Org. Setting and Reporting
This position is located in the Operations and Advocacy Division (OAD) of the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), based in Kabul, Afghanistan. OCHA is the part of the United Nations Secretariat responsible for bringing together humanitarian actors to ensure a coherent response to emergencies. OCHA’s mission is to mobilize and coordinate effective and principled humanitarian action in partnership with national and international actors in order to alleviate human suffering in disasters and emergencies; advocate the rights of people in need; promote preparedness and prevention, and facilitate sustainable solutions.
This position is located in the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) Regional Office for Southern and Eastern Africa, Nairobi, Kenya. The Humanitarian Affairs Officer reports to the Humanitarian Affairs Officer/Head of the Emergency Preparedness and Response Unit.
This position will require regular surge deployments within and potentially outside the region. Candidates are expected to be available and willing to surge for up to three months at a time.
Within delegated authority, the Humanitarian Affairs Officer will be responsible for the following duties:
• Deploys on humanitarian surge and support missions in Southern and Eastern Africa as requested, including to facilitate: humanitarian operational coordination (e.g. chairing inter-cluster meetings); humanitarian financing proposals (e.g. CERF applications); implementation of preparedness actions (e.g. contingency plans); development of humanitarian needs overviews and appeals; and humanitarian needs assessments.
• Monitors, analyzes and reports on humanitarian developments, disaster relief/management or emergency situations in assigned areas of Southern and Eastern Africa .
• Organizes and prepares updates and reports on humanitarian, emergency relief and related issues in assigned countries/areas of coverage; organizes follow-up work, including interagency meetings to support information-sharing and decision-making on important issues.
• Participates in large, complex projects, to include disaster assessment or other missions to countries in the region; deploys on surge to assist in the coordination of international humanitarian/emergency assistance for complex emergency/disaster situations and in ensuring the necessary support (e.g. staff, funding, specialized equipment, supplies, etc.); drafts situation reports to the international community, apprising of situation to date and specifying unmet requirements of stricken countries.
• Partners with other humanitarian agencies to plan and coordinate humanitarian and emergency assistance programmes – including through deployment on surge if required – and helps ensure that latest findings, lessons learned, policy guidelines, etc. are incorporated into these activities, including gender and protection-related considerations.
• Assists in the production of appeals for international assistance – including Humanitarian Needs Overviews, Humanitarian Response Plans and Flash Appeals – in the region; ensures the proper use and spending of donor contributions channeled through OCHA.
• Establishes and maintains contacts with government officials, other UN agencies, non-governmental organizations, diplomatic missions, etc.
• Undertakes and provides support to technical assistance and other field missions, e.g. participates in field trips to review and/or support specific country coordination mechanisms.
• Prepares or contributes to the preparation of various written reports, documents and communications, e.g. drafts sections of background papers, briefings, case studies, presentations, correspondence, etc.
• Serves as the primary focal point on specific humanitarian topics or policy-related issues; keeps abreast of latest developments, liaises with other humanitarian organizations, donors, etc., ensures appropriate monitoring and reporting mechanisms; provides information and advice on a range of related issues.
• Reviews and provides advice on issues related to safeguarding humanitarian principles and ensuring the effective delivery of humanitarian assistance; provides technical advice to humanitarian leadership and country teams on cross-cutting issues, such as protection and gender considerations and may act as ROSEA Focal Point on one or more of these issues;
• Organizes and participates in work groups, meetings, conferences, consultations with other agencies and partners on humanitarian and emergency relief-related matters in the region.
• Provides guidance to, and may supervise, new/junior staff.
• Performs other duties, and surge assignments, as required.
PROFESSIONALISM: Knowledge of a wide range of humanitarian assistance, emergency relief, and related humanitarian issues, including humanitarian principles and humanitarian coordination architecture and processes . Analytical capacity and in particular the ability to analyze and articulate the humanitarian dimension of issues which require a coordinated UN response. Ability to identify issues and judgment in applying technical expertise to resolve a wide range of humanitarian problems, including under difficult conditions and/or when deployed to remote locations. Ability to conduct research, including ability to evaluate and integrate information from a variety of sources and assess impact on the humanitarian situation in assigned country/area. Ability to work under extreme pressure, including in highly stressful environments (e.g. civil strife, natural disasters and human misery). Shows pride in work and in achievements; demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.
PLANNING AND ORGANIZING: Develops clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies; identifies priority activities and assignments; adjusts priorities as required; allocates appropriate amount of time and resources for completing work; foresees risks and allows for contingencies when planning; monitors and adjusts plans and actions as necessary; uses time efficiently.
ACCOUNTABILITY: Takes ownership of all responsibilities and honours commitments; delivers outputs for which one has responsibility within prescribed time, cost and quality standards; operates in compliance with organizational regulations and rules; supports subordinates, provides oversight and takes responsibility for delegated assignments; takes personal responsibility for his/her own shortcomings and those of the work unit, where applicable.
Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in political science, social science, public administration, international studies, economics, engineering, earth sciences or a related field. A first-level university degree in combination with two years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.
A minimum of five years of progressively responsible experience in humanitarian affairs, emergency preparedness, crisis/emergency relief management, or other related area is required.
Humanitarian experience in the field (actual setting where a mission and/or project is being implemented) in emergency situations (complex emergency or natural disaster) is required.
Three (3) years of relevant experience at the international level is desirable.
Recent experience in emergency response in Africa is desirable.
Experience in a humanitarian context within the UN common system or other comparable international organization is desirable.
French and English are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English is required. Fluency in French is highly desirable. Knowledge of other languages used in the region (e.g. Portuguese, Swahili etc) is an advantage.
Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.
This position is funded for a finite period of one year. Extension of the appointment is subject to extension of the mandate and the availability of the funds. Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-general and to assignment by him or her. In this context, all staff are expected to move periodically to new functions in their careers in accordance with established rules and procedures.
The United Nations Secretariat is committed to achieving 50/50 gender balance in its staff. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply for this position. An impeccable record for integrity and professional ethical standards is essential.
External candidates (including OCHA temporary appointees and OCHA national field staff) who are selected for a position in field duty stations may be strategically placed on a fixed-term appointment limited to a specific position or to a specific country office in accordance to the paragraph 2.2 (b) of administrative instruction ST/AI/2013/1 on the administration of fixed-term appointment which provides that an FTA may be granted to individuals who are “(b) Selected but not reviewed by a Secretariat review body for appointments limited to specific entities”.
United Nations Considerations
According to article 101, paragraph 3, of the Charter of the United Nations, the paramount consideration in the employment of the staff is the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. Candidates will not be considered for employment with the United Nations if they have committed violations of international human rights law, violations of international humanitarian law, sexual exploitation, sexual abuse, or sexual harassment, or if there are reasonable grounds to believe that they have been involved in the commission of any of these acts. The term “sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. The term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions. The term “sexual harassment” means any unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature that might reasonably be expected or be perceived to cause offence or humiliation, when such conduct interferes with work, is made a condition of employment or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, and when the gravity of the conduct warrants the termination of the perpetrator’s working relationship. Candidates who have committed crimes other than minor traffic offences may not be considered for employment.
Due regard will be paid to the importance of recruiting the staff on as wide a geographical basis as possible. The United Nations places no restrictions on the eligibility of men and women to participate in any capacity and under conditions of equality in its principal and subsidiary organs. The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.
The paramount consideration in the appointment, transfer, or promotion of staff shall be the necessity of securing the highest standards of efficiency, competence, and integrity. By accepting an offer of appointment, United Nations staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and assignment by him or her to any activities or offices of the United Nations in accordance with staff regulation 1.2 (c). In this context, all internationally recruited staff members shall be required to move periodically to discharge new functions within or across duty stations under conditions established by the Secretary-General.
Applicants are urged to follow carefully all instructions available in the online recruitment platform, inspira. For more detailed guidance, applicants may refer to the Manual for the Applicant, which can be accessed by clicking on “Manuals” hyper-link on the upper right side of the inspira account-holder homepage.
The evaluation of applicants will be conducted on the basis of the information submitted in the application according to the evaluation criteria of the job opening and the applicable internal legislations of the United Nations including the Charter of the United Nations, resolutions of the General Assembly, the Staff Regulations and Rules, administrative issuances and guidelines. Applicants must provide complete and accurate information pertaining to their personal profile and qualifications according to the instructions provided in inspira to be considered for the current job opening. No amendment, addition, deletion, revision or modification shall be made to applications that have been submitted. Candidates under serious consideration for selection will be subject to reference checks to verify the information provided in the application.
Job openings advertised on the Careers Portal will be removed at 11:59 p.m. (New York time) on the deadline date.
THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CHARGE A FEE AT ANY STAGE OF THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS (APPLICATION, INTERVIEW MEETING, PROCESSING, OR TRAINING). THE UNITED NATIONS DOES NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH INFORMATION ON APPLICANTS’ BANK ACCOUNTS.