Community Based Organization (CBO) Digital Skills Implementing Partner

20 Min Read
  • Contract
  • Kenya

World University Service of Canada


Project: Learning Through Education and Access to Skills for Employment Project (LEAP)

Location: Kakuma, Turkana West – Kenya

Duration of Assignment: 6 Months

Expected Start Date: June 2024

Expected End Date: November 2024

1. Introduction

World University Service of Canada (WUSC) is a Canadian non-profit organization working to create a better world for all young people. We bring together a diverse network of students, volunteers, schools, government, and businesses who share this vision. Together, we foster youth-centered solutions for improved education, economic, and empowerment opportunities to overcome inequality and exclusion in over 15 countries around the world. WUSC believes that if youth have access to and benefit from inclusive, quality education opportunities from primary to post-secondary, then they will develop the knowledge, skills, and capacities they need to secure a better quality of life. WUSC has been active in the education sector for several decades, with a strong focus on improving education access and quality in conflict-affected and fragile contexts to ensure that even the most marginalized youth can change their lives through education.

WUSC is currently implementing the Learning through Education and Access to Skills for Employment Project (LEAP) with a grant of $12.4 million (CAD) from Global Affairs Canada (GAC). Launched in December 2019, LEAP is enhancing education opportunities for adolescent girls and provide access to gender-responsive and market-based skills training for young women with the ultimate goal of increasing the empowerment of female youth in Kalobeyei Settlement, Kakuma Refugee Camp, and the surrounding host communities in Turkana County in northern Kenya.

WUSC is seeking an implementing partner to support the implementation of project activities that relate to increasing girls’ access to safe, quality, gender-sensitive education, and generating community support and driving behavior change to enhance female empowerment through digital skills and access to employment opportunities.

2. Background of the LEAP Project

LEAP is designed to address gender, social, cultural, and economic barriers that affect adolescent girls’ and young women’s ability to access education and employment opportunities and make critical decisions about things that affect their lives. The project specifically targets two of the most critical moments in a girls’ educational journey: 1) upper primary grades and the transition to secondary school, when girls are most at risk of dropping out of the education system; and, 2) the transition from basic education to post-secondary education or employment. Consisting of a large range of interventions, including teacher training, life skills education, financial assistance through cash transfers, media campaigns, community outreach and engagement for behavior change, psychosocial support, mentorship programs, market-based skills training, and training in digital skills, LEAP not only support girls and young women directly but also aims to address the root causes of inequality by challenging and helping to transform structural barriers and entrenched social norms, attitudes, and power relations that impact girls’ ability to thrive.

LEAP was launched in December 2019, and will run until March 2025, and aims to reach a total of 40,000 adolescent girls and young women. To give a brief overview of the scope of the activities under LEAP, the project components can be broadly categorized into activities to support education, activities to support employment opportunities, and activities to support community behavior change:


LEAP supports a total of 15 schools (11 primary schools and 4 secondary schools) located within Kalobeyei Settlement (5 primary schools and 2 secondary schools) and the surrounding host communities (6 primary schools and 2 secondary schools). Conditional cash transfers support vulnerable girls and their families to overcome the economic barriers to accessing education, and a combination of teacher training, life skills education, strengthening school policy, and psychosocial support are designed to help improve the overall quality the education girls receive.

Employment Opportunities

LEAP aims to increase equitable participation in gender-responsive, market-based skills training to equip adolescent girls and young women with critical skills to improve their future life options and livelihoods. The project supports 20 girls to access diploma level technical and vocational courses at a number of Kenya National Technical Vocational Education Institutions through providing TVET scholarships; 735 girls have completed certificate level vocational technical skills training within Kalobeyei camp, and 475 girls taking online digital skills training courses leading to online freelance working opportunities.

Community Behaviour Change

LEAP works to generate community support for girls’ empowerment, recognizing that a supportive and enabling environment is a critical component for girls to exercise their voice, choice and agency. LEAP is implementing several methodologies to achieve sustainable community-wide shifts in gender-related norms and behaviors. First is direct community mobilization led by a network of activists to promote shifts in power dynamics and reduce violence against women and girls. Second is the use of mass media, specifically radio programming to promote women’s economic empowerment. And third is male engagement in which male partners and family members of skills training participants are engaged in a several-weeks course to promote positive masculinity.


One of the major goals of LEAP is to increase the equitable participation of young women in the formal and informal workforce, particularly in high-growth and profitable jobs. The digital skills and online jobs training is therefore an integral component of the program, with the objective of supporting at least 475 young women in Kalobeyei, Kakuma, and surrounding host communities to obtain training in digital skills and subsequently obtain sustainable work. Thus far in the project, 475 participants have been trained on digital skills. WUSC is seeking to identify an experienced, skilled, and results-oriented community based organisation (CBO) to co-develop a business model; tailor-make a training curriculum; select trainees; and provide training, mentorship and linkages to the online jobs market.

Through initial analyses and scoping studies, WUSC identified that online work–such as remote data entry/annotation, data processing, and editing–was a promising new area for refugees who may face other types of restrictions on business ownership or formal employment. The proposed partner should have a strong understanding of the legal context of refugee employment in Kenya, as well as a deep understanding of gender dynamics in the refugee and host communities of Kakuma and Kalobeyei. To achieve the project’s objective with regards to improved livelihood opportunities for young women, the project will work in collaboration with a local CBO digital implementing partner to train and link adolescent girls and young women in Kakuma, Kalobeyei and the Host community with online work opportunities. The project aims to train 120 young women from the host community in a period of 6 months and transition them to digital online jobs where they can earn decent income. (the project is currently in year 5 of implementation with 475 participants already trained.

Role of the CBO

Aligned with this purpose, the digital skills and online jobs implementing CBO will play the following roles: review the digital skills training and access to jobs model; and develop and design a cost effective, gender-responsive training model for the project and `be a leader in training and supporting Adolescent Girls and Young Women (AGYW) to enter the digital economy. The partner will work in close collaboration with the WUSC LEAP project teams based in Nairobi and Kakuma who will oversee the project.

Specifically, the mandate of the implementing partner is to:

Training design and model

  • Conduct a digital labour market assessment and trainees needs assessment to inform development of a cost effective and scalable digital skills business model.
  • Work with a pre-qualified TVET institution in the delivery of an internationally recognized digital literacy certification.
  • Co-create, update and customize gender responsive training curricula on digital skills, online jobs, and soft skills.
  • Develop recruitment and selection criteria for trainees in consultation with WUSC, and recruit trainees for the program.
  • Identify and select trainees – lead trainee selection process, working in collaboration with WUSC and other LEAP Project partners as needed.
  • Provide job mentorship to graduates
  • Conduct project monitoring and evaluation, revenue tracking and document success stories

Training – Young Women Empowerment

  • Deliver training to identified young women using customised curriculum and support trainees to develop online profiles and bid for online jobs.
  • Support trainees with linkages to credible local and international online job platforms. This includes a minimum of 3-month mentorship support to help trainees identify, bid for work and deliver quality jobs as well as receive payment for work done.
  • Provide gender sensitive training and mentorship support to a minimum of 120 adolescent girls and young women, with a target of 70% of young women earning income through online freelance work
  • Conduct gender-responsive skills training covering the areas of basic digital skills (covering those areas identified through labour market assessments), how to obtain online freelance work, entrepreneurship in the context of online work, and life skills
  • Provide gender-sensitive support and appropriate referral pathways for those who are survivors of SGBV.


  • Provide mentorship for young women to help them bid and perform online jobs
  • In collaboration with the WUSC team, conduct outreach with the family members of the trainees and the broader community to garner support for women’s and girl’s use of technology and inclusion in the gig economy


  • Work closely with the WUSC staff to build the capacity of 2 business units, ensure a good governance structure of the units is in place and provide linkages to financial services.
  • Provide information to trained AGYW on online work regulation and best practices.
  • Support graduates to open bank accounts with credible financial institutions and online wallets.
  • Organize graduates to form, register and operationalize 1 business units for digital online workers

Quality Control and Impact Measurement

  • Provide oversight and ensure quality during online job bidding and execution to ensure that trainees have adequate support.
  • Collaborate with the WUSC MERL team to monitor the training, mentorship and online job status, using a result-based monitoring system.
  • Provide data and information required by MERL on impact assessment.
  • Conduct outreach with parents, teachers, and community leaders, particularly men and boys, to foster a supportive environment for young women’s employment and to mitigate against risk of SGBV.
  • Collaborate with WUSC MERL in conducting assessments with men and boys, particularly male spouses or partners, to identify and address gender roles and joint decision-making regarding young women’s employment pathways.
  • Develop a detailed work plan.
  • Provide monthly financial reports and quarterly technical reports as required.

Key Deliverables

Safeguarding Adherence

WUSC recognizes that safeguarding children, young people and vulnerable adults is everyone’s responsibility and we must collectively stay vigilant and immediately respond to potentially any kind of abuse or exploitation or harmful situations without exceptions. The LEAP project recognizes that online harassment, bullying, sexual exploitation and other digital safeguarding risks can affect anyone, but is most likely to affect women, girls and LGBTQI+ individuals. These groups face an increased risk of violence through digital technology, which can be considered a form of Gender-Based Violence. LEAP staff, partners, representatives and others working with the project should be aware of common perpetrators and acts of such violence. Any individual can raise a concern/complaint to WUSC about an incident they have experienced, witnessed, or heard about concerning a LEAP staff member or partner (suppliers, partners, contractor, etc.) without fear of retribution.

Partner Qualifications

  • Be a registered Community Based Organization (CBO) operating in the Kakuma Kalobeyei and surrounding Host communities for the last 5 years
  • Evidence of managing and implementing donor funded projects for at least 3 years of USD 5000 and above.
  • Must have implemented a similar digital skills project in the past with evidence of beneficiaries transition to online work.
  • Clear demonstrated understanding of the Gig economy ( Trainers/ Mentors should be active participants of online gigs)
  • Ability to design and deliver a digital training curriculum (Short courses – 3 months and long courses – 6 months)
  • Clear demonstrated understanding of donor reporting requirements (Templates, timelines)
  • A clear detailed profile of organization operations, human resource and thematic areas of operation.
  • Have clear policies and staff commitment to safeguarding, as well as necessary structures and procedures in place to respond effectively to safeguarding issues and concerns.
  • Commitment to and understanding of how to take a do no harm approach to promote safety, security, and inclusivity.
  • Have sound anti-discrimination principles and codes of conduct
  • Commitment to learning and ability to be flexible in programming and operations to truly commit to change. WUSC seeks partners that are willing to accommodate change, adapt practices and approaches, and engage in ongoing dialogue and evolution in the partnership based on context, time limits, and review/ renewal processes, and are willing to have discussions around any deeply entrenched structural inequalities, racism and power imbalances, if and when they may arise.

Points to Note

WUSC’s activities seek to balance inequities and create sustainable development around the globe; the work ethic of our staff, volunteers,, representatives, and partners shall correspond to the values and mission of the organization. WUSC promotes responsibility, respect, honesty, and professional excellence and we will not tolerate harassment, coercion and sexual exploitation, or abuse of any form.

Interested applicants must meet the requirements outlined above and all proposals must include the following:

  1. Cover Letter (maximum 1 page): expressing the organization’s interest and capacity to deliver the outlined scope of work.

  2. Technical Proposal (5 pages pages):

    1. Understanding of the TOR
    2. Description of the capacity and qualifications for each of the components outlined above, including previous experience of implementing similar programming/activities
    3. Proposed approach to implementing this initiative, including:
      1. How would your organization propose to deliver (both from a technical and operational perspective) each of the components outlined above over the final two years of the program? Please outline how you will work with other organizations and community leadership for implementation and the staffing requirements / technical expertise required for implementation.
      2. How will you integrate gender equality, social inclusion, and safeguarding into your delivery approach?
      3. What is your organization’s approach to monitoring, evaluation, research and learning? How do you propose to effectively monitor the impact of each component?
      4. What is your organization’s approach to sustainability? What considerations would you take in your delivery approach to ensure programming is sustainable as much as possible?
    4. Team composition and level of effort of each team member clearly outlined on an organization chart, including any additional positions that would be hired for to fulfill the scope of work. CVs can be presented as an Annex and do not count toward the total page limit and qualifications.
  3. Financial Proposal:

    1. Budget presented in Kenyan shillings with itemized costs, with each distinct type of expense broken down
    2. Only eligible costs according to the Global Affairs Canada Guidance on Eligible Costs for Development Initiatives shall be accepted
    3. Expected payment plan and method
  4. Required Documentation:

    1. Registration certificate of the organization/company
    2. Copy of CR 12
    3. Audit Reports for the last 2 years
    4. List the policies, procedures and overall approach of the organization for ensuring safeguarding, online safety and protection
  5. References: names and contact information of three references who can be contacted regarding relevant experience and/or similar assignments undertaken.

  6. Timeline for RFP

    1. Request for Proposal published by April 24th, 2024

    2. Submission of proposal to WUSC by May 3rd, 2024

    3. Evaluation of the proposals by May 6th – 7th, 2024

    4. Interview and presentation by applicant by May 13th, 2024

    5. Negotiations and Due Diligence by May 20th – May 23rd 2024

    6. Contracting by May 29th – June 1st, 2024

How to apply

All proposals and supporting documents should be submitted here latest by 3rd May, 2024. Do not send hardcopies. Any questions regarding the RFP can be sent by email to [email protected] with the subject line Questions RFP LEAP. Questions received by phone will not be answered.

***Show some love and please mention* in your application***
***We also feel loved when you share it***

Share This Article