Civil society representatives to the Family Planning 2020 Reference Group

Call for nominations

Background Information on FP2020

At the Family Planning Summit in London in July 2012, partners representing country governments, donors, multilateral agencies, civil society and private sector organisations from all over the world came together around an ambitious goal: to provide an additional 120 million women in the world’s poorest countries with access to voluntary family planning by 2020. Developing country leaders and other partners made transformative financial, policy and delivery commitments and $2.6bn in donor financing was pledged to enable millions more girls and women to use family planning information, services and supplies. The commitments made at the Summit will support the right of women and girls to decide, freely and for themselves whether, when and how many children they have.

To ensure accountability, DFID, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, UNFPA, and USAID, with other stakeholders, have developed an FP2020 governance arrangement that will complement and work closely with key partners and existing mechanisms and will contribute to the UN Secretary General’s Strategy for Women’s and Children’s Health, Every Woman, Every Child. This arrangement will be comprised of a Reference Group, Task Team, Working Groups, and an Ambassadors/Champions Group (name TBD).

The Reference Group will consist of up to 18 members, including representatives from the above mentioned partners, donors, country governments, civil society, and the private sector, and will set overall strategic direction of FP2020, drive coordination among stakeholders, and be accountable for reaching 120 million additional women by 2020. The Reference Group will have oversight over FP2020 mechanisms, including the Task Team and Working Groups.

Civil Society Reference Group Board representation

This is to inform you that there are three seats available for civil society representatives at the Family Planning 2020 (FP2020) Reference Group.

These persons will represent themselves as individuals (not their organizations, their countries, etc.) but will be chosen from among civil society organizations. We therefore are soliciting nominations from individuals from civil society organizations that can provide perspectives on reproductive health and family planning service delivery, reproductive health access for adolescents and other marginalized populations, and rights-based approaches to family planning.

Due to the revolving nature of the Reference Group representation, the selection committee will ensure that various perspectives as well as that of the developing and developed countries are equally represented in the upcoming years. We request that you look through the roles and responsibilities, criteria for selection, and application process detailed in the following pages to ensure you understand the commitments and the application process.

CLOSING DATE of the call for nominations is November 15 at 5:00 PM EST.

Reference group role

The role of a Reference Group member is that of a volunteer – there is no payment for participating. Travel and per diem costs to attend Reference Group meetings for civil society representatives are expected to be covered by FP2020. The Reference Group will meet in person up to three times per year and providing oversight and coordination between meetings. Candidates should expect the position to demand 10% of their working time.

The role of the Reference Group is to:

  • Provide overall strategic direction for FP2020 and approve the strategy, annual operating plan, and budget
  • Review the annual budget against the operating plan
  • Monitor the performance of the FP2020 strategy and workplan against a set of approved metrics
  • Ensure annual reporting of FP2020 commitments and progress against the goal, and that reporting informs and supports the accountability processes established under the auspices of the UN Secretary General’s Every Woman Every Child strategy, including by the Commission for Information and Accountability’s iERG
  • Make recommendations regarding the recruitment and termination of the FP2020 Director and conduct an annual performance assessment process
  • Establish the overall principles and direction for the governing, administrative and advisory bodies of FP2020 and contribute to the appointment process for the Ambassadors/Champions Group (name TBD), Reference Group and Working Group leadership, amend the composition of the board, and create or terminate FP2020 structures (e.g. Working Groups, committees to the board, temporary advisory groups, etc.)
  • Promote the mission, principles and activities of FP2020, ensure alignment and harmonization with key stakeholders and existing partnerships, and mobilize public and private sector donors to support that mission
  • Establish and oversee the strategy for identifying and managing risks to FP2020 particularly strategic, reputational and operational risks, recognizing the role of the UNF board in monitoring financial and legal risks

Criteria for selection

The following criteria will guide the selection of Reference Group membership based on the diversity of skills, experience and capabilities desired by the Reference Group, as well as the expected time commitment. Seats will rotate to ensure broad representation from civil society over the 8-year project horizon. Reference Group members will be selected based on their individual technical skills and merits, rather than as official representatives of their organizations or constituencies.

  • Availability and commitment to participate – approximately 10% of time including attending all Reference Group meetings
  • An in-depth understanding of and personal commitment to the FP2020 principles, core values and mission
  • An in-depth knowledge of the issues around reproductive health and family planning, international health and/or development, and development financing
  • Experience serving in partnerships and governing bodies with an ability and capacity to network effectively and broadly
  • A facilitative and consultative approach—diplomatic with policy and strategic skills.
  • Strong leadership and management skills gained in a multicultural environment
  • High-level judgment in complex situations
  • Acute analytical skills
  • Ability to act as an ambassador/advocate and to represent FP2020 at a senior level
  • Access to the necessary communication infrastructure to allow the role to be carried out effectively (e.g. telephone, fax, e-mail and mobile phone)

In particular, Civil Society Reference Group members will be based on the following criteria:

  • Geographic coverage of member
  • Reproductive health and family planning service delivery and/or advocacy experience
  • Experience with reproductive health access for youth and other marginalized populations
  • Background in rights-based approaches to family planning
  • Consistent internet, email and phone access
  • Demonstrated linkages with community networks (local, national, and/or regional levels)
  • History of focus on issues of importance to the community and civil society movements
  • Commitment to seeking input from communities FP2020 on the design, implementation, and evaluation of FP2020 related activities
  • If employed by an organization, written assurance regarding availability
  • A letter of institutional support and or individual recommendation from an employer or affiliated organization preferred

Each member will sign a standard statement regarding lack of conflicts of interest.

Length of term

Reference Group members shall serve two or three year terms, which may be renewed for another two year term. There is a term maximum of serving three consecutive terms.

Application Process

The following should be sent in ONE email to with subject matter as APPLICATION FOR CIVIL SOCIETY SEAT ON FP2020 REFERENCE GROUP.

  • A copy of the completed application form (electronically, scanned copies will not be entertained);
  • A letter of reference from your organization expressing its support, agreeing to the additional travel and workload (maximum 1 page);
  • Endorsement from organization that is affiliated with the work that you are involved in (optional).

The CLOSING DATE for nominations is November 15 at 5:00 PM EST. Applications without all of the above documentation will be automatically disqualified. After the closure of the nomination process, principals from DFID, UNFPA, USAID, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and the United Nations Foundation will consider completed applications.