Individual Consultancy: Early identification and intervention for developmental delays and disability

Individual Consultancy: Early identification and intervention for developmental delays and disability
Individual Consultancy: Early identification and intervention for developmental delays and disability

30 abril, 2021

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UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up.

For every child, Health

How can you make a difference?

Purpose and Objective: In collaboration with the Technical group on Early Childhood development of the Ministry of Health, develop tools, processes and training packages for early identification and intervention of developmental delays and disability.

Methodology and Technical Approach:

The first 1,000 days of child’s life are a crucial phase of growth and development because experiences during early childhood can influence outcomes across the entire course of an individual’s life.  For all children, early childhood provides an important window of opportunity to prepare the foundation for life-long learning and participation, while preventing potential delays in development and disabilities. For children who experience disability, it is a vital time to ensure access to interventions which can help them reach their full potential.

Developmental difficulties include conditions that place a child at risk for suboptimal development, or that cause a child to have a developmental deviance, delay, disorder or disability. Identification happens through developmental monitoring, screening and assessment/testing.

Developmental difficulties are the most common causes of long-term morbidity. Infancy and early childhood are the best time for the prevention and mitigation of problems that could potentially cause developmental difficulties and affect brain development. Most importantly, multiple studies show, how much positive caregiver interaction can stimulate the brain and building the resilience of children.

In Mozambique, there is a strong recognition by the Ministry of Health on the importance of early childhood and a technical group is established, convening different department of the Ministry, NGOs with relevant technical capacity and UN agencies.

In 2019, in both healthy child and sick child registers, an indicator on developmental delays was introduced. The orientation specific to developmental delays is being validated, and the IEC tools were printed and distributed nationally at the end of 2020. The tools allow to do development monitoring and screening to identify children at-risk. However, tools for the next stage, i.e. assessment/evaluation, as well as SOPs for the full process of identification and referrals, are not yet developed. For parent education, posters for development monitoring have been developed, but more detailed guidance for parents whose children have been identified as having delays or disabilities would be needed.

Activities and Tasks:

  1. Conduct a desk review for existing tools, guidelines and materials and consult relevant stakeholders
  2. In collaboration with the ECD technical group, develop a set of tools and processes for the second-stage assessment (once a risk of delay or disability is identified), including job-aids such as easy-to use guides, pathway algorithms, SOPs, job-aids
  3. In collaboration with ECD technical group, develop referral pathway (guidance for referral to services when a delay or disability is confirmed.
  4. In collaboration with ECD technical group, develop a training package on early identification and intervention tools and processes.
  5. In collaboration with ECD technical group, develop/adapt parent engagement/education tools for caregivers of children with disabilities and developmental delays.

Deliverables and Payments:

Deliverable 1:

Desk review, interviews and suggested tools: 2 weeks, 5 working days

Deliverable/product(s): Document describing the overall approach, list of tools, guidance and other support documents

Payment (indicate amount or %): 20%

Deliverable 2:

Tool and process development: 6 weeks, 15 working days

Deliverable/product(s): all agreed upon tools, guidance and support documents described in Tasks B and C above.

Payment (indicate amount or %): 40%

Deliverable 3:

Family education package– 4 weeks, 10 working days.

Deliverable/product(s): guidance for caregiver engagement

Payment (indicate amount or %): 20%

Deliverable 4:

Trainings package development – 4 weeks, 10 working days.

Deliverable/product(s): Training package on the tools and processes

Payment (indicate amount or %): 20%

Management and Supervision:

The assignment will be supervised by Health Specialist in collaboration with Disability Inclusion Specialist.

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

  • Academic qualifications:

    At least a /Masters’ degree in Pediatrics, Psychology or relevant medical and social sciences

    Work experience:

    At least 8 years of relevant work experience in early childhood development

    Specific knowledge, competencies, and skills required:

    Technical expertise in child development, developmental delays and disabilities.

    Experience in development of trainings

    Experience in working with government agencies in developing country contexts

    Experience in participatory development of modules, materials and other documents

    Strong skills in working with people

    Language skills: Portuguese and English

Download FileAnnex 3 – TOR Consultant Early Intervention.docx

For every Child, you demonstrate…

UNICEF’s values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, and Accountability (CRITA) and core competencies in Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results.

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.


Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.

Individuals engaged under a consultancy or individual contract will not be considered “staff members” under the Staff Regulations and Rules of the United Nations and UNICEF’s policies and procedures, and will not be entitled to benefits provided therein (such as leave entitlements and medical insurance coverage). Their conditions of service will be governed by their contract and the General Conditions of Contracts for the Services of Consultants and Individual Contractors. Consultants and individual contractors are responsible for determining their tax liabilities and for the payment of any taxes and/or duties, in accordance with local or other applicable laws.




Advertised: South Africa Standard Time
Deadline: South Africa Standard Time


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