Save The Children

Consultant (Literature Review and Roadmap for Addressing Child, Early, and Forced Marriage and Unions)

Save The Children

Job Description

Project Description/Background

Nine of the ten countries with the highest rates of child marriage are fragile states. Based on the Fragile States Index, attributes of state fragility may include:

  • The loss of physical control of its territory or a monopoly on the legitimate use of force
  • The erosion of legitimate authority to make collective decisions.
  • An inability to provide reasonable public services.
  • The inability to interact with other states as a full member of the international community.

Preventing child, early and forced marriages and unions (CEFMU) and realising the rights of married, widowed and divorced girls requires a multisectoral approach. This includes:

  • the creation and implementation of fully-funded laws and policies to ensure girls’ rights
  • enabling access to education justice, social protection, sexual and reproductive health and Child Protection services
  • meaningful inclusion of girls in related decision-making processes.

States have a critical role to play in providing this leadership and making essential services available to all girls – state fragility therefore poses a significant barrier to fulfilling this role and effectively addressing CEFMU.

Practical, evidence-based guidance is needed to enable more effective interventions to address CEFMU in fragile contexts. Key considerations we would like the guidance to address:

  • What measures governments can take in the context of limited control, resources or stability?
  • How to manage frequently changing circumstances, for example frequent need for humanitarian support or periods of conflict
  • How to maintain gains made during periods of stability through periods of instability
  • How to sustain positive interventions introduced during periods of Humanitarian Intervention as governments re-take control of service delivery
  • How to enable continuity of service delivery and reform processes through changes in leadership and control
  • How can humanitarian actors support sustainable gains through periods of transition in fragile contexts?
  • What role can or should others holding ‘state power’ e.g. armed non-state actors play?
  • What existing guidance can be adapted for fragile contexts?
  • Are considerations different for conflict and climate related disasters and can a single set of guidelines speak to both?

Save the Children is seeking a consultant to conduct a comprehensive literature review and to Design a roadmap for developing Guidance to Address CEFMU in Fragile States, including measures to gain buy-in from key stakeholders.

Period of Engagement

April - July 2023.

Consultant Deliverables

  1. Literature Review. The Literature Review should be approximately 10-15 pages long and include research, evidence, and policy relevant to the key considerations above.
  2. Roadmap. This document should be approximately 5-10 pages long and include these elements based on findings from the literature review:
  • A list of key actors working on child marriage and in fragile contexts including governments, donors, humanitarian actors and UN agencies. E.g., UNFPA/UNICEF in connection to the Global programme on Ending Child Marriage, donor governments interested in GBV in fragile contexts, governments of fragile or former fragile states, relevant CSOs., etc.
  • A proposed format(s) for development, endorsement, and adoption of Guidance to Address CEFMU in Fragile States, taking into account practicality reflected in the key considerations above, as well as user profiles. ( E.g. Could we define guidelines for different phases of transition between humanitarian crisis and stability or based on different levels of fragility? Long and short-term steps?)
  • A theory of change and timeline for gaining buy-in from key stakeholders in order to accelerate development of the Guidance.

Each deliverable will include one or two rounds of feedback from Save the Children before finalization.

Illustrative Timeline

Deliverable 1: Literature Review

  • Consultant delivers first draft - 15 May 2023
  • Save the Children provides feedback - 19 May 2023
  • Consultant incorporates feedback and delivers final draft - 5 June 2023

Deliverable 2: Roadmap

  • Consultant delivers first draft - 12 June 2023
  • Save the Children provides feedback - 16 June 2023
  • Consultant delivers second draft - 23 June 2023
  • Save the Children provides feedback - 28 June 2023
  • Consultant delivers final draft - 7 July 2023

Management of Consultancy

The Consultant’s main point of contact will be Gabrielle Szabo, Head of Policy, Research and Evidence Team at Save the Children UK.

To facilitate the work of the Consultant, meetings with the Consultant and advisers from Save the Children will occur as necessary.


Consultancy may be undertaken by an individual or group; group proposals are especially encouraged. The following qualifications are required:

  • Fluency in English
  • Availability to meet with Save the Children focal points via Teams video calls between the hours of 9am-5pm GMT
  • Substantive experience conducting literature reviews on the topics of Humanitarian Emergencies, fragile states, governance, child marriage, Gender Equality, and/or broader development issues
  • Track record of completing deliverables on time and in line with required project scope
  • Commitment to child safeguarding and do-no-harm approaches

The following qualifications are desired:

  • Experience working on issues related to gender-based violence in fragile states or humanitarian contexts
  • Familiarity with international Law" id="link" class="link">Humanitarian Law and obligations of state and non-state actor
  • Familiarity with humanitarian architecture and key decision-making actors, bodies and frameworks
  • Understanding of African peace and security issues
  • Familiarity with feminist research principles and practices

How to apply

Send an email to Gabrielle Szabo ( with the subject line “Consultancy – CEFMU in Fragile Contexts.” In PDF or Word format, please attach:

  • a CV/s (maximum 2 pages)
  • a capability statement (maximum 1 page) setting out the consultant/s ability to meet the qualifications
  • a proposed project timeline and workplan (maximum 1 page) and total fees; proposals in the $10-15,000 range are encouraged
  • 1-2 examples of relevant prior work demonstrating capability

Deadline for applications is April 21 2023. Please contact if you would like to apply but require an extension to the application deadline.

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