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Anemia control in adolescent girls - Strategy Consultancy (International P3)


Consultancy assignment opening for Anemia control in adolescent girls - Strategy, P3- Open to international candidates only

If you are a committed, creative professional and are passionate about making a lasting difference for children, the world's leading children's rights organization would like to hear from you.

For 70 years, UNICEF has been working on the ground in 190 countries and territories to promote children's survival, protection and development. The world's largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations and governments.

Purpose of the Assignment

Undernutrition early in life has major consequences for future educational outcomes. If children survive, stunting holds back their cognitive development − robbing them of the potential they might have had to learn in school and limiting their earning power as adults. According to the Cost of Hunger (COHA) study in Malawi, 23 percent of all child mortality cases in Malawi are associated with under-nutrition and 18% of school repetitions are a result of undernutrition.  Poor nutrition could limit the extent to which children and wider society can benefit. Not only does it alter the course of a life, it has an enormous economic cost and is a serious bottleneck in the country’s development. Undernutrition perpetuates the intergenerational cycle of poverty among children, families, communities and nations.


Malawi has made great strides in reducing vitamin A deficiency in school-aged children, most of whom are adolescents. Prevalence of vitamin A deficiency in school-aged children has gone down from 38 per cent in 2001 to 0.9 per cent in 2015 (MNS 2001, MNS 2015). Similar efforts are also being made to address iodine deficiency disorders. Currently, 75 per cent of all household salt is adequately iodised at >15 ppm iodine. Up to 86 per cent of population have adequate urinary iodine, i.e. >100 µg/L (MNS, 2015).

Despite the improvements in other micronutrient deficiencies, anemia has remained high among children of school age. In 2001, up to 22 per cent of school aged children had anemia and over a decade later, 21 per cent of school aged children are anemic (MNS 2001, MNS 2015), with children in rural settings being more affected (21% as compared to 16% in children in urban settings).  Anemia in children contributes to cognitive growth loss in children and future productivity deficits in adulthood.  The micronutrient survey also found that up to 13 per cent of women of child bearing age are also deficient in folate (MNS 2001, MNS 2015). Anemia in women of child bearing age is also at 20% which contributes to high prematurity, low birth weight as well as neonatal and infant mortality.

The current national policy for addressing anemia focuses on under-five children and pregnant women. It is imperative that to be able to effectively address nutritional anemia, interventions such as Iron and Folic Acid (IFA) supplementation need to be initiated in adolescence before girls become pregnant in view of the high prevalence of teenage pregnant and early marriage. According to the 2016 MDHS, up to 29 per cent of girls aged 15-19 have begun child bearing.


The Department of Nutrition HIV and AIDS (DNHA) is mandated to provide policy guidance on nutrition, including addressing nutritional anemia through IFA supplementation. The department requires technical support in developing a national strategy document to guide effectively implementation of IFA supplementation among adolescent girls in the country. UNICEF will therefore, engage a consultant to provide technical leadership in the development of the guidelines/strategy document.  It is against this background and rationale that UNICEF Malawi will support the DNHA with technical support towards iron folic acid supplementation to adolescent girls in Malawi. The consultant will work closely with the multi-disciplinary team constituted by DNHA and Reproductive Health Unit of Ministry of Health.


Scope of Work & Responsibilities

The key purpose of the assignment is to provide technical support to Department of Nutrition HIV and AIDS and UNICEF Malawi in developing a guidelines/strategy document on addressing nutritional anemia in adolescent girls, while ensuring wide consultations and dissemination with key stakeholders.

Assignment Tasks

  • Conduct literature review of anemia particularly among adolescent girls
  • Review Malawi’s past  and current policies and programs on anemia control
  • Conduct consultations among key stakeholders at national and district level experiences and aspirations on anemia
  • Develop guidelines/strategy for addressing anemia in adolescent girls
  • Facilitate printing of guidelines/strategy document
  • Disseminate the guidelines/strategy document to stakeholders

Expected Deliverables



Timeframe and payment schedule

Conduct Global literature review of anemia particularly among adolescent girls

Literature review submitted




1/6th fee paid upon submission of inception report by end of 1st month of assignment

Develop an inception report outlining the approach to be undertaken for the assignment to be presented to Multi-disciplinary team

Inception report presented

Review Malawi’s past and current policies and programs on anemia control for different age group and deliver gap analysis in Policy

Policies and programs review submitted

1/6th fee paid upon submission of policy review by end of 2nd month of assignment

Conduct consultations among key stakeholders at national and district level on experiences and aspirations on anemia

Stakeholders consultations analysis report submitted



1/6th  fee paid upon submission of stakeholder consultations by end of 3rd month of assignment


Document key findings from literature review and stakeholder consultations

Findings documented

Develop a guidelines/strategy document on addressing anemia in adolescent girls

Strategy document compiled

1/6th fee paid upon submission of strategy document by end of 4th month of assignment

Present draft guidelines/strategy document to DNHA, MOH and UNICEF

Draft guidelines/strategy document presented



1/6th fee paid upon submission of end of the 5th month of assignment

Consensus meeting with stakeholders on the draft guidelines/strategy

Consensus meeting report submitted

Disseminate the final guideline document to all key stakeholders


Guideline/strategy document disseminated

1/6th fee paid upon dissemination of policy document by end of 6th month of assignment

Qualifications of Successful Candidate



  • Minimum of Master’s degree in Nutrition or Public Health
  • Minimum of 5 years of experience  working for Nutrition, specifically in Anaemia control for Adolescent Girls
  • Knowledge of Malawi’s nutrition policy landscape
  • Experience in micronutrient interventions such Iron folate supplementation  is desirable
  • Previous experience in stakeholder consultations and dissemination.
  • Experience working with governments, NGOs, UN agencies or other relevant development partners.

Competencies of Successful Candidate


To view our competency framework, please click here

Please indicate your ability, availability and daily/monthly rate (in US$) to undertake the terms of reference above (including travel and daily subsistence allowance, if applicable).  Applications submitted without a daily/monthly rate will not be considered.

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages qualified female and male candidates from all national, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of our organisation.

Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.
  • Organization: UNICEF - United Nations Children’s Fund
  • Location: Lilongwe
  • Grade: International Consultant - Consultancy
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Nutrition
  • Closing Date: 2017-05-23