Mercy Corps Careers – Consultant – Nutrition SMART Survey 2022

Mercy Corps Careers – Consultant – Nutrition SMART Survey 2022 – Maiduguri, Borno State, Nigeria



Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within. Mercy Corps has been present in Nigeria since 2012, focusing its interventions on humanitarian assistance, economic development, and conflict mitigation. With the ongoing insurgency, and other forms of identity-related conflicts, causing the displacement of thousands of individuals and communities in North-East Nigeria (NEN), Mercy Corps started its humanitarian response in the region in 2014 to address rising humanitarian needs. As the crisis persists, Mercy Corps’ strategy has also expanded to address the root causes of the conflict and seek to build the long-term resilience of communities with integrated multi sectoral programs that focus on governance, the recovery of markets and livelihoods, improving nutrition and food security, improving social cohesion and protection, youth empowerment, and enhancing local conflict management.

Purpose / Project Description:

The ongoing conflict in Northeast Nigeria has resulted in enormous humanitarian needs in various sectors. Recent nutrition and food security surveys indicate that most people are food insecure, with poor or critical levels of both acute and chronic malnutrition. To respond to the existing needs and in line with the Nutrition Sector Humanitarian Response Plan Objectives, Mercy Corps collaborates with the Nutrition Sector Coordination and State Primary Health Care Development Agency (SPHCDA) to support and strengthen the quality and scale of nutrition services. Mercy Corps is currently implementing a USAID/ BHA funded program that aims at addressing Diverse and Acute Primary Threats II (ADAPT II) to Human Security in Northeast Nigeria through saving lives and preventing human suffering among displaced, returnee and host households in Borno State.  This program is multi-sectoral and covers Nutrition, Food assistance, Agriculture, WASH, Shelter, Multipurpose Cash Assistance (MPCA) and Protection to support the conflict-affected population. The nutrition response supports both nutrition sensitive and specific interventions that contribute to prevention, detection, and management of malnutrition. The programs in collaboration with the Nutrition Sector TWG, plans to support a Standardized Monitoring and Assessment of Relief and Transitions (SMART) survey. This survey will provide information and update on the current nutrition and food security situation in the targeted LGAs to inform current and future programming.

OConsultancy Objective:

The overall objective of this consultancy is to determine the magnitude and severity of malnutrition, mortality rates and food security situation amongst the population in the accessible communities of 5 LGAs (Damboa, Bama, Dikwa, Ngala and Gwoza) in Borno State, Nigeria.

The Specific Objectives include:

  • To estimate the prevalence of acute malnutrition (wasting and Oedema) among children aged 6-59 months.
  • Determine the prevalence of chronic malnutrition and underweight among children 6 to 59 months of age
  • To estimate the coverage of measles vaccinations, vitamin A supplementation and health seeking behavior among caretakers of children aged 6-59 months,
  • Assess the prevalence of diarrhea and use of ORS and zinc among children under-five years two weeks preceding the survey
  • To retrospectively estimate the levels of crude mortality rates and under five mortality rates in a specific period (134 days)
  • To assess maternal malnutrition among the mothers of children surveyed.
  • To determine Infant and young child feeding practices (IYCF) indicators in the survey area for the age group of 0-23 months children.
  • To determine water, sanitation, and hygiene practices of the survey population.
  • To assess the current food consumption score and coping strategy situation of the surveyed population.

Consultant Activities:

The Consultant will:

  • Conduct all survey preparation activities including development and validation of protocol and tools, selection of survey teams & preparation of necessary logistics.
  • Train survey teams
  • Lead, monitor and supervise data collection daily data entry and share feedback to teams.
  • Review and analyze the data collected including conducting daily plausibility tests,
  • Present the preliminary results and analysis to the MC team and the Nutrition Technical Working Group to validate findings.
  • Final report Compilation and submission

Mercy Corps will work with the consultant(s) to recruit survey personnel and preparations for relevant logistics for training and data collection.

Consultant Deliverables:

The Consultant deliverables will include:

  1. A Nutrition SMART survey protocol drafted, presented and Validated by the Nutrition Technical Working Group. It will include a comprehensive survey plan, including:
    • Mixed-methods evaluation design, methodologies used and sampling design/criteria, frame, size(s) for the qualitative data collection
    • the Data Analysis Plan (DAP) for the mixed methods study  
    • Survey tools
    • Suggested improvements to the assessment scope
    • Ethical considerations, limitations, and mitigation strategies.
  2. Two rounds presentation of preliminary results and analysis one to the MC team and another to the Nutrition Technical Working Group.
  3. Submit a). A final survey report as per specified format, b). A synthesized 2 pager with key highlights and findings, and c). Electronic files of all Data sets (quantitative and qualitative), code books, syntax, etc.

 Timeframe / Schedule: 

  • The survey will be conducted in November 2022, for a duration not exceeding 30 working days including field work, data analysis and report write up.

The Consultant will report to:

  • Line Manager – Country MEL Manager.
  • Technical Supervisor – Country Nutrition Advisor.

The Consultant will work closely with:

  • Program teams, in country Technical Support Unit and Strategic Learning Manager within the Program Performance and Quality Unit (PaQ).

Required Experience & Skills:

The selected consultant is expected to have strong expertise in measuring Mortality, Nutritional Status, and Food Security in Crisis Situations using SMART methodology and should be a recognized/ registered SMART survey manager.

She/ he should have:

  • 5-10 years of experience in a relevant technical field
  • Academic qualification in nutrition, epidemiology, demography, or related field.
  • Demonstrated experience conducting and managing all aspects of nutrition SMART surveys.
  • Led at least two SMART surveys, preferably in different contexts.
  • Experience in Northeast Nigeria or any other conflict affected contexts is preferred
  • Experience, knowledge, and clear understanding of Nigeria’s humanitarian context.
  • Experience with evaluating USAID-funded projects.
  • Good people skills and understanding of cultural sensitivities.
  • Readiness to travel to northwest and northcentral Nigeria and conduct direct standard assessment activities as well as field visits to program sites. Having a presence in West Africa or Nigeria is desirable but not essential.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication in English is required

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives. 

We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.

Equal Employment Opportunity

We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.

Safeguarding & Ethics

Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our stakeholders and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects. Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and MC’s policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.

Mercy Corps Careers – Consultant – Nutrition SMART Survey 2022 – Maiduguri, Borno State, Nigeria