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Internship Programme - Health & Nutrition Intern (Three months - for Afghan Nationals Only), Jalalabad- Afghanistan

Jalalabad (Afghanistan)

Afghanistan has one of the world’s highest rates of stunting in children under the age of five: 41 per cent. Stunting is a sign of chronic under nutrition during the most critical periods of growth. It prevents children from reaching their potential. Stunted children are more likely to contract diseases, less likely to get basic health care, and do not perform well in school. The rate of wasting in Afghanistan is also extremely high. Wasting, as its name suggests, is literally wasting away to skin and bones. The crushing result of acute malnutrition, it poses an immediate threat to a child’s survival. Chronic nutritional deficiency in Afghanistan is largely the result of poor feeding. For example, only half of Afghan babies are exclusively breastfed in their first six months, and their exposure to contaminated liquids or foods places them at a greater risk of life-threatening illnesses such as diarrhea and pneumonia. Inadequate dietary diversity and insufficient amounts of food, coupled with poor hygiene, also contribute to health risks and deaths of older children. When mothers have inadequate diets, a harmful cycle is created – malnourished infants grow up to become stunted mothers, generation after generation. Despite impressive improvements in the past decade, Afghanistan’s health system still faces a number of challenges. Nutrition services remain limited and healthcare providers lack training to assess and offer counselling and treatment. When nutritional issues go undetected, rates of stunting, wasting, severe acute malnutrition, and micronutrient deficiencies appear lower in statistics and receive much less focus than they should.

UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up.

For every child, a champion!

Purpose of the internship:

Afghanistan has one of the world highest rates of stunting in children under the age of five: 41 per cent. Stunting is a sign of chronic under nutrition during the most critical periods of growth. It prevents children from reaching their potential. Stunted children are more likely to contract diseases, less likely to get basic health care, and do not perform well in school.

The rate of wasting in Afghanistan is also extremely high. Wasting, as its name suggests, is literally wasting away to skin and bones. The crushing result of acute malnutrition, it poses an immediate threat to a child survival.

Chronic nutritional deficiency in Afghanistan is largely the result of poor feeding. For example, only half of Afghan babies are exclusively breastfed in their first six months, and their exposure to contaminated liquids or foods places them at a greater risk of life-threatening illnesses such as diarrhea and pneumonia.

Inadequate dietary diversity and insufficient amounts of food, coupled with poor hygiene, also contribute to health risks and deaths of older children. When mothers have inadequate diets, a harmful cycle is created malnourished infants grow up to become stunted mothers, generation after generation. 

Despite impressive improvements in the past decade, Afghanistan health system still faces a number of challenges. Nutrition services remain limited and healthcare providers lack training to assess and offer counselling and treatment. When nutritional issues go undetected, rates of stunting, wasting, severe acute malnutrition, and micronutrient deficiencies appear lower in statistics and receive much less focus than they should.

Key Duties and Tasks

Under the direct supervision of relevant Program Specialist, the intern will:

  • Support implementation and document challenges and lessons learn from Community Based Nutrition Package (CBNP) implementation in Laghman;
  • Support planning for and conducting of Social Behavior Change Communication (SBCC) activities related to Weekly Iron and Folic acid Supplementation program and celebration of World Breastfeeding Week;
  • Support identification of cases of interest for and development of human interest stories;
  • Provide support in implementation and scale up of the Kangaroo Mother Care (KMC) intervention;
  • Support in conducting Reproductive Maternal New-born Child and Adolescent Health (RMNCAH) trainings and post training follow-ups;
  • Participate in the Maternal New-born Death Surveillance Review (MNDSR) meetings and closely follow-up on implementation of action plan;
  • Conduct supportive supervision from the Maternal and New-born wards. 

To qualify as a champion you will have:

Education: Current enrolment in, or recent graduation from an undergraduate or master programme within the last two years in nutrition, public health, nutritional epidemiology, global/international health and nutrition, health/nutrition research, policy and/or management, health sciences, nutritional epidemiology or other health related science field is required.

Have excellent academic performance as demonstrated by recent university or institution records. 

Language: Fluency in English as well as Pashto/Dari is required.

Skills:

a. Good reading skills: Ability to read and understand English articles.

b. Good writing skills: ability to write up reports or briefing with UNICEF provided template.

c. Good technical skills: familiarity with MS Office, ability to conduct comprehensive research via internet research as well as developing and using spreadsheets is an asset.

d. Good communication skills: Ability to work independently and also as a team member both within and outside the office.

e. Experience in a similar field would be beneficial but is not essential.

For every Child, you demonstrate… 

  • Respect for and adherence to UNICEF core values of Commitment, Diversity and Inclusion, and Integrity
  • Excellent communication, interpersonal and team working skills and capacity to work in a multicultural environment
  • Strong drive for results, setting high standards for the quality of work
  • Interest in learning and researching, gathering comprehensive information to support decision makin

Conditions of Intern:

  • Expenses: Please note that Internships at UNICEF are unpaid. However a small stipend may be available inclusive of transport cost.
  • Health/Medical insurance: Intern is required to hold valid health/accident insurance. UNICEF accepts no responsibilities for costs arising from accidents and/or illness incurred during the internship whether on or off UNICEF premises.
  • Employment: There is no expectancy of employment at the end of the internship.

How to apply:

  • If you recognize yourself from the above and wish to make a difference for every child; you are requested to apply through this online system by 2nd July 2018.  When you apply, please attach the following:
    • your CV and a cover letter in English to state the majors/areas of your study and the reason for application;
    • include two letters of recommendation (can be from employers, internships, university professor, etc.)
    • attach a proof of excellent academic performance/transcript through recent university or institution records.

Duration: Three months

Duty Station: Jalalabad with travel to Laghman, Kunar and Nuristan

 

 

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 organization.

Only qualified applicants will be short-listed and notified for further screening and interview. 

 

 

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: Jalalabad (Afghanistan)
  • Grade: Internship
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Education, Learning and Training
    • Public Health and Health Service
    • Nutrition
    • Project and Programme Management
    • Administrative support
  • Closing Date: 2018-07-18

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