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International Polio Eradication and Transition Consultant at the United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF)

Posted on Wed 12th Jun, 2019 - --- (0 comments)

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

We are recruiting to fill the vacant position below:

Job Title: International Polio Eradication and Transition Consultant (P3 level)

Job Number: 523013
Location: Nigeria
Work Type: Consultancy

Background/Purpose of Assignment
Nigeria is wild Polio free for last 33 months and country is all set polio free status soon; with the great strides made by Nigeria in the polio eradication drive, the Government of Nigeria is intensifying its efforts to ensure that the gains are sustained and it ultimately receives its much-anticipated certification as a polio-free nation.  As a key partner in the effort to achieve this, UNICEF has the lead role in communicating to families and communities in the endemic and other areas about the importance of taking the oral polio vaccine to prevent polio until global certification achieved.  Beyond this, there is a push for integrating other child survival issues and messages in the basket of behaviours being promoted by the enlarged partnership working on the Polio Endgame.

Key additional areas of engagement include full immunization for the child, promoting Ante-natal care as an entry point to proper health-seeking among pregnant women, Hand washing at critical times, management of basis childhood illnesses and delivery by skilled birth attendants. Over 19,000 volunteer community mobilizers, volunteer ward supervisors, Polio Survivors, LGA social mobilization supervisors and state social mobilization supervisors have recently been hired to support intensified communications activities in the field.

Government of Nigerian initiated a ground breaking community health work force  name as community health promotors, influencers and service providers project (CHIPS). In a transition, VCM network will be the main source for this project and transition will take place gradually as per transition plan and timelines. This requires more investment on the VCM network in terms of building the capacity and empowerment to adequately shoulder the intended responsibilities and play the active role in strengthening the local health system beyond polio.

The programme has an urgent need to have intensified and sustained social communication technical support with focus on ensuring improved coordination and partnership with key community leaders of underserved populations in the very high risk States in addition to strengthen and build the capacity of all existing VCMNet structure to enrich the transition and post-polio plans. UNICEF hires international consultants; the consultants will mainly be located at State levels with frequent trips to LGAs building capacity of VCM network and frontline workers who sustain the gains and improve health promotion and service provision at the community level.

Major Tasks to be Accomplished
Support Polio Campaigns:
  • Coordinate with State team on planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of VCM network by rationalizing human resource, support supplemental immunization activities, especially the advocacy and social communication component; and support targeted social mobilization activities while providing direct oversight for Third Party State Social Mobilization contractors recruited and deployed by UNICEF and the STOP team members deployed at state level.
  • The incumbent will ensure intensified actions at State, LGA and community levels with a special emphasis on overcoming refusal of vaccination by building public trust in the safety and need for OPV and other antigens and improving their acceptance. Identify constraints, challenges and opportunities for program delivery with State Team and State Social Mobilization Working Group.
  • Adapt and use appropriate communication models at community level in all high risk LGAs in State. Monitor all UNICEF funded activities related to advocacy, social mobilization, logistics of polio eradication and supplemental immunization. Establish and maintain coordination with the work of other partners in the assigned State.
  • Provide technical guidance in the design, preparation and use of targeted communication strategies appropriate for communities including communication materials in appropriate languages for Government frontline health workers/media networks, traditional and religious opinion leaders, village development/community groups and households.
  • Support State Governments and State teams to prepare micro plans and make other arrangements to ensure good quality SIAs and other interventions
  • Mobilize support for PEI through advocacy, training and awareness building programmes targeting a variety of groups to include State Governments, media, public relations networks, and traditional, religious and other s and community networks.
  • Facilitate State & LGA Social Mobilization Working Group and Committees and ensure holding of the committee meetings before each IPD by using social data for planning.
  • Provide leadership and direction in the application and use of social data for developing strategies for IPD and for in between rounds activities.
  • Monitor and evaluate implementation activities by regularly analyzing and using social mobilization data, undertaking field visits and other existing study/surveys. Based on these to identify problems and propose remedial action, identifying alternative courses of action to accelerate/improve service delivery.
  • Contribute implementing national Communication for Development Strategic Framework and Polio legacy in action priorities.
Capacity Building:
  • Identify capacity gaps in the VCM network and develop a training program to strengthen their skills to ensure they have adequate skills to strengthen linkages to RI and other health services.
  • Guide the development and implementation of a learning needs assessment of the Volunteer Community Mobilizer network to inform the design and assess the impact of a capacity development strategy.
  • The consultant should review all the training materials and develop a training plan- how many trainings are needed, how many days per training, class size, experienced facilitators available to conduct trainings, evaluation plan for training activities.
  • The training plan should ensure that any TOT has quality control mechanisms to ensure materials and concepts don't get diluted by the time it reaches the VCMs and that all trainings take place as planned. The training plan should consider a target of no more than 3 trainings, each focusing on IPC skills around an important technical area.
  • Coordinate and support the development and implementation of an appropriate capacity development strategy for the VCM infrastructure of workers conducting social mobilization and interpersonal communication for community engagement, including developing appropriate content, modules and methodologies for a communication, social mobilization and other areas according to the needs of the programme.
  • Support the development of a roll-out plan, including the identification of training focal points and training of master trainers within the capacity development strategy.
  • Develop and produce relevant training materials and job aides to support the work of the field staff.
  • Participate in the development of a revised vaccinator training package, with emphasis on improving IPC skills of vaccination teams.
  • Initiate a monitoring and evaluation framework to assess the impact of the capacity development plan.
  • Recommend alternative capacity development initiatives, which could include elements beyond trainings, such as mentorship, coaching, and ensure there are mechanisms in place to recognize talent, capture innovations, and scale up high performance among the frontline communication and social mobilization workforc.
Polio Transition:
  • Mapping of Polio assets, structures and processes in place based on the guidelines provided by the Global Polio Eradication Initiative.
  • Provide technical advises and operationalization of transitioning of VCMs to proposed Community Health Influencers, Promoter and service providers (CHIPs) project.
  • Support CHIPS implementation process and ensure 1:1 VCM to CHIPS transition through engagement at state LGA and various level.
  • Supporting Emergency Operation Center for Polio in developing the Nigeria Legacy plan along with WHO consultant as recommended by the Expert Review Committee on Polio Eradication in Nigeria.
Qualifications or Specialized Knowledge/Experience Required
  • A University Degree in Medicine/Social Sciences/Public Health/Business Administration/Communication/Statistics or related technical field preferably in Communications and social mobilization. Working experience in Polio field, human resource development and data management or research will be an added advantage.
  • At least Five (5) years progressively responsible professional work experience in Polio eradication at national level or 3 years of national experience plus one year experience at international level in programme planning, management, human resource development, monitoring and evaluation in Polio field.
  • Fluency in English, knowledge of another UN working language is desirable.
  • Experience working in one of currently polio endemic countries will be an added advantage.
Basic Competencies include:
  • Current knowledge of development issues, polio eradication, program management, capacity building, legacy strategies as well as programming policies and procedures in international development cooperation.
  • Proven ability to conceptualize, innovate, plan and execute ideas, as well as to impart knowledge and teach skills
  • Managerial and supervisory skills.
  • Good analytical, negotiating, communication and advocacy skills
  • Computer skills, including internet navigation and various office application
  • Demonstration of ability to work in a multi-cultural environment and establish harmonious and effective working relationships both within and outside the organization.
  • The duration of this consultancy is 6 months
Application Closing Date
25th June, 2019 at 23:55:00 GMT+0100 (West Africa Standard Time)

How to Apply
Interested and qualified candidates should:
Click here to apply online

  • Applicants should quote an all inclusive fee in their cover letters and kindly note that your application will not be considered if you fail to provide your fee.
  • 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, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks, and will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles.
  • Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.


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