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UN Women - Spotlight Project Officer, Spotlight Initiative regional programme for Central Asia and Afghanistan

Almaty (Kazakhstan)

  • Organization: UNDP - United Nations Development Programme
  • Location: Almaty (Kazakhstan)
  • Grade: SB-4 (SC8/SC9), Service Contract, Local Contractors Agreement - Consultancy
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Women's Empowerment and Gender Mainstreaming
    • Project and Programme Management
  • Closing Date: 2020-01-26

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Funded by the European Union and managed from Kazakhstan (Almaty) in cooperation with all participating countries, the Spotlight Initiative (SI) regional programme for Central Asia will harness the collective expertise, experiences challenges and energy of gender equality advocates from the five Central Asian countries as well as Afghanistan. This will be done with the purpose of advancing legislative reform, policy dialogue and advocacy, technical assistance in adaptation of most effective measures to address sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) and social norm changes necessary to prevent and respond to SGBV and harmful practices such as bride kidnapping, child, early and forced marriage. 
Mobilizing the UN country teams (UNCTs) in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, as well as in partnership with Afghanistan, the SI seeks to fill a vital vacuum in the region. Namely, the absence of any Central Asian consensus around SGBV, reliable data on SGBV prevalence, coordinated mechanisms of Multi-sectoral response to SGBV (MSR to SGBV) with access to a coordinated set of essential and quality multi-sectoral services for all women and girls who have experienced gender-based Violence, and the absence of any institutional forum for such consensus to be generated. 
Through collective thinking, participatory approaches and collective advocacy, governments, parliamentarians, civil society, including faith-based organizations, human rights and women’s activists, men and boys’ networks, SGBV survivors, women from marginalized groups, young people and religious leaders  will develop Central Asia-specific models for evidence based legislative, policy and institutional reforms and social norms change initiatives. These Central Asia-specific models will be grounded in the international norms and standards guiding work on SGBV, including the CEDAW, and the Council of Europe (CoE)’s Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence – also known as the Istanbul Convention. In addition, the Models will reflect the importance of gender-responsive budgeting (GRB) methodologies and mechanisms of MSR to SGBV system with developed essential services for SGBV survivors (with special focus on those most left behind and vulnerable groups, such as adolescent girls, women with disabilities, rural women and migrants) to be provided by the health, social support, police and justice sectors – to ensure prevention and response to SGBV is robust and in line with the Global agenda to leave no one behind. 
It will also focus on improvement of gender data/statistics collection in view that quality, disaggregated and globally comparable data on different forms of VAWG and harmful practices is a key to inform laws, gender-responsive policies, evidence-based advocacy and dialogue addressing the gender equality, prevention of SGBV, ensuring human rights and promotion the realization of the sexual and reproductive health and rights.  
Reporting to SI Programme Coordinator who operates under the overall guidance of the UN Resident Coordinator for Kazakhstan and to the UN Women’s Programme Specialist as the second reporting officer, the SI Project Officer provides programme support to the effective management of programme components managed by UN Women in the Spotlight Initiative regional programme by actively leading the day-to-day implementation, guided also by UN Women as one’s second reporting officer and in close cooperation with other SI Project Officers managing components for two other Recipient UN Organizations to ensure UN-wide coherence of the programme management. S/he supports the delivery of UN Women programmes by analyzing results achieved during implementation and supporting appropriate application of systems and procedures and contribute towards programme reporting and evaluation; ensures smooth implementation of the Regional Programme, quality and timely guidance, formulation, design, implementation, monitoring and reporting. The Project Officer works in close collaboration with the programme and operations team, UN Women HQ staff, Government officials, multi and bi-lateral donors and civil society ensuring successful programme implementation.   

Duties and Responsibilities

Provide technical support to the implementation and management of the Spotlight Initiative regional programme:
  • Provide inputs to the annual workplan and budget as required;
  • Coordinate and monitor the implementation of programme activities of specific components;
  • Coordinate the call/request for proposals, including the organization of technical review committees, and capacity assessment of partners;
  • Review and coordinate the submission of implementing partners (IPs) financial and narrative reports;
  • Provide quality and timely guidance in formulation, design, implementation of project activities by IPs, monitoring and reporting from IPs;
  • Provide full support and coordination in preparation of regional events related to the area of responsibility. 
Provide technical assistance and capacity development support to project/programme partners:
  • Provide technical support to and technically oversee the implementation of project activities with partners; 
  • Coordinate technical workshops and webinars; facilitate workshop sessions;
  • Develop stakeholders’ capacity and provide a forum for exchanging experiences;
  • Consolidate lessons learned and key outcomes of workshops and webinars;
  • Analyze emerging needs and provide suggestions for technical follow up;
  • Identify opportunities for capacity building of partners and coordinate and facilitate technical/ programming support and trainings to partners as needed;
  • Contribute to preparation of Steering Committee meetings. 
Provide technical inputs to the monitoring and reporting of the programme:
  • Monitor progress on programme activity, results and indicators; 
  • Monitor the implementation of proposals by responsible partners;
  • Provide inputs to quarterly reports, donor reports and other reports on outputs, results outputs and outcomes.
  • Analyze and appraise incoming documents, draft statements, talking points, correspondence, and briefing notes on the programme and operational issues;
  • Review documents to ensure quality and relevance to subject and themes; 
  • Elaborate inputs to the annual and other reports; 
  • Conduct site-visits for monitoring and reporting of programme implementation;
  • Contribute to evaluation of the programme.
Provide technical inputs to the management of people and finances of the programme:
  • Monitor budget implementation and programme activity expenditures and perform budget revisions when required;
  • Provide inputs to financial reports;
  • Oversee as needed the day-to-day work of Project Assistants who operate under the supervision of the SI Project Coordinator;
  • Participate in development of annual budgets, coordinate and negotiate the budget with RCO and RUNOs;
  • Ensure delivery of the donor funds at least 85% by the end of a fiscal year. 
Contribute to building partnerships and resource mobilization strategies:
  • Provide inputs to resource mobilization strategies to attract possible additional donor funds; analyze and maintain information and databases; 
  • Provide inputs to relevant documentation such as project summaries, conference papers, briefing notes, speeches, and donor profiles.
Provide technical inputs to inter-agency coordination on Spotlight Initiative to achieve coherence and alignment of UN Women managed programme components with those of other UN agencies:
  • Provide technical support to the Programme Coordinator on inter-agency coordination related activities by providing inputs to background reports and briefs and offering complementary support as necessary.
Provide inputs to advocacy, knowledge building and communication efforts:
  • Provide technical inputs to background documents, briefs and presentations related to Spotlight Initiative;
  • Coordinate and support the organization of advocacy activities and campaigns events, trainings, workshops and knowledge products;
  • Provide inputs to the development of knowledge management products on Spotlight Initiative.
Key Performance Indicators:
  • Timely and quality programme implementation;
  • Timely and quality inputs to workplans and budgets;
  • Adherence to UN Women standards, rules and procedure;
  • Timely monitoring and tracking of programme results and finances;
  • Timely organization of events;
  • Number of communication opportunities identified; 
  • Number of knowledge products developed.


Core Values:
  • Respect for Diversity;
  • Integrity;
  • Professionalism.
Core Competencies:
  • Awareness and Sensitivity Regarding Gender Equality Issues and /or SGBV issues Accountability;
  • Creative Problem Solving;
  • Effective Communication;
  • Inclusive Collaboration;
  • Stakeholder Engagement;
  • Leading by Example.
Functional Competencies:
  • Programme formulation, implementation, monitoring and evaluation skills;
  • Knowledge of Results Based Management;
  • Ability to gather and interpret data, reach logical conclusions and present findings;
  • Good analytical skills;
  • Capacity to work effectively under deadline pressure and to take on a range of responsibilities;
  • Ability to work as a team member, presentation and communication skills;
  • Good knowledge of issues and programming approaches to end sexual and gender-based violence and harmful practices.

Required Skills and Experience

Education and certification:

  1. Master’s degree or equivalent in social sciences, human rights, gender/ women’s studies, international development, or a related field is required;
  2. A first-level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree;
  3. A project/programme management certification would be an added advantage.
  • At least 5 years of relevant work experience in development programme/project implementation, coordination, monitoring and evaluation, donor reporting and capacity building; 
  • Experience of managing multi-stakeholder development programmes is an advantage;
  • Experience coordinating and liaising with government agencies and/or donors is an asset;
  • Familiarity with UN development programmes and working methods, and particularly with UN Women policies and programming procedures, desirable;
  • Knowledge and experience in data/statistics collection, analysis and presentation;
  • Good knowledge of key concepts and global and regional commitments related to gender equality, empowerment of women and girls, ending violence against women and harmful practices, their impacts on health and realization of SRHR;
  • Experience working on SGBV related projects will be considered an assetGood knowledge of issues and programming approaches to end sexual and gender-based violence and harmful practices.
Language Requirements:
  • Fluency in English and Russian is required;
  • Knowledge of languages of Central Asian countries is an asset.


Important applicant information

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

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