Temporary Appointment: Programme Officer, P-2, NYHQ (O/P Geneva), 102489

New York City

The incumbent will directly report to the Communication for Development Specialist (P4) providing support with the management of outbreak preparedness and response coordination.

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 Position

UNICEF as a spearheading partner of the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) is lead for the provision of expert technical advice and capacity-building in the areas of programme communications and social mobilization and in the procurement and distribution of polio vaccines for routine and supplementary immunizations and, together with WHO, in strengthening of routine immunization. From its Supply Division, UNICEF also coordinates the global supply and demand of OPV and IPV. Along with the other GPEI partners, UNICEF actively participates in the global process by which eradication policies and plans of action are developed.

The Strategic Global Polio Eradication Plan (2013-2109) has been developed to capitalize on the unique opportunity to eradicate a disease for only the second time in history. The new Strategic Plan has called for the urgent need to strengthen polio program capacity for outbreak preparedness and response. While the number of cases globally has seen a significant decrease (only five wild polio cases have been reported so far this year), the challenge of outbreaks and reaching the most hard to reach populations is significant and could threaten the certification process. This requires high quality and timely outbreak response interventions that are proactive rather than reactive. 

The additional risk of cVDPV is increasing with several pockets of unreached populations in security compromised areas such as South Sudan and Syria. The recent outbreaks of VDPV2 in Syria and DRC are reflecting the challenge the program is facing. Moreover, for several of the closed outbreaks in 2016 and in early 2017, such as Guinea, Madagascar and Laos, a number of action points remain urgent to follow up on to ensure a continuous free of polio status. Additionally, review of national preparedness plans, ensuring social data are available, and mapping various capacities are important components for improved readiness of high risk countries. For those, routine immunization must be included as part of this comprehensive framework.

The incumbent will directly report to the Communication for Development Specialist (P4) providing support with the management of outbreak preparedness and response coordination.  

Under the guidance and direct supervision of the Communication for Development Specialist (P4) and in collaboration with the Immunization Specialist (P4), in coordination with WHO HQ Outbreak secretaries focal point will: 1) support UNICEF management of outbreak response 2) support preparedness interventions in high risk countries and 3) support GPEI outbreak response technical secretariat and 4) manage the global polio surge roster.

Key Expected Results

Within the GPEI, UNICEF and WHO work closely to ensure well-coordinated outbreak response and streamlined approach with ROs and COs.  The UNICEF HQ Polio team (C4D and Immunization Specialists) focused on outbreak response out-posted to WHO HQ in Geneva manage this coordination on outbreak response and preparedness. Additional support is needed to enable their ability to coordinate and provide the required field support for polio outbreaks.

Among the key characteristics for the effective coordination with WHO is the synchronization of the outbreak interventions between the two agencies and with partners under the outbreak technical secretariat. UNICEF contribution to the secretariat support and the active engagement with the RO/CO teams is critical to ensure an effective response. Within UNICEF, the coordination of internal updates, monitoring implementation of actions points with missions, assessments, and exchange of RO and CO response plans and reports are important corner stones of this function. 

The post will be integral to improving the coordination and synchronization of partner engagements and outbreak response and towards the ultimately achievement of global polio eradication by 2019– a critical UNICEF accountability.

Key Accountabilities and Duties & Tasks

Support UNICEF management of outbreak response and preparedness (50%)  

  • Organize OUTBREAK calls with RO and CO offices and follow up on action tracker
  • Review and monitor OUTBREAK plans with RO / COs and flag any delay or bottlenecks.
  • Review data and documentation of outbreak progress and archive relevant information
  • Draft internal outbreak updates
  • Support the organization of the semi-annual coordination meeting between WHO and UNICEF HQs
  • Document outcomes of outbreaks interventions and share with partners’ summary reports. Where possible, develop human interest stories on various events / outbreaks to support the communication team
  • Provide technical support to RO/CO as assigned by the supervisor

 Support outbreak preparedness of high risk countries (20%)  

  • Update high risk country preparedness status with ROs using the global preparedness tools
  • Support with ROs organization of capacity building and training initiatives such as SOPs, vaccine management, micro planning, community surveillance, and C4D
  • Follow up on regional implementation of preparedness plans and report progress being made
  • Update regional and high risk country data based on the independent monitoring of previous implemented campaigns  

Support OUTBREAK response technical secretariat (15%)

  • Timely update of the GPEI outbreak dashboard to reflect UNICEF contribution
  • Attend the outbreak calls and report
  • Update UNICEF HR Surge for events and outbreaks and share within Outbreak secretariat and OPRTT
  • Support the organization of briefing for OBRA members before and after the OBRA and provide relevant onboarding materials and follow up on the recommendations. and manage required logistical coordination with WHO HQs

Global surge roster management (10%)

  • Lead the effort to maintain polio global roster by ongoing review of available profiles of consultant and filling any gaps on particular area
  • For newly added consultants, enter the profile on the EXPERT and update other profiles as required
  • Follow up with RO/CO on the Team A possible staff designation
  • Organize onboarding of consultants prior to deployment and debriefing after the mission is completed and send out the final evaluation survey
  • Maintain active engagement with the consultants on the roster

Other tasks as assigned (5%)

Qualifications of Successful Candidate

Education: Master degree in related field of social study, preferably human rights, communication and / or psychology.

Experience: At least three years of professional experience in development field with minimum one in the area of communication for development or a similar discipline.

Language Requirements: English required. French or any other UN official language would be an asset.

Competencies of Successful Candidate

Core Values

  • Commitment
  • Diversity and Inclusion
  • Integrity

Core competencies

  • Communication
  • Working with People
  • Drive for Results

Functional Competencies

  • Analyzing   
  • Deciding and Initiating Action          
  • Planning and Organizing
  • Following Instructions and Procedures
  • Coping with Pressure and Setbacks

To view our competency framework, please click here

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.
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  • Organization: UNICEF - United Nations Children’s Fund
  • Location: New York City
  • Grade: P-2, International Professional - Junior level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Development Cooperation and Sustainable Development
    • Development Cooperation and Sustainable Development
    • Project and Programme Management
  • Closing Date: 2017-07-26

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