Gender, Health Emergency and Disaster Risk Management Specialist at World Food Programme

Programme Policy Officer (Livelihood & Resilience) at the United Nations World Food Programme (UN WFP)

Position” Gender, Health Emergency and Disaster Risk Management Specialist



The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), a highly prestigious, reputable & world’s largest humanitarian organization, operates in more than 120 countries and territories, bringing life-saving assistance in emergencies, building pathways to peace, stability, and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change and supporting sustainable and resilient livelihoods for a world with zero hunger. At WFP, people are at the heart of everything we do, and the vision of the future WFP workforce is one of diverse, committed, skilled, and high-performing teams, selected on merit, operating in a healthy and inclusive work environment, living WFP’s values (Integrity, Collaboration, Commitment, Humanity, and Inclusion) and working with partners to save and change the lives of those WFP serves.

To learn more about WFP, visit our website: UN World Food Programme (WFP), and follow us on social media to keep up with our latest news: YouTubeLinkedInInstagramFacebookTwitter.

WFP seeks candidates of the highest integrity and professionalism who share our humanitarian principles. Selection of staff is made on a competitive basis, and we are committed to promoting diversity and gender balance. Female Candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.

The WFP Regional Bureau for West & Africa covers a region that extends from Mauritania to Chad and along the coast from Cameroon to Senegal. It consists of 20 countries. The West Africa Regional Bureau (RBD) is based in Dakar and provides strategic guidance, technical support, and direction to country operations in these countries.


The West and Central Africa region is facing multiple crisis with a number of hotspots where the deterioration is already causing significant humanitarian impact, and others where violence and fragility threatens to cause further displacements, human and livelihood losses, and instability. This is against a well-known backdrop of chronic vulnerabilities, recurring shocks, state fragility and poverty, in particular in the central band of the region.

The Regional Bureau Dakar (RBD) provides support, guidance, and oversight to the 20 offices in Western and Central Africa.


General background

Climate-induced hazards such as floods, storms, droughts, and earthquakes are seemingly gender-neutral; however, the gendered impact of such hazards is more far-reaching. Natural disasters affect men, women, boys, and girls differently, even when they belong to the same household. This means that men, women, boys, and girls experience differential impacts of disasters and consequently have different needs. This situation has posed challenges to disaster management practitioners since information on the affected populations is often limited to consolidated numbers which seldom exceed the number of households. A better understanding of the drivers behind the differentiated impact of disasters between men, women, boys, and girls will help inform policy development and improvement and tailor interventions for strengthening resilience.

Climate change, economic uncertainties, new epidemics, and food shortages are coming together in a way that evokes considerable concern. In addition, there are gender-based vulnerabilities to disasters which do not emanate from a single factor but reflect historical and culturally specific patterns of social institutions, culture, and personal lives. Gender equality is pivotal in building resilience and adaptation pathways in disaster risk management.

Trends across the Global South show that disaster management and response, including management of disease outbreaks, is traditionally viewed as ‘men’s business’ – planned by men for men (World Bank 2011). As a result, women’s needs are often not understood or addressed. Africa’s inability to adequately respond to disease outbreaks is compounded by the continent’s existing gender inequalities, usually defined by roles and responsibilities assigned to men and women. These manifest as: discriminatory traditional and social norms, and power relations; disproportionate access to and control over resources, services, and technology; limited women’s decision-making and leadership; and unequal literacy and education levels. These inequalities amplify the impact of disease outbreaks on girls and women, and deepen existing vulnerabilities, affecting the provision of other healthcare services such as immunising children and women.

According to the WHO, Africa faces on average about one hundred infectious disease outbreaks and other emergencies every year. Still, the continent’s ability to rapidly respond to these outbreaks and epidemics is a significant challenge for many African countries. The problem is that while investments have been made in national preparedness, the set-up of Emergency Operations Centers (EOC) and response planning, there is often no dedicated funding for countries for early response to outbreaks when they occur. As evident in the ECOWAS region, emerging infectious diseases increasingly threaten health, security, and development. Slow, unpredictable funding amplifies both the risk and impact of outbreaks. Moreover, countries with early warning and response systems for reporting and responding to outbreaks and epidemics rarely adequately consider gender differences in their interventions. Gender disparities, including access to resources and decision-making power, continue exacerbating the disease burden on women.

Ghana context

Situated on the Gulf of Guinea, Ghana is a resource-rich country with a diverse population of nearly 31 million people. However, Ghana is not immune to natural disasters such as erratic rainfall, rising temperatures, drought, floods, rising sea levels, and tidal waves. These have proven to present significant threats to agriculture and energy (hydropower) and contribute to climate-induced migration. Economically, Ghana’s Agriculture accounts for approximately 20% of GDP and employs more than half of the workforce as mainly small landholders. Gold, oil, and cocoa exports, as well as individual remittances, are significant sources of foreign exchange. According to the 2021 UNDP Human Development Index, Ghana ranks 133 out of 191 countries.

The National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO) which falls under the Ministry of the Interior, is mandated to manage disasters and similar emergencies in the country. Established in 1996, NADMO coordinates all relevant civil authorities at the national, regional and district levels. In addition, NADMO is responsible for preparedness, response, and prevention activities, as well as the training of communities and volunteers to initiate action to prevent and respond to disasters.

Ghana is also no stranger to epidemic-prone disease outbreaks, the most recent being Yellow Fever and Marburg Virus Disease. As a result, Ghana has three Public Health Emergency Operation Centres (PHEOC) located in the Ashanti, Northern and Western Regions. The PHEOCs, established in 2022 are mandated to serve as central command centres and bring together important stakeholders and experts for coordinated responses to public health events and threats under the coordination of the Ghana Health Services (GHS) and the leadership of the MOH.

The Role of the African Risk Capacity

The African Risk Capacity (ARC) Group is comprised of ARC Agency, a Specialized Agency of the African Union founded in 2012; and the African Risk Capacity Limited (ARC Ltd), a hybrid mutual insurer and the commercial affiliate of the Group founded in 2014.

ARC Agency was established to support African governments in improving their capacities to better plan, prepare, and respond to natural disasters triggered by extreme weather events, outbreaks and epidemics. On the other hand, ARC Ltd offers complementary risk pooling and risk transfer services. Together, the two provide Member States with capacity building and contingency planning services, access to state-of-the-art early warning systems, and risk pooling and transfer facilities towards building resilience against natural disasters such as droughts and tropical cyclones. In the process, the Group strives to apply gender equality principles and achieve inclusivity in the programme to ensure that no one is left behind.

In December 2022, the ARC Group launched its outbreaks and epidemics risk insurance product. This innovative risk financing instrument, requested in 2015 by African Ministers of Finance in the wake of the West African Ebola Outbreaks in 2013-2016, aims at equipping countries with rapid and predictable funding to contain high-impact infectious diseases outbreaks such as Ebola, Marburg, and meningitis, and complement the efforts of the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) to safeguard the health security across Africa.

ARC, through established partnerships with ECOWAS, the West African Health Organization (WAHO), and Institut Pasteur de Dakar, is supporting a capacity-building work to implement disaster risk management and financing practices, and build the capacities for surveillance, disease prevention, response and resilience to epidemics and other health emergencies in ECOWAS member states.


Under the direction of the ARC O&E and Gender Units and the support of the Country Engagement Managers, we are seeking to recruit one Gender, Health Emergency and Disaster Risk Management Specialist for Ghana to:

  • Conduct an in-depth gender analysis of the health sector from the Outbreak and Epidemics (O&E) perspective. The analysis aims to identify gaps & challenges and propose recommendations for gender integration in O&E towards gender transformation of the sector. The Consultant is to carry out an in-depth gender analysis to better understand where women, men and boys and girls are situated in O&E and Disaster Risk Management and Financing. Highlighting the barriers for women’s empowerment and participation in contributing to O&E and DRM and the opportunities for policy articulation to strengthen the integration of gender equality into O&E and DRM planning and implementation processes, by advancing recommendations to gender transformative approaches capable of ensuring gender equality for vulnerable men and women.
  • Carry out an in-depth gender analysis on Disaster Risk Management & Financing (DRM&F) to identify gaps & challenges and propose recommendations in policies, strategies, and activities to ensure a gender-responsive and transformational DRM sector.


In line with the objectives above, the critical elements of the assignment are:

  • Conduct an in-depth gender analysis of gender sensitivity and inclusivity from the perspective of i. Outbreak and Epidemics (O&E) and ii. the Disaster Management Sector– preferably using the gender audit methodology – and develop Gender Analysis Report(s)[1] incorporating a Plan(s) of Action.”
  • Develop a Policy Brief for advocacy and resource mobilisation, based on the gender analysis findings.
  • Using the Policy brief as a base, facilitating policy dialogue and donors’ round table to mobilise funds for gender transformative DRM and O&E financing.
  • Adapt the ARC Gender & DRM training modules to the country context and include a module on Gender and O&E
  • Conduct a Training of Trainers workshop for members of TWG and other ARC partners with the use of the developed training manual.
  • Facilitate the establishment of a ToT national network and the setting up the Gender, Advocacy and Communications sub-working group of the TWG.
  • Conduct the Training of Trainers of public officers and health practitioners in charge of national epidemics preparedness and response.


You have

Advanced university degree (Master’s degree equivalent, BAC+4/5) recognized by in one or more of the following disciplines: public health, gender, DRM, climate change, environment, sustainable development, etc. Or First University degree (Bachelor’s degree equivalent, Licence/BAC +3) recognized by with additional years of related work experience or trainings/courses.

Should you not find your university degree in this link kindly note that it will be your responsibility to obtain a formal letter from your Ministry of Education stating their recognition of the university and degree


You have:

At least ten (10) years of progressively advanced and relevant professional experience at the international and national levels (additional years’ experience for a bachelor’s degree) in public health, mainstreaming gender in development projects and policies, especially in the development of manual(s) and training materials for gender mainstreaming on at least one other related theme, including DRM, public health and sustainable development.


  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills in English, including the ability to write clear and concise briefing papers and external communication, strategic operational documents, etc.

How to apply

  • Female applicants and qualified applicants from developing countries are especially encouraged to apply.
  • WFP will not request payment at any stage of the recruitment process including at the offer stage. Any requests for payment should be refused and reported to local law enforcement authorities for appropriate action.



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