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REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS: Communications Strategy

Updated: Dec 20, 2023

Overview Choices for Youth (CFY) is seeking proposals from qualified consultants/firms with demonstrated experience in strategic communications. The project will focus on understanding CFY’s current communications processes and guidelines, analyzing to best practices, providing recommendations, and delivering a finalized organizational communications strategy and implementation plan. About Choices for Youth Founded in 1990, CFY is a non-profit social services organization based in St. John’s, NL, committed to building programs, systems, and opportunities that are focused on providing individualized, wrap-around support for young people, celebrating who they are, and working together to unlock their potential to build a brighter future.


CFY supports youth and young families to secure stable housing and employment, while working towards family stability and better health. As an organization, CFY invests time, energy, and resources to lend our experiences and expertise to important policy and systems change conversations. We do this because we believe that everyone is better off when we design policies, services, and systems to meet the needs of the most vulnerable in our community.


Background CFY’s communications team oversees all internal and external communications and works directly with staff across the organization to ensure that information is shared in a timely and appropriate manner. CFY’s target audiences include staff, volunteers, youth, media, local and national partners, donors and funders, and the general public.


As part of CFY’s recently launched five-year strategic plan, CFY has committed to developing and implementing a communications strategy for the organization that supports strong internal and external communications. Project Scope and Deliverables This project will require the consultant or agency to analyze CFY’s current internal and external communication processes, complete a scan of industry best practices, and provide recommendations to CFY’s communications lead. The final deliverable of this project is to provide CFY with a fully developed organizational communications strategy and implementation plan. This will be achieved by completing the following deliverables by March 30, 2024:


1. Reviewing CFY’s Current State

  • Review of all aspects of CFY internal and external communications.

  • CFY’s communications tools and processes.

  • Key information being shared and when.

  • Key roles when it comes to sharing information.


2. Completing Benchmarking and Reviewing Best Practices

  • Analysis of best practices in internal and external communications.

  • Evaluation of how CFY's current processes align with other organizations.


3. Reviewing Core Values

  • Analysis of CFY’s current core values, including alignment with strategic plan.

  • Recommendations for updated values if necessary.


4. Analyzing Roles and Responsibilities

  • In-depth analysis of roles and responsibilities associated with communications across the agency.

  • Recommendations for changes or improvements.


5. Finalizing an Organizational Communications Strategy and Implementation Plan

  • Development of a comprehensive organizational communications strategy for CFY, including:

  • Key areas for improvement and associated recommendations

  • Guidelines, processes, and policies for internal and external communications.

  • Delivery of an implementation plan and timeline based on proposed recommendations.

  • Outline of roles, responsibilities, and timelines for implementation.

Please note: Privacy and confidentiality must be always kept at the forefront during this project. The vendor will be required to sign a privacy and confidentiality agreement. Qualifications and Experience The consultant(s) should have relevant, demonstrable expertise in strategic communications. Experience with non-profits or charities will be considered an asset. Proposal Submission Guidelines 1. Personnel The company or consultant(s) shall identify the staff and project personnel, including third parties (subcontractors) that will be responsible for the implementation of the anticipated contract. 2. Components of the Proposal Submissions must include, but are not limited to, the following:

a. Corporate or Consultant(s) Profile An overview of the company’s or consultant’s services and relevant experience.


b. Team Information

Current resumes outlining the level and experience of personnel to be assigned to the project and their relationship to the consultant/consulting company.


c. Work Plan An overview of how the deliverables outlined above will be achieved.


d. Project Costing A detailed breakdown of the costs associated with both the development and delivery work associated with the project, for example, labour, soft materials/supplies, subcontracts, travel, taxes, and incidentals. Please note the project cost cannot exceed $30,000, inclusive of applicable taxes.


e. Special Considerations

Please identify any unique challenge(s) that you anticipated in executing the project, and how you might approach these challenge(s).

Proposal Submission PDF copies of the proposal with all submissions must be received no later than 5:00pm (NST) on Sunday, December 24, 2023, via email. Proposals must include the name and address of the company or consultant(s) and include the title “Internal and External Communications Strategy” in the email subject line.


Any questions on this RFP must be submitted by email. Questions will be answered until end of day on Monday, December 18.


Questions and proposals can be directed to Katie Keats, Manager of Fund Development and Communications, Choices for Youth at kkeats@choicesforyouth.ca


Proposal Evaluation A company or consultant(s) will be selected based on the proponent’s response to the enclosed project requirements and evaluated to the criteria listed below:

  • Proposed Work Plan (50%)

  • Relevant Experience (40%)

  • Project Costs (10%)

Timing The consultant must be prepared to begin work on the project immediately upon award of contract in mid January. If required, meetings with candidates will occur during the first week of January 2024.

Read PDF Version of this Request for Proposals.

Choices for Youth (CFY) strives towards a culture of inclusion and empowerment, one where there’s a sense of belonging and safety while prioritizing diversity across the organization, including in its Board of Directors composition, employment practices, staff, policies, programming, and services. CFY actively works to support program participants, staff, and volunteers who identify as Indigenous, Black, racialized and/or as members of other equity-seeking and/or religious, cultural and other communities; members of the 2SLGBTQIA+ community; people with disabilities; and people from a variety of social and economic backgrounds. CFY is committed to providing support and accommodations to all involved with the organization, including employees, program participants, and volunteers. Should you require support or accommodation(s) to enable your participation within CFY’s programs, and/or during the hiring, selection, or employment process please let us know at any point.

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