The Vera Institute of Justice is powered by hundreds of advocates, researchers, and activists working to transform the criminal legal and immigration systems until they’re fair for all. Founded in 1961 to advocate for alternatives to money bail in New York City, Vera is now a national organization that partners with impacted communities and government leaders for change. We develop just, antiracist solutions so that money doesn’t determine freedom; fewer people are in jails, prisons, and immigration detention; and everyone is treated with dignity. Vera’s headquarters is in Brooklyn, New York, with offices in Washington, DC, New Orleans, and Los Angeles.
Purpose of Request for Qualifications
To document the approach, results, and learnings of the Jails initiative, Vera is now seeking a qualified evaluator to work with the Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning (MEL) team to develop case studies. Case studies will help strengthen initiative work and support strategic learning and continuous improvement throughout the organization.
Anticipated Scope of Work
The vendor will develop three (3) case studies in collaboration with the MEL team and the Jails initiative, which is working to change practices, policies, and laws that drive pretrial detention, excessive supervision, and unnecessary jail bookings.
The vendor will be responsible for data collection, data analysis, and case study development. Each case study will focus on the work in one county. Completion of each case study will include:
- document reviews (e.g., presentations, reports, funder updates);
- up to 10 phone or Zoom interviews or focus groups with Vera staff, site partners, and stakeholders; and
- limited quantitative data (based on site availability).
Limited additional methods (e.g., stakeholder surveys) may be employed for some case studies. The MEL team will meet every other week with the vendor and manage communication between the vendor and initiative teams.
The case studies will each be approximately four pages and include the following information: site background and context; goals, strategy, and activities; results (including intended and unintended outcomes); findings (e.g., strengths/challenges, lessons learned); and a list of site-specific documents/resources (e.g., reports, tools).
Interested and qualified vendors that meet the following minimum qualifications are invited to submit a response to this RFP:
- three years’ experience with mixed methods data collection and analysis;
- experience working with criminal legal system stakeholders, including adults and young people directly impacted by the system;
- excellent written and oral communication skills and experience collaborating with multiple stakeholders to accomplish project goals;
- experience developing accessible and visually appealing case studies;
- deep commitment to racial equity—in a system built on racism and inequity, Vera works to ensure equity both in our workplace and in the world, and aims to work with others who incorporate this value and share it with others; and
- knowledge of and demonstrated commitment to working on projects relevant to transforming the criminal legal and immigration systems.
During the review process, we will focus primarily on the following criteria to evaluate responses from vendors that meet the Minimum Qualifications:
- qualifications and experience;
- familiarity with the criminal legal system and Vera’s work;
- alignment with Vera’s values, including a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion;
- adequacy, clarity, and completeness of response;
- review of one example of past work; and
- Submission deadline: March 10, 2023
- Submission review and interviews with selected candidates: March 13-24, 2023
- Applicants notified: March 27, 2023
- Term of engagement: 5 months (April 2023-August 2023)
- Document review and data collection planning: April/May 2023
- Data collection: June 2023
- Data analysis: June/July 2023
- Completion of Case Studies: August 2023
Terms of RFP/RFQ
Vera has the right to amend or cancel this RFP/RFQ at any time. Vera reserves the right, at the time of evaluation of any Response, to request any additional information that it deems necessary. Vera further reserves the right to reject any or all Responses after evaluation, and to be the sole judge of the merits of those received. Vera will not be responsible for late or incomplete responses. Any Response which does not comply with this RFP/RFQ may not be considered. Vera will not return any materials it receives, and will not reimburse applicants for any costs incurred in developing a Response.
If you have any questions, including accessibility questions, or need assistance completing this application, please contact:
Debbie Mayer, Sr. MEL Associate, email@example.com
Questions must be received prior to February 28, 2023.
All application forms must be completed and submitted online at: Vera.
Application Form Questions
2. Last Name
3. Email Address
4. Phone Number
5. Name of Organization/Company/Entity
6. Organization/Company/Entity Website
7. Organization/Company/Entity Address
8. Would you like to be contacted for future opportunities to provide services to Vera?
9. Please introduce yourself and/or your company and provide a description of how you meet or exceed the Minimum Qualifications, including your relevant background, experience, and expertise. (Max 400 words)
10. Please list and describe two comparable projects completed by you or your company or currently in progress, include your role. For each project, include the contact information for a reference including contact name, title, address, telephone number, and email address. (Max 400 words)
11. What connects you to Vera’s mission? (Max 250 words)
12. What values guide your work? What are some examples of how they will be applied in the initiative case studies? (Max 250 words)
13. What have you learned from similar projects? How will you apply those lessons to the initiative case studies? (Max 250 words)
14. We plan for this work to take place over five months, with a $30,000 budget. If you have any concerns about this timeline and budget, please share them with us.
15. Please upload a relevant sample of work.
16. Please upload resumes for all staff who would work on the case studies, specifying their roles and responsibilities for this project.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
17. Please share the diversity statement or otherwise describe the commitment to diversity of you or your organization.
18. Review the diversity programs below and check the box for any certifications for which you qualify.
- The selection of this question may result in additional questions of verification and qualification surrounding your certification.
- Please upload any certifications and any other documents in support of your application.
20. “By signing, I attest that all information I have provided in this form is true and accurate to the best of my knowledge.”