Protection Statelessness Consultant, Lusaka At UN High Commissioner for Refugees


UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, is offering a Consultancy vacancy within the Protection Unit in our Representation Office in Lusaka.

The Consultancy will be within UNHCR Representation Office in Lusaka, Zambia. This exciting Consultancy vacancy is a unique opportunity to gain experience in not-for-profit branding as well as experience working within the UN system.

UNHCR is a global organization dedicated to saving lives, protecting rights and building a better future for refugees, forcibly displaced communities and stateless people. Every year, millions of men, women and children are forced to flee their homes to escape conflict and persecution. We are in over 125 countries, using our expertise to protect and care for millions.

  • Title: Protection Statelessness Consultant

  • Duty Station: Lusaka, Zambia
  • Duration: 4 months
  • Contract Type: Individual Consultancy Contract
  • Closing date: 22 August 2021
  • Start date: 1 September 2021

Organizational context

Zambia is a party to the 1954 Convention but has not domesticated its provisions in national law. Zambia is not party to the 1961 Convention. There are no provisions for maintaining statistical information regarding the number of stateless and potentially stateless persons in the country. However, the Government has made significant progress in addressing statelessness through numerous actions. In 2015, the Government, with the support of UNHCR commissioned a study on statelessness and nationality issues in Zambia and a final report was validated and published in 2019. In October 2019, in line with the #IBelong campaign, the Government established a national taskforce on the eradication of statelessness. The national task force has since drafted an action plan which awaits adoption by Parliament. During the High-level Segment on Statelessness in Geneva in 2019, Zambia made five pledges; demonstrating the country’s willingness and commitment to deal with statelessness. Zambia committed to (1) to ensure, by 2020 the accession to the 1961 Convention, (2) to complete, by 2021, the issuance of the residence permits to all former refugees who have opted to locally integrate in Zambia, and to facilitate their naturalization, (3) to facilitate, by 2023, naturalization procedures for stateless persons and their children to acquire nationality, (4) to simplify and improve by 2023, access to birth registration, to ensure and certification, for born in Zambia, including the late birth registration, to ensure universal birth registration for all children, including refugees and asylum seekers born on the territory and, (5) to support the adoption of the draft Regional Action Plan to end statelessness in the Southern African Region. Among the five pledges, UNHCR requests additional financial support from PRM for the below pledge: “The Government of Zambia hereby commits: simplify and improve, by 2023, access to birth registration and certification, for persons born in Zambia, including late birth registration, to ensure universal birth registration for all children, including refugees and asylum seekers born on the territory.”

In accordance with its pledge, UNHCR proposes to:

  • Build the capacity of district and provincial registration offices in Eastern Province in the areas of birth registration, certification, and acquisition of nationality documents.
  • Sensitize traditional leaders, women, and men in Eastern Province on the importance of birth registration, certification, and acquisition of nationality documents.
  • Sensitize communities in Eastern Province are sensitized on the importance of birth registration, certification, and acquisition of nationality documents.
  • Provide identity and national documents to children and adults in Eastern Province

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The position

The Protection Consultant – Statelessness will be directly supervised by the SGBV/Protection Officer maintaining close interaction with the Regional Bureau of Southern Africa, RBSA as well as other staff members.

UNHCR Manual, programme and protection objectives, Operation Plans, UN and UNHCR financial/budgetary rules and regulations will guide the work of the incumbent. The incumbent shall have daily contacts with staff of the Country and Regional Offices. He/she will also have close liaison with Office of the Commissioner for Refugees and other Government of Zambia departments, civil society, NGO and private sector, as well as diplomatic community and UN Agencies.

Duties and Responsibilities

The duties and responsibilities envisaged under the function/ this consultancy include but are not limited to:

  • Assist in the mainstreaming of statelessness into all relevant regional and/or country plans and strategies.
  • In liaison with Protection Officer, provide technical advice to the partners on statelessness related policy developments, including in relation to legislative reform initiatives.
  • Actively monitor national legal and policy developments relevant to statelessness in the country, and keeping management informed.
  • Support mapping of statelessness situations; identify information gaps and provide technical guidance to help address them, including research and profiling activities.
  • Promote the visibility of the #I Belong Campaign and the UNHCR and UNICEF Coalition on Every Child’s right to a nationality.
  • Support in organizing discussion events/consultations around statelessness issues.
  • In coordination and consultation with Protection Officer provide inputs for Partner Partnership Agreements for implementation of activities.
  • Support capacity-building initiatives for government counterparts, civil society partners with the aim of enhancing protection and solutions for stateless persons.
  • Update communications strategy and ensure its implementation, including organization and implementation of campaigns, events and other initiatives in support of UNHCR’s strategic objectives, including its need for leading share of voice on refugee and statelessness related matters, and ensure coverage in global and domestic media.
  • Identify thematic priorities and target audiences to meet UNHCR’s global communications objectives.
  • Contribute to the development of news-driven and authoritative content to lead the narrative on forced displacement and show UNHCR’s impact (e.g. interviews, press releases, flagship reports, speeches), create emotive storytelling to generate empathy (e.g. stories, multimedia content) and mobilize action by signposting concrete steps people can take to help refugees (e.g. action-driven campaigns, fundraising).
  • Draft media releases, statements, and briefing notes.
  • Engage with journalists and public audiences via social media channels.
  • Undertake field trips with media and other official visitors in support of UNHCR and its work.
  • Ensure alignment with UNHCR’s global branding and messaging.
  • Perform any other related duty as required by the UNHCR Representation office in Lusaka, Zambia.

Essential minimum qualifications and professional experience required.

  • Areas of required and /or preferred education – Law, International Relations, Political Science, Public Information, or related field.
  • 4 years relevant experience with Undergraduate degree (BA/BS); or 3 years relevant experience with Graduate degree (MA); or 2 years with Doctorate degree.
  • International/field experience – particularly with NGOs and/or UN Agencies working with refugees, stateless people and media;
  • Strong social media experience;
  • Experience working on advocacy campaigns;
  • Knowledge of the international legal framework-governing refugees, asylum seekers and stateless population;
  • Strong knowledge of UNHCR’s policies and programs is desirable;
  • Ability to carry on analysis of legislation;
  • Excellent writing skills;
  • Fluency in English and other UN languages is essential while knowledge of Swahili/ French language is desirable;
  • Computer skills, key/most known programs;
  • Knowledge of and/or preparedness to become familiar with and abide by UNHCR’s principles, code of conduct, PSEA principles and humanitarian goals;
  • Awareness of gender issues;
  • Awareness of the importance of preventing fraud;
  • Respect for diversity. Ability to work in a multicultural environment. Adherence to the principles of transparency, confidentiality, and fair treatment of refugees;
  • Strong interpersonal skills and ability to work effectively in teams


The successful candidate will be based in Lusaka, Zambia.


The consultancy will initially last approximately four (4) months; starting from 1 September 2021. It is a part time role for 3 days in the week with working hours starting from 8.00 am to 5pm. The mission travel will be undertaken to the following refugee camps, Mayukwayukwa, Meheba & Mantanpala. The periods of travel are estimated at 5 days per camp.

How to apply

To learn more and apply, please visit

The UNHCR workforce consists of many diverse nationalities, cultures, languages and opinions. UNHCR seeks to sustain and strengthen this diversity to ensure equal opportunities as well as an inclusive working environment for its entire workforce. Applications are encouraged from all qualified candidates without distinction on grounds of race, colour, sex, national origin, age, religion, disability, sexual orientation and gender identity.

Please note that UNHCR does not charge a fee at any stage of its recruitment process (application, interview, meeting, travelling, processing, training or any other fees).

Closing date for the receipt of applications: 22 August 2021