International Consultant to assist United Nations Country Team in Turkmenistan to develop a joint Programme for “Improving the system of social protection through introduction of inclusive community-based social services

Location : Home based with 1 mission to ASHGABAT, TURKMENISTAN
Application Deadline : 26-Aug-19 (Midnight New York, USA)
Additional Category : Sustainable Development and Poverty Reduction
Type of Contract : Individual Contract
Post Level : International Consultant
Languages Required :
English   Russian  
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract : 1.09.2019-30.11.2019
Expected Duration of Assignment : 15 working days


Turkmenistan’s policy reforms in the area of social protection aimed at better meeting the financial, educational and medical needs of the most vulnerable group of the society are underway. The necessity for integrated social support services for families and children in Turkmenistan stems from the country's commitment to achieve global goals for sustainable development (SDGs 2015-2030), which include the objective of providing accessibility and quality of social services for all children and eliminating the inequalities in access to services among vulnerable groups of population.

Development of the civil society and wider engagement of the civil society into provision of inclusive quality community-based support services is identified as one of the priorities in the Partnership Framework for Development PFD for 2016-2020 between the Government of Turkmenistan and UN. Development of social services is also central to the attainment of all Sustainable SDGs to benefit all vulnerable children, people with disabilities and other vulnerable groups. However, the positive results of these reforms are not palpable yet, and people with disabilities are not fully included and their participation in society is limited.

In 2018, UNDP conducted a rapid assessment of the social service sector in Turkmenistan that revealed gaps in provision of social services to vulnerable groups. The quick assessment of the national legislation also showed that the CSOs are eligible to be contracted by the government to deliver social services. It also confirmed the interest of CSOs to provide such services to their target groups. In addition, during the technical consultations with the government institutions, the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan expressed interest to further explore possible opportunities for comprehensive socio-medical service delivery and to pilot integrated services to vulnerable groups.

This year, UNICEF, UNDP, UNFPA and UNODC, under the leadership of the UN Resident Coordinator, developed a joint concept note on “Improving social protection through the introduction of inclusive quality community-based social services” which was submitted to the SDG Fund. The concept note was shortlisted and will now need to be developed into a full joint program proposal.

Given the above context, UNDP in Turkmenistan is going to recruit an international consultant to support UN Country Team and partners to develop a technically sound detailed joint program proposal to SDG Fund on social services, which reflects the country’s priorities and is adapted to the specific context.


The purpose of the consultancy is to provide technical inputs and advice to UN Country Team for the development of a full two-year joint program proposal on introducing quality community based social services in Turkmenistan, jointly with UNICEF consultant hired for the same purpose and design a pilot model  of comprehensive socio-medical services for social contracting with the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan, including roles and responsibilities, and cost estimates for the implementation.

Duties and Responsibilities

The selected consultant will undertake the following:

  • Desk-review of the SDG related  joint programme/ UNSDG Guidance on Joint Programmes;
  • Hold internal briefing discussion with UNDP Team, UNICEF consultant, which may include a series of conference calls to further discuss technical details of the proposal and next steps;
  • Facilitate technical discussions with all participating UN agencies as well as government partners and NGOs, and provide written technical inputs to these discussions as needed;
  • Prepare analysis of the current status of social work and provision of community- based social services in Turkmenistan in light of the objective of the concept note submitted to the SDG fund;
  • Develop the program document, and therefore this whole assignment will be based on the following documents (to be provided by UNDP):
    • The original concept note submitted to the SDG fund;
    • The list of human rights conventions and recommendations relevant for this proposal;
    • The guidance and project document template received from the SDG fund secretariat on the development of the program in writing and through online means (webinars and Yammer platform);
    • Previous analysis and documentation available on social work and social services provision in Turkmenistan;
    • Hold technical meetings with the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry, Ministry of Labour and Social Protection, Ministry of Finance and Economy and other relevant stakeholders to discuss possibility of social contracting through CSOs;
    • Design a pilot model of social contracting with the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan, including roles and responsibilities, cost estimates for the implementation.
  • Technical contributions to a detailed action plan for a two-year joint program, including written inputs to the program proposal;
  • Recommendations for UNDP’s piloting model with the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry of Turkmenistan of social services for two-year project as part of the joint programme component.

Management arrangements:

The international expert will work with UNDP on a daily basis. He/she is expected to work closely with UNICEF consultant and the other participating agencies including the Resident Coordinator’s office in this assignment.  The consultant will report directly to UNDP Portfolio Manager.

Deliverables and timeframe:

The consultancy duration is 15 working days, covering the period of 1 September 2019 – 30 November 2019. The distribution of days by tasks is suggested below. The consultant is expected to work home-based most of the time (10 days home-based) undertaking one country visit (5 working days in-country) during the consultancy period.

  • Deliverable 1: Draft contributions to the program proposal, and list of additional data/information requirements to finalize the proposal;
  • Deliverable 2: Draft contributions to the UNDP pilot model with the Ministry of Health and Medical Industry for social contracting within two-year project document. Location: Home based and in-country visit. Number of days: 8 days;
  • Deliverable 3: Revised contributions to the program proposal;
  • Deliverable 4: Revised pilot model for social contracting within two-year project document. Location: home based. Number of days: 7 days.

Payment Conditions:

This is an installment-based contract that should cover the costs of consultancy and all other costs required to produce the above deliverables. The final schedule of payments will be agreed upon in the beginning of consultancy.

Payment will be released in 2 installments: 1st installment: 50% (for completion of the deliverable 1 and 2), and 2d installment 50% (for deliverable 3 and 4) – upon timely submission of respective deliverables and their acceptance by UNDP Turkmenistan.


Functional Competencies:

  • Knowledge of and extensive experience working in the area of civil society in Turkmenistan, civil society support in Turkmenistan, development of the non-governmental sector, government-CSO cooperation, etc. Prior experience in Turkmenistan or in Central Asia and knowledge of social services/protection systems of CEE/CIS countries;
  • Excellent analytical skills;
  • Excellent communication skills;
  • Results driven, ability to work under pressure and to meet required deadlines;
  • Good understanding and practice of capacity development;
  • Cultural sensitivity;
  • Diplomatic skills;

Corporate Competencies:

  • Demonstrates integrity by modeling the UN’s values and ethical standards;
  • Promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of UNDP;
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability;
  • Treats all people fairly without favoritism;
  • Fulfills all obligations to gender sensitivity and zero tolerance for sexual harassment.

Required Skills and Experience


  • Advanced university degree in a relevant field, such, social protection, social sciences, governance, law, etc.


  • At least 8 years of working experience in the area of social protection, social services;
  • Prior experience in Turkmenistan or in Central Asia and knowledge of public services and third sector of CEE/CIS countries;
  • Good understanding of the UN mandate in the area of democratic governance;

Language requirements:

  • Excellent written and spoken English; good knowledge of Russian.

Submission of applications:

Interested individual consultants must submit the following documents/information to demonstrate their qualifications:

All experts applying for this position are required to provide:

  • Description of the methodology (1-2 pages) for the assignment;
  • Financial Proposal with the references to (1) the daily rate for the assignment and within the timing scale indicated in the present TOR, and (2) any other expenses (including transportation costs, accommodation costs, the possibility of vaccination and etc.). Template of the form named "Letter of Confirmation Interest and Availability" can be found at The UNDP will enter into an Individual Contract based on a lump sum amount. The financial proposal shall represent a detailed, justified and “all inclusive” amount.  In order to assist UNDP in the comparison of financial proposals, the financial proposal shall include a breakdown of this lump sum amount, including: a daily fee for the tasks and an estimated duration as specified in this announcement, travel (to and from the missions), per diems, any other possible costs (including vaccinations, dwelling, communication etc.);
  • Personal CV form including past experience in similar projects and contact details of referees.

Evaluation of proposals:

Individual Consultants will be evaluated based on the combined scoring methodology. When using this method, the award of the contract should be made to the individual consultant whose offer has been evaluated and determined as:

  • Responsive/compliant and
  • Having received the highest score – out of 100 points

Out of the maximum score of 100 points, the score for technical criteria equals 70% - maximum 70 points, and for financial criteria 30%.

The technical evaluation (70%, or max 70 points) will take into account the following as per the scoring provided:

  • Education – 20 pts;
  • At least 8 years of working experience in the area of social protection, social services. Proven experience and good understanding of research and statistical analysis – 20 pts;
  • Methodology– 20 pts;
  • Good understanding of the UN mandate in the area of democratic governance –15 pts;
  • Prior experience in Turkmenistan or in Central Asia and knowledge of public services and third sector of CEE/CIS countries- 15 pts;
  • Fluency in Russian – 5pts;
  • Fluency in English– 5pts;

Financial proposal – 30% of total evaluation.

Additional requirements for recommended contractor:

Recommended contractors aged 65 and older, and if the travel is required, shall undergo a full medical examination including x-ray, and obtain medical clearance from the UN-approved doctor prior to taking up their assignment. The medical examination is to be cleared by the UN physicians, and shall be paid by the consultant.


UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.