UNICEF-Nutrition Specialist-P4-Dakar, Senegal

Location: Dakar, Senegal, Senegal
Date Posted: 14-06-2018


Job Title: Nutrition Specialist- CMAM (RRT)            
Job Level: P 4
Supervisor Title/ Level: Regional Nutrition Advisor, WCARO       
Duration:  6 Months

Background and purpose

In 2018, the nutritional situation of children 6-59 months in the Sahel countries remains worrying and may worsen further during the lean season due to the poor rainfall recorded during the 2017 crop year as well as population displacements caused by a context of insecurity and conflict in the area.  It is estimated that by 2018, more than 6. 7 million children aged 6-59 months in Sahel will suffer from acute malnutrition, of which more than 3.5 million will present the severe form of the disease; this number could increase up to 4.05 million using the worst-case scenario.

Based on the most recent nutritional survey results (SMART Method), acute malnutrition rates are considered as "serious" (public health problem) in 2018 in Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Chad, where the national prevalence of global acute malnutrition (GAM) is between 10% and 14%. However, these GAM prevalence’s at the national level hide disparities in the first and second level administrative   areas (regions and districts), where the critical emergency threshold of 15% is often exceeded and therefore requires the establishment of effective and immediate emergency responses.

Despite the increase in focus on nutrition over the last few years, severe acute malnutrition (SAM) remains an under prioritized area and treatment coverage is still low, leaving many children in need untreated.

With a vision of simplifying and unifying the treatment of severe and moderate acute malnutrition to improve coverage, cost effectiveness, quality and continuum of care, UNICEF together with other NWL members (ACF, ECHO, DFID, WFP) and NGO partners (Altima, IRC) decided to implement pilot program using "simplified protocol" of CMAM for the response to 2018 Sahel crisis.  Pilot areas were defined with two main objectives: (I) piloting and documenting to inform
and influence the global and regional agenda; (ii) no regret approach in areas with operational solution needs.

In   this exercise, UNICEF   will   provide technical   and operational support for piloting the implementation of the simplified protocol as part of the Sahel 2018 response though an identified Nutrition Specialist-CMAM. UNICEF   will focus on coordinating the Initiative by providing qualified human resource based a regional level to play   a role of technical focal point on the implementation of the pilots, monitor activities, facilitate information shrink, collect qualitative and quantitative data on the outcome of the approach and lead discussion and negotiation with country teams for: (I) agreement between country offices and authorities; (ii) orientation of accompanying packages and capacity   building of national health staff. 

The Nutrition Specialist-CMAM will support these efforts and report to the Regional Nutrition Advisor in the UNICEF West and Central Africa Regional Office.

UNICEF WCAR will cover all cost related to Internal travel according to the procedure that is in place for UNICEF staff and the office will provide equipment (mobiles, laptops etc.) and office space to the incumbent. Other cost related to this position (Salary, DSA, Benefits for the standby deployed, all forms of insurance (travel, medical, disability, death) will be covered by the Standby partner.

Key functions, accountabilities and related duties/tasks

Under the overall supervision of the Regional Nutrition Advisor, the Nutrition Specialist -CMAM based at Region Office will be responsible for technical support with monitoring and evaluation roles in areas where simplified protocol will be tested, ensure proper implementation and consistence of protocols and accelerate action for children with acute malnutrition in WCAR.

The incumbent will be responsible for advocacy, building partnership and support the implementation of the simplified protocol in the priority areas, ensure the focal point role between regional I global actors and the field. This includes the development of a regional monitoring and evaluation plan for quality program, development of tools for qualitative and quantitative data collection, support in advocacy and strategy to implement CMAM simplified protocol, documenting and sharing lessons learned in the Sahel.

Summary of key functions/accountabilities:
1.Technical support with advocacy and networking
2.Global, Regional and Country focal point/ advisory support.
3.Program development, planning and monitoring
4.Innovation, knowledge management and capacity building

1.   Technical support; advocacy and networking

•    Provide technical support for the development of an adapted simplified protocol for each implementation site and coordinate its implementation of to contribute to the Sahel nutrition response.
•    Link with relevant technical experts to ensure compliance and relevance of the technical and implementation protocols
•    Conduct field visits to the selected countries for technical exchange and respond to possible technical issues with implementing partners
•    Build and   strengthen   partnership with   relevant   regional   and   national   partner's governments to create awareness and promote continuum of care and the use of CMAM simplified protocol.
•    Participate and/or represent UNICEF in appropriate regional and global fora to ensure that organizational positions, interests and priorities are considered in   development planning and agenda setting 

2.    Global, Regional   and Country focal point advisory support for the implementation ofCMAM simplified protocol

•    Advise global, key regional health sector/nutrition partners, national government officials, development partners and other partners on policies, strategies, approaches and best practices to accelerate the continuum of care of children with acute malnutrition using simplified protocol.
•    Contribute to the development of regional strategies and approaches to influence regional institutions/ development partners and countries to ensure policy coherence, accelerated and sustainable action for children with acute malnutrition in West and Central Africa.
•    Participate in key regional events and strategic discussions to influence policy discussions and agenda setting on prevention and treatment of acute malnutrition programmes using simplified protocols

3.   Program development, planning and monitoring

•    Provide technical superabundance to the preparation/design and conduct programmatic analysis at the regional level and in selected countries to ensure quality implementation of the simplified protocol.
•    Support the formulation, design and preparation of work plans and monitoring procedures for accelerating the implementation of the simplified protocol pilots, ensuring alignment with UNICEF Strategic Plan and NWL coalition strategic plans.
•    Support the quality assurance and monitoring of the implementation by exploring developing adequate tools and standard procedures for data collection
•    Provide regular updates and produce relevant information to support the advocacy for government ownership of the approach.
•    Conduct regular field visits to the selected countries for monitoring of activities, capacity building of implementing partners and exchange of experiences

4.   Innovation, knowledge management and capacity building

•    Support the implementation of the simplified protocol in monitoring developments in the pilot areas, collecting and centralizing data and support the analysis for the dissemination of best practices within regional networks, and contribution to country protocol review; policy development and global/regional reports.
•    Disseminate key lessons, findings and information associated with the implementation of CMAM simplified protocol, its comparative advantages (including cost) and performances, in the region through events, workshops, meetings and other forms of knowledge exchange among countries and other partners in the region.
•    Keep abreast, research, benchmark, promote critical thinking and implement best and cutting edge innovative practices in advocacy, policy influencing in nutrition.
•       Institutionalize and share best practices and knowledge learned.
•    Organize, plan and/or implement capacity building initiatives to enhance the competencies of stakeholders to effectively advocate, position, promote continuum of care hence sustainable results with roll out of the use of simplified protocol in WCAR
•      Produce and disseminate synthesis of lesson learn research results

Impact of Results

The Nutrition Specialist- CMAM will contribute to 2018 Sahel nutrition response and will influence the revision of CMAM protocol considering the use of simplified protocol as well as strengthening the quality of the continuum of care in the piloting areas.  However, it is important to note that the outcome of the results will be dependent on the deployment duration .

The incumbent roles will lead to the following results

•    Political profile of continuum of care for acute malnutrition   is raised and care for severe acute malnutrition   becomes a political, public health and child development   agenda in WCAR countries
•    Revision of CMAM protocols focusing on the management   of acute malnutrition with simplified protocol when possible and desirable.
•    A regional coalition of influential partners/actors   is established   and actively supports the continuum of care agenda.
•    Achievements of progress made in scaling up AM treatment with simplified protocol is monitored and documented.

Recruitment Qualifications

Education: Advanced university degree in Nutrition, Public Health, Health Systems, Social Sciences, International Relations, Public Policy, Development Economics, Public Relations, or other relevant disciplines.
- Work Experience: A minimum of 8 years of progressively responsible professional experience in Nutrition with strong understanding of and experience in nutrition monitoring and evaluation, protocols and nutrition policies.
- Experience in supporting high profile international or regional movements and campaign building and delivery in international health/nutrition and development.
- Entrepreneurial, results-driven personality, with strong coordination and influencing skills and a track record in successfully managing advocacy and influencing campaigns for programs at the country level
- Demonstrated experience and understanding of management of nutrition interventions in emergency
- Experience with West and Central Africa Regional and national political, development, public health, decentralized governance contexts, nutrition platforms and institutions are desirable.
- Experience in international health or nutrition policy and programme development is an asset.

Language Requirements: 
- Fluency in French (verbal and written);
- Good written and spoken skills and knowledge of another UN language an asset
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