Health Policy Project

The Health Policy Project has ended, but work continues under a new USAID five-year project, Health Policy Plus (HP+).



Public Polling on Religion and Family Planning

Purpose: To conduct a population-based survey (public polling) in two districts in Malawi to measure public perceptions, attitudes, and behaviour as they relate to religion and family planning.

Who can apply: Any organization, university, or private firm is eligible to apply under this RFP. Applicants must be organized under the laws of Malawi; have their principal place of business in Malawi; be majority-owned by individuals who are citizens or lawful permanent residents of Malawi or managed by a governing body, the majority of whom are citizens or lawful permanent residents of Malawi; and not be controlled by a foreign entity or by an individual or individuals who are not citizens or permanent residents of Malawi. If short-listed, applicant will be requested to provide proof of registration/s as part of the full proposal application for this award.

Deadline for submission of EOI: Thursday, November 6, 2014. Any application submitted after the deadline may be automatically rejected.

Submit EOIs via email to:

Format of EOI: Cover page, a maximum of 2 pages of application (See details below) and the Curriculum Vitae (CV) of the proposed project manager/lead.

Incomplete applications may be rejected.

Required Expertise:

  • Experience in conducting public polling, market research, population-based surveys, or related research including study design, data collection, data management, analysis, and write-up of results.
  • Institutional capacity, including demonstrated capacity to manage international donor funds and program activities using basic accounting and project management practices by providing at least one example of a previous project fitting these criteria. The eventual successful applicant may be required to provide previous audit reports or financial statements.

Duration of Study: 2-4 months

1.  Partnership of this Sub-contract: To conduct public polling in two districts on Malawian's perceptions, attitudes, and behaviour as they relate to religion and family planning.

1.1 Introduction
The Health Policy Project (HPP) is seeking to contract a local Malawian organization/company to carry out the above named activity. HPP is implemented by Futures Group in partnership with Plan International USA, Futures Institute, RTI International, White Ribbon Alliance, Population Reference Bureau, and Partners for Population in Development-Africa Regional Office. The goal of HPP is to strengthen developing country national and subnational policy, advocacy, and governance for strategic, equitable, and sustainable health programming. HPP focuses on key health issues—family planning/reproductive health (FP/RH), HIV, and maternal health (MH)—while also promoting health systems strengthening and program integration. 

This request for an EOI is issued by Futures Group under HPP, with funding from USAID. It describes the program objectives, explains the technical areas of focus, qualifications of organizations applying, criteria for evaluating applications, application format, and other relevant information.

1.2 Background
Family planning, in various forms, is accepted by all major religious institutions in Malawi. Yet in Malawi, one in four women has an unmet need for family planning, and population growth is high, with families averaging almost six children. Since June 2013,  HPP has partnered with the Ministry of Finance, Economic Planning and Development (MOFEPD) and six of Malawi's religious mother bodies [Episcopal Conference of Malawi, Evangelical Association of Malawi, Malawi Council of Churches, Muslim Association of Malawi, Seventh Day Adventist Church of Malawi, Quadria Muslim Association of Malawi] to train religious leaders on how to integrate population and development issues, including family planning messages, into sermons and discussions with their congregants.  These trainings culminate in "Population Weekends" – district-wide events held on a designated weekend, where churches and mosques in the target district mobilize to disseminate information and hold discussions with congregants during Friday (Muslim), Saturday (Seventh Day Adventists), and Sunday (Catholics and other Christians) religious services. Thus far, Population Weekends have been conducted in Kasungu, Lilongwe, Karonga, and Balaka districts. Between November 2014 and April 2015, two additional Population Weekends are planned, one in the Central Region, one in the Southern Region. Since 97% of Malawians belong to a religious group, Population Weekends reach significant proportions of a population within a district. Anecdotal feedback has been extremely positive, from the Mother Bodies, the religious leaders involved, and participating congregants. However these activities, part of a larger MOFEPD communication and advocacy strategy, were not designed with formal evaluations.

1.3 Objectives and Program Focus
HPP would like to gather some information on the potential of Population Weekends to influence Malawian's perceptions and opinions on family planning from a religious perspective. As such, HPP would like to subcontract a local organization/company to conduct pre-intervention and post-intervention opinion polling within two districts to measure whether these Population Weekends change public awareness of population and family planning issues, and/or whether they impact perceptions on religious support for family planning. Polling results will inform HPP and the religious Mother Bodies on the possible impact Population Weekends are having, and the information will be taken into consideration in future design of religious-based interventions with congregants.

2.  The Application Process

2.1 Letter Expressing Interest (EOI)
Applicants are asked to submit a Letter of Interest to HPP at ( by Thursday, November 6, 2014. Please include a cover sheet with the title of your EOI, the date of submission, your organization's name, and a contact person's name, phone number, and email address. The EOI should not be longer than 2 pages (exclusive of cover page and CVs), double-spaced, in size 11 Arial font with right, left, top, and bottom margin of 1 inch each and your organization's name indicated in a header or footer. EOI should be submitted in English. Incomplete or late applications may be rejected.    

2.2 Content of the EOI

The EOI should include brief descriptions of the following:

  • At least two examples of survey experience involving representative samples.
  • How the applicant would undertake this survey, including sampling frames and sampling methodology that the applicant proposes using. Include an illustrative timeline with key activities/milestones.
  • The personnel to be used on the survey. Specify whether any personnel will be temporary labour or subcontracted. Please provide the curriculum vitae of the project manager/lead, as well as the person(s) responsible for sampling and data management. (Note: CVs are not included in the two page limit.)
  • Institutional capacity, including demonstrated capacity to manage project activities using basic accounting and project management practices as demonstrated by describing a previous project meeting these requirements; the eventual successful candidate may be required to provide previous audit reports or financial statements.

No budgetary information is required for this EOI.   Organizations that are short-listed and invited to submit a full proposal will be required to provide an illustrative budget as part of the full proposal.

3.  Evaluation and Selection of EOIs

EOIs will be evaluated by a committee with expertise in related programmatic interventions and quantitative research. Based on committee recommendation, successful applicants will be invited to submit full proposals.  Evaluation of EOIs will be based on applicants' demonstration of the specific experience described in response to the items in section 2.2 Content of EOI.

4.  Terms and Conditions of the Solicitation

Notice of non-binding solicitation:  Futures Group reserves the right to reject any and all EOI received in response to this solicitation, and is in no way bound to accept any EOI.

HPP may amend or cancel this invitation, in whole or in part, at any time, extend the deadline for submitting EOIs and/or determine whether an EOI complies with the requirements of the invitation.

Issuance of this call for EOI does not constitute an award commitment on the part of Futures Group, nor does it commit Futures Group to pay for costs incurred in the preparation and submission of an application.  In addition, final award of any resultant agreement cannot be made until funds have been fully appropriated, allocated, and committed through internal Futures Group procedures. The final decision of the award will be at the sole discretion of Futures Group based on the pre-award survey outcomes.

Confidentiality: EOI, discussions, and all information received in response to this solicitation will be held as strictly confidential, except as otherwise noted.

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The Health Policy Project is a five-year cooperative agreement funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development under Agreement No. AID-OAA-A-10-00067, beginning September 30, 2010. The project's HIV-related activities are supported by the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). It is implemented by Futures Group, in collaboration with Plan International USA, Avenir Health (previously Futures Institute), Partners in Population and Development, Africa Regional Office (PPD ARO), Population Reference Bureau (PRB), RTI International, and White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood (WRA). The information provided on this Web site is not official U.S. Government information and does not represent the views or positions of the U.S. Agency for International Development or the U.S. Government.

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