Vacancy Announcement: (NOC) Nutrition Specialist, EAPRO, UNICEF Vientiane, Lao PDR

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Application deadline 4 months ago: Tuesday 13 Sep 2022 at 10:00 UTC

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This is a NO-3 contract. This kind of contract is known as National Professional Officers. It is normally only for nationals. It's a staff contract. More about NO-3 contracts.

UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest but inspiring places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children.

Across 190 countries and territories to protect the rights of every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone. UNICEF has spent 70 years working to improve the lives of children and their families. Defending children's rights throughout their lives requires a global presence, aiming to produce results and understand their effects. UNICEF believes all children have a right to survive, thrive and fulfil their potential – to the benefit of a better world. And we never give up!

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UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply. Our workplace policies promote flexible work arrangements, to support all staff in maintaining a healthy life balance, both in and out of the office.

For every child, good nutrition - for the growth and development of individuals, communities and the nation.

Despite progress in recent years including a reduction in prevalence of stunted children under five years of age from 44 to 33 per cent, malnutrition remains a significant challenge in Lao PD. This is resulting in an enormous human and economic costs including impairment of normal brain development, increased risk of disease and death, reduced learning outcomes, overall reduction in lifetime earnings. This is stifling of economic growth including significant reduction in GDP of 481.66 million USD or 2.66%, every year.

The challenge of malnutrition is acknowledged and addressed by the Government through comprehensive policy and strategy frameworks including the National Nutrition Policy of 2008, the National Nutrition Strategy (2016-2025) and the National Plan of Action 2021-2025. The framework applies a multi-sectoral approach, taking in nutrition specific and nutrition sensitive actions in health, education and agriculture.

With effect from January 2022, the new Country Programme Document (CPD) 2022-2026, which was signed by the executive board in September 2021, has responded to the needs in country by elevating nutrition to a standalone section in the UNICEF Lao Country Office (LCO). The 2022-2026 CDP is aligned with the 2021-2025 NPAN as well as the Global UNICEF Nutrition strategy 2020-2030.

The new CPD reflects the new UNICEF conceptual framework with its focus on 3 main drivers of good nutrition across the life cycle: good diets, good services and good practices. It also strongly reflects the systems approach to address nutrition problems through engagement not only through the health system but also through the food system, the education system, the water and sanitation system and the social protection system.

How can you make a difference?

The Nutrition Specialist (NOC) will join the newly expanded Nutrition team to support primarily the development of newer programme areas to strengthen the ability of the food, education, water and sanitation and social protection systems deliver better nutrition for infants, children adolescents and women. Also engagement in key areas pertaining to enhanced nutrition Governance will be included including strengthening the multi-sectoral coordination, planning and budgeting for nutrition. A summary of key functions and accountabilities include:

  • Support to programme development and planning. This will include leading on the formulation, design and preparation of new areas of engagement including the establishment of specific goals, objectives, strategies, and implementation plans as well as preparation of funding proposals, and the provision of technical support throughout all stages of programming processes
  • Programme management, monitoring and delivery of results. This will include efforts to identify gaps, strengths and/or weaknesses in programme management, identify lessons learned and use knowledge gained for development planning and timely intervention to achieve goals as well as the preparation of regular and mandated programme/project reports for the management, donors and partners
  • Technical and operational support to programme implementation. This will include the provision of technical guidance to government and others on the best practices and approaches to improve nutrition outcomes across the food, education, water and sanitation and social protection systems including for the development, planning, and implementation of new or exciting initiatives.
  • Networking and partnership building. This will include the building and strengthening of close working partnerships with Government and key stakeholders across the mentioned systems and well as the ability to build the capacity of those stakeholders to deliver better results for nutrition, as well as the active representation of the UNICEF in key discussions pertaining to engagement of the food, education, water and sanitation and social protection systems and the appropriate multisectoral coordination structures to deliver better outcomes for children.

  • Innovation, knowledge management and capacity building. This will include the introduction innovative approaches and good practices to support the implementation and delivery of concrete and sustainable results for Nutrition across systems and keeping informed of the best/ cutting edge practices in the delivery of nutrition across the food, education, water and sanitation and social protection systems including multi-sectoral coordination.

To qualify as a champion and advocate for every child, you will have…

  • An advanced university degree (Master’s or higher) in one of the following fields is required: nutrition, public health, nutritional epidemiology, global/international health and nutrition, health/nutrition research, policy and/or management, health sciences, nutritional epidemiology, or another health-related science field. Applicants with a first university degree and two additional years of relevant experience can be accepted in lieu of an advanced degree.
  • A minimum of 5 years of relevant professional experience in one or more of the following areas is required: nutrition, public health, nutrition planning and management, or maternal, infant and child health/nutrition care. This new area of engagement for the UNICEF nutrition team requires the candidate to have strong capacity and credibility for engagement with “new” Ministries for nutrition programming, particularly the Ministry of Education and Sports (MOES) and the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF). The candidate is also expected to possess an excellent level of understanding and experience of how the Governance structures work in Laos across different sectors and how they can be influenced. The candidate should have a profile with strong expertise and credibility amongst the actors in food systems, thus allowing meaningful engagement with a range of new stakeholders including from private sector.
  • Fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another official UN language (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian or Spanish) or a local language is an asset.

For every Child, you demonstrate...

UNICEF's values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, and Accountability (CRITA) and core competencies in Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results

To view our competency framework, please visit here.

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.


Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.

Added 5 months ago - Updated 4 months ago - Source: