Consultancy: Conducting Village Savings and Loans Associations (VSLA) Trainings

Consultancy: Conducting Village Savings and Loans Associations (VSLA) Trainings

23/01/2024
in News

TERMS OF REFERENCE FOR CONDUCTING VILLAGE SAVINGS AND LOANS ASSOCIATIONS (VSLA) TRAININGS

About Rikolto

Rikolto is an international NGO with more than 50 years’ experience in partnering with farmer organizations and food chain stakeholders across Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America. Our mission is a sustainable income for farmers and nutritious and affordable food for everyone. Rikolto works to foster a more sustainable and resilient cocoa and coffee sectors by strengthening farmer organizations, working on living income for cocoa farmers, empowering young men and women, and promoting diversified agroforestry systems and sustainable farming practices from a food systems perspective. (https://www.rikolto.org/programmes/cocoa-coffee )

About the project

Rikolto received funding from IDH through ETG, for promoting sustainable and low carbon coffee production in the Greater Masaka region. The project aims to address multiple challenges within the coffee supply chain, aligning with broader sustainability goals and carbon reduction commitments.

To achieve this objective, the project has designed a comprehensive set of activities:

Farmer Direct Supply Chain: onboarding Farmer Groups and registering and mapping farmers so they become part of the long term ETG direct and responsible coffee supply chain.

Farmer Training: By providing training on low carbon farming practices, farmers will gain the knowledge and skills needed to adopt sustainable cultivation methods, including the use of biochar and composting. This, in turn, will enhance soil health, increase crop yields, and reduce the carbon footprint.

Agroforestry and Shade Tree Nurseries: The establishment of shade tree nurseries and agroforestry practices will contribute to biodiversity, improved soil fertility, and climate resilience, benefiting both coffee farmers and the environment.

Gender Empowerment and Financial Inclusion: Through Village Savings and Loan Association (VSLA) savings groups and gender empowerment initiatives, women in the community will be empowered, leading to more balanced decision-making, increased income resilience, and reduced deforestation.

Biochar and Bio Composting: Training programs on biochar and bio composting will enable farmers to apply these techniques effectively, improving soil carbon sequestration potential and water retention.

Objectives of the Consultancy Assignment:

One of the project key performance indicators is to deliver VSLA training to 20 groups (including 10 youth groups and 10 VSLA groups). This will help youth & women access essential funds for purchase of inputs, solve family related issues, own small-domestic animals, run small business etc. VSLAs will also help bridge cash-flow issues within families. Rikolto would like to engage a local consultant to conduct TOT training on VSLA methodology to 500 participants for a period of 1.5 months (i.e. 45 days including report writing). The consultant is expected to deliver these trainings on group per group basis and is also expected to deliver the range of methodologies and techniques that are highly participatory, impactful, and memorable i.e. training ha to be highly participatory and practical, focusing on all VLSA components and well managed within the planned period.

The indicative budget for the training is UGX 40,000,000 covering daily expenses and professional fees. Rikolto staff will from time-to-time will routinely conduct checks on the trainings as well as ensure all trainings are well conducted.

The consultant’s tasks include but not limited to the following activities:

  • Conduct group per group training on VSLA methodology to 20 groups (i.e. 10 youth groups and 10 VSLA groups).
  • To provide Rikolto with the necessary materials or manual as point of reference for the training and for reproduction and distribution to participants.
  • Produce a training report.

Expected Deliverables and Timeline

  1. After reviewing the existing capacity assessment gaps and in close consultation with the implementing team, the consultant and or team should develop a simple VSLA training manual covering the following key topics:

General Introduction

What is VSLA?

  • Objectives of forming a VSLA

  • Fundamental Principles of VSLA

  • Importance of forming a VSLA.

Operation and Management of a VSLA

  • Leadership and Governance

  • Functionality of the committee

  • Leadership positions and responsibilities

  • Election procedures

  • Constitution/bylaws

  • Roles and qualities of group members etc.

Transparency and Accountability

  • Passbooks

  • Farmer Register

  • Receipts

  • Meetings(frequency)

  • Account opening in a financial institution.

  • Financial reporting by the committee

Bookkeeping /Records

  • Financial records

  • List of members

  • Cash book

  • Agreements

  • Register

  • Previous meeting minutes

  • Passbooks etc.

VSLA kit (components)

  • Three good quality padlocks (Key should be kept by Treasurer, Sec and Chairman.

  • Money and other important records should be kept.

  • Counter book

  • Stamp

  • Pens

  • Calculator

    Investment in youth groups: Kits for paid-for skilled labour provisions on coffee GAPs.

  1. The full schedule for the training

  2. Training tools and resources

  3. Training reports and attendance lists.

  4. Training evaluation forms

Timeframe:

  1. Training Proposal: Submit a technical & financial proposal by 05th February 2024

  2. VSLA TOT Training of Participants: Conduct training in VSLA methodology from 15th Feb to 30th March 2024

  3. Training Report: Submit a comprehensive training report for review and approval by 02nd April 2024

    Management and Implementation Responsibilities

The consultant will report directly to the Agribusiness Advisor (Coffee & Cocoa) in Rikolto. However, s/he will also interact with ETG Field Officer while in the field.

Rikolto will provide:

  • Participants/group lists.

  • VSLA kits

  • Investment kits for youth

  • Refreshments only (since these are group-based trainings)

  • Produce copies of the training materials for each group

    The consultant will be responsible for:

  • Developing training plan

  • Developing training materials and tools.
  • Conducting the training in VSLA methodology
  • Sharing training report and training materials for reproduction
  • Transport to/from Masaka region and any living/accommodation expenses incurred.

Key principles for the assignment

Confidentiality and credibility – the consultant should ensure professionalism when delivering this assignment.

Participation – All group members must be involved during training and use easy tools and approaches that enable quick memory of the training by participants.

Qualifications of consultant.

  • Extensive experience in delivering VSLA training to beneficiaries in agribusinesses or coffee value chain.
  • Excellent facilitation and communication skills
  • Fluency in spoken and written English
  • The minimum qualification for individual facilitators is Bachelors in Agribusiness or agricultural sciences, economics or related.
  • Fully registered consultancy firm/individuals with statutory bodies of the government of Uganda.

    Other Application requirements

  1. Registration certificates if company/firm
  2. Tax Identification Number
  3. Tax Clearances if company
  4. CV of facilitators and photocopy of their qualifications,
  5. At least 2 reports of previous engagements
  6. Trading license if company.
  7. At least 2 facilitators who can speak Luganda.

Submission of Proposals

Interested consultants or firms are requested to submit:

  1. A summarized technical and financial proposal, technical proposal not longer than 8 pages of how you intend to execute the assignment with a clear training plan/timetable.
  2. Copy of your Curriculum Vitae (CVs).
  3. Contact details for two references (including one from your last client/employer).
  4. Copy of the previous VSLA training report

All documents must be submitted by email to our ‘sealed’ email address eastafrica [at] rikolto.org by 05th February 2024 6pm East Africa Time. The email subject line should clearly indicate ‘Bid for Village Savings and Loans Associations training Consultancy’.