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.
Operational in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) since 2007, Mercy Corps implements programs in the areas of food security, agriculture, urban and rural WASH and emergency response to man-made disasters. Taking a systems approach to our programming, we aim to improve the lives and potential of vulnerable individuals and communities across DRC.
Mercy Corps is leading a multi-partner consortium to implement USAID’s Sustainable Water and Sanitation Systems Activity, which aims to increase and sustain access to clean water and safe sanitation services for communities in the North and South Kivu provinces of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). The Activity will do this through robust research geared to informing potential investors, operators and authorities on best practices (Objective 1), improving the enabling environment for water and sanitation service delivery (Objective 2), and proving the market potential of economically sustainable delivery of water and sanitation services (Objective 3) throughout the Kivus region.
Purpose / Project Description:
USAID’s mandatory environmental procedures, detailed under 22 CFR 216, require environmental review of all activities prior to implementation, and application of environmental management conditions that result from this review. The Initial Environmental Examination (IEE) is the most common form of this review. In June 2021, USAID approved an IEE for their WASH portfolio in DRC, which is applicable to this program. The IEE specifies a negative determination with condition on most of the planned activities, and a positive determination for large-scale infrastructure construction/rehabilitation activities planned under the award. Mercy Corps has developed a program-level EMMP aligned with this approved IEE. Mercy Corps seeks an IEE/ EMMP consultant to review this EMMP to ensure compliance with the USAID IEE, to develop templates for site-specific EMMPs to be developed for activities with a positive determination, and to work with a local DRC environmental advisor/ engineer to plan necessary environmental assessments in accordance with USAID regulations and in response to specific guidance provided by USAID’s Bureau and/or Mission Environmental Officers, as applicable.
- Revise the program-level EMMP/s for USAID’s Sustainable Water and Sanitation Systems Activity to align with the approved WASH IEE for DRC.
- Develop USAID compliant tools and/or templates for the required environmental assessments (EA), and for ongoing environmental monitoring (EM) activities, as per the EMMP
- Advise and train DRC-based environmental engineer/coordinator on using the EA and EM tools successfully. Provide review and guidance as needed throughout the life of the activity.
The Consultant will:
- Read and gain familiarity with the approved USAID WASH IEE For DRC
- Read and gain familiarity with SWASSA program strategy/planning documents to understand planned activities
- Review/revise EMMP draft to ensure alignment with approved IEE and to address feedback received from USAID
- Develop basic guidance and tools to be used by program environmental focal point to successfully complete environmental assessments and monitoring on the ground
- Provide ad-hoc training and guidance to program environmental focal point and leadership team on compliance with USAID environmental regulations, as required
- Review/refine program-level EMMP to align with approved WASH IEE and national regulations
- Produce templates for site specific EMMPs in accordance with approved IEE and EMMP
- Produce terms of Reference or other tools for site-specific Environmental Assessments (EA), as applicable
Timeframe / Schedule:
The consultancy is estimated at 15 billable days over a 2-year time-frame (December 2021-December 2023), with estimated level of effort as follows.
- Approximately 4-5 billable days within the first 4 weeks upon signing this agreement, to review and refine existing EMMP and to produce a template for site-specific EMMPs.
- The remaining days to be used on an as-needed basis when the consultant’s expertise is required to a) respond to USAID questions or feedback or b) plan environmental assessments or monitoring activities, in collaboration with the program team. This will be agreed mutually between Mercy Corps and the consultant with at least 30 days advance notice required.
The Consultant will report to:
- Chief of Party, SWASSA
The Consultant will work closely with:
- SWASSA Program team and consortium partners, based in DRC
- HQ-based Senior Program Officer and Technical Support teams
Required Experience & Skills:
- 5-10 years of experience in relevant technical field (required)
- Knowledge of the USAID environmental procedures and requirements.
- Proven experience providing both environmental compliance and environmental management technical support to USAID missions, programs and projects, including development of 22 CFR 216 environmental review documentation.
- Past experience in the Democratic Republic of the Congo or in the sub-Saharan African context preferred
- Ability to develop a multi-year strategy, working within the phased approach of USAID SWASSA
- University degree or higher with a focus in environmental studies or another relevant degree
- French proficiency preferred.
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.