Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States:  Consultancy for the Documentation of Country Experience on Social Protection Reform in St. Vincent and the Grenadines

Closing Date: August 27, 2018




Consultancy for the Documentation of Country Experience on Social Protection Reform in St. Vincent and the Grenadines 


Consultancy for the Documentation of Country Experience on Social Protection Reform in St. Vincent and the Grenadines

Terms of Reference


1. Background and Rationale

Caribbean Small Island Developing States (SIDS) require targeted social protection responses for three main reasons. The first is that these islands are susceptible to economic and environmental shocks. The United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) designed an Environmental Vulnerability Index (EVI) based on 50 indicators for estimating the vulnerability of a country’s environment to future shocks, namely the extent to which the natural environment is prone to damage and degradation. The EVI found 34 countries classified as SIDS to be highly or extremely vulnerable to future shocks, while 10 are classified as vulnerable. For Caribbean SIDS, Trinidad and Tobago, Barbados, and Saint Lucia are classified as extremely vulnerable, while Grenada, St Kitts and Nevis and St Vincent and the Grenadines are among those classified as highly vulnerable.[1]  

The second reason which warrants targeted social protection systems is that these states have experienced limited economic growth which has led to increases in poverty.  Caribbean SIDS have experienced limited growth in recent years, with significant declines experienced after the 2008 crisis. For example, in Antigua and Barbuda, growth registered at -11.9 percent at the height of the crisis in 2009. Other Caribbean SIDS where growth performance was significantly affected include Barbados, Grenada, and St Kitts and Nevis.[2] This has caused a contraction in the labour markets and high unemployment. 

The third reason is that demographic and epidemiological transitions have impacted positively on the quality of life of the population.  This is especially noted among the elderly population, that is people 60 years and over and within the next 15 years, the number of older persons is expected to grow fastest in Latin America and the Caribbean with a projected 71 per cent increase in the population aged 60 years or over. These three factors have necessitated the implementation and strengthening of numerous safety net programme, labour market interventions, and insurance schemes from the governments of the region. 

Social safety nets are an important component of social protection systems for Caribbean SIDS. Most SIDS provide an unconditional cash transfer programme for the poor, usually Public Assistance (Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Haiti, Mauritius, St. Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, and St. Vincent and the Grenadines), while a few have focused on a conditional cash transfer (CCT) namely, Grenada and Trinidad and Tobago. 


Spending on safety nets is close to the global average of 1.9 percent of GDP (see Table 1). There are exceptions however, in the case of Mauritius, which spent 7.5 percent of GDP on safety nets compared with Saint Lucia’s expenditure of 1.3 percent of its GDP spent the lowest portion of GDP at 1.3 percent, when compared to the other SIDS identified in Table 1.


Table 1: Social Safety Net Spending in selected SIDS[3][4]






Spending          (%

GDP) 4


Antigua and Barbuda 






St. Kitts and Nevis 






St. Lucia 



St.        Vincent      and      the











In the case of children, social protection has to be a germane component of their rights and well-being. The average child poverty rate across the countries in the Eastern Caribbean Area was 32.7%, that is, about one-third of all children were living in poverty[5].  Child poverty limits the access of children to vital resources, including nutrition, water, sanitation, basic health and social services. These situations can prevent children from achieving their full potential due to cultural, physical, mental and social development, participation and protection deprivations.  Integrated social protection and child protection programmes have the propensity to break the cycle of poverty and vulnerability. Notwithstanding various challenges in implementation, Member States in the OECS region have sought to establish good protection systems geared towards enhancing the development of children and families.  

In addition, the SIDS in the Eastern Caribbean have all invested resources towards reforming their social protection system given the realization for the need of targeted responses. These resources not only include financial and human resources but national commitment to apply a rights-based approach to social safety net programmes informed by transparent, accountable mechanisms and evidence to identify the most vulnerable and to leave no one behind. 

It is against this background which the Social Development Unit in collaboration with UNICEF seeks to implement a Consultancy that will document good practices of implementing social protection programmes. Many SIDS are at different progress of their social protection reform and some have begun with the development of legislation and policy while some work on investing strengthening institutional capacity and refining their operational services of public assistance programmes.  One SIDS has invested many institutional reform in strengthening their social protection programmes and this is reflected with the total number of welfare officers and staff supporting the Department.  The St. Vincent and the Grenadines currently has a total of 89 staff members in their social protection divisions of the Ministry of National Mobilisation, Social Development, Family, Gender, Persons with Disabilities and Youth Affairs. Social protection expenditure comprises 12.4% of total recurrent expenditure. St. Vincent and the Grenadines is working on the development of the social protection legislation and policy this year.  


The Member States earmarked to be the first SIDS to document its social protection reform journey will be St. Vincent and the Grenadines where children make up 43.7% of those who are poor. The national poverty rate in SVG is 30.2% and children poverty rate is 37.6%.  This equates to about 13,260 children ages 0-17 years who are poor[6]. The outcome of this Consultancy intends to provide packaged information to other OECS Member States to learn from the lessons of St Vincent and the Grenadines in their reform journey to be adapted in the respective Member State social protection reform process.  


2. Scope of Consultancy 


This consultancy is geared toward documenting the experiences of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines in their social protection reform. Specifically, the consultancy will comprise the development of a country specific case study, production of a 2-page fact sheet and video showing the journey of the social protection reform process. The video will capture the key lessons learned from the institutional reform, legislative and policy development, capacity building of staff, programme development and delivery of services, tools utilized to inform public assistance programmes and its remaining gaps. In addition, recommendations for the improvement of delivery social protection will be highlighted. These can be utilized by other OECS Member States contemplating social protection reform.  

The documentation of the St. Vincent and the Grenadines social protection reform journey will be centered on the following questions: 

  1. What was the trigger and start to realization that investment in social protection was crucial? 
  2. What did St. Vincent and the Grenadines do differently to other OECS Member States that have now translated to increase staff and capacity in the social protection division? 
  3. What are the lessons learned along the journey of the reform that would be most relevant to other Member States? 
  4. How did the different programmes get established and what are the operational challenges? 
  5. Would Saint Vincent and the Grenadines prioritize legislation and policy investment vs. operational delivery? 
  6. How are poor and vulnerable children now benefiting from SVG social protection programmes? 


The consultancy will include the following components: 

  1. A desk review of St. Vincent and the Grenadines national documents, resources, tools, strategies, assessment reports. 
  2. Key informant interviews with government policy makers, beneficiaries, programme staff, and government development partners. 
  3. Country case study from the context of SIDS capturing the lessons learned from St. Vincent and the

Grenadines’ investment on institutional reform, capacity building, programme development, tools utilized for public assistance programmes, gaps that remain and recommendations for other OECS to adopt and adapt. 

  1. Production of 2-page max factsheets 
  2. Develop a short 10-12-minute video presenting case study of St. Vincent and the Grenadines. 


3. Methodology and main activities

Based on the multi-country desk review, the analytical framework will be contextualized for the specific studies, including country specific research questions around key criteria to be defined during the inception phase. Qualitative and quantitative methods of analysis will be used, including triangulation of findings. 

The consultant will be expected to structure their work in four phases:

  1. Inception phase: listing of key documents to review, list of key stakeholders to interview, outline of the case study, analytical framework to be used, followed by an inception report;
  2. Data collection: review of available secondary data and collection of additional secondary data; remote and / or in-country key informant interviews at national and island specific level in St.

Vincent and the Grenadines;

  1. Data analysis based on the agreed analytical framework;  
  2. Synthesis of collected data and drafting of the case study.
  3. Develop 2-page factsheet 
  4. Develop video of the case study: selection of those to be interviewed, generate script and questions to be included based on the case study, shoot on-site with identifiable locations agreed with SVG government partners, edit and finalize video. 


4. Deliverables

The deliverables for this consultancy are:

  1. 1 inception report, including listing of documents and key stakeholders to be interviewed, analytical framework,  
  2. 1 country case study report;
  3. 2 page factsheet
  4. 10-12-minute video on the case study


5. Timeframe

The Consultancy will have a duration sixty (60) person days, from September 10, 2018 to November 30, 2018. 

6.  a. Selection Requirements a. Qualifications and Experience

  • Holder of Masters level degree in Social Sciences, Social Development, Communication for Development, Communication and Behavior Change or Public Relations 
  • At least three years of relevant professional work experience in developing advocacy and communication material for print, media, radio and social media across all types of audience members.
  • Hands-on advocacy experience in supporting national policy dialogues including working with general public and media throughout the OECS and/or a CARICOM Member States


b. Knowledge, Skills and Attributes Requirements


  • Has a minimum three years working experience in Communication for Development and

Behaviour Change or Public Relations 

  • Possesses an understanding of the issues of social protection in the Caribbean
  • Has knowledge of the communication/media culture of the OECS
  • Demonstrates the ability to establish and maintain good working relations at all levels
  • Possesses excellent graphic and written communication skills.  
  • Knowledge and use of developing infographics to package data and information 
  • Has access and ability to source production of video development and editing support 


7. Coordination and Support

During the Assessment, the Consultant will work closely with the Social Development Unit (SDU).  The Consultant will be administratively managed and supported by the Head of the Social Development Unit. 


8. Obligations of OECS Commission The OECS Commission agrees to: 

  1. Along with UNICEF, review and provide feedback on consultancy deliverables; 
  2. Provide all necessary technical and logistical support to ensure that the consultancy is undertaken with reasonable efficiency; 
  3. Allocate a point person(s) to support consultants during the process; 
  4. Meet all the agreed cost related to the consultancy; 
  5. Make all necessary contacts that may be needed; and 
  6. Guide the consultancy as necessary.




9    Payment Schedule 




Payment Schedule

Time frame


Inception report including work plan       detailing                 approach associated with undertaking the consultancy


September 17, 2018


1 country case study report


October 15, 2018


2-page factsheet


November 2, 2018


10-12-minute video on the case study


November 23, 2018


10. Property Rights


The OECS and UNICEF shall hold all property rights, such as copyright, patents and registered trademarks, on matter directly related to, or derived from, the work carried out through this contract with the OECS and the sponsoring agency UNICEF. 



Consultancy for the Documentation of Country Experience on Social Protection Reform in St.

Vincent and the Grenadines 


Individual Consultants wishing to signify their interest in undertaking the prescribed services are to submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) to include: 


  1. Information on the Consultant’s qualifications and technical competence relevant to the assignment, experience in undertaking similar assignments, including Curriculum Vitae of the Individual Consultant proposed for the assignment; 


  1. A Concept Note on the planned framework for undertaking the assignment and a breakdown of the number of days required for each task.


Consultants shall bear all costs associated with the preparation and submission of their Expressions of Interest.


The OECS is not bound to accept any Expression of Interest and reserves the right to annul the selection process at any time prior to contract award, without thereby incurring any liability to the Consultants.


For more information or to submit Expressions of Interest, please contact:


Procurement Officer 

Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States

Morne Fortune

P.O. Box 1383



Telephone Numbers: 758-455- 6327/ 758-455-6300

Email Address:


An electronic copy of the Expressions of Interest are to reach the OECS Commission by September 3, 2018 addressed to:


The email submissions should include the name and address of the Individual Consultant and shall be clearly marked in the subject line as “Consultancy for the Documentation of Country Experience on Social Protection Reform in St. Vincent and the Grenadines


An Individual Consultant will be selected in accordance with the Consultant’s Qualifications (CQS) Selection method as detailed in the procedures set out in the Procurement Manual of the OECS dated November 2013, revised June 2017.


The criteria to evaluate the Expressions of Interests submitted may include:

  1. Qualifications of the Consultant
  2. Technical competence in undertaking the assignment 
  3. Related Experience of the Consultant and experience in undertaking                               similar assignments 
  4. Planned framework submitted for undertaking the assignment


Expressions of Interest will be evaluated and the Individual Consultant with the most relevant experience, qualifications and technical competence will be selected and requested to submit a proposal which will be the basis for negotiations leading to a contract.  


It is expected that the services will commence September 2018 and be completed no later than November 2018.





[1] Tailoring Social Protection to Small Island Developing States: Lessons Learned from the Caribbean. 2013


[2] Ibid. 

[3] Ibid

[4] Ibid

[5] Child Poverty in the Eastern Caribbean Area Report, 2017. 

[6] Ibid

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