Select Page

Call for a Strategic Planning Consultant

15th Nov 2021

Call for a Strategic Planning Consultant


1. Introduction

Initially founded as a loose network of human rights defenders (HRDs) in February 2013, the Southern Africa Human Rights Defenders Network (Southern Defenders) is now a firmly established, increasingly influential non-profit sub-regional network of human rights and civic space defenders from Southern Africa. It is registered as Non-Profit Organisation in South Africa with a U.S. Equivalence Determination, making it the equivalent of a US public charity. It coordinates regional efforts to provide rapid, practical and holistic protection support to HRDs at high risk, defend civic space, and enhance the agency of HRDs to mitigate the effects of repression. Southern Defenders has partners in all Southern African countries.

As part of its growth initiatives, Southern Defenders intends to conduct a scenario-based strategic planning exercise through the guidance of a consultant, from December 6-8, 2021 in Mozambique.

2. The context of the consultancy

In lieu of a strategic plan, Southern Defenders has been operating under a Results Framework (RF) and is now geared to develop a comprehensive strategic plan, which will outline the dynamic road map the Southern Defenders will take to transform into a high performance and accountable strategic enabler in protecting HRDs and defending the civic space, including the freedoms of assembly and freedoms of association in Southern Africa.

Southern Defenders’ programmatic environment is constantly changing and is characterised by an evolving economic and political environment, shifting donor commitments, growing stakeholder numbers and expectations, evolving staffing structure and capacity, amongst other factors. Additionally, this is a transition period for Southern Defenders with new board members coming into office. At the secretariat level, some transitions have also happened (or are ongoing). It is thus a good time for the organisation to reflect on its past and think through the most effective way to capitalise on the new governance and programmatic realities.

3. Scope of assignment

The main objective of this consultancy is to develop a new strategic framework for Southern Defenders that takes into account the current internal and external operating environment in order to enhance Southern Defenders’ operational effectiveness and sustainability in the HRDs and civic space sector in Southern Africa.

At the end of this consultancy, we expect that Southern Defenders will adopt a new strategic framework, building on the achievements brought forward as part of the implementation of 2019- 2021 RF and cognisant of its ever-changing operating environment. To achieve this, the consultant will review and guide Southern Defenders in clearly defining: –

  1. Our vision, mission, goal, strategic priorities and objectives, including a global theory of change  
  2. Our situational context, through a SWOT, PEST and other relevant analysis, including scenario mapping.
  3. Sustainability plan; including proposals for effective financial and Human resource strategies
  4. Our stakeholder map and identify relevant strategies to engage them to advance our stated objectives, stakeholder
  5. Risk analysis and management approaches,
  6. Functional organisational & leadership structure,
  7. Monitoring and reporting framework to enable effective tracking of the strategic plan
  8. Costing of the plan.
  9. Team building initiatives

This assignment will involve close engagement with the internal Southern Defenders Strategic Planning Team (comprising of the Team Leader, selected Board Members and staff members) and entail a participatory process, including, but not limited to:

  • A review of internal documents and benchmark with similar institutions/ organisations
  •  Consultations with Southern Defenders members, staff and selected partners/ stakeholders to review the current plan (RF) and set priorities for the next plan
  •  Facilitation of a strategic planning workshop for staff, board members and selected stakeholders to further build on the Strategic plan
  •  Drawing up of a draft Strategic Plan for the next phase and incorporating input from staff, Board and selected stakeholders and partners.

4. Expected deliverables

  • An inception report detailing the methodology/ approaches and timelines and a basic needs assessment highlighting the current status and gaps in Southern Defenders strategic direction.
  •  A two-day strategic planning workshop for the Southern Defenders Staff, Board and selected partners
  •  A new strategic plan following the workshop.

A consultancy report that includes the major activities of the consultancy, the highlights of the strategic planning workshop and an evaluation of the workshop.

5. Expert profile

In order to be selected for this assignment, the Consultant must possess the following among other Academic and Professional qualifications:

  1. A minimum of a post graduate qualification, preferably in the fields of law, strategic management, organisational development or in a related field
  2.  Minimum of 5 years of experience in strategic planning.
  3.  Experience in organisational and change management
  4.  Good knowledge of the human rights and civic space field.
  5.  Excellent communication and facilitation skills
  6.  Highly motivated and committed to Southern Defenders values of Ubuntu, Professionalism, accountability, courage in action, integrity and teamwork

6. Selection criteria

The consultant will submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) to, including the following:

  • A suitability statement; including commitment to his/her availability for the entire assignment.
  • Updated curriculum vitae that clearly spells out qualifications and experience in relation to this assignment.
  • Contacts of 3 organisations that have recently contracted the consultant to carry out a similar assignment.

7. Supervision

This consultancy assignment will be supervised by the Southern Defenders’ Team Leader, with the support of the Southern Defenders Strategic Planning team

8. Confidentiality of information

All documents and data collected in the process of the consultancy will be treated as confidential and used solely to facilitate the consultancy assignment. All information to which the consultant shall receive access to shall at all times be treated as the property of Southern Defenders and shall not be disclosed saved for where express permission has been granted as such.

9. Consultancy duration

The strategic planning exercise is expected to be fully completed by January 31, 2022. The consultant will submit a detailed plan of work as part of the EOI.

10. Budget and payment

The Consultant will submit a detailed budget in the EOI for consideration by Southern Defenders. The final terms will be stipulated in the consultancy contract.

11. Due Date

The due date for submitting the EOI is 23 November 2021.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Related Posts

2021 Southern Africa Human Rights Defenders Summit

2021 Southern Africa Human Rights Defenders Summit

The Southern Africa Human Rights Defenders Network (Southern Defenders), in partnership with Mozambique Human Rights Defenders Network (MHRDN), Advancing Human Rights in Southern Africa (ARISA), UN Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights Regional Office for...



The Southern African Human Rights Network (Southern Defenders) calls for the nomination for the 2021 Southern Defenders Awards for outstanding Human Rights Defenders. The annual Southern Defenders Award was established in 2018 to celebrate the courage and resilience...