The United Nations is an international organization founded in 1945. It is currently made up of 193 Member States. The mission and work of the United Nations are guided by the purposes and principles contained in its founding Charter.
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Due to the powers vested in its Charter and its unique international character, the United Nations can take action on the issues confronting humanity in the 21st century, such as peace and security, climate change, sustainable development, human rights, disarmament, terrorism, humanitarian and health emergencies, gender equality, governance, food production, and more.
The UN also provides a forum for its members to express their views in the General Assembly, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council, and other bodies and committees. By enabling dialogue between its members, and by hosting negotiations, the Organization has become a mechanism for governments to find areas of agreement and solve problems together.Job Opening Number: 20-Humanitarian Affairs-OCHA-133815-J- (X)
Locations: Yaounde – Cameroon; Abuja – Nigeria; Kiev – Ukraine
Department / Office: Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Org. Setting and Reporting
This position is located in the Operations and Advocacy Division (OAD), Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), which is the part of the United Nations Secretariat responsible for bringing together humanitarian actors to ensure a coherent response to emergencies. OCHA also ensures there is a framework within which each actor can contribute to the overall response efforts.
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 temporary job opening is being advertised for the positions of Head of Office, Humanitarian Affairs which are located in three (3) different duty stations: Yaoundé, Cameroon; Abuja, Nigeria and Kiev, Ukraine. The Head of Office supports the UN Resident/Humanitarian Coordinator under the overall leadership of the Director of the Operations and Advocacy Division (OAD) of OCHA.
Operating within the limits of delegated authority, and under the overall leadership and direction of the Director of the Operations and Advocacy Division (OAD) of OCHA and supporting the UN Resident/Humanitarian Coordinator, the Head of Office will discharge and be responsible for the following functions:
Serve as senior policy advisor to the UN RC/HC, the UN Country Team (UNCT) and the humanitarian country team on humanitarian principles and initiatives;
Develop and maintain contacts with the international community in order to raise awareness and advocate for issues of humanitarian concerns;
Act to strengthen cooperation among the humanitarian community on policy issues of inter-agency concern and serve as a key interlocutor with relevant Government partners;
Advise, promote and provide guidance to the UN RC/HC, the UNCT and the humanitarian county team on humanitarian reform initiatives including cluster coordination, humanitarian financing, etc.
Humanitarian Programming / Coordination:
Provide strategic support to the UN RC/HC in the preparation, implementation and monitoring of the work plan of the humanitarian community (usually expressed thought the CHAP/CAP), soliciting and negotiating inputs with relevant authorities, UN agencies, NGOs, etc.;
Consult on a regular basis with the HC, Heads of UN Agencies and Programmes, NGOs heads of mission, the government and the donor community on all appropriate aspects of the implementation and delivery of humanitarian activities, to ensure that coordination structures at local, provincial and national levels operate in a coherent and cost-effective manner;
Support the planning, monitoring, and evaluation of humanitarian programs, facilitating incorporation of lessons learned, policy guidelines etc. into humanitarian response activities;
Promote best practices in humanitarian planning, response and evaluation;
Facilitate inter-agency resource mobilization efforts, including the provision of specialized international assistance to respond to ongoing as well as new and /or emerging emergencies;
Develop, reinforce and maintain effective coordination mechanisms with the humanitarian county team and other key humanitarian stakeholders;
Establish / manage information management systems to effectively map areas of humanitarian needs and response activities in support of coordination efforts;
Foster and reinforce linkages between field monitoring, information management and coordination efforts;
Facilitate implementation of relevant IASC and UN commitments across the collective humanitarian response and within the OCHA operation on PSEA, GBV and Accountability to Affected People;
Ensure timely and appropriate assistance to the UN RC/HC and (if applicable) the United Nations Disaster Management Teams (UNDMT) in response to disasters and emergencies;
Support inter-agency efforts to build in-country UN capacity to manage natural disaster response;
Provide substantive support and leadership to government institutions and local humanitarian entities to build national capacity for emergency and/or disaster management;
Promote dialogue, regional alliances, sharing of knowledge and resources, among national and, as appropriate, regional humanitarian actors in disaster risk reduction, disaster/emergency preparedness and response;
Promote and lead contingency planning processes in close cooperation with UNDMT and Regional Disaster Reduction Advisers (RDRA) as applicable;
Develop joint initiatives on disaster management with other UN and (if applicable) regional actors, including early warning mechanisms;
Under the overall guidance of the Director of the AOD and in partnership with other branches of OCHA, work to reinforce regional networks and mechanisms for swift, effective response to emerging humanitarian situations.
Office Management / OCHA Representation:
Serve as the OCHA Head of Office in designated duty station, providing oversight of all programmatic/administrative tasks necessary for the efficient functioning of the OCHA office and any sub-offices, and being accountable for the use of resources and for the results obtained;
Recruit staff, taking due account of gender and geographical balance.
Ensure regular and effective supervision of OCHA staff, particularly by leading, managing, developing, and training staff; foster teamwork and communication amongst staff; and strengthen linkages between the staff in field, regional and headquarters offices;
Promote OCHA's mandate, objectives and tools in the designated area through contacts with the government, diplomatic missions, UN entities, non-governmental organizations and the media;
Lead, formulate, supervise and carry out the work planning and budgeting process, support resource mobilization and ensure sound financial management;
Ensure the Office produces timely, high-quality outputs including comprehensive workplans, concise and factual situation reports, analytical papers, comprehensive and fact-based information products, etc.; ensures that all outputs produced by the Sections under his/her supervision meet required standards before completion to ensure they comply with the relevant mandates;
Coordinate the work carried out by different work units under the Office and by other agencies and bodies of the United Nations system and the humanitarian community, NGOs, the government and the donor community on all appropriate aspects of the implementation and delivery of humanitarian activities, to ensure that that coordination structures at local, provincial and national levels operate in a coherent and cost-effective manner;
Undertake or oversee the programmatic/administrative tasks necessary for the functioning of the Office, including preparation of budgets, reporting on budget/programme performance,
evaluation of staff performance (PAS), interviews of candidates for job openings, evaluation of candidates and preparation of inputs for results-based budgeting.
Ensure all staff have completed all mandatory trainings and certificates
Perform other duties as requested by the UN RC/HC and / or Director of OAD.
Advanced university degree (Master's degree or equivalent) in Business or Public Administration, Finance, Accounting, Law, Social Sciences, International Affairs, Political Science or related area.
A first-level university degree in combination with an additional two (2) years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.
A minimum of fifteen (15) years of progressively responsible experience in disaster relief coordination, humanitarian assistance, human resources management, administration, logistics, financial management, budget or related field is required.
Field experience in emergency situations (complex emergencies or natural disasters) is required.
Experience in either coordinating relief/humanitarian response, or participating in coordination, is desirable.
Experience within the UN common system or other comparable international organization is desirable.
Previous humanitarian affairs work experience is desirable.
A minimum of four (4) years of relevant experience at the international level, including experience at the senior management level (e.g. P-5 and above) is desirable.
English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat.
For the positions advertised, fluency in English and French is required for Cameroon; fluency in English is required for Nigeria; and for Ukraine, fluency in English is required and fluency Russian is desirable. Knowledge of another UN official language is desirable.
Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.
Expert knowledge of complex, multifaceted humanitarian affairs issues with wide exposure to humanitarian and emergency relief operations;
Ability to advise the UN RC/HC as well as the OCHA's senior management team on tactical approaches and techniques to address complex and sensitive humanitarian issues;
Conceptual and strategic analytical capacity to thoroughly analyse and evaluate critical matters pertaining to a broad spectrum of humanitarian and emergency relief issues;
Ability to effectively handle major policy and project development and its implementation;
Ability to work under pressure including in insecure environments, while maintaining productivity and effectiveness;
Excellent understanding of institutional mandates, policies and guidelines related to humanitarian affairs and of the institutions of the UN system, in particular, the mandate of OCHA as well as its core policies and guiding humanitarian principles;
Knowledge of OCHA institutional mandate, its policies, and organizational procedures as well as an understanding of the core UN policies and guiding principles pertaining to international humanitarian affairs;
Ability to examine, edit, and provide analytical inputs and intellectual guidance for the work of others; readiness to serve in hardship environment.
Planning & 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.
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.
Serves as a role model that other people want to follow: empowers others to translate vision into results; is proactive in developing strategies to accomplish objectives;
Establishes and maintains relationships with a broad range of people to understand needs and gain support; anticipates and resolves conflicts by pursuing mutually agreeable solutions; drives for change and improvements;
Does not accept the status quo; shows the courage to take unpopular stands.
Provides leadership and takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work;
demonstrates knowledge of strategies and commitment to the goal of gender balance in staffing.
Judgement / Decision-Making:
Identifies the key issues in a complex situation, and comes to the heart of the problem quickly; gathers relevant information before making a decision;
Considers positive and negative impacts of decisions prior to making them; takes decisions with an eye to the impact on others and on the Organization;
Proposes a course of action or makes a recommendation based on all available information; checks assumptions against facts;
Determines the actions proposed will satisfy the expressed and underlying needs for the decision; makes tough decisions when necessary.
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.
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.