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Malawi Agricultural Cooperative Societies Strengthening Consultant Job Vacancy

Position Description: Consultant

Job Title: Consultant, Agricultural Cooperative Societies Strengthening – Malawi

Number of days: 65 Days

Period: March 6th to August 15th, 2016 (Phased)

Background Information: NCBA CLUSA is a technical partner in the USAID-Food-for-Peace United in Building and Advancing Life Expectations (UBALE) Program, led by Catholic Relief Services (CRS).

The goal of UBALE is to reduce chronic malnutrition and food insecurity and build resilience among vulnerable populations in rural Blantyre, Chikwawa and Nsanje Districts of Malawi.

NCBA CLUSA plays a critical role within this program of strengthening agricultural value chains, supporting development of agricultural finance products and producer organization.

Background of Agricultural Cooperatives in Malawi

The number of registered cooperatives in Malawi has increased more than seven-fold the past two decades from 138 in the mid-1990s to 1192 in 2014. Agricultural cooperatives are the majority (56.1%), followed by SACCOs (28.2%) and multi-purpose cooperatives (15.7%).

While there are many registered primary agricultural cooperatives, there are very few marketing cooperatives. This is because most primary cooperatives individually practice to evolve into marketing cooperatives or do both production and marketing concurrently, making it difficult for them to focus on core competencies.

The increasing number of registered cooperatives can be attributed to the reintroduction of democracy and the subsequent creation of a favorable policy and legal environment to support farmer organization in Malawi.

There has also been concerted efforts by various farmer organization stakeholders like Farmers Union of Malawi (FUM), Malawi Union of Savings and Credit Cooperatives (MUSCCO), National Smallholder Farmers Association of Malawi (NASFAM), and development partners to liberalize producer group organization.

However, cooperative membership patronage in the Malawi is still low, with a cooperative density of 1% in 2010. Additionally, most cooperatives, particularly agricultural cooperatives, are not showing any growth in either capital or assets since inception.

This is because agricultural cooperatives in Malawi have engaged in pre-mature value addition/processing, thanks to generous support from various donor funded projects

However, the agricultural cooperative sector is vital to Malawi’s GDP improvement because agriculture is still the economic mainstay of Malawi.

For example, the agricultural sector contributes 30% of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP), 60% of export earnings and supports the vast majority of the population (85%) of about 16 million that live in rural areas and derive its livelihood from farming as smallholder farmers.

Cooperatives Societies and SACCOs in Malawi are registered and supervised by the Malawi Ministry of Industry, Trade and Tourism-Department of Cooperatives, Small and Medium Enterprises.

This consultancy carries three KEY objectives:

  1. To revitalize primary agricultural cooperatives in the three southern districts in Malawi (Blantyre, Chikwawa and Nsanje);
  2. To establish at least two nascent agricultural marketing cooperatives;
  3. To train cooperative board members and managers.

Requirements of the Assignment:

  • Conduct a thorough review and audit of the operations, membership and business processes of all duly registered primary agricultural cooperative societies in Blantyre Rural, Nsanje and Chikwawa Districts of Southern Malawi;
  • Provide recommendations of audit and review for each primary agricultural cooperative society;
  • Provide technical backstopping in the establishment of secondary marketing cooperatives for rice, legumes, cotton and sesame. This includes setting up by-laws and board members elections;
  • Train cooperative society board members in line with the Malawi Cooperative Societies Act, 2000;
  • Provide technical backstopping on recruitment of cooperative society managers and accountants by board members;
  • Prepare an elaborate cooperative society manager’s and accountant’s guide and use it administer induction training to hired managers and accountants;
  • Train cooperative society board members and manager on key success factors for cooperative society commodity bulking, marketing, deal signing, and sales.

Deliverables:

  • Conduct a thorough review and audit of the operations, membership and business processes of all duly registered primary agricultural cooperative societies in Blantyre Rural, Nsanje and Chikwawa Districts of Southern Malawi;
  • Recommendations of audit and review for each primary agricultural cooperative society;
  • Provide technical backstopping in the establishment of secondary marketing cooperatives for rice, legumes, cotton and sesame. This includes setting up by-laws and board members elections;
  • Train cooperative society board members in line with the Malawi Cooperative Societies Act, 2000;
  • Provide technical backstopping on recruitment of cooperative society managers and accountants by board members;
  • Prepare an elaborate cooperative society manager’s and accountant’s guide and use it administer induction training to hired managers and accountants;
  • Train cooperative society board members and manager on key success factors for cooperative society commodity bulking, marketing, deal signing, and sales

Timeline


Required Competence:

  • A seasoned agricultural cooperatives business development specialist, manager and thought leader with at least ten years providing successful management, technical, business advisory and strategic planning services to agricultural cooperatives. (15 points)
  • Illustrated high level leadership experience in turning around poor performing primary (first tier) and/or secondary (second tier) agricultural cooperatives. (10 points)
  • Track record of overseeing cooperative society member, capital and asset portfolio growth (20 points)
  • Experience managing and coaching a team within a cooperative society (10 points)
  • Illustrated expertise in putting together robust and compelling cooperative society business and strategic plans (10 points)
  • Relevant first degree or masters in agriculture, agricultural economics, cooperative development, commerce, marketing, finance from a reputable institution of higher learning. (15 points)
  • Realistic and justified professional fee/costing (10 points)
  • Positive attitude, articulate presentation and willingness to unlearn to learn (10 points)

Application:

Interested and qualified consultants should submit their expression of interest to include:

1. A profile or CV, including reference from organizations you have worked for before in similar assignments (30 points).

2. A technical proposal- detailing how the consultant(s) propose(s) to undertake the assignment (40 points).

3. A financial proposal – with justified rates (30 points).

Send application strictly to clusamwrecruit@gmail.com with the subject as ‘MwCoopConsultancy’.

Hard copy applications will NOT be accepted.

Deadline is Feb 28th, 2017.

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.



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