Vacancies and Notices


Desk Review and Analysis of Available Resources related to
Pre and Post-Marital Reproductive Health Counselling for Adolescents

Desk Review and Analysis of Available Resources related to Pre and Post-Marital Reproductive Health Counselling for Adolescents

Consultancy fo Individuals 


Hiring Office:

UNFPA CO Lebanon

Purpose of consultancy

Gender Based Violence (GBV) through many of its forms is widespread in Lebanon among both Syrian refugees as well as Lebanese communities. One of the most common GBV forms is child marriage as reported by many NGOs, the media as well as through the GBV Information Management System (GBV IMS)[1]. Child marriage directly threatens girls’ health and well-being. It is often followed by pregnancy, even if a girl is not yet physically or mentally ready. In Lebanon, according to a study conducted in the Bekaa in 2016, 61% of 15-17 year old married Syrian refugee girls reported at least one pregnancy[2]. A pregnancy at an early age can have immediate and lasting consequences for a girl’s health, education and income-earning potential. The risk of maternal death and of obstetric fistulae for mothers under 15 in low- and middle-income countries is much higher that of older females. For most adolescents below 18, and especially for those younger than 15, pregnancies are generally the result of an absence of choices, of knowledge and of circumstances beyond a girl’s control.  Although child marriage is reported as a cultural practice within some communities prior to displacement from Syria, focus group discussions with adolescent girls and caregivers, as well as recent studies on the Syrian crisis[3], highlight that the age of the girls being forced to marry is decreasing and that marriage is used by some families as a negative coping mechanism, to protect girls or to alleviate financial burden. According to a 2015 survey in Lebanon on child marriage among persons displaced from Syria and the Lebanese population[4], approximately 22.5% of the total married registered refugee women got married before 18 years of age.

In terms of family planning (FP) and use of contraception to delay/avoid early pregnancy, the results of a study led by UNFPA in 2014[5] demonstrates that female and male youth suffer from a clear deficit of knowledge on SRH/FP issues whereby 45% of the surveyed youth exhibit a basic knowledge on contraception. While FP is not a priority for either male or female youth, childbearing is a valued and necessary achievement, and the use of contraception is often not accepted. Other than pregnancy- and delivery-related medical consultation, only 31% of youth aged 15-24 have sought health services, most commonly at dispensaries and hospitals. The study also shows that a third of the total assessed confirm their interest in being more informed in SRH. Furthermore, a survey carried out by Medair (INGO) in the Bekaa Valley amongst both Lebanese and Syrian populations[6] reveals that 58% of refugees and 45% of Lebanese respondents did not plan their last pregnancy; and among the 53% of respondents who report doing something or using a method to delay or avoid getting pregnant, only 68% use a modern form of birth control.

Although numerous resources exist on the impact of child marriage on girls’ SRH, few or no resources are available for service providers/frontliners to guide them in their counselling/information sharing with adolescent girls at immediate risk of getting married as well as about-to-be married/married young couples. Moreover, most existing resources mainly relate to “youth friendly” services. Some RH Manuals for service providers provide guidance on how to better serve adolescents, that contains a mix of information to be delivered including soft skills. However it does not take into account the specificities of the context of child marriage as such, does not adjust according to the situation of the girl (to-be married; married) and does not envisage the youth couple counselling[7]. In addition, efforts have been disproportionally made on preventing child marriage in comparison with mitigating its consequences, including on RH/FP[8], as highlighted by Girls Not Brides[9]: “Evidence from various operational context demonstrate the need for multi-pronged programmatic efforts targeted at married young people, as well as those about-to-be-married and the unmarried to build in-depth awareness. (…) Efforts by health care providers to reach married young people were limited and not commensurate with the extent to which this group is at risk of adverse sexual and reproductive health outcomes, as observed in this and other studies”.

Although prevention of child marriage is paramount, there is a need to develop complementary and pragmatic resources focusing on mitigating the consequences of child marriage when it cannot be avoided or delayed[10], with the aim to sensitize health care providers about the special needs and vulnerability of adolescent girls at immediate risk of getting married and married young people, including young newly-weds, and to orient them to the need for developing appropriate strategies to reach them.[11]

In this frame, the purpose of this consultancy is twofold: 1) to conduct a desk review and analysis of available resources related to pre and post-marital sexual and reproductive health counselling for adolescents, incl. resources developed for service providers/frontliners (incl. social workers) to counsel adolescents; and 2) to provide operational recommendations and ways forward for developing a tailored manual to support the service providers/frontliners in Lebanon in their counselling, taking into account the specific needs of adolescent girls at risk of getting married as well as about-to-be married/married adolescent girls/young couples.

Scope of work:


(Description of services, activities, or outputs)

Under the supervision of UNFPA, the purpose of the consultancy is twofold:

  1. Take stock/review the existing resources, tools and practices related to pre and post-marital SRH counselling for adolescents, incl. resources developed for service providers/frontliners (incl. social workers) to counsel adolescents;
  2. Provide operational recommendations and ways forward to UNFPA for developing an appropriate manual to support the service providers/frontliners (incl. social workers) in Lebanon in their counselling, taking into account the specific needs of adolescent girls at risk of getting married as well as about-to-be married/married adolescent girls/young couples.

 The specific objectives of the consultancy are:

  • To research and compile existing resources and practices at global, regional and country levels;
  • To highlight documented successful approaches and good practices relevant for the Lebanon context, with a special attention to innovative initiatives, identify potential challenges and retrieve lessons learned;
  • To provide operational recommendations towards the drafting of an appropriate manual specific to the Lebanese context which meets the needs and fills the gaps identified in the frame of the review.  

To achieve the objectives of this consultancy, the following tasks will be carried out:

  • Develop a detailed timeline for the consultancy in collaboration with UNFPA;
  • Carry out a comprehensive literature/desk review in order to collect and compile existing guidance, manual, tools and approaches at global, regional and country levels on pre and post-marital SRH counselling for adolescents, incl. resources developed for service providers/frontliners (incl. social workers) to counsel adolescents ;
  • Meet with relevant stakeholders to assess their experience, priorities and recommendations for future initiatives as suggested below:

o 3-4 UN Agencies, 2 line Ministries, 5-6 NGOs, and other identified organizations who have been/are involved in the subject matter;

o  6-8 frontliners/service providers (incl. social workers);

o 4 focus group discussions (1 with adolescent girls; 1 with adolescent girls already married; 1 with adolescent boys/men; 1 with community leaders, incl. religious leaders) to understand their needs, concerns, challenges, etc

  • Draft a report summarizing and analysing findings (successful approaches, good practices, lessons learned etc) and provide recommendations towards the drafting of an appropriate manual specific to the Lebanese context which meets the needs and fills the gaps identified in the frame of the review;
  • Finalize report based on UNFPA comments and recommendations.

Duration working schedule:

 The assignment should be concluded within 10 weeks from the signing of the contract

Delivery dates and how work will be delivered (e.g. electronic, hard copy etc.):



  • Folder containing all materials/tools collected (Google doc link)
  • Interview guide (soft copy)
  • Focus group discussion guide (soft copy)
  • Schedule of meetings/consultations (soft copy)

Week 3

  • Summary of consultative process (soft copy)
  • Draft report (soft copy)

Week 6

  • Comprehensive analytical report and Annexes – English (soft copy)
  • PPT presentation summarizing the content of the report – English (soft copy)
  • Executive summary (3-4 pages) – Arabic (soft copy)

Week 10


Monitoring and progress control, including reporting requirements, periodicity format and deadline:

Detailed deliverables

 The consultant shall deliver the following:

  • A folder containing all materials/tools collected (Google doc link);
  • An interview guide with key questions to address UN Agencies, line Ministries, INGOSs and NGOs;
  • A focus group discussion guide to support the interaction with adolescent girls; adolescent boys; adolescent girls already married; and community leaders, incl. religious leaders;
  • A comprehensive analytical report and Annexes;
  • Facilitation of an expert group meeting to share the main findings
  • A PPT presentation summarizing the content of the report to be delivered in a technical meeting;
  • An executive summary (3-4 pages) outlining the main findings and recommendations to support the dissemination.
Content of report

The report will be prepared in English and will consist of approximately 30 pages - excluding the annexes - with proposed parts as follows (to be further discussed with the consultant):

  • Background and rational
  • Methodology
  • Findings at global, regional, country levels
  • Boxes to include good practices/lessons learned
  • Recommendations (divided by targeted audience: adolescent girls at risk of getting married; about-to-be married girls/boys/young couples; adolescent girls/couples already married; counselling service providers; community/religious leaders)
  • On-line bibliography
  • List of Annexes (among which the guides)

Supervisory arrangements:

The assignment will be carried out under supervision of UNFPA, who shall provide the following support to the consultancy:

  • Related documents, material, reports, etc.
  • Contact of relevant partners and stakeholders
  • Facilitation of meetings with relevant partners and stakeholders
  • Provision of meeting facilities
  • Review and provision of comments/inputs on guides, reports, etc.

Expected travel:

Within Lebanon

Required expertise, qualifications and competencies, including language requirements:

  • Advanced University degree in social/development sciences or other related areas with previous work experience and considerable skills in survey design, analysis and report writing;
  • At least 7 years’ experience in research, SRH, youth and SGBV in a displacement context, with a special focus on the MENA region;
  • Proven experience in leading field focus group discussions and interviews on issues such as GBV/RH;
  • Good knowledge of humanitarian contexts and familiarity with humanitarian related resources and material;
  • Excellent analytical and drafting skills;
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and ability to establish effective and working relations with other stakeholders;
  • Excellent written and spoken communication skills in Arabic and English.

Interested candidates may apply online by providing:
(1) most updated CV
(2) a P-11 Form  (click here to download)
(3) a cover letter mentioning the relevance of past/current experience with the requirements of the consultancy.
The above documents must be sent to the following email address: by no later than May 04, 2018

Candidates who fail to submit the required documents above will not be considered for review.

UNFPA Lebanon will only be responsible to respond to those applicants submitting the required documents above and in which there is further interest.

ONLY individual consulatnts, not companies, are eligible to apply.

[1] The GBVIMS captures information on incidents reported in the course of seeking services and allows to safely collect, store and analyse data related to SGBV. Since only information on reported incidents is recorded, and shared with the informed consent of survivors, it does not represent a comprehensive overview of the incidences of SGBV in Lebanon. Also, the GBVIMS captures cases only reported by service providers operating in Lebanon, therefore, statistics cannot be interpreted as reflecting the magnitude or patterns of SGBV in Syria. Additionally, GBV incidents, especially those having happened in Syria prior to displacement, remain underreported for several factors including socio-cultural issues.

[2] UNFPA, The prevalence of early marriage and its key determinants among Syrian refugee girls/women, The 2016 Bekaa study, Lebanon.

[3] Spencer, R. A., J. Usta, A. Essaid, S. Shukri, Y. El-Gharaibeh, H. Abu-Taleb, N. Awwad, H. Nsour, Alianza por la Solidaridad, United Nations Population Fund-Lebanon and C. J. Clark. Gender Based Violence Against Women and Girls Displaced by the S.yrian Conflict in South Lebanon and North Jordan: Scope of Violence and Health Correlates, Alianza por la Solidaridad and UNFPA Lebanon, 2015

[4] University Saint-Joseph, “Mariage Precoce: Illusion ou Realite? Enquete sur les taux de mariage precoce parmi les Libanais et les Refugies Syriens au Liban”, 2015.

[5] UNFPA, UNHCR, UNICEF, Save the Children, UNESCO, “Situation Analysis of Youth in Lebanon affected by the Syrian Crisis”, April 2014. 


[7] See for example WHO, “Family Planning. A Global Handbook for Service Providers”, 2011; Women Deliver, “Respecting, Protecting and Fulfilling our Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights – A Toolkit for young leaders” March 2015; Pathfinder International, “Meeting the needs of young married women and first-time parents – Publication Series”, 2016.

[8] See for example Girls Not Brides, “Efforts to improve access to family planning need to stop ignoring child brides”, 2017.

[9] Girls Not Brides is a global partnership of more than 900 civil society organisations committed to ending child marriage and enabling girls to fulfil their potential.

[10] It has to be noted that UNFPA does not in any way encourage nor accept harmful practices such as child marriage. This initiative is viewed as a mitigation measure in order to cope with the negative consequences associated with child marriage.

[11] OHCHR, “Child marriage and sexual and reproductive health risks: Experiences of young women and men in India”, 2007.


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Latest update: 3/1/2018