REQUEST FOR EXPRESSION OF INTEREST OF MFIs TO PROVIDE FINANCIAL SERVICES IN WEST NILE
Habitat for Humanity Uganda (HFHU), affiliated to Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI), is a Christian non-profit organization dedicated to the cause of eliminating poverty housing. Since 1982, Habitat for Humanity Uganda has built, rehabilitated or repaired more than 8,000 homes, providing simple, affordable shelter for approximately 48,000 people. Originally, the Uganda office followed Habitat’s traditional model of selling its houses to homeowner partners for the cost of construction. The resulting mortgage payments were put into a revolving fund to help build more homes. After several years, Habitat Uganda realized this model left out numerous local families with the most need. While construction costs are relatively low for a Habitat house in Uganda, too many families could not afford to pay anything toward a mortgage. As a result, Habitat Uganda adopted a twoprong housing approach in 2005.
With the mission to eliminate poverty housing through provision of access to affordable housing finance for low income earners, HFHU is interested in partnering with credible Ugandan duly registered SACCOs to continue supporting her mission.
2.0 Program and Context overview
The Bank of Uganda estimates that less than 20% of Ugandans have a bank account. There are a number of drivers for this low user base, including; lack of trust in the institutions, geographic access to bank branches, and the targeted customer profile of the banks. As a result, lower income families tend to make use of Savings and Credit Cooperatives (SACCOs) or smaller – and unregulated – Microfinance Institutions (MFIs). Typically, these institutions struggle with organizational capacity and access to capital. HFHU will launch a pilot project to demonstrate that SACCOs and MFIs can be a reliable source of micro housing finance across Uganda.
HFHU will therefore identify 5 SACCOs or MFIs that provide financial services to low income families to provide appropriate housing finance products while strengthening their organisational capacity. This will be achieved by implementing a series of related activities that will include; a due diligence for the 5 partner organisations, an organisational capacity assessment (OCA), institutional action planning and follow-up, training for SACCOs and MFIs in specific organisational capacity development domains, peer learning, disbursement of at least 250 loans benefiting not less than 1,500 clients and signing of loan agreements, quarterly fund performance reporting, and identification and documentation of at least 5 success stories.
3.0 Study Justification
The need for housing finance and investment in housing in Uganda is clear. A large housing gap exists in terms of absolute numbers and of the quality of housing stock. Growth of the housing finance market has been slowed by issues such as high interest rates, difficulties in accessing credit, an underdeveloped financial system, and uncertainties in the regulatory structure. The role of private financing of infrastructure development is increasingly being highlighted as necessary in the African context. Despite its limited size, Uganda‘s financial sector has the potential to make a meaningful contribution to infrastructure.
However, microfinance has sometimes disappointed its supporters. Only few of the hundreds of microfinance programs inaugurated in the last decade have proven their sustainability. A growing body of evidence indicates that the instrument does not meet the high expectations initially placed on it in terms of client impact. Few microenterprises experience sustained growth, while a majority grow only a little or maintain their operations at a constant level. It is also unusual for credit to trigger a continuous increase in technical sophistication, output or employment. It is much more common for each of these variables to reach a plateau after one or two loans and remain in a steady state. As far as empowerment is concerned, micro finance services have shown little potential to thoroughly change existing inequalities in power relations or the role of women in society.
Faced with such challenges, together with the poverty situation in West Nile, and therefore lack of access to formal banking systems, the population will not therefore be able to access housing microfinance to meet their housing demands. It is against this background that the project seeks to support selected SACCOs in West Nile such that they can stand the current challenges faced by the financial sector and therefore offer an affordable microfinance product to the target population. This assignment will therefore include a Due Diligence study and an Organization Capacity Assessment (OCA) to ascertain the associations’ capacities in a number of functions, especially, finance, administration, monitoring and evaluation, networking and partnership, and human resources, among others. This OCA should therefore guide the development of Organizational Capacity Development Plans (OCDPs) that would therefore be implemented with the support of HFHU project staff. This approach is therefore envisaged by HFHU as viable towards improving the performance of SACCOs and therefore help sustain their interventions.
This Assignment has four objectives;
i. To conduct a Due Diligence (DD) Review
ii. Conducting an Organisational Capacity Assessment (OCA) in specific areas of finance, administration, monitoring and evaluation, networking and partnership, and human resources,
iii. Designing an Organisational Capacity Development (OCD) plan based on the capacity gaps identified, and
iv. Delivering specific training to SACCOs with an aim of building their capacity in finance, administration, monitoring and evaluation, networking and partnership, and human resources.
5.0 Location of the Study
The study will be conducted in West Nile targeting five (5) pre-identified SACCOs.
6.0 Roles and Responsibilities
Specifically, the Consultant(s) will be expected to undertake specific tasks that will include but not limited to:
a) Study critically the COINS Project Proposal,
b) Actively engaging with HFHU staff and SACCOs’ Staff, through the use of participatory methods,
c) Regularly communicate progress to the Deputy National Director – HFHU,
d) Produce deliverables in accordance with the requirements and time frames of these Terms of Reference,
e) Conduct a study on the available organisational systems and structures at each of the SACCOs,
f) Analyse the findings to identify the capacity development needs and resources needed to support SACCOs,
g) Suggest an Organisational Capacity Development Plan for the studied SACCOs,
h) Develop the process of data entry and assume responsibility for data analysis,
i) Submit a Draft Report within the agreed time frame, and
j) Submit Final Reports [DD Report, OCA Report, and Training Report] to HFHU. This should include; 3 original spirals bound hard copies and a soft copy on a removable disk. The raw data, (field notes for in-depth interviews) and data collection tools used in the assessment should be submitted together with the Final Report. A simple inventory of material handed over will be part of the record.
It should be noted that all the materials, used in data collection, including the Final Report, will be property of HFHU and cannot be shared, reproduced, or presented in any other forum without express permission from the HFHU National Director. The other attendant laws regarding HFHU’s Data Management/Protection will also apply. However, SACCOs will have the right to access these reports as they will help them to reflect and improve on their capacities from time to time.
6.1 Specific Deliverables
i. Due Diligence Reports,
ii. OCA Reports,
iii. OCD Plans, and
iv. Training or OCD Reports.
6.2 Consultant Selection Criteria
The consultant will be required to demonstrate:
a) Strong technical understanding and experience of organizational/institutional development, looking at the basic requirements/capacities for establishing an MFI plus organizational capacity assessment skills for microfinance institutions,
b) Undoubtable experience in proposal development,
c) At least 5 years’ experience in conducting similar assignments; with strong analytical, research, and writing skills,
d) Strong facilitation skills, particularly with regards to working with micro finance institutions,
e) Clear proposal on the most appropriate way to conduct this Assignment, that is, the study methodology, study tools, detailed work plan and budget,
f) Excellent written and verbal communication skills, and
6.3 Ethical Approval
The study will not require an ethical review, as the results will be used for internal project management within Habitat for Humanity Uganda.
6.4 Study Timeline
(i). Preparation, design and presentation of Technical Proposal 5th February 2018
(ii). Inception Meeting 9th February 2018
(iii). Data Collection 16th February 2018
(iv). Data Entry and Analysis 22nd February 2018
(v). Submission of Draft Report 28th February 2018
(vi). Training of SACCOs in identified capacity areas 15th March 2018 7.
(vii)Submission of Training Report 22nd March 2018
7.0 Management and Coordination
The Consultant(s) will work under supervision of the Deputy National Director – HFHU.
a) Prospective Consultants will provide their proposed daily rates along with expected assessment of the total number of days for each step. The selected Consultant will then be compensated at the rate approved by Habitat for Humanity Uganda based on experience and relevance of the candidate’s proposal, study methodology, tools for data collection, and availability of a budget,
b) Under no circumstances should the consultant invoice for more than the agreed contract,
c) Full payment will be contingent on receipt of all deliverables as detailed above with approval of the Final Report by Habitat for Humanity Uganda,
d) The proposed budget should include all consultancy fees, local travel, costs for enumerators and all costs associated with the study,
e) Cost efficiency and value for money will be strongly considered in the evaluation of submitted proposals
f) Financial proposals will be evaluated based on total funds available for the activity and RTP will enter into negotiations with the best evaluated consultant.
9.0 Application Process
Interested individuals or companies should E-Mail a cover letter and a CV of the Lead Consultant, a Technical Proposal, including the proposed methodology, tools, proposed work plan/timeline and consultancy costs to email@example.com with Subject: HFH-Coins /01/2018.
Proposals should be submitted by 5:00 PM on Monday 5th February, 2018.