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Title : Zika Care and Support Specialist
Contract Type : Temporary Appointment
Duration : 364 days
Duty Station : LACRO, Panama City, Panama
Supervisor : T echnical supervision by Regional ECD Specialist and operational guidance by Health Emergencies and Zika Specialist in close coordination with Regional Health Advisor
The last few years presented new and continuing challenges in global public health. The recent outbreaks of Zika, cholera, yellow fever and others are reminders of the importance of surveillance, preparedness, and a well-
coordinated response to public health emergencies in the world, including to avoid losing important gains in the health of children and women acquired along several decades.
Latin American and the Caribbean (LAC) is the most ZIKV- affected region in the world. The latest PAHO report (5th of October 2017), shows a total of 802,782 suspected and confirmed ZIKV cases reported by 48 countries and territories in the region, and 3,689 cases of Congenital Zika Virus Syndrome (CZS) have been reported in 26 countries and territories.
While many countries have reported a decrease in new cases and the region is going through the transition from epidemic to endemic, the number of infections and the number of new-
borns with CZS continues to rise, with pregnant women and women of childbearing age remaining highest-risk groups. Regarding the humanitarian impact of the epidemic specifically on children and their families, the consequences include a wide range of negative outcomes at the psychological, social and economic level.
Pregnant women with ZIKV face a high level of uncertainty, stress and fear, as it is not yet clear what risk factors increase the likelihood of having a baby with CZS.
Once a baby is born with CZS, families potentially face other problems such as rejection from parents, relatives and neighbours, mostly related to stigma and in some cases mothers and their child affected are abandoned.
In terms of economic impacts, mothers usually become full time caregivers, leaving their jobs in most cases and negatively impacting the financial status of the family.
UNICEF in Latin America and the Caribbean region is implementing the first phase of the regional ZIKV response plan from 2016 to the end of 2017, with interventions in several countries in the region.
mitigation of its impact on young children and their families, and promotion of the child s development and inclusion. UNICEF is working to support national efforts, and in close collaboration with PAHO / WHO, international partners, and other relevant stakeholders, building on its comparative advantage and mandate, to :
1. Prevent transmission of ZIKV through :
2. Support the provision of non-clinical child care and family support to those affected by ZIKV, including a comprehensive, multi-
sectoral and multi-level approach to address the long-term impacts of the conditions of the Congenital Zika Syndrome, other congenital malformations and / or developmental disabilities.
The second phase of the UNICEF Zika response will be from January 2018 to September 2019 and it provides important and timely opportunities for the continuation and expansion of actions in the LAC Region and for strengthening first phase integrated child care and family support response strategies, promoting country level capacities and coordination, and expanding the utilization of initial pilot interventions in Care & Support to guarantee family-
based interventions for the development and inclusion of those young children affected by the Congenital ZIKV and other congenital disorders.
The incumbent will provide technical advice to ensure a more systematic link between the Child Care and Family Support actions of the Zika Response at both country and regional levels, with the LAC regional UNICEF Strategic programme priorities in the fields of ECD, Health, and Social Protection, including those related to child disability and family support components.
Through this effort, special emphasis will be required to mainstream Zika Care & Support actions in the priority 8 countries to guarantee a sustainable intervention package for those children and families affected by Zika congenital syndrome, while expanding more integrated, life-
course ECD approaches to reach other young children with developmental disabilities and their families. In addition, as young children affected by Zika and other congenital disorders grow older, actions will be developed to fulfill their continual requirements As part of UNICEF ECD programming, attention should be given to designing and implementing strategies for preparing young children with developmental disabilities, their families and ECD services for supporting more inclusive, transitioning processes for these young children across the early stages of the life-
course, aimed at guaranteeing that all children are guaranteed the right to : survive, thrive, develop to their potential, and learn, while being protected against violence and abuse.
Under the technical supervision of the Regional ECD Specialist and the operational guidance of the Health Emergencies and Zika Specialist in collaboration with the Regional Health Advisor, the Zika Care and Support Specialist will be responsible for supporting the development and implementation of the ZIKV response for all components pertaining to Care and Support in countries, with the vision to mainstream these initiatives in line with UNICEF Regional Programme priorities and as part of the Zika country annual work plans with emphasis in 8 priority countries 1 .
The Zika Care and Support Specialist shall provide the technical support to the strategic implementation and monitoring of the care and support component of UNICEF ZIKV regional response plan, in support of national plans.
This includes providing multi-country technical support and capacity building assistance for care and support (C&S) actions, with a priority in 8 countries.
The Zika Care and Support Specialist will provide technical support to UNICEF Country Offices in the multiple components of non-
clinical child care and family support for those affected by the Zika Virus. Assistance will focus on responding to specific requests of UNICEF COs, in aspects related to the implementation and evaluation of pilot experiences for expanded utilization, increasing internal (UNICEF) and external (partner and counterparts) capacity, additional material preparation, while promoting further cooperation between countries.
Under the operational guidance of the Health Emergencies and Zika Specialist and the technical supervision of the Regional ECD Specialist, the incumbent will contribute to the technical coordination efforts with partners at regional level and in further development of related policies, construction of inter-
sectoral approaches and capacity-building strategies, along with assisting in the monitoring of the implementation of the care and support component of UNICEF ZIKV regional response plan.
For the 2nd phase of the Zika Response strategy, emphasis will be placed on mainstreaming Child Care and Family Support components of the Zika Response as part of UNICEF regional and CO ECD, Health and Disability programming in the 8 priority countries.
1 Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, Jamaica, Peru and Paraguay
MAIN RESPONSIBILITIES AND TASKS
clinical child care and family support components.
Based Rehabilitation components and validation of WHO Zika Toolkit utilization.
Recommend timely action to ensure the achievement of results as planned and time and efficient use of allocated resources.
Integrate / disseminate lessons learned in planning and improvements of actions at regional and country level to ensure a results-
based programmatic approach.
up and maintain communications with technical teams working on C&S in COs, in aspects related to child care and family support component of the response.
building, material preparation, on Zika related child care and family support aspects.
clinical child care and family support for ZIKV related interventions, including children affected by other congenital conditions and developmental disabilities.
To qualify as a champion for every child you will have
MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS AND COMPETENCIES
Advanced university degree in social sciences, public health, and / or other related fields (Education, ECD, Disabilities).
Work Experience :
Fluency in English and Spanish is required. Fluency in Portuguese and / or French is an asset.
Technical Knowledge :
Other skills and Attributes :
For every Child, you demonstrate
UNICEF’s core values of Commitment, Diversity and Integrity and core competencies in Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results.
View our competency framework at
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.
Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.
Opening Date Thu Feb 01 2018 18 : 00 : 00 GMT-0500 (EST) SA Pacific Standard Time
Closing Date Sat May 26 2018 00 : 55 : 00 GMT-0400 (EDT)