Consultant: Development of women's legal aid organization in Timor-Leste

17-05-2011 10:15

THE ASIA FOUNDATION

SCOPE OF WORK

Background
The Access to Justice (ATJ) Program of the Asia Foundation (the Foundation)- funded by USAID - began in 2002. The largest component of the program is the provision of legal aid for litigation and non-litigation services in particular to those who are vulnerable within the community. Currently the Foundation supports five legal aid service providers which operate across the country. One of those organisations, the Victim Support Service (VSS) of the Judicial Systems Monitoring Program (JSMP), provides specialized services to women and children victims of gender-based violence.

The Foundation has undertaken a number of initiatives in recent years to assist with addressing inequalities faced by women in RDTL. These initiatives are aimed at enhancing legal aid service delivery for women clients and at increasing the capacity of women lawyers. The Foundation has required that the legal aid partners meet targets of at least 30 percent women clients and has provided specialized trainings to legal aid lawyers on areas of law particularly relevant to female clients. The Foundation has also encouraged the legal aid organizations to employ women lawyers and paralegals and has facilitated the establishment of a women lawyers' group which meets monthly.

In 2010, the Foundation arranged for an exchange visit by 12 women lawyers to Indonesia for an exposure visit to legal aid service delivery for women clients. The visit consisted of six days of training facilitated by two women lawyers from LBH-APIK, a prominent Indonesian women's legal aid organization. While in Indonesia the 12 lawyers developed two plans to establish a women's legal aid organization in Timor-Leste. Since their return, the Foundation has continued to support monthly meetings of the women lawyers who have determined that they want to pursue their initiative to develop a women's legal aid organization.

Around 15 women lawyers have participated at different times in the women lawyers' group meetings.  The women lawyers are now referring to themselves as the 'Grupo Advogada' - Women Lawyers' Group. The Group consists of lawyers from different legal aid organizations and some are currently studying full time at the Judicial Training Centre (Centru Formasaun Juridika, CFJ).

A key contributor and proponent of the initiative is JSMP's VSS which is currently a unit within JSMP. At the time of the formation of VSS in 2005, JSMP intended that it would ultimately become a separate organization but that during a transitional period it would have the support of JSMP's overall management. JSMP is committed to VSS's transition out of JSMP to become an independent organization and is currently evaluating VSS's capacity in view of the possible separation.

The Women Lawyers' Group has developed a basic outline of a vision for the organization which they are calling LBH-Feto. They envisage that the organization would have three units; a victims'  support unit for gender-based violence crimes; a civil unit and a criminal unit - both of which would serve only women clients. The organization may also provide legal assistance to children. The Women Lawyers' Group has also developed some steps in the process for establishing the organization and has started with an assessment of legal services available for women.

Some basic principles which have been adopted by the Women Lawyers' Group in relation to the development of LBH-Feto are:

·         LBH-Feto should have a solid organizational developmental plan with a strong focus on sustainability;

·         Technical support for the development of the organization is necessary but the women lawyers should continue to guide its development;

·         The initiative should be an inclusive process involving other organizations providing services for women in particular those in the Gender-based Violence Referral Network.

Activity

At the request of the Women Lawyers' Group and JSMP, the Foundation is seeking to engage a consultant to work with JSMP and the Women Lawyers' Group. The consultant would assist JSMP and the Group in developing an organizational plan for the development of LBH-Feto. The consultant would be based at JSMP in the VSS unit.

Duties of the consultant

The consultant will be required to undertake the following specific tasks:

·         Facilitate the Women Lawyers' Group's initiative to develop a legal aid organization solely for women and children clients;

·         Assist the Women Lawyers' Group to analyze the results of the assessment of legal services for women and children (which was conducted by the women lawyers in October 2010) and prepare a report of the assessment;

·         Conduct a capacity needs assessment of the Women Lawyers' Group including JSMP's VSS unit with the aim of identifying the human resource needs for LBH-Feto, and any knowledge and skills gaps amongst the women lawyers and JSMP's VSS staff to establish and manage LBH-Feto.  Prepare a brief report based on the outcome of the above needs assessment identifying the individual and organizational capacity of the women lawyers, including JSMP's VSS staff to establish and manage LBH-Feto;

·         Organize a mini-workshop to address the capacity issues identified in the above report with the aim of recommending capacity building solutions to the Women Lawyers' Group including JSMP's VSS staff;

·         Organize the Women Lawyers' Group and JSMP's VSS preparatory study exchange to LBH-APIK in Jakarta, Indonesia.


Deliverables from the consultant

The following are the expected deliverables from the consultant:

Stage 1 (duration of 6 months):

·         A report of not more than 15 pages of the assessment of legal services for women;

·         A brief report (not more than 10 pages) based on an evaluation of the women lawyers and JSMP's VSS staff, identifying the individual and organizational capacity of the women lawyers and JSMP's VSS staff to establish and manage LBH-Feto;

·         A mini-workshop (not more than 1 day) to address the capacity issues identified in the above report with the aim of recommending capacity building solutions for the women lawyers and JSMP's VSS staff;

·         Facilitation of a process to develop an implementation plan for LBH-Feto and preparation of the written plan;

·         Following the JSMP evaluation of VSS and the approval of JSMP management, support VSS in developing a plan to transition into a component of LBH-Feto;

·         Completion of the Women Lawyers' Group and JSMP's VSS preparatory study exchange to LBH-APIK in Jakarta, Indonesia.

Based on the Consultant's progress in achieving the deliverables under Stage 1, the terms of reference may be extended for an additional six months for Stage 2. The exact terms of reference for Stage 2 will be dependent on the decision of JSMP regarding the future of VSS but are likely to include the following expected deliverables from the consultant:

Stage 2 (duration of 6 months):

·         With approval of JSMP management, support to VSS to transition into
a component of LBH-Feto;

·         A draft constitution for LBH-Feto;

·         Establishment of the LBH-Feto board;

·         Recruitment of key staff;

·         Development of fundraising strategy and approaches to development partners.

Supervision
The consultant will be managed on a day to day basis by the JSMP Director and will report monthly (with a face-to-face meeting and a bullet point narrative report) on the implementation of deliverables to the Law Program Advisor, The Asia Foundation Timor-Leste.

Duration of the appointment

The appointment is expected to start in the first quarter of 2011 and is for an initial period of six months for the completion of Stage 1. It may be extended by an additional six months for completion of Stage 2 upon agreement between the Foundation and JSMP.

Remuneration
The consultant will be paid a fee negotiated between the consultant and the Asia Foundation not exceeding the monthly salary rate paid by JSMP to their international advisers.

Other
TAF will provide:

·         A return economy airfare to Dili from a consultant's home city ;

·         Medical insurance;

·         Assistance with finding accommodation;

·         A small allowance for official communication;

·         Transport and per diem costs for any agreed, official travel within Timor-Leste outside of Dili.

VSS will provide:

·         All work communication costs;

·         A working space.

The consultant will be expected to provide the following:

·         Their own laptop.

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS

Experience
Demonstrated work experience in legal and/or human rights programs
Experience with management in a non-government organization, preferably one
working in the legal sector and/or women's issues

Understanding of gender Knowledge of the conditions in Timor-Leste and challenges in relation to gender and service delivery, civil society, and sustainability for civil
society organizations
. Demonstrated commitment to legal reform and civil society strengthening
Education
Bachelor's degree
in law or social sciences.

Other
Strong verbal and written communication skills in English and Bahasa Indonesia or Tetum
Good written and oral analytical skills Excellent interpersonal skills

Demonstrated organizational abilities Computer proficient in word processing (Word), spreadsheets (Excel), email

DESIRED QUALIFICATIONS

Professional experience with a legal aid organization or an NGO working in the legal and/or human rights fields. Previous experience working in Timor-Leste.
TO APPLY: Any interested candidates (including East Timorese nationals) can submit a short covering letter and CV to Aquelina Savio, The Asia Foundation
in Dili.
Rua de Nu Laran No. 20.

Bairro dos Grillos, Dili, Timor-Leste. (asavio@asiafound.org). tel. + 670 7796069. To obtain further information, please contact Merita Correia, Coordinator, VSS, JSMP, tel. + 670 7244304. The deadline for applications is May 24, 2011. Only short listed candidates
will be contacted for interviews.

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