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Consultancy: Advocacy Specialist Consultant (full-time) - Advocacy, DGCA - NYHQ, Requisition# 545039

New York City (United States of America)

  • Organization: UNICEF - United Nations Children’s Fund
  • Location: New York City (United States of America)
  • Grade: Consultant - Contractors Agreement - Consultancy
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Legal - Broad
    • Political Affairs
    • Logistics
    • Communication and Public Information
  • Closing Date: 2021-10-16

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The Advocacy Section within the Division of Communication in UNICEF New York is looking for an Advocacy Specialist on a consultancy role to support the roll-out of the Global Advocacy Priorities on addressing the learning crisis. This consultancy will support implementation of the global advocacy strategy to address the learning crisis at the global, regional, and country level.

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, an Advocate

UNICEF is mandated to advocate for the protection of children’s rights, and the Strategic Plan recognizes the importance of advocacy to deliver against UNICEF’s mission and secure programmatic results for children. Advocacy plays an essential role in supporting and pressing governments and other influential actors to ensure measurable, sustainable change for children, whether through private influencing, mobilizing public support, policy advice, or a holistic blended approach. As stated in the Global Communication and Advocacy Strategy, truly global or ‘glocal’ advocacy requires identifying strategic advocacy opportunities at the national, regional and global levels, and working together to capitalize on these opportunities to advance advocacy goals. We accelerate our impact for children by leveraging the full strength of the organization. Towards this end, UNICEF has announced four Global Advocacy Priorities (GAPs) to be implemented across the organization.  

How can you make a difference?

The purpose of the consultancy is to support the Advocacy Section in rolling out the Global Advocacy Strategy on addressing the learning crisis, at the global, regional and national levels. This will include working with a select group of champion countries to implement the GAP at the country level and influence those national decision-makers to drive real change for children. This work will be focused on three key priorities:

  • New evidence-based policies, legislation, plans, or budgets focused on foundational literacy and numeracy; and
  • Increasing access to digital learning; and
  • Increase the proportion of overseas or domestic funds going towards pre-primary and primary education.

This includes working with the Advocacy Capacity Building Initiative (ACBI) to deliver the global advocacy strategy development workshops for the champion countries, supporting national advocacy efforts, and enabling cross-organizational learning. 

Expected results: (measurable results) 

Internally, the Thematic Advocacy team and ACBI are supported in effectively planning and implementing the Global Advocacy Priority to address the learning crisis at the global, regional and national offices. 

Externally, the champion countries will be engaged and supported in developing strong national advocacy strategies with context-specific tactics and approaches to influence relevant government decision-makers.

Description of the assignment :  The purpose of the consultancy is to support the Advocacy Section in

  1. Implementing the Global Advocacy Strategy on addressing the Learning Crisis   
  • Support the planning, implementation and delivery of key global initiatives or moments linked to the global advocacy strategy on addressing the learning crisis;
  • Support the delivery of advocacy-related outcomes which are part the World Bank-BMGF-UNICEF partnership on foundational literacy and numeracy with five sub-Saharan African countries, which is closely linked to UNICEF’s global advocacy strategy to address the learning crisis.
  • Support relationships with key internal and external stakeholders including the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation; Global Partnership for Education; the Education Commission; Save our Children and other civil society organizations to help implement strategy at global, regional and national levels.
  • Support the building of strategic links between global and national advocacy on the Global Advocacy Priority on learning.
  • Coordinate with a select group of ‘champion countries’, working with relevant country and regional offices to ensure those countries commit to, plan for, and implement initiatives to deliver the outcomes of the GAP on learning.
  1. Working with Champion Countries and the ACBI to deliver outcomes of the learning strategy
    • Provide strategic support in planning and delivering advocacy workshops for the champion countries under the GAP on learning.
    • Support the planning and delivery of virtual advocacy capacity-building workshops to build advocacy knowledge, skills and confidence of colleagues across UNICEF.
    • Provide bespoke advocacy capacity building and advocacy strategy development support to Country Offices, aligned with the GAP on learning and the ACBI.
  2. Working across HQ divisions and Country Offices to plan and deliver effective monitoring and evaluation of the roll-out of the GAP on learning
    • Support the development of annual cross-divisional work plans to enable ownership, planning and effective implementation of initiatives/activities to achieve our advocacy outcomes.
    • Support the development of a results framework to effectively monitor and evaluate progress of the GAP in addressing the learning crisis at the global, regional and national levels
  3. Ensuring smooth operations and delivery against the work plan, including coordination with internal and external stakeholders  
  • Support the implementation of the workplan, including directly managing specific bodies of work under the advocacy strategy;
  • Facilitate logistics around project team meetings (setting up calls, minute-taking, follow-up of action points, etc.).
  • Manage the internal and external communication tools to ensure effective communication and coordination of the GAP efforts, such as Global Advocacy Priorities site and SharePoint 
  • Prepare key materials to introduce the advocacy strategy and its specific initiatives to internal and external stakeholders (i.e. toolkits and guidance for country offices, presentations at key events, proposals to be presented to potential donors and/or allies, etc.).
  • Track and monitor the use of advocacy funds allocated to the thematic advocacy area.

Duty Station              :  NYHQ (on-site preferred)
Estimated start date   :  1 November 2021
Estimated end date    :  15 October 2022 
Travel                        : TBD (Contract will be amended  when trip date/s are determined, and prior to starting the trip)


(Specific service / outputs to be delivered at a specific time as per stated objectives and performance / quality requirements.) 


(Estimated # of Days) 


Supporting planning, oversight and delivery of 2-3 global advocacy moments to deliver on the advocacy outcomes in the GAP strategy


  1. October 2022 

Identifying, coordinating and working with Champion Countries to further the outcomes of the global advocacy strategy


30 April 2022

Supporting the ACBI in planning and co-facilitating 2 to 3 global workshops on the Global Advocacy Priority on learning, with Country Offices and/or UNICEF National Committees


15 October 2022 

Supporting a select few country offices, as needed, with the development of tailored national advocacy strategies under the Global Advocacy Priority


15 October 2022 

Working across HQ divisions and country offices towards effective advocacy implementation, monitoring and evaluation


15 October 2022 

Supporting coordination of internal groups, information flow, and budget management, including implementing an internal communication plan to support the GAP strategy


15 October 2022




To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have ...


  • Bachelor's degree in Public Policy, Political Science, International Relations, International Development, Public Administration, Business Administration, Economics, or other related field.

Work experience  

  • At least five years’ experience in advocacy planning, strategy development and execution, preferably at both a global and national level. 
  • Experience working for an advocacy or campaigning organization e.g. international or national NGO, UN or other multilateral organization.   
  • Experience in presenting and facilitating virtual workshops is essential, ideally with diverse, multi-country participation. 
  • Experience in delivering capacity-building and training is a strong asset. 
  • Experience in developing clear theories of change, with specific, measurable and timebound objectives and performance indicators. 
  • Experience in strategic public engagement activity, based on an understanding of the target audience. 
  • Strong track record in writing engaging advocacy narratives and identifying, shaping and delivering creative advocacy tactics.  
  • Demonstrated experience in design and management of projects, including budget management and monitoring of results. 
  • Experience in operating independently and in providing expert advice and support on advocacy and campaigns. 
  • Knowledge of international development, humanitarian issues and children’s rights. 
  • Experience working in a developing and emergency environment is an asset. 

Skills and attributes 

  • Demonstrated strong communication, presentation and writing skills are essential – a clear, concise, compelling writing style, which is adaptable for difference audiences, including mainstream public.  
  • Strong verbal communication skills, interpreting and condensing technical language or complicated global issues for different audiences.
  • Strategic thinking and critical analysis.
  • Ability to work under pressure in a fast-paced environment  
  • Commitment and drive, with a clear focus on results. 
  • Positive, proactive, ‘can-do’ approach. 
  • Solutions-focused. 
  • Ability to juggle competing priorities, whilst maintaining attention to detail and meeting deadlines. 
  • Creative and innovative. 


  • Fluency in English (both written and verbal) is required.  Working level of French and/or Spanish is considered a strong asset.  

For every Child, you demonstrate…

UNICEF's values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, and Accountability (CRITA) and core competencies in Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results.

The UNICEF competencies required for this post are...

1. Core Values 

  • Commitment 
  • Diversity and Inclusion 
  • Integrity 

2. Core Competencies 

  • Communication [II] 
  • Drive for Result [II] 
  • Working With People [II] 

3. Functional Competencies 

  • Formulating Strategies and Concepts [II] 
  • Analyzing [II] 
  • Applying Technical Expertise [II]  
  • Planning and Organizing [III] 
  • Relating and Networking [II]  

To view our competency framework, please visit here.

Click here to learn more about UNICEF’s values and competencies.

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.


Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.

Please indicate your ability, availability and daily/monthly rate (in US$) to undertake the terms of reference above (including travel and daily subsistence allowance, if applicable). Applications submitted without a daily/monthly rate will not be considered.

Individuals engaged under a consultancy or individual contract will not be considered “staff members” under the Staff Regulations and Rules of the United Nations and UNICEF’s policies and procedures, and will not be entitled to benefits provided therein (such as leave entitlements and medical insurance coverage). Their conditions of service will be governed by their contract and the General Conditions of Contracts for the Services of Consultants and Individual Contractors. Consultants and individual contractors are responsible for determining their tax liabilities and for the payment of any taxes and/or duties, in accordance with local or other applicable laws.

With the exception of the US Citizens, G4 Visa and Green Card holders, should the selected candidate and his/her household members reside in the United States under a different visa, the consultant and his/her household members are required to change their visa status to G4, and the consultant’s household members (spouse) will require an Employment Authorization Card (EAD) to be able to work, even if he/she was authorized to work under the visa held prior to switching to G4. At the time the contract is awarded, the selected candidate must have in place current health insurance coverage.

We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
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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