Senior Registration Assistant
San José | Costa Rica
Staff Member / Affiliate Type
ReasonTemporary > Temporary Assignment/ Appointment
Residential location (if applicable)
Remote work accepted
Target Start Date
Target End Date
Job Posting End Date
Standard Job DescriptionSenior Registration Assistant Organizational Setting and Work Relationships The Senior Registration Assistant is a member of the Registration team. The incumbent is responsible for supporting all activities related to registration, which may also include functions related to reception, filing and data management. S/he provides counselling to, and responds to queries from, asylum seekers and refugees regarding UNHCR's registration procedures and their rights and entitlements. S/he liaises closely with protection staff and partners to ensure timely identification and referral of persons of concern (POC) for protection follow up. The Senior Registration Assistant may assist in compiling and analysing information related to registration activities in the Operation. The incumbent may provide interpretation and/or translation services in cases for which s/he has the required language competencies. All UNHCR staff members are accountable to perform their duties as reflected in their job description. They do so within their delegated authorities, in line with the regulatory framework of UNHCR which includes the UN Charter, UN Staff Regulations and Rules, UNHCR Policies and Administrative Instructions as well as relevant accountability frameworks. In addition, staff members are required to discharge their responsibilities in a manner consistent with the core, functional, cross-functional and managerial competencies and UNHCR¿s core values of professionalism, integrity and respect for diversity. Duties - Assist in the implementation of registration strategies and methodologies for POC. - Conduct registration interviews when required in accordance with registration standards and guidance. - Provide counselling to, and responds to queries from, asylum seekers and refugees regarding UNHCR's registration procedures and their rights and entitlements. - Maintain accurate and up-to date records and data related to all individual registration cases. - Identify persons with specific needs and ensure timely referral to protection follow-up as required. - Collaborate with protection staff and/or partners in the delivery of assistance and programming, including provision of identity and entitlement documentation. - Draft correspondence and reports relating to registration activities in the Operation, when required - Provide statistics and draft reports related to registration data, as requested. - Act as interpreter and translator when needed. - Refer cases to other units within the office and to implementing partners as necessary. - Draft and submit reports and statistics related to registration. - Perform other related duties as required. Minimum Qualifications Education & Professional Work Experience Years of Experience / Degree Level G5 - 2 years relevant experience with High School Diploma; or 1 year relevant work experience with Bachelor or equivalent or higher Field(s) of Education Not applicable Certificates and/or Licenses Social Science Statistics Mathematics Information Technology (Certificates and Licenses marked with an asterisk* are essential) Relevant Job Experience Essential Good computer skills, particularly in data management. Desirable Training in basic principles of international protection. Experience in working with UNHCR proGres software. Functional Skills *DM-Data Management PG-Programme Management (programme cycles and reporting standards) DM-Data Collection and Analysis RG-Registration SoPs Design/Implementation TR-Training - Virtual and face to face IT-IT Refugee Systems & Applications *IT-Computer Literacy (Functional Skills marked with an asterisk* are essential) Language Requirements For International Professional and Field Service jobs: Knowledge of English and UN working language of the duty station if not English. For National Professional jobs: Knowledge of English and UN working language of the duty station if not English and local language. For General Service jobs: Knowledge of English and/or UN working language of the duty station if not English. All UNHCR workforce members must individually and collectively, contribute towards a working environment where each person feels safe, and empowered to perform their duties. This includes by demonstrating no tolerance for sexual exploitation and abuse, harassment including sexual harassment, sexism, gender inequality, discrimination and abuse of power. As individuals and as managers, all must be proactive in preventing and responding to inappropriate conduct, support ongoing dialogue on these matters and speaking up and seeking guidance and support from relevant UNHCR resources when these issues arise. This is a Standard Job Description for all UNHCR jobs with this job title and grade level. The Operational Context may contain additional essential and/or desirable qualifications relating to the specific operation and/or position. Any such requirements are incorporated by reference in this Job Description and will be considered for the screening, shortlisting and selection of candidates.
Desired Candidate Profile
Only candidates holding a permanent residency in Costa Rica will be considered eligible.
Candidates would undergo an interview as part of the selection process.
Covid-19 Vaccination and related Safety Measures:
UNHCR has a responsibility to prevent and curb the spread of COVID-19 as part of its accountability to its workforce and the communities it works in and serves. Whilst other measures (such as hand hygiene, physical distancing, ventilation and wearing masks) remain crucial, being vaccinated against COVID-19 plays a key role in protecting oneself, families, colleagues, and the community including persons of concerns and has been proven to significantly reduce risks of serious illness and death from COVID-19. Therefore, in alignment with other UN agencies and based on the advice of the UN Medical Directors network, UNHCR strongly urges all colleagues to get vaccinated as soon as possible to protect themselves and others.
Recruitment as a UNHCR staff member and engagement under a UNHCR affiliate scheme or as an intern is subject to proof of full vaccination, independently of contract type and duration, unless the candidate is based in a location with documented lack of access to COVID-19 vaccines.
Therefore, the people recommended for the position must provide proof of vaccination or the medical recommendation that justifies non-vaccination
3. Organizational Setting and Work Relationships
The socio-political crisis and rise in persecution factors in Nicaragua since April 2018 has produced a particularly sharp increase in the number of Nicaraguan asylum-seekers in Costa Rica. Only 78 Nicaraguans were registered as asylum-seekers in 2017. However, from April 2018 to mid-2020, the number had grown to over 86,000. This includes a significant number of vulnerable persons: at least one quarter of the arrivals has required humanitarian assistance, although this figure has likely increased in the months since the arrival of COVID in March 2020. With the onset of the COVID pandemic and related measures, the regular influx of new asylum seekers slowed to a trickle, but is expected to increase again once the situation “normalizes” and borders are reopened on a greater level. The level of humanitarian and legal protection needs has only increased for those asylum-seekers, refugees, and persons at risk of statelessness – known collectively as Persons of Concern (“PoC”) – in the country.
Costa Rica also continues to receive asylum-seekers from Venezuela, Colombia, El Salvador, Honduras, Cuba and other countries with approximately 160,000 total PoC in Costa Rica at end-2021. The country also hosts a significant number of persons from within and outside the region who are in transit through Costa Rica as part of mixed movements, but some of these persons apply for asylum as well.
The response capacities of Costa Rica, a country of approximately 5 million people, and those of UNHCR and other partners, have been severely stretched, resulting in inadequate reception facilities and significant delays in registering and processing asylum claims. The large backlog can inhibit asylum-seekers from timely access to documentation, work authorization, health insurance and other rights, as well as a final refugee recognition decision, increasing their vulnerability and exposure to protection risks, and increasing their dependency on humanitarian aid.
UNHCR carries out registration activities for Persons of Concern (POC) to ensure that they are identified and monitored for assistance, protection interventions and case management activities. Registration involves the recording, verifying and updating of information on POC to UNHCR with the aim of protecting, and of implementing durable solutions. Registration with UNHCR would result in identifying persons with specific needs and facilitate access to protection interventions.
According to Conclusion No. 91 (LII) of the Executive Committee (ExCom), registration is a protection tool and should be an ongoing process that records both essential information on initial displacement and changes in the refugee population. The continuous process of updating the information guarantees the integrity of the database so that quality protection, well-targeted assistance and durable solutions can be provided to the PoC.
While the Costa Rican government registers refugees for refugee status determination, UNHCR registers refugees and asylum-seekers to provide effective protection for people, manage individual cases, provide financial assistance, and for programmatic responses.
The Senior Registration Assistant is responsible for supporting all activities related to registration, which may also include functions related to reception, interviews, filing and data management. The incumbent provides counselling to, and responds to queries from asylum-seekers and refugees regarding UNHCR’s registration procedures and their rights and entitlements. S/he liases closely with protection staff and partners to endure timely identification and referrals of persons of concern for protection follow up. The Senior Registration Assistant may assist in compiling and analyzing information related to registration activities in the operation. The Senior Registration Assistant may provide interpretation and/or translation services in cases for which s/he has the required language competencies. The Senior Registration Assistant is under the overall supervision of the Associate Registration & Identity Management Officer.
Additionally, s/he responds to queries from asylum seekers, and refugees regarding UNHCR’s registration procedures and their rights and entitlements, conduct registration interviews, scheduling activities, or perform any other type of reverification interview when needed. Additionally, as part of the multifunctional team in UNHCR, the registration unit at San Jose will be conducting Protection and Socio-economical Assessment for applicants who applied for the Resettlement program with UNHCR.
Field(s) of Education
Completion of the secondary Education with post-secondary training/certificate in Social Science, statistics, Mathematics, Information Technology, or related fields is desirable.
Good computer skills.
Fluency in Spanish and B2 level in English.
Experience conducting Registration interviews and UNHCR’s proGres system will be an asset.
Training in basic principles of international protection.
Ability to review registration interview
Ability to make sound judgement and decision making
Knowledge of UNHCR programmes and activities.
Required languages (expected Overall ability is at least B2 level)
SkillsDM-Data Collection and Analysis, DM-Data Management, IT-Computer Literacy, IT-IT Refugee Systems & Applications, PG-Programme Management (programme cycles and reporting standards), RG-Registration SoPs Design/Implementation, TR-Training - Virtual and face to face
CertificationsInformation Technology - Other, Mathematics - Other, Social Sciences - Other, Statistics - Other
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