The Asia Foundation – Consultancy – Strengthening Public Financial Management in DNRS Service Delivery, Analysis of Funding Flows and Bottlenecks to Service Delivery – CD 24 de Maio de 2015


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Consultancy – Strengthening Public Financial Management in DNRS Service Delivery, Analysis of Funding Flows and Bottlenecks to Service Delivery

 

Consultancy – Strengthening Public Financial Management in DNRS Service Delivery, Analysis of Funding Flows and Bottlenecks to Service Delivery

BACKGROUND

The Asia Foundation (the Foundation) recently launched an Ending Violence Against Women (EVAW) Program in Timor-Leste under a Grant Agreement with the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. The EVAW Program goal is to reduce the proportion of women who have experienced violence, and to better meet the needs of women and children affected by violence. The objective is to improve outcomes for women in prevention, support services, and access to justice by improving capacity in key ministries, reducing levels of violence, improving services, and strengthening judicial processes serving the needs of women survivors of violence.

The program’s primary counterpart is the Ministry of Social Solidary (MSS), which is the lead agency for addressing VAW including in its role as coordinator of the GBV Referral Network at district level, manager of key staff responsible for receiving cases of violence against women and children, as a funder to service providers and in its responsibility to create standards for services. The EVAW program is providing grants to CSO service providers, and institutional strengthening support to the Directorate of National Social Reinsertion (DNRS) within MSS. The focus is on improving the quality and expanding the reach of existing services. It is for this reason that TAF EVAW wishes to do an analysis of funding flows and bottlenecks to DNRS service delivery, in collaboration with MSS.

The program recognizes that there has already been considerable work done related to service provision, in particular, by MSS itself, CSOs and UNICEF, UNFPA, UN Women, initiatives which were previously funded by Australia through the Justice Sector Support Facility (JSSF) and Irish Aid.

There is more to be done to improve the quality and reach of services provided to women and children. This includes working towards timely transfer of resources to MSS partners, making allocations which reflect the needs and capacity of service providers and seeking resources so that government is increasingly covering the costs of services to assist women and girls who experience violence.

UNICEF and UN Women have both undertaken studies to gather and analyse information regarding the costs of staffing and providing services to victims. The information from these initiatives should be reviewed and considered by the consultant. The focus of this consultancy will be to try to further document and analyse the processes which are involved in budgeting, allocation and disbursing funds.

 

OBJECTIVES

This consultancy will seek to fulfill the following objectives:

  • Development of enhanced understanding of current processes to plan and allocate DNRS funds to partners
  • Development of enhanced understanding of current processes and bottlenecks to transfer funds to DNRS partners working on violence against women and children
  • Development of enhanced understanding of current processes and bottlenecks to transfer funds to individuals experiencing violence who are in need of special assistance
  • Development of enhanced understanding of current processes and bottlenecks to allocate and transfer funds for activities of DNRS staff at national and district level who are working on violence against women and children
  • Identification of actions to address challenges and bottlenecks identified.

AUDIENCES FOR THE ANALYSIS

Audience Relevant Objectives How this relates to their role and responsibilities
Senior leadership in MSS All – particularly 1 and 5 Analysis and suggested actions from this consultation could enable MSS to make the most effective use of its commitment to support and resource work on VAW, in particular through processes to forward plan resources for the ministry and internally allocate resources
Leadership in DNRS All Analysis and suggested actions from this consultation could enable DNRS to make the most effective use of its commitment to support and resource work on VAW, in particular through focused staff positions and support to civil society organizations.
Finance staff within MSS 5 Analysis and suggested actions could be used to inform work of Finance and identify areas for adjustment
Partners of MSS 2 and 5 Analysis and suggested actions could be used by partners to plan their work and processes to enable more efficient and effective transfer and use of resources
Ending Violence Against Women Program All Analysis and suggested actions will be used by the EVAW program to guide engagement and technical assistance with both MSS and partners
Other programming funded by the Australian Government 5 Analysis and suggested actions could be used by other DFAT programs which are interacting with the Ministry of Finance
Ministry of Finance All Analysis and suggested actions could be used by the Ministry of Finance to further understand how systems and processes are experienced by line ministries and partners and individuals receiving supports and services from ministries.

 

 

ActivitIES

These terms of reference address the requirement for a Public Expenditure Tracking[1]  define assessment of specific aspects of DNRS programming.  The approach of this consultancy will be to inquire regarding specific areas of budgeting and spending which currently pose challenges to DNRS and partners and which are related to the quality and sustainability of services. This consultancy will consider funding for DNRS partners as well as for DNRS’s own activities. We are also interested in understanding where the bottlenecks exist in terms of DNRS accessing, and dispersing funding for its own activities. This will include looking at planning, budgeting, resource allocation, expenditure and procurement. The process of inquiry will need to engage with both MSS and the Ministry of Finance.

The Asia Foundation is looking for a consultant to undertake the following areas of inquiry. The table below is indicative, and details will be confirmed during the initial Inception Phase of the consultancy:

Objectives Questions Variables of interest/Data sources/Methods of Data Collection/Data Collection Tools
1)      Development of enhanced understanding of current processes to plan and allocate DNRS funds to partners

 

What are the interactions between DNRS and other parts of MSS in deciding on allocations to Directorates? In particular what are the challenges and opportunities to request increases in funds?

What are the current processes for developing the DNRS annual budget? In particular what data, information and criteria are used in developing the budget?

Develop a summary to compare the level of funding from DNRS to the client caseload of identified partners (partners to be identified by MSS and EVAW).

What are the current processes for transferring funds to DNRS for utilization? Where are there bottlenecks and challenges?

What are mistakes or gaps which result in delays in payments?

 

To be confirmed
2)      Development of enhanced understanding of current processes and bottlenecks to transfer funds to DNRS partners working on violence against women and children

 

What are the current processes for transfer of funds to DNRS partners? In particular, what is the process of receiving funds from Ministry of Finance, and then processing the funding through MSS finance and out to CSO partners.?

 

What are the current requirements from DNRS regarding financial reporting from partners? How are grants monitored?

 

Where are there bottlenecks and challenges?

 

What are mistakes or gaps which result in delays in payments?

 

Consult with relevant actors regarding potential solutions to these problems.

 

To be confirmed
3)      Development of enhanced understanding of current processes and bottlenecks to transfer funds to individuals experiencing violence who are in need of special assistance

 

What are the current processes for provision of financial and material assistance for victims? In particular how the amount of assistance is determined and the processes to release funds to individuals? How long does it take to provide this assistance?

Consult with relevant actors regarding potential solutions to these problems

 

To be confirmed
4)      Development of enhanced understanding of current processes and bottlenecks to allocate and transfer funds for activities of DNRS staff at national and district level who are working on violence against women and children

 

What are the current processes for planning and budgeting for staff based in municipalities particularly Child Protection Officers (OPL’s) and Gender Based Violence Focal Points (GBV FP’s)?

Where resources are sufficient and where there are gaps?

Where are there bottlenecks and challenges?

What are potential to these problems?

To be confirmed
5)      Identification of actions to address challenges and bottlenecks identified.

 

To be confirmed

 

 

Deliverables

  1. To be provided within 1 – 2 days of in-country start: initial assessment plan identifying methodology and scope of the analysis, based on the Table provided in the TOR (up to 2 pages).
  2. Presentation of findings to a meeting at the end of the mission. Attendees for this meeting will be decided based on the list of “Key Audiences” and confirmed with MSS and EVAW during the consultancy period.
  3. To be provided upon completion of the work: a draft report of no more than 25 pages. The report should be written in an accessible manner, presenting information in a way that is useful to non-native English speakers and people who may not be highly experienced in PFM. The report will include:
    1. Documentation of key process and timelines for planning and processing of funds for DNRS activities and support to partners.
    2. Documentation of key processes and considerations in budgeting for DNRS programming related to violence against women and children.
    3. Identification of feasible options and opportunities to address bottlenecks, including prioritizing and sequencing on what needs to be addressed, and when, in order to build more effective and stronger financial management capacity.

All documents will be provided to The Asia Foundation in soft copy.

Duration

15 days

Supervision

The Consultant will be supervised by Sophia Cason, the Organisational Strengthening Coordinator and Access to Justice Coordinator, EVAW Program.

Required qualifications and experience

  • A minimum of ten years professional experience in a combination of public financial management, including experience in a developing country context;
  • A tertiary qualification in a relevant discipline (Masters desirable);
  • Experience of working with a government Ministry in Timor-Leste;
  • Public Finance expertise in Timor-Leste;
  • Experience and understanding of Timor-Leste public financial administration processes, documentation, budget templates and regulations;
  • Ability to produce high quality reporting outputs on a tight deadlines; and
  • Fluency in written English and Tetum.

Core skills and attributes

  • A personal commitment to promoting gender equality and to modelling personal behaviours consistent with program focus;
  • A commitment to consultation and listening to relevant actors to collaboratively identify ways to address problems;
  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively in a cross-cultural setting;
  • A commitment to working respectfully and collaboratively with individuals and organisations at a range of levels;
  • Strong oral and written communication skills; and
  • Strong networking skills.

 

Expression of interest

Expressions of interest must be submitted no later than 29 May 2015 containing the following information:

  • Cover letter outlining prior relevant experience and contact details of two referees
  • Curriculum Vitae

Applications should be submitted to Dian Wahyu Saputri – email dian.saputri@asiafoundation.org.

Questions regarding this TOR may be directed to Sophia Cason, OIS and Access to Justice Coordinator, Ending Violence Against Women Program, The Asia Foundation Timor-Leste. Email: sophia.cason@asiafoundation.org.

[1] From Kozio, Margaret and Tolmie, Courtney, Using Public Expenditure Tracking Surveys to Monitor Projects and Small-Scale Programs: A Guidebook, World Bank, Washington, DC, 2010. “Public Expenditure Tracking Surveys are tools in a methodology used to track the flow of public resources (including human, financial, or inkind) from the highest levels of government to frontline service providers. PETS first identify a research objective, then employ an extensive mapping exercise in order to understand the flow of funds through the different levels of government. Once the resource flows are mapped, budget data are collected and analyzed, and often complemented with a facilities survey and qualitative research. PETS can help civil society and policy makers alike to understand funding flows, identify areas of leakage, and make informed policy decisions based on their findings (p. 3).”

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