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Equity, diversity, and inclusion - call for consultancy

Published on: 01/06/2021

IRC is currently looking for a consultant to review its performance on equity, diversity, and inclusion. Deadline for submission: 30 June 2021.


IRC is an independent, non-profit organisation that drives resilient water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) systems from the ground up. We have offices in Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, the Netherlands and Uganda, and staff representatives in Honduras, India, Mali, Niger and the US.

At IRC, our mission is to promote the human right to safe water and sanitation for some of the poorest people on the planet. We value our mission and our dedicated team of professionals who are every day committed to providing safe drinking water and sanitation for all, forever.

We are proud to and have the ambition to remain an ‘‘Employer of Choice’’ in the sector. Being an organisation in which everyone feels respected, included, and has a safe space to share their points of view. And where we, as an organisation, favour the well-being, safety and happiness of employees. In the end, it is the people at IRC who drive change and every voice counts.

Purpose and overview

Therefore, in light of and as an act of solidarity with last year’s Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement (read statement here), IRC is dedicated to carry out an organisational review on its Equity, Diversity and Inclusion performance. For this organisational review, we are seeking a consultant to provide services in this area.

Scope of services

This Request for Proposals (RFP) is to:

  • Provide an introductory overview of shared (or other relevant) Equity, Diversity and Inclusion terminology and intercultural competency.
  • Provide (a) methodological framework, (b) execute a review to assess the current state of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion at IRC (within all the offices and departments) and (c) identify growth areas. Specifically:
    • Review of current organisational values and governance structure to make sure Equity, Diversity and Inclusion are adequately reflected.
    • Review a selection of internal policies, procedures, practices and culture in relation to Equity, Diversity and Inclusion and suggest improvements.
    • Support development of updating the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion principles in the Code of Conduct.
    • Gather, analyse, and share data and best practices on successful onboarding of employees and training of managers in equity and unconscious/implicit bias.
    • Provide tools and training to managers to improve their self-awareness and competency in Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.
    • Develop an action plan based on the identified (c) growth areas, accountability measures, and a timeline of short-term (1 to 3 years) and long-term (3 to 10 years) goals to track and report the progress of objectives and action items.
Key deliverables
  1. Assessment of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion at IRC: Online stakeholder surveys and interviews, written summary of best practice research and gaps analysis, and data analysis on effective Equity, Diversity and Inclusion programmes in similar non-profits.
  2. Facilitation of separate (including training) sessions with, amongst others the senior leadership.
  3. Organisational action plan with recommendations for Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion at IRC with estimated investment plan and schedule for key milestones through 2022. 
Proposal and requirements

IRC is explicitly inviting individuals and/or firms with a strong track record in organisational assessments on equity, diversity and inclusion to prepare a brief proposal to undertake the work. Please provide:

  1. Consultant’s/Team’s credentials and expertise in Organisational Change, Organisational Culture, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion.
  2. Names of all key personnel proposed to support IRC and roles specifying experience and qualifications (please indicate project lead).
  3. Description of demonstrated prior planning and facilitation experience with Equity, Diversity and Inclusion initiatives similar in scope.  
  4. Proposed approach:
    1. Description and justification of how you will meet the stated deliverables,
    2. Proposed timeline of your process,
    3. Description of your facilitation methodology and tools to be employed,
    4. Writing sample,
    5. Proposed budget aligned with the proposed project tasks (and budget per task).
Questions and Proposal Submittal Requirements

Please submit one electronic proposal to: IRC Director’s Office (directorsoffice@ircwash.orgbefore Wednesday 30 June 2021. If you have questions prior to submission of the proposal, please submit them in writing via email to Evita Rozenberg, Chief Director’s Office.

  • Request For Proposal issued: 1 June, 2021
  • Proposals due: Wednesday 30 June, 2021
  • Individual(s) and/or firm(s) selected: 23 July, 2021 (possible interviews in week of 12 July)
  • Contract executed & Notice to proceed: 2 August, 2021
Key concepts

EQUITY The guarantee of fair treatment, access, opportunity, and advancement while at the same time striving to identify and eliminate barriers that have prevented the full participation of some groups. The principle of equity acknowledges that there are historically underserved and underrepresented populations, and that fairness regarding these unbalanced conditions is needed to assist equality in the provision of effective opportunities to all groups.

DIVERSITY Psychological, physical, and social differences that occur among any and all individuals; including but not limited to race, ethnicity, nationality, religion, socioeconomic status, education, marital status, language, age, gender, sexual orientation, mental or physical ability, and learning styles.

INCLUSION The act of creating environments in which any individual or group can be and feel welcomed, respected, supported, and valued to fully participate and bring their full, authentic selves to work. An inclusive and welcoming climate embraces differences and offers respect in the words/actions/ thoughts of all people.