• Type: Consultant


Interested candidates should respond to this tender by 23 February with a CV highlighting relevant experience and a short proposal for how to undertake the work outlined. Please send applications to hannah@fern.org.


Over the last six years, Fern has looked at different ways to improve justice, diversity, equity and inclusion (JEDI) and ensure that both internally and externally we were considering issues that led to the disenfranchisement of various sectors of society. Fern believes this is core to the strength of the organisation. Fern organises its Organisational Development (OD) work by forming interdisciplinary teams with members from across the organisation, to deliver agreed strategies and workplans. We focussed initially on looking at issues through a gender lens and since the beginning of our latest long-term strategy (2023-2027), we have looked at diversity and inequality in a more intersectional way. The long-term objective is that Fern fully integrates gender, diversity and social justice considerations into internal processes and campaigns, and supports the wider European forest and rights movement to address similar issues. 

While we are aware this will always be an ongoing process, we have already reflected Fern’s commitment to building gender, diversity and social justice issues into our strategic priorities in our 2023+ long term strategy and we have a roadmap for improving internal structures in relation to JEDI.

In October 2020 we hosted an all staff training, and had a subsequent audit which focused on ensuring that JEDI issues were well integrated into our long-term strategy workplans and strategic objectives. This approach has improved how these topics are held and attended to across the organisation and in all aspects of our work.

There is strong agreement in Fern about the need to work on JEDI because if we do not include such considerations in the way we work as well as what we work on, it is possible that we will recreate the structures and problems that our campaigns are trying to solve.

Theory of Change 

This long term strategy will enable us to go beyond gender and diversity and look at JEDI as a whole. As well as consolidating previous work, we will increase staff knowledge of JEDI issues, continue to improve our internal structures and work closely with other OD teams to integrate JEDI in all aspects of our internal and external work. By reviewing Fern’s co-management processes (recruitment/ mentoring / induction) and our campaigns (in templates and during planning meetings) we will ensure that our working practices mirror the change we want to see. Because rights and justice feature highly in our mission and values, Fern already has a good track record of integrating social and economic justice in our campaigns and recommendations, which we can continue to improve upon.

The assumptions that underpin the strategy includes that learning paves the way to change, and that individual learning will lead to organisational change. We assume that the identified training will contribute to raised staff confidence in working internally and externally in ways which are inclusive, reduce the potential for harm, and increase our impact. 

We also think that understanding the issues we work on through the lens of organisations and social movements that have different theories of change and/or are led by people with specific lived experiences, will enhance our comprehension of complexity and improve our collaboration with broader intersectional movements.

Improving our internal systems and processes, and undertaking both organisational and personal learning, will enable us to become an organisation where people from more diverse backgrounds feel comfortable to work, thereby increasing our team diversity. It is essential to build links with our finance and administration team (especially around safeguarding), as well as those working to improve organisational wellbeing, to build stronger partnerships, and to support the movement more strategically. 

Since 2019, Fern has worked with an external consultant to support Fern’s JEDI work. This consultant is no longer available and we are therefore looking for a new consultant to support us with this work. 

Planned work in 2024 

Fern’s JEDI team is seeking an external advisor to support delivery of its annual plan for 2024 (March – December).

This work would include:

  • Advising two campaigns at Fern on ways to better integrate JEDI goals into campaigning 
  • Supporting 2025 campaign planning process to ensure integration of JEDI goals at campaign output level 
  • Supporting delivery of one specific grant whose Mid-Term Review made recommendations related to JEDI and gender specifically  
  • Screening recruitment processes if any take place (none currently foreseen) to ensure JEDI is well integrated 
  • Building on Fern’s diversity audit, supporting integration of JEDI into internal Fern processes, including introducing a class lens 
  • Leading on one internal training 

It is foreseen that this work would not exceed 15 days (max). Ideally this person would be within a reasonable train distance from Brussels.

Expressions of interest 

Interested candidates should respond to this tender by 23 February with a CV highlighting relevant experience and a short proposal for how to undertake the work outlined. Please send applications to hannah@fern.org.

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