Programme Assistant



Under the overall guidance of the Representative of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in Cambodia, the direct technical supervision of the Head of the Prison Reform Support Programme Unit (PRSP) and the day-to-day management of the Coordinator of OHCHR Battambang Regional office, the incumbent provides programme support and assistance in the implementation of OHCHR workplan to support prison reform in Cambodia.  
The Programme Assistant works in close collaboration with focal points of other Units, especially the Rule of Law Unit and the Administration Unit, as required to exchange information and support programme delivery. 

Duties and Responsibilities

Summary of key functions:
With the main focus on prisons located in the provinces covered by OHCHR Battambang regional sub-office, 
  • Provide support in the monitoring and reporting of the enforcement of policies and practices that impact on human rights in prison
  • Contribute to the human rights protection of individuals, particularly those in detention
  • Provide support to the prison capacity building and development work
  • Contribute to the successful implementation of the PRSP and the office work
The Programme Assistant supports the implementation of the four components of the Prison Reform Support Unit, namely: analysis and advice on prison issues from a human rights perspective; support to prison staff training; monitoring and reporting on prison conditions and the treatment of prisoners; and the provision of material and other assistance to help implement programme recommendations.
With the main focus on prisons located in the provinces covered by OHCHR Battambang regional sub-office, the Programme Assistant will in particular:
1. Provide support to the monitoring and reporting of the enforcement of policies and practices, that impact on human rights in prison:
  • Support the review of new policies and practices
  • Collect and present the results of the enforcement and the implementation of programme recommendations 
2. Contribute to the human rights protection of individuals, particularly those in detention:
  • Support the Head of Unit to conduct confidential interviews with the prison authorities, staff, prisoners, families, and others as appropriate
  • Support the Head of Unit in collecting/verifying information and share concise summaries of information as appropriate
  • Follow-up on individual cases of prisoners requiring assistance, including legal assistance and social protection support, as necessary, and record such work in the office database
3. Support prison capacity-building and the programme’s development work: 
  • Foster and maintain good working relations with prison authorities, relevant institutions including the courts, local authorities, civil society organizations, and other actors in the prison sector
  • Liaise with programme partners, to exchange information, help programme implementation and facilitate coordination of action among the different actors
  • As requested by the Head of  Unit, support the design, preparation and organisation or delivery of the meetings, workshops and conferences or training activities led by PRSP and/or other Units 
  • Contribute to the provision of materials and other assistance to help implement programme recommendations
4. Contribute to the successful implementation of the PRSP and the office work:
  • As necessary, assist with translation and interpretation between Khmer and English
  • Assist in contributing to and promoting the work of United Nations human rights mechanisms
  • Contribute to the fulfilment of the reporting requirements of the PRSP Unit, including on individual cases, notes and reports
  • Collect information and maintain Unit records and files so that they are accessible and well organized
  • Work closely with and support other office and unit staff to ensure coordinated and smooth action, in particular at the level of the sub-national office in Battambang 
  • Perform other tasks as required

IV. Impact of Results 

The key results have an impact on the success of the OHCHR PRSP Unit work plan in the north-western provinces. In particular, the key results have an impact on the quality of the support provided to the governmental and non-governmental partners toward the achievement of prison reform, the sustainability of strategic partnerships, the on-going development of an advocacy strategy for prison reform, and the protection response of the office.


The incumbent is expected to adhere to the core values of the United Nations – integrity, professionalism, and respect for diversity/gender - and demonstrate the following competencies: 

Functional competencies
  • Professional competence and mastery of human rights, in particular international human rights norms and national norms with regard to prison
  • Capacity to plan, monitor, evaluate and coordinate human rights related matters with Governmental and Non-Governmental partners, other United Nations Agencies, and other relevant stakeholders
  • Ability to work well with figures, undertake basic research, gather information from standard sources, organize information and compile statistics on programme outputs 
  • Knowledge of internal policies, processes and procedures generally and in particular those related to programme and project administration 
  • Ability to build/maintain effective partnerships for the purpose of training and capacity-building
  • Pride in work and in achievements
  • Conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results
  • Motivation from professional rather than personal concerns
  • Ability to apply good judgment in the context of assignments given, show persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges and remain calm in stressful situations
  • Responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work. 
Core Competencies
  • Speaks and writes clearly and effectively
  • Listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately
  • Asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication
  • Tailors language, tone, style and format to match the audience
  • Demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed
  • Applies technology to appropriate tasks
  • Possesses good communication (spoken and written) skills, including the ability to draft a variety of correspondence and other communications, summary reports, etc. 
  • Works collaboratively with colleagues to achieve organizational goals
  • Solicits input by genuinely valuing others’ ideas and expertise and shows willingness to learn from others
  • Places team agenda before personal agenda
  • Supports and acts in accordance with final group decision, even when such decisions may not entirely reflect own position
  • Share credit for team accomplishments and accepts joint responsibility for team shortcomings
  • Build good understanding for task purpose and direction with team members 
  • Good interpersonal skills and ability to establish and maintain effective working relations with sensitivity and respect for diversity.
  • Considers all those to whom services are provided to be “clients” and seeks to see things from clients’ points of view
  • Establishes and maintains productive partnerships with clients by gaining their trust and respect
  • Identifies clients’ needs and matches them to appropriate solutions
  • Monitors on-going developments inside and outside the clients’ environment to keep informed and anticipate problems
  • Keeps clients informed of progress or setbacks in projects
  • Meets deadlines for the delivery of products or services to clients.
  • Seeks feedback to learn and improve

Required Skills and Experience


  • Secondary Education. 
  • Bachelors or higher degree in law, political and social sciences or related fields desirable.


  • At least 5 years of relevant experience in the area of human rights and/or law. Experience in criminal justice or prison issues is an asset 
  • Good computer skills using MS Office applications, knowledge and practice of Khmer Unicode 
  • Readiness to undertake travel throughout the country as needed
  • Demonstrated ability to respect confidentiality, use discretion and uphold integrity.
  • Proficiency in oral and written English and Khmer.


Important applicant information

All posts in the GS categories are subject to local recruitment.

Applicant information about UNDP rosters

Note: UNDP reserves the right to select one or more candidates from this vacancy announcement.  We may also retain applications and consider candidates applying to this post for other similar positions with UNDP at the same grade level and with similar job description, experience and educational requirements.

Workforce diversity

UNDP is committed to achieving diversity within its workforce, and encourages all qualified applicants, irrespective of gender, nationality, disabilities, sexual orientation, culture, religious and ethnic backgrounds to apply. All applications will be treated in the strictest confidence.

Scam warning

The United Nations does not charge any application, processing, training, interviewing, testing or other fee in connection with the application or recruitment process. Should you receive a solicitation for the payment of a fee, please disregard it. Furthermore, please note that emblems, logos, names and addresses are easily copied and reproduced. Therefore, you are advised to apply particular care when submitting personal information on the web.

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: UNDP - United Nations Development Programme
  • Location: Battambang
  • Grade: GS-5, General Service - No need for Higher Education - Locally recruited position - Administrative support
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Development Cooperation and Sustainable Development Goals
    • Operations and Administrations
    • Development Cooperation and Sustainable Development Goals
    • Administrative support
  • Closing Date: 2017-09-20

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