Field Consultant for the Kahuzi-Biega National Park
Duration: Short-Term, Temporary
Location: Preferably based in South Kivu / Able to travel to the Kahuzi-Biega National Park
Minority Rights Group International (MRG), in collaboration with local partners, is pursuing a research project to document conservation-related human rights abuses committed against Batwa communities and land rights defenders in the Kahuzi-Biega National Park (PNKB). The principal purpose of the project is to uncover the nature and extent of conservation-related violence experienced by the Batwa of the PNKB between approximately 2014 and the present. To do so, MRG is commissioning a fact-finding mission to investigate serious human rights abuses committed by PNKB guards and other personnel tasked with monitoring poaching and conservation enforcement in and around the PNKB. The information and data gathered from this field research will then be analysed, synthesised and compiled into a final report and disseminated to various key stakeholders.
Role and Responsibilities
The field consultant on this project is principally responsible for conducting the fact-finding mission in South Kivu to document the serious conservation-related human rights abuses experienced by Batwa community members and liaising with MRG and its local partners. The consultant will be tasked with undertaking interviews in Batwa villages in and around the PNKB to obtain detailed information regarding conservation-related human rights abuses. The consultant will coordinate with MRG’s local partners and other members of local civil society to access and interview victims and witnesses amongst affected Batwa communities. These interviews shall be conducted in an objective, lawful, culturally appropriate and ethical manner and in accordance with the project’s Terms of Reference.
The field consultant will seek to verify and corroborate victim and witness accounts through other sources, including through local civil society, community leaders, and publicly available records. The consultant will further seek to contact government officials, PNKB personnel and other accused perpetrators of conservation-related violence to verify victim and witness accounts and/or to receive additional information and explanation of incidents.
The field consultant will further be responsible for organising, compiling and synthesizing the collected data and draft a final report to MRG with detailed accounts of the human rights violations experienced by the Batwa of the PNKB.
- A timetable of work to be performed, in consultation with MRG and the project’s Terms of Reference, prior to the commencement of any research on or before 15 September 2020;
- A detailed action plan for conducting the fact-finding mission(s), including victim and witness interviews, after meeting/consulting with MRG’s local partners and other members of civil society and an assessment of potential risks that might arise, on or before 1 October 2020.
- A final, written report containing the consultant’s research findings on or before 1 December 2020.
With Covid-19 restrictions permitting, we anticipate that the fact-finding mission will be completed and all deliverables will be performed by the field consultant on or before 1 December, 2021.
Required Experience and Qualifications
- Extensive experience in human rights investigations and documenting human right abuses;
- Experience and expertise interviewing victims and witnesses of violence;
- Extensive in-country knowledge and specific experience working in South Kivu;
- Willingness and ability to travel to affected communities in and around the PNKB;
- Knowledge and experience of working with indigenous and/or minority communities;
- Expertise and skills interviewing members of vulnerable groups;
- Experience conducting field research in unstable and conflict-affected areas;
- Proven ability to draft field reports and communicate research findings to various audiences;
- Awareness of relevant research issues such as confidentiality and research ethics;
- Excellent written and verbal communication skills;
- Fluency in English and French.
MRG shall pay the field consultant EUR.7000 which will include fees and travel costs in three instalments as follows:
- Instalment #1: 50% upon signing of the Consultant Agreement;
- Instalment #2: 30% upon submission of the detailed action plan;
- Instalment #3: 20% on approval of the final research report by MRG
How to apply
Interested consultants should send an Expression of Interest to Colin Luoma at Colin.Luoma@mrgmail.org by 15 August 2020.