The Ouagadougou Partnership (OP) was founded in 2011 by Ministers of Health of
Francophone nations in West Africa and donor institutions working on reproductive health.
The goal was to increase attention and resources for family planning in the region by building
stronger collaboration among countries and donors.
Since its founding, the OP has helped to double the number of users of modern contraception
across its nine member countries—Benin, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, Guinea, Mali,
Mauritania, Niger, Senegal, and Togo. Indeed, the OP has provided a forum for experts to
exchange ideas and data, for policy makers to align their efforts across and within countries,
and for international donors to coordinate and increase their financial support. As one sign of
ongoing commitment, each donor institution that has joined the OP has maintained or
increased their funding for family planning in the region each year, and each member country
has gradually increased its commitments. Currently, donor spending amounts to
approximately $165 million annually, and country governments exceed such spending with in-
kind contributions (e.g., direct funding for programs and supplies, personnel, and research
Beginning in 2021, the OP is launching an updated strategy to help countries, donors, and
implementing partners meet their reproductive health goals in OP countries, including by
2030 to once again double the number of users of modern contraception in the region.
The OP has been supported by a small Coordination Unit (the OPCU) based in Dakar,
Senegal which organizes OP events, leads activities on the ground, coordinates partners in
countries, and programs some donor funding for select purposes. This request for
proposals seeks an institution to gradually assume responsibility as institutional host
and support service provider (including but not limited to grants management,
accounting, human resources, facilities, and IT) to the OPCU. The applicant will work
directly with the Hewlett and Gates Foundations to program millions of dollars of funding for
the coordination of family planning efforts in West Africa each year, will support a team of
ambitious and accomplished family planning leaders in Dakar, and will encounter numerous
other private foundation, bilateral, and multilateral organizations that work with the
Partnership.These services have previously been provided by the U.S.-based NGO IntraHealth
International, which has agreed to transition their responsibilities during calendar year 2021 to
a West African-based entity to further localize the Partnership in the region it serves.
IntraHealth will gradually transition responsibility for support services during 2021 and will
serve as the host during the transition phase, as further described below. Assuming strong
performance during the 2021 transition period, the applicant will take sole responsibility for
providing these services in 2022 and beyond with grant funding from the OPCU’s sponsors.

Requested services

The OPCU’s activities and operations are funded by grants amounting to roughly $2.5 million
annually from the Hewlett and Gates Foundations. As described later in this RFP, roughly
$450,000 per year of the funding goes to support services, with the remainder devoted to
OPCU staffing and programmatic activities.
The OPCU is steered by an Advisory Board comprised of Ministers of Health of OP
countries, representatives of OP donor institutions including Hewlett and Gates, and
representatives of Civil Society Organizations and youth coalitions. The OPCU Director
develops and manages the OP’s strategies and activities and reports programmatic outcomes
to Hewlett and Gates and to its Advisory Board.
With that context, the applicant will provide services across six areas for the OPCU:

  • General administration: 501(c)3 public charity status as determined by the U.S. Internal
    Revenue Service or an existing (or the ability to receive) an equivalency determination
    from NGO Source by September 2021. These services include receiving and disbursing
    the roughly $2.5 million annually of funding for OPCU operations and providing related
    legal services as needed. Importantly, the funding will be provided separately by the
    Hewlett and Gates Foundations and the applicant will be responsible for complying with
    both institutions’ systems and procedures.
  • Grant monitoring and reporting systems to help the OPCU report in a professional, timely,
    and efficient manner to the donors who sponsor its operations. The applicant will assist
    the OPCU in writing both financial and technical reports, including by providing editing
    and translation assistance.
  • Human resources services to serve as employer for all OPCU staff (OPCU staff would
    transfer from being employed by IntraHealth to the applicant organization) and to assist
    the OPCU as it defines, searches for, hires, trains, evaluates, and retains talented staff
    members, including deep familiarity with country-level laws and regulations affecting
    human resource decisions. The OPCU Director will lead on all decisions and
    evaluations, with input from the applicant, while the applicant will lead on all legal
    matters and paperwork. Current and potential future OPCU staff are third country
    nationals, and the applicant should be able to manage such employment consistent with
    labor laws in Senegal and elsewhere.
  • Finance services to ensure service contracts with local, regional, and international partners
    are properly administered, staff are paid in a timely and legally compliant manner, and
    that revenue and expense budgeting, cost accounting, and reporting on financial health,
    operate smoothly
  • IT services to provide the best available IT systems and support, including e.g., networks,
    software, computers, data security, and phone systems
  • Private office space and a conference room for eight to ten OPCU staff in central Dakar,
    with related real estate support as needed to ensure a well-functioning work
    In addition, the applicant will be responsible for a proposal to provide these services in 2022
    and beyond, to be submitted in early Fall 2021 based on roughly nine months of experience.

Additional details on the support requested may be found in Appendix A.


Proposals will be reviewed by a committee of OP leaders and a winner will be selected
through private vote. The primary criteria on which proposals will be evaluated include your

  • Demonstrated ability to provide the services detailed above and in Appendix A
  • Demonstrated ability to provide basic support in all nine OP countries, such as
    banking services, payroll for remote employees, as-needed legal services, etc.
  • Physical and legal presence in Dakar, Senegal to facilitate OPCU operations.
  • Capacity to innovate and improve OPCU support services and make the
    organization more effective (e.g., transferring IT services to the cloud, enabling high-
    quality video calls, etc.)
  • Ability to scale up or down (within reason) as needs change
  • Cost efficiency
  • Ability to work bi-lingually (in English and in French)

These criteria will be assessed based on demonstrated past performance of the applicant or its
partners, capabilities of key staff, specific plans to provide the services going forward, and on
other evidence you choose to provide, as detailed in section #5.
The OP’s leadership also recognizes that some applicants may provide additional value to the
OP’s mission beyond the services described above, such as strategic counseling, influence
within and knowledge of OP governments, knowledge of philanthropic and NGO partners,
and reputation and convening power. Such “value added” services will be treated as a bonus
on proposals but are not necessary and are less important than the criteria listed above (which
are necessary). Ultimately, the OPCU Director will decide when or if to engage the host
organization on such value-added services.


As noted above, the OP Coordination Unit’s activities and operations are supported by grants of about $2.5 million dollars, including the funding for its institutional host organization (which you are applying to become), salaries and expenses for eight fulltime staff, consulting and contracting budgets, and programmatic funding the OPCU uses to execute its strategy. As a host organization, your role will be to provide support services to the OPCU, including serving as the recipient for all grants received by the OPCU.
The normal annual budget for these support services is $450,000, which include all fees (including overhead) for the institutional host organization, as well as the costs of providing the services (e.g., accounting for the overall grant; purchasing laptops, printers, generators, and other equipment; providing office space and legal services; etc.). Historically grants to IntraHealth have been for 24 months, but in 2021 we are planning a one-year transition grant to be split between IntraHealth and the applicant. As a baseline, we are assuming that IntraHealth and the selected applicant will evenly split $450,000 to each provide ~50% of OPCU support services as outlined in Appendix C. You may also include a request for a limited amount of one-time funding to smooth the 2021 transition.
The attached budget worksheet (Appendix B) outlines spending categories that match the support services outlined in section #3 above. A draft schedule of when responsibilities for these services will pass from IntraHealth to the applicant may be found in Appendix C and  should be used as the basis for your proposed budget for 2021. This schedule will be revised with IntraHealth once the applicant is selected, and final details of the transition of responsibilities for services and the allocation of related budgets will be completed at that point.
As a practical matter, the 2021 support services grant will be awarded to, and managed by, IntraHealth with a sub-grant to the selected applicant for a share of $400,000 commensurate with the services it provides during 2021 (currently assumed to be ~50 percent, as noted above), plus any one-time funding that has been awarded to smooth the 2021 transition.


Using the service descriptions (section #3), the budget information (section #4), and the schedule in Appendix C, please submit an overall plan and budget that describes how your organization will provide the listed services. All proposals should be submitted in English as all reporting to the Gates and Hewlett Foundation and most communications with other OP donor partners will occur in English. French fluency is also required for day-to-day work in Dakar and with the OPCU (all of whom speak fluent English, French, and other languages). Note that we are open to receiving joint bid proposals (although one organization will need to serve as the prime grantee with a sub-contract to the other) or proposals where services are intended to be contracted and managed by the applicant.
Your proposal should include the following sections:

  • The applicant’s statement of the goal of the proposed work
  • General context that the applicant believes is relevant, including any remarks or
    stipulations concerning the transition process
  • Proposed deliverables for each of the support services described in section #3 and for
    any proposed additional services
  • Proposed measures of success for each deliverable and overall, potentially including
    specific metrics, milestones, and evaluation criteria
  • A proposed total budget, and budgets for each deliverable in the budget worksheet
    in Appendix B (you may also submit additional budget data if you wish)
  • A short description of why your organization is a good choice, including
    biographies of key staff (employees or contractors) associated with each deliverable and
    with overall project management
  • Professional references as needed, including examples of past work or testimonials
    concerning the support services described in section #3

If your organization does not have a track record of successfully providing a given service, please provide additional detail on your plan to bring the needed capacity, whether through contracts, collaborations, or other means. Please limit the overall word count to 2,000 words and limit descriptions of services lines to the most important experiences, activities, processes, or other data (in general, shorter is
better). Finally, if anything in this document or the draft schedule in Appendix C strikes you as
problematic, please feel free to propose alternatives.

Process timeline

Organizations that are interested in submitting an application are asked to send an initial expression of interest (a short, informal email) to JohnWhitney@redstonestrategy.com by September 18, 2020. We will then likely arrange a video interview for your organization during
the month of September 2020.

RFPs are then due to JohnWhitney@redstonestrategy.com no later than COB October 16, 2020. After we receive proposals, we may ask applicants to provide further information to facilitate a final decision.
The OP will decide and communicate with all applicants no later than November 13, 2020. The selected organization, IntraHealth, and the OPCU then will develop more detailed plans in November and December 2020 for the transition.
The issuance of this Request for Proposals (RFP) and responses to it convey no rights or obligations on the part of the Ouagadougou Partnership or its fiscal sponsors, including the Gates and Hewlett Foundations. The Partnership may (1) amend, modify, or withdraw this solicitation; (2) revise its requirements; (3) require supplemental statements or information; (4) accept or reject any or all submissions; (5) extend submission deadlines; (6) negotiate or entertain discussions with vendors and waive defects and allow corrections of deficient RFP responses, and/or (6) cancel this solicitation, in whole or in part. The Partnership may exercise any of the foregoing measures at any time without prior notice and without liability to
any respondent for expenses incurred.

Applicant information

  • Organization legal name, address and website:
  • Organization type (e.g., NGO, for-profit, academic, government):
  • Organizational legal status (501(c)3 determination letter issued by the U.S. Internal
    Revenue Service or Equivalency Determination Certificate from NGO Source or
    ability to apply for/receive Equivalency Determination certification by September 2021):
  • Country of incorporation:
  • Primary contact name, title, phone, and email:
  • Organization/program leader contact information:
  • 2019 budget:
  • Number of staff:


Appendice A :

Appendice B :

Appendice C :