Chief Child Protection, (P-5), South Africa Country Office, Pretoria # 99016 (Open for UNICEF internal staff and non-South African nationals only)
The Chief is responsible for leading and managing the child protection section and establishing the plans of action to ensure the achievement of concrete and sustainable programme/project results, according to plans, allocation, results based-management approaches and methodology (RBM), and UNICEF’s Strategic Plans, standards of performance and accountability framework.
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, protection & safety
The Chief will be responsible for the management and oversight of the child protection and child rights governance programme with UNICEF in SA; experience in human rights based approach to programming and experience in integrated collaboration with other programmes and with UN Sister Agencies are huge success factors. Ability to manage and nurture many high level strategic partnerships with Presidency, line departments, Parliament, Human Rights Commission and civil society organizations, academic institutions and work in close collaboration with the Communications and Partnership team.
Purpose for the job
Join our team for managing and leading all stages of child protection programmes/projects from strategic planning and formulation to achieving concrete and sustainable contributions to national and international efforts to create a protective environment for children against all harm and to protect their rights to survival, development and well being as established under the Convention on the Rights of the Child, international treaties/frameworks and UN intergovernmental bodies.
Key function, accountabilities and related duties/tasks
1. Managerial leadership
- Establish the section’s annual work plan with the child protection team; set priorities/targets and performance measurements. Monitor work progress and ensure results are achieved according to schedule and performance standards.
- Establish clear individual performance objectives, goals and timelines; and provide timely guidance to enable the team to perform their duties responsibly and efficiently. Plan and ensure timely performance management and assessment of the team.
- Supervise team members by providing them with clear objectives and goals, direction and guidance to enable them to perform their duties responsibly, effectively and efficiently.
2. Programme development and planning
- Lead the planning and updating of the situation analysis to ensure that current and comprehensive data on child protection issues is available to guide UNICEF’s strategic policy advocacy, intervention and development efforts on child rights and protection, and to set programme priorities, strategies, design and implementation plans.
- Keep abreast of national, regional and international development priorities on child protection and rights to leverage UNICEF’s position and competencies with donors, national governments, communities and constituents to advocate and promote child protection interventions, policies and social change to achieve goals on child’s rights, protection, survival and wellbeing, as productive members of society.
- Lead, coordinate and supervise the development of child protection programmes/projects (as a full component of the CO and/or UNDAF programmes). Establish plans of action, programme goals and results, using results-based planning methodology and terminology (RBM).
- Oversee the timely preparation of programme recommendations and related documentation for inclusion in the Country Office Programme recommendation ensuring alignment with overall UNICEF Strategic (Child Protection) Plans, regional strategies and national priorities, plans and competencies.
- Consult and collaborate with national and global colleagues, partners and allies to develop partnership frameworks to address specific needs and to leverage resources for enhancing and scaling up child protection programmes/projects. Ensure synergy, integration, coherence, and harmonization of programmes/projects with UNICEF Strategic Plans and priorities, donors’ development strategies/policies, national priorities/competencies and UN System development interventions/initiatives
- Ensure emergency preparedness is contained in national programmes/projects to ensure the protection and well-being of children in cases of armed conflict, natural disasters and other emergency situations.
3. Programme management, monitoring and quality control of results
- Coordinate, plan and collaborate on monitoring and evaluation initiatives to establish benchmarks, performance indicators and other UNICEF/UN system indicators, to assess and strengthen performance accountability, coherence and delivery of concrete and sustainable results in child protection programmes.
- Participate in major monitoring and evaluation exercises, programme reviews and annual reviews with government and other counterparts to assess progress and to engage stakeholders to take required action and interventions to achieve results.
- Assess monitoring and evaluation reports to identify gaps, strengths, and/or weaknesses in programme management. Identify lessons learned and use knowledge gained for development planning and timely intervention to achieve goals.
- Plan, approve, monitor, certify, and control the use of programme resources (financial, human, administrative and other assets) certifying/verifying compliance with organizational rules, regulations and procedures, donor commitments and standards of accountability and integrity. Ensure timely reporting and liquidation of resources.
- Submit and prepare programme/project reports to donors and other partners to keep them informed on programme progress and critical issues.
4. Advisory services and technical support
- Provide technical advice to key government officials, NGO, UN system and other country office partners on strategies and best practices to influence approaches/policies, support social/economic/political/legal development planning & implementation, and to support delivery of results on child protection, human rights and other related issues.
- Coordinate and ensure the availability of technical experts (with Regional Office/HQ) to ensure timely support throughout all stages of programming/project processes.
- Participate in strategic discussions to influence policy and agenda setting for combating poverty and all forms of discrimination against women/children by advising on and advocating strategies and approaches to promote and catalyze social changes for child survival, development and well being in society.
- Lead in country discussions on child protection emergency preparedness, programming and contingency planning to ensure proactive and appropriate responses are in place to meet onset of emergencies nationally, or in other designated locations.
5. Advocacy, networking and partnership building
- Build and strengthen strategic partnerships through networking and advocacy with local/national governments, UN system agency partners, donors, internationally recognized institutions, NGOs, funding organizations, research institutes and private sector to reinforce cooperation and/or pursue opportunities to promote goals and achieve sustainable and broad results on child protection.
- Prepare communication strategies and implementation plans and activities for maximum communication impact and outreach to promote awareness, establish partnerships/alliances for sustainable results and support fund raising for UNICEF and Country Office child protection programmes and emergency interventions.
- Participate and/or represent UNICEF in inter-agency (UNCT) discussions and planning on child protection and related issues to ensure organizational position, interests and priorities are fully considered and integrated in the UNDAF process in development planning and agenda setting. Collaborate with inter-agency partners/colleagues on UNDAF planning and preparation of programmes/projects including emergency preparedness.
6. Innovation, knowledge management and capacity building
- Promote critical thinking, innovative approaches and good practices for sustainable child protection programme/project initiatives through advocacy and technical advisory services.
- Keep abreast, research, benchmark, introduce, and implement best and cutting edge practices on child protection management and information systems. Institutionalize and disseminate best practices and knowledge learned.
- Lead the development of policies and procedures and introduce innovation and best practices to ensure optimum efficiency and efficacy of sustainable programmes and projects.
- Lead, plan and implement capacity building initiatives to enhance the competencies of clients and stakeholders to promote sustainable results on child protection and related programmes/projects.
To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have…
- An advanced university degree (Master’s or higher) in international development, human rights, psychology, sociology, international law, or another relevant social science field.
*A first University Degree in a relevant field combined with 2 additional years of professional experience may be accepted in lieu of an Advanced University Degree.
- A minimum of ten  years of relevant professional experience in social development planning and management in child protection related areas, at the international level, is required.
- Developing country work experience and/or familiarity with emergency is considered an asset.
- Relevant experience in programme management in child protection related areas in a UN system agency or organization is considered as an asset.
- Experience in both development and humanitarian contexts is an added advantage.
- Fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another official UN language (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian or Spanish) or a local language is an asset.
For every Child, you demonstrate...
UNICEF's values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, and Accountability (CRITA).
Core Competencies (For Staff with Supervisory Responsibilities)
- Nurtures, Leads and Manages People (2)
- Demonstrates Self Awareness and Ethical Awareness (2)
- Works Collaboratively with others (2)
- Builds and Maintains Partnerships (2)
- Innovates and Embraces Change (2)
- Thinks and Acts Strategically (2)
- Drive to achieve impactful results (2)
- Manages ambiguity and complexity (2)
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.
Mobility is a condition of international professional employment with UNICEF and an underlying premise of the international civil service.
Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.
UNICEF appointments are subject to medical clearance. Issuance of a visa by the host country of the duty station, which will be facilitated by UNICEF, is required for IP positions. Appointments may also be subject to inoculation (vaccination) requirements, including against SARS-CoV-2 (Covid). Government employees that are considered for employment with UNICEF are normally required to resign from their government before taking up an assignment with UNICEF. UNICEF reserves the right to withdraw an offer of appointment, without compensation, if a visa or medical clearance is not obtained, or necessary inoculation requirements are not met, within a reasonable period for any reason.