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, nutrition
UNICEF has been working in Lao PDR continuously since 1973, one of the longest-serving international organizations in the country. We have been implementing one of UNICEF’s largest country programmes worldwide, working tirelessly to promote the rights of children and women and to bring basic services – education, health, nutrition, protection, water and sanitation – to those who are most in need.
In Lao People’s Democratic Republic (PDR), UNICEF is promoting the rights and wellbeing of every child. Together with our partners, we are focusing and putting extra efforts on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children throughout the country.
Despite progress in recent years, malnutrition remains a significant challenge in Lao PD, with rates of stunting amongst the highest in the region, consistent high levels of wasting and indications of high levels of micronutrient deficiencies, resulting in enormous human and economic costs. UNICEF is at the forefront of nutrition programming in Lao PDR, supporting the Government to improve the enabling environment, the delivery of nutrition interventions across sectors and increase the demand for key nutrition services and behaviours across the life cycle.
The Nutrition Specialist will lead UNICEF’s efforts to enhance institutional capacity to generate, analyze and use nutrition data at national and subnational levels, strengthen national nutrition information systems for effective monitoring and accountability and support multi-sectoral nutrition coordination, advocacy and partnerships.
How can you make a difference?
You will join the Nutrition section as manager for the 1st output of the UNICEF Nutrition Programme, namely to strengthen the institutional and administrative framework for nutrition through data and evidence, policy and partnerships.
You will be responsible for managing existing grant and mobilizing new funding including function as project manager for several grants including grant management, planning, implementation, donor engagement and reporting.
A summary of key functions and accountabilities for the post include:
- Support to programme development and planning. This will include leading on the preparation, design and updating of the situation analysis for the nutrition sector; tracking progress of nutrition results and investments through routine data/surveilllance/assessments/surveys to inform government policies, programmmes and investments.
- Programme management, monitoring and delivery of results. This will include efforts to identify gaps, strengths and/or weaknesses, identify lessons learned and use knowledge gained for development planning and timely intervention to achieve goals as well as the preparation of regular and mandated programme/project reports for the management, donors and partners including the EU.
- Technical and operational support to programme implementation. This will include the provision of technical guidance to government and others on the best practices and approaches to strengthen the integration and use of data for implementing nutrition interventions across sectors and enhance sub-national planning and budgeting processes for nutrition.
- Networking and partnership building. This will include the building and strengthening of close working partnerships with Government and key stakeholders for enhanced nutrition advocacy for improved governance and financing of nutrition actions at both national and sub national levels including the use of data and evidence to influence policy and decision makers at national and subnational levels and improve accountability for results; and to support improved multi-sectoral nutrition policy frameworks and legislation.
- Innovation, knowledge management and capacity building. This will include the introduction of innovative approaches and good practices to strengthen national capacity to routinely share data and evidence in a common platform including the use of dashboards and data repositories to track nutrition results and investments.
To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have…
- An advanced university degree (Master’s or higher) in nutrition, public health, nutritional epidemiology, global/international health and nutrition, health/nutrition research, policy and/or management, health sciences, nutritional epidemiology, or another health-related science field.
- A minimum of 5 years of relevant professional experience in a developing country in one or more of the following areas is required: nutrition, public health, nutrition planning and management, or maternal, infant and child health/nutrition care.
- Experience in health/nutrition programme/project development and management in a UN system agency or organization is an asset.
- Experience in strengthening routine data sources, improving surveillance systems, and undertaking surveys is an asset.
- 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 Core Values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust and Accountability and Sustainability (CRITAS) underpin everything we do and how we do it. Get acquainted with Our Values Charter: UNICEF Values
UNICEF competencies required for this post are…
(1) Builds and maintains partnerships (2) Demonstrates self-awareness and ethical awareness (3) Drive to achieve results for impact (4) Innovates and embraces change (5) Manages ambiguity and complexity (6) Thinks and acts strategically (7) Works collaboratively with others (8) Nurtures, Leads and Manages People.
During the recruitment process, we test candidates following the competency framework. Familiarize yourself with our competency framework and its different levels: competency framework here.
UNICEF is here to serve the world’s most disadvantaged children and our global workforce must reflect the diversity of those children. The UNICEF family is committed to include everyone, irrespective of their race/ethnicity, age, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, nationality, socio-economic background, or any other personal characteristic.
We offer a wide range of benefits to our staff, including paid parental leave, breastfeeding breaks and reasonable accommodation for persons with disabilities. UNICEF strongly encourages the use of flexible working arrangements.
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 is committed to promote the protection and safeguarding of all children.
UNICEF’s active commitment towards diversity and inclusion is critical to deliver the best results for children. For this position, eligible and suitable candidates are encouraged to apply.
Mobility is a condition of international professional employment with UNICEF and an underlying premise of the international civil service.
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 are also subject to inoculation (vaccination) requirements, including against SARS-CoV-2 (Covid). Should you be selected for a position with UNICEF, you either must be inoculated as required or receive a medical exemption from the relevant department of the UN. Otherwise, the selection will be cancelled.
All selected candidates will undergo rigorous reference and background checks and will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles. 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.
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.
Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.