SNV Netherlands Development Organisation – Social Safeguard Specialist.

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Social Safeguard Specialist

Company Description

SNV is a not-for-profit international development organization that applies practical know-how to make a lasting difference in the lives of people living in poverty. We use our extensive and long-term in-country presence to apply and adapt our top-notch expertise in agriculture, energy, and WASH to local contexts. SNV has an annual turnover of €130 million, over 1,250 staff in more than 25 countries in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. We are proud to be a not-for-profit organization that uses project financing to implement our mission. This requires us to work efficiently and to invest in operational excellence.

Programme Overview

Driven by the imperative to provide equal opportunities across the entire Kenyan territory as key to achieving Kenya’s Vision 2030, and the national target of achieving universal access to electricity by 2020, the Government of Kenya (GoK) seeks to close the access gap by providing electricity services to remote, low density, and traditionally underserved areas of the country. GoK intends to use US$150 million of financing from the World Bank to deliver an Off-Grid Solar Access Project for Underserved Counties Project (KOSAP). KOSAP promotes these objectives by supporting the use of solar technology to drive electrification of households, enterprises, community facilities, and water pumps.   

Geographic Scope 

The Project targets 14 of the 47 counties in Kenya that have been defined as “marginalized areas” by the Commission on Revenue Allocation (CRA). The 14 underserved counties – Garissa, Isiolo, Kilifi, Kwale, Lamu, Mandera, Marsabit, Narok, Samburu, Taita Taveta, Tana River, Turkana, Wajir and West Pokot – collectively represent 72% of the country’s total land area and 20% of the country’s population. Their population is highly dispersed, at a density 4 times lower than the national average.  Kenya’s underserved counties present profound infrastructure deficits, including lack of access to roads, electricity, water, and social services. The cultures in eight of these localities – Garissa, Mandera, Marsabit, Narok, Samburu, Turkana, Wajir and Isiolo – were historically nomadic, based on pastoralist lifestyles, and overwhelmingly poor. The other six counties – Kilifi, Kwale, Lamu, Taita Taveta, West Pokot and Tana River – are of mixed cultures and livelihood strategies which include fishing, livestock keeping, farming and hunting/gathering, and are also marked with extreme poverty. Roughly 1.2 million households are un-electrified in these fourteen counties, of which approximately 600,000 could be serviced by solar home systems (SHS). Market analysis and precedents show that the major bottlenecks to uptake of SHS in these geographies are availability and affordability of the service. 

Project Component 2a: Household electrification via standalone solar systems

The component will support electrification of households using solar home systems (SHS) in areas where sufficient load clusters do not exist and SHS provide the best technical and financial solution. The component design draws upon international best practice and leverages experience to date from the Lighting Africa program, which has been present in Kenya since 2009. Two main instruments will be financed by the project, which seek to catalyze a private sector led, market-based approach to delivering off-grid access in the underserved counties:   

  1. Competitively awarded incentives, (US$12 million) to compensate SHS operators for initial, ongoing incremental, and opportunity costs associated with an expansion of operations in Underserved Counties
  2. Debt financing to solar companies, (US$30 million) to support ongoing growth in the Underserved Counties, specifically targeting working capital constraints associated with getting hardware inventory into the market and with providing consumer financing to end-customers

The World Bank’s social safeguard polices on Indigenous Peoples (known in Kenya as Vulnerable and marginalized Groups-VMGs) and Involuntary Resettlement

The World Bank has a set of “Do No Harm” social and environmental safeguard policies that are designed to protect project affected persons (PAPs) and the environment from adverse impacts and risks resulting from Bank financed projects.

The World Bank’s OP/BP 4.10 on Indigenous People is applicable In KOSAP Component 2 being a market-led results based incentivising private companies to venture in underserved counties inhabited by rural communities that are also from vulnerable and marginalised areas. OP/BP 4.12 on Involuntary Resettlement is not applicable to KOSAP component 2 since the SSPs and CCSs companies KOSAP component 2 implementations activities will not trigger the displacement of people.

E&S Framework documents have been prepared including a Vulnerable and Marginalized Groups framework (VMGF) in accordance with the OP 4.10 requirements, and Environmental and Social Management Framework (ESMF) to guide the implementation of the social safeguards in component 2 of KOSAP. These two documents set out the principles that will guide the project in its relations with, and project benefits to VMGs, which will be in accordance with the VMGF while issues of involuntary resettlement or land take will be in accordance with the RPF.

The Constitutional/Legal Provisions on VMGs and Involuntary Resettlement

The CoK, 2010 acknowledges minorities and marginalized communities which have been established through historical processes. The definition of marginalized groups, being broad, encompasses most of the groups that identify as Indigenous Peoples (IPs).The recognition of minorities and marginalized people aims at contributing to the preservation of their identities and enabling them to obtain equality with other groups in that state, including in relation to participation in political life as well as development matters. VMGs include: the Endorois, Ogiek, Elmolo, Watha, Munyayaya, Yakuu. In the project’s target counties, Lamu, Tana River, Taita Taveta, Kilifi, Kwale and West Pokot are hosts to Indigenous Peoples who are in the minority compared to the more dominant communities among whom they live in.

KOSAP Component 2 has triggered the World Bank’s Operational Policy (OP 4.10) for Indigenous Peoples, and the relevant laws and regulations of the Government of Kenya concerning VMGs.

Job Description

 I.            Objective of the Assignment
To provide technical assistance to the facility manager for social risks and impacts management in line with the social safeguards policies of the World Bank and the legal provisions of Kenya, as well as on the ESMF and VMGF that have been prepared to guide the implementation of the social safeguards aspects of the project. The consultant will be expected to ensure that all documents mainstream social safeguards issues so that the project under component 2 does not detrimentally influence the social well-being of the population.

Component 2 of K-OSAP project has triggered the following Environmental and Social Safeguards policies of the World Bank (a) Safeguard OP 4.01 Environmental Assessment; (b) OP 4.10, Indigenous Peoples,. Additionally, it has triggered relevant laws and regulations of the government of Kenya concerning Vulnerable and Marginalized Groups (VMG’s) and involuntary land take.

    II.            Scope of the Assignment

The Social Safeguards Specialist will report to the Project Co-ordinator-SNV/ and will have the following major duties and responsibilities: –

  1. Familiarization with each of the World Bank’s Social Safeguards policies that have been triggered for the project. These include OP 4.01 and OP 4.10, as well as the VMGF and ESMF that have been prepared to guide the implementation of the requirements of OP 4.01 and OP 4.10 respectively. 
  2. Overseeing stakeholder engagement (based on the SEP) to build awareness of all stakeholders, on the social safeguards requirements and social risks that may arise from the implementation of Component 2 of KOSAP, The stakeholders include underserved counties community members, vendors/suppliers of clean energy products and service providers.
  3. Ensure under Component 2 participation and involvement of the Vulnerable and Marginalized Groups and Indigenous Peoples in the project area, especially in accessing benefits and opportunities arising from KOSAP component implementation activities.
  4. Identify and prepare a comprehensive plan that will avert any potentially adverse effects from project interventions on Vulnerable and Marginalized Groups
  5. Ensure that the project benefits reach the Vulnerable and marginalized groups and peoples in an equitable manner and through institutions that respect and are able to serve them in a decentralized manner.
  6. Spearhead the preparation of social risk management plans to mitigate social risks and impacts related to the project. These include the preparation of Stakeholder Engagement Plan, Gender Action Plan and Grievance Redress Mechanism (GRM) in accordance with the VMGF and ESMF respectively.
  7. Supervision and monitoring of the implementation of social safeguards frameworks and instruments in accordance with the respective Bank’s guidelines and policies, while paying special attention to ensure the active participation in project activities of VMGs who are in the minority in the counties in which they live. (The counties with minority VMG communities include Kilifi, Kwale, Lamu, Taita Taveta, West Pokot and Tana River) 
  8. Supporting Solar Service Providers (SSPs) and Clean Cooking Solutions companies in the review of their documentation pertaining to Social safeguards compliance, procedures & policies.
  9. Training and capacity building of SSPs and CCSs on social safeguards; risks management, mitigation measures, monitoring & reporting.
  10. Track the project’ compliance with proposed mitigation measures with regard to socio– cultural and environmental aspects-to determine the impact of the KOSAP Project on the wellbeing of the VMGs in all the 14 counties, and with special attention to minority VMGs in the six counties afore mentioned.
  11. Ensure the free, prior and informed consultations with VMGs to enable their involvement and participation
  12. Contribute to project’s Component 2 progress reports pertaining to overall implementation of  Social safeguards requirements of the project
  13. Preparing training materials and conducting technical training workshops to SSPs and CCSs companies and Microfinance organization on  Social Safeguards requirements
  14. Prepare social safeguards information materials and disseminating the information to the relevant stakeholders; and organize environmental and social orientation & awareness, consultations, and training programs
  15. Review bid documents to ensure social risk management factors and mitigations are incorporated, and they are in harmony with social safeguards  requirements;
  16. Preparation of Social monitoring and evaluation reports and, perform tasks and responsibilities related to the social issues including SEA and SH by solar companies staff, GBV, HIV/AIDS program, issues related to labour influx (people coming into the project area for project related work) and child labour
  17. Develop and appraise the Gender Equity and Social Inclusion (GESI) measures of the Project interventions. Advice on how the KFM RBF recipients can be more gender sensitive to meet the priorities of both men and women beneficiaries in KOSAP project area and activites
  18. Undertake site visits during project execution and operation to assess how social screening and mitigation measures are succeeding or have succeeded in minimizing impacts
  19. Ensuring that all the decisions made on Component 2 of the project are gender informed and socially sustainable
  20. Assess any significant social risks and impacts and if required draw on KOSAP safeguards framework and instruments to provide mitigation measures including corrective action plans.
  21. Facilitate communication among various project stakeholders to promote socially and environmentally and socially sound project implementation with sustainable development outcomes-
  22. Liaise on a regular basis with the Ministry of Energy, Local CBO’s ,NGO’s  and other implementing Agencies
  23. Produce and document social safeguards implementation reports; and Undertake other duties as per the requirements of the project or as directed by Project Coordinator.

 III.            Deliverables/Consultant’s Reporting Obligations

The Consultant will be required to submit reports as follows:

  • ­One copy of quarterly progress on activities undertaken and solutions to challenges
  • One copy of annual progress report; and
  • One copy of project completion report after the completion of the task period


  • The candidate should have, as a minimum, a postgraduate degree from any recognized institution in the area of Social Sciences: Sociology, Community development, Rural Development, Social Inclusion, Gender Studies or any related discipline with combination of appropriate trainings;
  • A minimum of ten years of relevant work experience in social development
  • At least 5 years’ working knowledge in the World Bank’s Social and Environmental safeguards policies and IFC Environmental, Health and Safety Guidelines
  • Experience with Community development, gender mainstreaming issues, social inclusion of VMG’s and participatory  approaches, and in particular, experience in World Bank’s social safeguard policies, direct experience in working on implementation of Social Assessment, RAP, VMGF, ESMF andESMP , and other environmental and social safeguard issues preferably in Conservation organization or large industries in any private or public sector are an added advantages
  • Good communication skills both verbal and written
  • Fluency in English is essential and fluency in Kiswahili is an added advantage.

Additional Information


The social safeguard specialist will work in close co-operation with and under the guidance and supervision of the Project Co-ordinator –SNV and the PCU Project Coordinator in the Ministry of Energy

Duration of the Assignment/Contract Period

This is a Consultancy position with the successful candidate being contracted on a consultancy agreement.

The duration of the assignment is a 6 months contract with the possibility of extension based on satisfactory performance and continued project needs.

How to apply

Please apply by clicking on the “I’M INTERESTED” tab above/below and complete your application in our in-house recruitment system before 30th November 2022 attaching your CV and Cover letter.


•    Only shortlisted candidates shall be contacted.
•    We do not appreciate third-party mediation based on this advertisement.
•    Applicants are not required to undertake any medical checks before selection or pay any money at any stage of the recruitment process.








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