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  • Organization: UNICEF - United Nations Children’s Fund
  • Location: Belgrade
  • Grade: Mid/Senior - Internationally recruited position - Mid/Senior level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Women's Empowerment and Gender Mainstreaming
  • Closing Date: 2017-10-01

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Gender Specialist

Belgrade (Serbia)

UNICEF in Serbia is seeking a Gender specialist for the formulation, design, planning, implementing, monitoring and evaluation of Gender Based Violence (GBV) programming, with a focus on refugee and migrant children and families, including adolescent boys and girls. The Gender specialist will also support gender mainstreaming in education and other programming as relevant within the country programme. The duration of the assignment is 10,5 months, from 15 October 2017 to 30 August 2018.

Purpose of Activity/Assignment:


Despite the de-facto closure of the Balkan route in early March 2016, a continuous stream of refugees and migrants continued to arrive to Europe, with strong support from international smuggling networks.

As of June 2017, there were an estimated 60,000 refugees and migrants in Greece including 20,000 children and up to 20 per cent women. In Serbia, there are currently over 4,00 refugees and migrants of whom children and women represent over 60 per cent, and in Bulgaria, there are over 2,100 asylum-seekers accommodated in reception and registration centres. Many refugee and migrants may have been exposed to various forms of gender-based violence (GBV) either in their country of origin, country of first asylum, along the journey to, or inside the country where they are currently s located.  As these populations stay longer in one location, reported incidents of GBV may increase, due in part to increased opportunities to identify cases, as well as to newly emerging protection risks. 


GBV assessments conducted in Greece identified domestic violence as the most commonly occurring and/or reported form of GBV affecting women and children, although various other forms of GBV were also reported, including trafficking, commercial sexual exploitation, and early marriage.   As refugee and migrant populations move from organized reception facilities into private accommodation schemes in urban areas, opportunities to identify and support those most at risk may become increasingly challenging.   Outreach teams are limited, and existing services for survivors (including domestic violence shelters) are limited in their capacity to cater to the linguistic and cultural needs of the refugee and migrant population. Furthermore, the majority of existing services are concentrated in and around urban Athens, leaving more remote parts of the country underserviced. 


In Bulgaria, frontline workers report concerns about domestic violence occurring in some asylum-seeking families and cases of violence, including sexual against unaccompanied and separated children. However, only a few incidents of sexual and gender-based violence have been reported so far. In addition, there is no GBV screening by skilled service providers to confidentially identify survivors and there are no services within the refugee settings yet identified to refer survivors to. The UNHCR-led 2016 Age, Gender and Diversity Participatory Assessment identified SGBV prevention and response as one of the priority areas within the refugee context in Bulgaria that need considerable attention


In Serbia, the dispersion of refugees and migrants population among many different asylum centres and refugee reception centres (currently 18) has also created additional challenges to ensure minimum child protection/gender-based violence (GBV) standards are met by the different partners working on child protection. Many of these organizations sometimes have limited capacities in child protection and GBV related issues, and as such require additional support. A GBV assessment (UNICEF, 2016) in Serbia found that women and children, especially girls, are at heightened risk of exploitation and abuse throughout the European migration route. Health complications (particularly for pregnant women and girls), family separation, psychosocial stress and trauma, physical harm and injury, and risks of exploitation and multiple forms of GBV were just some of the most pressing concerns.  Furthermore, sexual and reproductive health services and services for GBV survivors were found to be lacking or are difficult to access due to lack of clear information or lack of interpreters, especially female interpreters. All of these factors were found to leave women, girls and boys more vulnerable to exploitation by smugglers and other opportunists.  There is a significant need for gender, GBV awareness, sensitization and capacity building within the context of existing child protection systems.


In Greece, Bulgaria and Serbia, UNICEF is working closely with partners to respond to the rising needs of refugee and migrant children and families. In collaboration with the Government, UNICEF has been continuously providing support to enhance the capacity of the national protection system, both from state and non-state actors. UNICEF continues to implement a two pronged approach, whereby humanitarian assistance supports the enhancing of national response systems for the medium and longer term ; thus reinforcing the humanitarian- development nexus. This provides a unique opportunity to “build back better” through investing in strengthening existing systems and mainstreaming GBV, in the areas of child protection, health, nutrition and education, that will benefit the overall children and parents’ population in the longer-term.


The Gender specialist will be accountable for the formulation, design, planning, implementing, monitoring and evaluation of Gender Based Violence (GBV) programming, with a focus on refugee and migrant children and families, including adolescent boys and girls. This work will be undertaken within the context of the broader child protection work. The Gender specialist will also support gender mainstreaming in education and other programming as relevant within the country programme. 


The Gender Specialist will be based in Belgrade, with travel within Serbia, and to Greece and Bulgaria (approximately 30%).

Start Date: 15th October 2017   

End Date: 30th August 2018        

Number of working days/months   10,5 months


Work Assignment Overview



Support UNICEF programmes to undertake a gender assessment of respective programmes, including in gender based violence in emergency and capacity at national and sub-national levels, including an assessment of workplans, planning and monitoring tools, and technical capacity on gender among programmes and partners, to identify gaps and opportunities for the purpose of capacity building, program sustainability and promotion and advocacy. 


Support UNICEF country offices and partners to revise planning documents, and integrate gender into results frameworks, indicators and related monitoring and results tracking systems.  Work with UNICEF relevant programme sector specialists to identify projects that would benefit from better inclusion of gender considerations and actively seek solutions and alternatives to address existing gaps and issues. Provide support in designing and implementing the gender-responsive interventions, and in setting up a system for monitoring impact.


Design, prepare, monitor and evaluate GBV projects in the child protection sector in partnership with civil society and government actors. This includes working with existing UNICEF partners to strengthen GBV components of ongoing work and identifying new partners to take forward an expanded portfolio of UNICEF’s work on GBV. Monitor, analyse and evaluate project results to ensure achievement of objectives and take corrective action when necessary.  


Strengthen GBV focus within existing child protection coordination mechanisms


Support all UNICEF sectors (with a focus on Child Protection, Health and Education) to integrate elements of gender into their programming, in-line with the UNICEF Gender Action Plan, IASC Guidelines on Integrating Gender-based Violence Interventions in Humanitarian Action (GBV Guidelines).


Through advocacy and policy dialogue, including through GBV and Child Protection coordination frameworks, work to facilitate the understanding of the importance of addressing gender based violence by all stakeholders, including through national and local level planning and investment frameworks. Participate in meetings with relevant state authorities, other actors and donors to discuss and represent UNICEF’s work on GBV.


Promote knowledge management including through drafting/finalizing GBV inputs into sectoral programme documents and reports, including donor reports, sharing good practices, lessons learned, and knowledge/information exchange with all partners on GBV prevention and response, and harnessing knowledge institutions resources and partnerships as appropriate.


Deliverables:  The consultant is expected to submit monthly reports on activities implemented to complete the tasks described below.  Monthly priorities will be determined at the beginning of each month and monthly report will be submitted accordingly.


Timeframe: 15th October 2017 to 30th August 2018


Minimum Qualifications required:           

Masters in Social Work, Gender Studies, or other field related social/humanitarian sciences


Knowledge/Expertise/Skills required:

•             At least eight (8) years of progressively responsible professional experience working on gender responsive programming in development and/or humanitarian/post-conflict settings, including with refugee and migrant populations in displacement and integration contexts.

•             Proven experience combining formal expertise on gender mainstreaming and gender equality with experience of applying these concretely to specific humanitarian programmes sectors, plans, policies and business processes.

•             Ability to work through networking and partnership.

•             Experience developing GBV prevention programs with a focus on children and adolescents, including adolescent boys.

•             Experience in addressing GBV issues in a multi-cultural environment with a view to supporting the adaptation and increased accessibility of services.

•             Experience carrying out applied capacity building of front line workers identification, assessment and referral of GBV cases

•             Knowledge of key standards and resources on GBV in emergencies, including the IASC GBV Guidelines.

•             Demonstrated ability to work in a multi-cultural environment and establish harmonious and effective working relationships.

•             Ability to work with professionals from other disciplines to deliver collaborative assessment results strengthening the quality of care provided. 

•             Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively. Spoken and written fluency in English. Knowledge of Serbian is an asset.

The application must include the following:

  1. Daily rate (all costs to be included e.g. health insurance, pension, usage of mobile phone etc.)
  2. Daily allowance cost for travel within Serbia, Bulgaria and Greece (for overnight)
  3. Daily allowance cost for travel within Serbia (without overnight, for more than 8 hours trip)
  4. Transport costs: international travel from home location to Serbia (round-trip) and international travel to Bulgaria and Greece from Serbia. (Travel costs for each country to be specified in the price proposal). This average cost will be used for all subsequent travels, based on needs in each country. 


Important note: Incomplete applications will not be taken into consideration.

Only short-listed candidates will be contacted. 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.



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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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