Terms of Reference for Networking Expert

Kategorija: Lobiranje / Datum: јул 27, 2016

Person drawing a People Network illustration with chalk on a blackboard.

INTRODUCTION

 

Labris, one of the oldest lesbian human rights organizations in the region, is an organization that considers the right to different sexual orientation as one of the basic human rights. Labris works on protection, advancement and promotion of gender equality and diversity through: empowerment and social inclusion of LGBT community; creation, monitoring and advocating inclusive politics; advancement of institutional systems of support and networking on national and regional level. Since its foundation Labris has been implementing over 60 projects through its three program components – Community Development, Education and Advocacy Program.

Based on the 20-year experience in supporting the most vulnerable group and the assessment of current situation in regards to position of LGBT community in Republic of Serbia, Labris developed project The Network Change for Serbia’s LGBT Community.

BACKGROUND AND RATIONALE

 

Numerous research and reports continuously demonstrate that LGBT community is one of the most discriminated social groups in Serbia and state institutions have proven to be unable and not willing to ensure full human rights to LGBT person: A comprehensive survey of societal perceptions of homosexuality and attitudes towards LGBT population showed that the share of those who think homosexuality is an illness is extremely high (67%). 56 percent of the population believed homosexuality posed a threat to society and as many as one half of Serbia’s citizens would never reconcile with the fact that someone close to them is a homosexual. 17% of the parents would violently react to the fact that their child is a homosexual. Survey conducted by the Commissioner for Protection of Equality and CESID in November 2012, showed that 30% object to having LGBT neighbors, 32.5% do not want them as colleagues, 40.6% do not want them as a friend, 58.8% do not want them as teachers, and 79.5% do not want LGBT people in their family. Furthermore, the Belgrade Centre for Human Rights report shows that 80% of high school students support discrimination of LGBT people.

Although Serbia has ratified most of the international human rights documents and conventions, and has legal and institutional anti-discrimination framework largely in place, ”…in practice, those most exposed to discrimination are Roma, women, persons with disabilities and the LGBT population. They are frequently victims of intolerance, hate speech and even physical attacks. Public officials have been reluctant to publicly condemn such incidents.” (Commission Opinion on Serbia’s application for membership of the European Union {COM (2011) 668}). From the other hand, due to the extremely low level of trust in government institutions (Centre for public policy research) and lack of knowledge on the rights and existing mechanisms among LGBT population, unreported homophobic violence and discrimination remain at extremely high levels.

LGBT people in Serbia are targeted as victims of hate crime more often than other vulnerable groups such as Roma or people with disabilities. Such violence raised from the deep hatred of the perpetrator toward real and/or perceived sexual orientation and/or gender identity of the victim. Relevant institutions are usually not well sensitized and educated to deal with this issue. Even if the victims report such crimes or incidents, the fact that reason for attack was prejudice, often does not appear in the official statistical reports, because the motives of homophobia and transphobia are often not recognized or not recognized as relevant.

OBJECTIVES AND COURSE OF THE ACTION

 

In order to develop sustainable and innovative initiative which will build on previous Labris’ s successes and create a critical mass of supporters and build new constituencies, this program will be implemented jointly by the network of the most prominent LGBT organizations and the organizations with the extensive experience and expertise in developing sustainable advocacy structures and multiplication of the project results.

The purpose of the action is to advance human rights of LGBT persons in Serbia by stimulating policy dialog and fostering implementation of the existing legislative framework and international standards in the scope of EU-Serbia accession negotiations over Chapter 23. Specific goals of the initiative are:

  • Developing an effective and sustainable network for LGBT inclusion on national and local level and advancing its capacities for long-term policy development and monitoring
  • Raising awareness, activating and mobilizing the LGBT community and new constituencies for sustainable public advocacy
  • Fostering implementation of anti-discrimination standards and policies through strategic policy development and advocacy in the scope of EU-Serbia accession negotiations over Chapter 23

The initiatives target groups will be: LGBT community, community-based and national CSOs, the most relevant institutions, including independent institutions in Serbia and internationally and media. Specific communication strategy will be developed in order to target new audiences and activate them in the project implementation.

Apart from networking and capacity development activities (to be implemented in the year one and two), the initiative will serve as an opportunity for development of the “independent observatory” of LGBT rights through its research, analyses and watchdog components (to be implemented in year one), policy road-maps and advocacy strategies for all future work (to be implemented in year two). In addition, existing gaps and challenges in the implementation of the anti-discrimination regulations will be identified and addressed accordingly throughout the implementation cycle.

OBJECTIVES OF THE CONSULTANCY AND SCOPE OF WORK

Network expert will be in charged for implementation of the networking activities envisioned by the project. Within this group of activities network expert, jointly with Labris, will develop sustainable and innovative initiatives which will build on previous Labris’ s successes and create a critical mass of supporters and build new constituencies. This project aims to develop the network of the most prominent LGBT organizations and to deepen and expend the LGBT network (including the PFLAG group (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) to the organizations with which LGBT organizations rarely cooperate with, community CSOs and local institutions in order to broaden the influence and outreach. More concrete, through this component two layers of support will be developed: national network which will serve as a watchdog and national advocacy platform and local networks which will gather different local actors, representatives of relevant institutuons (health, police, education, social welfare system, etc) and representatives of civil sector.

Networking Experts(s) will be responsible for:

  • Continued communication with project staff;
  • Setting up local networks in 5 communities and its administration – organization of the local networks regular meetings, coordination of joint activities, etc.;
  • Participation in organization of the local network trainings aimed at orientation of the local network representatives on all relevant issues/aspect of promotion of antidiscrimination policy and protection of LBGT individuals (3 trainings per network);
  • Engagement in the national promotion of the policy framework through traditional and online media;
  • Development of specific plans and implement awareness raising activities and 5 local advocacy actions within 5 local communities;
  • Participation in LGBT Inclusion Network Awareness Raising Activities;

The Consultant will be required to deliver:

  • Detailed plan on networks’ development and meeting schedules
  • Development of profile of local networks and mechanisms for promotion and enlargement of the network at local level;
  • Development of joint plan for promotion of the monitoring results and advocacy framework through created communication strategy in each 5 local communities;
  • Development of action plans in the scope of awareness raising activities in 5 local communities;
  • Reports on trainings implementation, awareness raising activities, media relations and public events in each community

Required Qualifications and Experience of the Consultant:

  • A minimum of three years of progressive experience in networking
  • Proven experience in designing and conducting networking activities
  • Team player able to work well with colleagues from diverse backgrounds
  • Prior experience with USAID or international donor funded projects
  • Extensive knowledge of the human rights and national social inclusion policies and practices
  • Strong communication skills
  • Excellent written and spoken English

Application Procedure

Applicants are required to submit the following by CoB August 15, 2016:

  • An explanation of the Applicant(s) qualifications to perform the task (including CVs, past performance information, at least 3 references)
  • Brief letter of Interest (1 page);
  • Description of plan and method to complete tasks described herein;
  • A detailed budget

Applicants can send their materials to: labris@labris.org.rs with the subject line: “Application [YOUR NAME]: Networking Expert”

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