Consultancy: Development of costed national sanitation and hygiene strategy

United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)
Freetown, Sierra Leone
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
International Organization
Experience Level: 
8-9 Years
Degree Required: 
Advanced Degree (Master's or JD)


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How can you make a difference?

In Sierra Leone, poor sanitation and hygiene and use of unsafe water cause ill-health and contribute to about half of the preventable diseases (MTNDP 2019-2023). The leading diseases are malaria, diarrhoeal diseases (including cholera and typhoid), worm infestation, and respiratory tract infections. Poor disposal of human excreta and garbage also increases the spread of cholera and typhoid, resulting in many deaths. The overall purpose of UNICEF’s support to the Government of Sierra Leone’s WASH programme is to ensure that more people, especially the most vulnerable children, women, adolescent girls and their families in rural and urban areas have access to and use affordable, sustainable and basic water and sanitation services and practice proper hygiene behaviours.  Ultimately, by ensuring that they receive improved WASH services, children will be better able to achieve their educational potential, be guaranteed improved health outcomes, and assume their roles as productive members of their societies, communities and families. However, recent major emergencies (Cholera, Ebola, flood/mudslides) slowed down the pace of improvements on   access to WASH services, especially safe water sources and sanitation. The high poverty level (over 70 per cent of the population), shocks from previous emergencies, poor water quality and current limited WASH services are predisposing children and their families to an increased risk of water-borne diseases outbreaks such as diarrhoea and cholera. Chronic malnutrition remains as high as 31 percent in Sierra Leone.  Further, the stunting among children 6-59 months is 26.4% (SLMICS-2017). Malnutrition leads to lower school productivity and work productivity from impaired cognitive function and learning capacity

WASH priorities for Sierra Leone are well articulated in Government (New Direction) and the 2018 Presidential parliamentary address on national priorities. They are aligned with the UNICEF global pledge to have 250 million people abandon open defecation and, in the UNICEF WCA, Key Result for Children #8 “By 2021, the proportion of the WCAR population practicing open defecation will reduce from 25.4 per cent (122m) to 15.6 per cent (88m)”. The determination of these priority concerns is based on the available evidence derived from the analysis of the national WASH situation, review of experience and lessons learnt from current programming including unfinished business. UNICEF Sierra Leone’s commitment to WASH is also based on the criticality of WASH issues, UNICEF’s financial and human resource capacities, UNICEF’s core commitments in humanitarian situations, and the roles of other organisations including the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS), the African Development Bank (AFDB), World Bank, the United Kingdom’s Department for International Development (DFID) along with NGOs working in Sierra Leone.


In close collaboration with the Directorate of Environmental Health of the Ministry of Health & Sanitation, the international consultant will lead the development of National Sanitation and Hygiene Strategy with Costed Implementation Plan. The strategy shall include rural and urban settings, schools, health care facilities and public places.

Activities, Tasks, Outputs and Deliverables

  • Task 1: Desk Review and Development of Concept Note.
  • Task 2: Facilitate Regional and National Level consultative workshops (4 Regional and 1 National level workshops).
  • Task 3: Develop a zero draft of the strategy with costed action plan including the milestone for 2025 and beyond.
  • Task 4: Present draft National Rural Sanitation and Hygiene strategy and costed action plan to the National Sanitation Forum and collate views.
  • Task 5:  Present the validated National Rural Sanitation and Hygiene Strategy and Costed Action Plan to MoHS for final approval and endorsement. Develop Consultancy report.

Management, Organization and Timeframe

The consultant shall work with a Desk Officer assigned by Directorate Environmental Health (DEH. The consultant will be supervised directly by the Chief of WASH, UNICEF, Sierra Leone and S/He is expected to submit progress reports as per the work schedule for the deliverables electronically.

Condition of work:

The consultant will be based in Sierra Leone.

The consultant must secure medical insurance (inclusive of medical evacuation) prior to assuming his/her duties with UNICEF (proof of insurance with medvac clause is required).

BSAFE Certificate of completion and other mandatory courses including: Ethics and Integrity, Prevention of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse, Prevention of Sexual Harassment and Abuse of Authority, UN Cares (HIV/AIDs in the Workplace), UN Human Rights, Fraud Awareness, UNICEF Security Awareness.

To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have…

  • Advanced University degree in one of the disciplines in the following areas: Public Health, Social Science, Civil Engineering, Sanitation Engineering, or a field relevant to international WASH development work.
  • Additional training in Strategy Development, Health Education or Communication for Development (Programme Communication), an asset.

Years of Experience and Knowledge/Expertise/Skills required:

  • Eight years of progressively responsible professional work experience in the UN or other international development organization, national government or the private sector and at a senior level working in the areas of programme management, strategic planning and strategy, strategy development and research.
  • Familiarity with the West African context is an asset.
  • Knowledge and skills especially use of Microsoft office, data management programmes, designing tools and programmes.
  • Familiarity with CLTS approach and other similar participatory approaches for elimination of open defecation.
  • Familiarity with the current developments, research, and best practices and global in development of environmental sanitation and hygiene strategy.