Request for Proposals



Rainforest Alliance is seeking a consultant to submit proposals for incorporating a GESI approach across the Initiative and develop the GESI Strategy and Action Plan.

Summary Information

●       Department: Business Case for Collective Landscape Action

●       Location(s): Global with scope in Peru, Ecuador, Colombia and Indonesia

●       Desired start date and duration: approx. three months

●       Under direction of: Technical and Monitoring Manager

●       Activity AWPY2: 4.4.1


Consultancy Summary

About the Rainforest Alliance


The Rainforest Alliance is a global NGO working to build an alliance to create a better future for people and nature by making responsible business the new normal. To advance our mission, we focus on amplifying our impact on the ground through systemic transformation: change throughout the supply chain, change in relationships between people and nature, and change within our own organization.


The Rainforest Alliance is creating a more sustainable world by using social and market forces to protect nature and improve the lives of farmers and forest communities.


We work towards making responsible business the new normal through our certification program, tailored supply chain services, landscape and community work and advocacy.


The Rainforest Alliance is working to build an alliance to create a better future for people and nature by making responsible business the new normal. To advance our mission, we focus on amplifying our impact on the ground through systemic transformation: change throughout the supply chain, change in relationships between people and nature, and change within our      organization.




Rainforest Alliance, in partnership with Clarmondial, CDP North America and Conservation International (CI) and with the support of U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), is leading the Business Case Initiative for Collective Landscape Action (“the Business Case” or “initiative” henceforward).


Across the Amazon and Indonesia, the rates of forest loss and biodiversity loss are increasing at the same time the global impacts of climate change are escalating and rural communities see their livelihood and wellbeing at risk. If the world is to turn the corner from increasing rates of forest and biodiversity loss, and climate disaster towards a net forest-positive and climate-positive future where people have access to decent livelihoods, wellbeing and human rights, transformative solutions that have the potential to unleash systems change are needed.


And these transformative solutions have to be deeply engaged with the participation and involvement of women and men equally, but considering that the impacts of climate change commonly brings higher risks for women in situations of poverty. It’s fundamental to consider the meaningful participation of women during any process related to the sustainable resource management because of their local knowledge and their leadership that contribute directly to decrease existing inequalities and increase effectiveness in the implementation of climate change policies and projects.

The Goal of the Business Case for Collective Landscape Action is to scale-up reductions in commodity-driven deforestation while accelerating biodiversity conservation, restoration and community livelihoods and human rights gains by demonstrating the business case for collective landscape action and enabling application globally. The Business Case for Collective Landscape Action ("Business Case") works with landscape partners to address a variety of local and global issues including water quality, climate change and biodiversity loss. Landscape-level approaches including tools such as Landscape Action Plans and LandScale are considered, as well as new reporting frameworks (CDP), e.g. in their ability to mobilize additional resources from the public and private sectors including business and investors. The landscape partnership, Landscape action plan and LandScale will create better conditions to allow regions to “de-risk” and encourage investment, go further or beyond certification with the certification to address challenges that have an impact outside the farm (wastewater management, for example) and align the Landscape Action Plan to the planning instruments of the governments and the private sector.


The Business Case Initiative consists of three key components:


1. Facilitation of multi-stakeholder landscape action plans and enhanced local capacity through the work of partners Rainforest Alliance and Conservation International

2. The development of innovative financing mechanisms to support investment in high-performing landscapes through the work of partner Clarmondial.

3. Increased disclosure of information on the performance of these landscapes and jurisdiction through the work of partner CD.


The expected results of the project are: 1) 12.1 million tons of CO2 emissions reduced through 2030, 2) 1.8 million hectares under improved natural resource management, 3) More than 12,000 people with economic co-benefits and improved livelihoods and human rights and 3) US$ 30 Million of international finance mobilised.        


As a result of this work, the initiative will unlock international finance for sustainable production, channel it to well-planned landscapes, and ultimately stabilize critical deforestation frontiers. USAID support for this activity will advance the Agency's new Climate Strategy, which aims to achieve significant reductions in global greenhouse gas emissions, improved resilience to the impacts of climate change, and climate-positive reforms to USAID operations by 2030.


The prioritization of women, Indigenous Peoples (IP), youth? and local communities throughout the intervention and the development of strategies to enhance their active participation is fundamental to achieving the Initiative's objectives and ensuring the sustainability of the Business Case and its ability to improve interventions. The Business Case's strategic interventions incorporate a gender and social inclusion approach. Objectives to facilitate Consultation, representation, active participation, including in decision-making of these groups (objectives) will be established in all relevant activities. Landscape action plans (LAPs) will be designed with and implemented by representatives of all social groups, including women, IP, youth and other marginalized groups, who will have increasing roles and decision-making authority in landscape activities.


The Activity will apply the USAID Policy on the Promotion of Indigenous Peoples' Rights (PRO-IP) and related principles, as well as the social inclusion metrics and gender-transformative approach and best practices of the RA Sustainable Agriculture Standard, Forest Stewardship Council, Guidelines for Applying Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC), and CDP disclosure standards.


The Gender and Social Inclusion (GESI) analysis with a women’s, youth, and indigenous people lens is key for the Initiative implementation have a strategy for including GESI across the Business Case Initiative outputs, results and activities. This Assessment and mainstreaming GESI will set out to identify key gender, youth, and indigenous people issues, inequalities, challenges and opportunities in the sustainable landscape actions in Colombia (Caquetá), Ecuador (Sucumbios and Orellana), Indonesia (Sintang), and Peru (Lamas). The findings and recommendations in the GESI Strategy should help the Business Case Initiative to establish clear, useful and relevant strategic and operational lines to the reality of each territory, so that all landscape stakeholders, especially those who are directly affected by any related REDD+ policy or project, get involved actively in the design and implementation of the action plan, accessing to its benefits, being an instrument that contributes to the protection and approach of their economic and environmental rights.

Main Objectives


The principal objective is to mainstream intersectional GESI in the Initiative implementation, in particular in each of the project’s three strategic approaches (Components), with more emphasis in the SA1, and provide recommendations as a basis for a GESI strategy (for mainstreaming actions) to ensure GESI considerations in all the Initiative.


The specific objectives for the consultancy are below:


  • Identify key gender equality issues or challenges and issues or challenges related to youth and indigenous people in each landscape in line with the Initiative objectives to guide activity planning and implementation.
  • Identify opportunities for gender equality and social inclusion within the Initiative objectives to help improve outcomes for historically marginalized groups including IP, youth, women-led organizations, among others in the target regions
  • Provide key recommendations to mainstream GESI in the Initiative overall through the development of a GESI Action Plan and GESI strategy.


Considerations for the methodological approach


The consultancy should consider the Initiative’s Theory of Change and expected results (intermediate and key results) for preparing the methodology, and consider the knowledge and roles, challenges that women, vulnerable groups and youth have in this type of landscape. The approach to be followed is a (gender) transformative approach where root causes of inequalities and gaps are identified and addressed, challenging social norms and transforming power dynamics. This approach can only be effective when the concerned population, women, youth, and indigenous people are actively engaged in the whole process, including planning, monitoring, evaluating and learning.


Do no Harm

In order to ensure unintended negative impacts of the project take place, unwantedly increasing existing inequalities, it is important to identify risks of unintended negative impacts and undertake actions to address those risks. Risks could be for example project activities that can lead to increased workload for women, or improved access to finance for women which can lead to conflicts within the household.


The contexts of gender inequality and social exclusion reported below provide detailed data and descriptions of the dynamics and root causes of inequality, which vary by country. However, all four countries face similar general challenges that need to be addressed from a root cause approach. For this purpose, the root causes of inequality identified and analysed at the country level have been grouped into three categories that are applicable across the five selected countries and landscapes. These categories are:


- Opportunity and access (gaps)-> the other categories are not formulated as gaps either

- Power and control

- Effective and inclusive governance


The above categories are linked to the objectives of the initiative as an Assessment, which consists of data collection, analysis, and planning necessary to maximize the gender and social inclusion impacts in the life of the Initiative (activities, outputs, results and impact targets).


Intersectional mainstreaming, which consists of three approaches, should be considered:

1. Intergenerational approach: It considers intergenerational and intragenerational relationships, in different contexts considering the life cycles, roles, actions, and symbolic imaginaries that people establish with their environments, society, and Society’s institutions.

2. Gender focus: Identifies roles and tasks performed by women and men in society, as well as asymmetries, position, knowledge, opportunities, representation, power relations, and gender inequalities.

3. Intercultural approach: Recognizes, values, and respects the diversity of customs, traditions, and worldviews of the various cultural and ethnic groups.


Also present are the seven practices of intersectional mainstreaming approaches:

Activities and deliverables


  1. Conduct initial calls with each partner organization to determine how their activities may interface with GESI in planning and implementation, including their views on opportunities and challenges. Get input on recommended literature sources and background information
  2. Conduct a literature review of GESI information for the landscapes (GESI regulations, national plans, strategies, other GESI for USAID funded projects, secondary socio-economic data, among others), including a first GESI analysis prepared by the Initiative in 2021-2022, considering the Business Case objectives and scope of work. (Deliverable 1)
  3. Prepare a methodology for gathering the information based on the landscape contexts and preliminary information gathered. As part of this analysis, it is required to at least conduct field visits of 2 or 3 landscapes (the Firm can suggest different strategies to gather information for each landscape, to be included in the Technical Proposal). Include a detailed Gantt for the consultancy with roles of the Team (Deliverable 1)
  4. Conduct a qualitative analysis according to the methodology proposed to collect primary data from key stakeholders, including the Initiative partners, governments, local companies, small farmers organizations, and Indigenous organizations, among others (in coordination with RA and partners). Prepare a provisional outline for the GESI Strategy. As part of this deliverable, the consultancy will identify IP, youth, and women-led organizations which can be part of or could be possibly affected (positive or negative) by the Initiative. (Deliverable 2)
  5. Analyse the data collected and put it into context producing information that ensures the reflection on inequalities and mainstreaming practice actions, determine key findings, and prepare key recommendations for the Initiative which will be part of the Report (Deliverable 2).
  6. Based on the results of the other activities above, prepare a GESI Strategy for the Initiative (ensuring specific activities     incorporate IP, women, and youth participation). This should incorporate the approaches for intersectional mainstreaming recommended above in the Considerations for the methodological approach (with external audiences). The GESI Strategy     should consider specific activities to strengthen capacities for Initiative Teams, focused on the team members that implement activities in the field (internal audiences). This Strategy should include tools suggested for implementing actions (Deliverable 3)

Deliverables will include the following. Every product should incorporate feedback from the Consortium of the Initiative when submitted. 

*All the deliverables should be presented in English


Contractor Services at a minimum, must include:


The consultancy requires a consultant firm/team of consultants, that can meet the following requirements:


Team Lead:

  1. Professional in social science, environment, agriculture or another similar professional.
  2. Post-graduate or master’s degree in Gender and/or Intercultural Studies.
  3. The Team lead will have at least eight years of experience in the field of GESI, conducting assessments, baselines and other similar gender research.
  4. At least 3 similar jobs, preferably in landscapes with similar characteristics,
  5. Knowledge and understanding of gender and social inclusion dynamics in the Amazon including value chain as cocoa, coffee, and palm oil. Among others.
  6. International experience working with diverse social groups, including women and Indigenous peoples (IP).
  7. Good understanding of conservation, sustainable forest/agricultural practices and forest protection issues.
  8. Excellent written, verbal, organizational, analytical, and interpersonal skills.
  9. Fluency in spoken and written Spanish and English (preferably bilingual).


Qualitative analysts (at least two members):

  1. Professional in social sciences, environmental, agricultural or other similar GESI.
  2. The consultant will have at least 5 years of proven experience in data collection (for the application of qualitative tools and focus groups)
  3. Experience in projects and/or activities regarded to Indigenous Women financing and/or ecosystem conservation, bio business and/or similar,
  4. Experience in the field and knowledge of landscapes and similar contexts.
  5. Knowledge and understanding of gender and social inclusion dynamics in the Amazon.
  6. Excellent written, verbal, organizational, analytical, and interpersonal skills.
  7. Excellent command of Spanish and English (preferably).
  8. Strong experience in participatory research methods, especially with vulnerable groups like women and indigenous people


General terms and conditions for Request for proposal

  • Proposals and/or any additional information received after the submission time and date are subject to rejection by The Rainforest Alliance. Incomplete proposals may be rejected by RA at its discretion.
  • The Rainforest Alliance reserves the right to request additional information at any time during the procurement process.
  • RA is at liberty to make multiple or no selections as part of the proposal process. RA also reserves the right to cancel the procurement.
  • All proposal costs shall be borne by the applicant and will not be reimbursed by RA.
  • The additional costs linked to the activities (travel, local transportation, accommodation, and similar) should be included in the total cost of the consultancy.


Selection Criteria


The List Criteria to assess proposals from potential consultants are:


  • Technical proposal (40%) – The extent that the Applicant’s proposal demonstrates a clear and effective overall technical approach and presents an effective and realistic work timeline.
  • Team Qualifications (20%) – Demonstrated expertise, experience, and availability through a CV that meets the requirements of the technical specifications.
  • Past Performance (15%) – Demonstrated capabilities and experience related to the technical specifications, capabilities, and quality of products or services.
  • Financial proposal (25%) — Based on the total cost presented in the proposal that is deemed responsive to the technical specifications.


Proposal Process and Format


Submit your application via, uploading CV, technical and financial proposal (in English), qualifications, and past performance along with other relevant materials for evaluation no later than Wednesday, January 18th, 2023 IMPORTANT: DUE DATE EXTENDED TO JANUARY 31st. 2023 (5pm. Lima Time). Questions regarding this RFP must be sent to no later than Friday 13th, 2023.


Only proposals that comply with the content detailed below will be evaluated.


The proposals should contain:


  • Project team (if a Consultant Firm)
  • Work plan/technical proposal/methodology/timeline for deliverables (including the methodology to collect data in the landscapes)
  • Financial proposal:
  • Fixed price: request budget needed to complete deliverables.
  • Financial proposals must include a basis for costing (ex: "Include previous rates")
  • Note: state currency required
  • Note: RA prefers not to define the budget amount for the opportunity. Instead, we prefer to gather proposals to determine the market price for activity. Stating the budget available for the consultancy can result in proposals only coming back at that cost. A reference range for the proposed budget is USD40,000-45,000
  • List of previous projects that address the above experience desired
  • Current C.V.(S)
  • Contact details of recent references (email and phone number)


Finalists will be notified by email and/or by phone, the process will include a short interview to know.



Thank you for your interest in working with The Rainforest Alliance


Preliminary Content GESI Strategy (to be defined as part of the Deliverable 2)


1. Introduction: purpose and intended audience in the Landscapes

2. Goal and Objectives of the GESI Strategy: Why mainstream gender equality and social inclusion (GESI)

3. USAID’s gender equality and women’s empowerment policy (2020)

4. What populations does GESI prioritize

5. How will tackle each of USAID’s objectives for gender equality, women’s empowerment and social inclusion

6. Key elements of the Business Case for Collective Landscape Action GESI Strategy

7. Theory of Change with a gender equality and social inclusion approach

8. Targeted activities and GESI mainstreaming and tools

9. Key interventions for integrating GESI in the Initiative

9.1 Strategic Communication

9.2 Funding Mechanisms (grants and contracts)

9.3 Collaboration with key stakeholders

9.4 Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning

9.5 Collaborating, Learning, and Adapting (CLA)

9.6 Capacity building to implement the GES Strategy

10. Sustainability of the Initiative GESI strategy

11. Key concepts of Gender Equality and Social Inclusion

12. Bibliography


See ToC in the link

The GESI Strategy should consider (no more than 25 pages) and according to the outline approved in the Deliverable 2 (at the final of this RFP, interested firms can find the Outline proposed). 

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