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Child Protection Specialist (Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) ) needed at UNICEF

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Child Protection Specialist (Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) ) needed at UNICEF, June 10 2022

Child Protection Specialist (Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) ), P-3, Temporary Appointment, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Post#00120478, Contract duration 364 days



Organization: UNICEF

Position: Child Protection Specialist (Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS)

Job no: 551732
Contract type: Temporary Appointment
Duty Station: Addis Ababa
Level: P-3
Location: Ethiopia

Deadline: 21 Jun 2022, 11:55 PM






Job description

UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up.

For every child, a fair Chance

UNICEF has been present in Ethiopia for 65 years and its history is closely tied to Ethiopia’s gradual transformation into a modern economy with strong aspirations for middle income status by 2025.

UNICEF works to support national efforts to ensure the realization of the rights of children and women through improved child survival, development and protection. Over the past six decades UNICEF has established strong relations with the government of Ethiopia, bi-laterals, donors, development partners and civil society.

How can you make a difference?

Under the supervision of Chief of Child Protection with close technical links to Chief of Health and Chief of Education, the incumbent strengthens Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) programming for UNICEF Ethiopia across child protection, education and health sectors including strengthening coordination, strengthening systems (including capacity development of the professionals of child protection, health and education sectors) for providing MHPSS services aligned with Global MHPSS Framework, and MHPSS interventions across sectors including community based MHPSS services in development and humanitarian context.

Specific Tasks

The incumbent will support the Country Office in the following main area of work and tasks in line with the MHPSS Acceleration Project and building on existing work on MHPSS in the country:

  1. Coordination and support for Child Protection, Education and Health system strengthening:
    • Build on existing entry points and established relationships across UNICEF sectors and Ministries of Education, Ministries of Health and Ethiopian Public Health Institute (EPHI), Ministry of Women, and Social Affairs for system strengthening
    • Support, through the development and implementation of MoUs, greater collaboration across Ministries for integrated MHPSS through sectors, notably the access to MHPSS within the formal and informal education system.
    • Share new resources, information and details about MHPSS global or regional webinars with colleagues in Health, Education and Child Protection sections
    • Support strengthened coordination, technical capacity of the MHPSS Technical Working Group (involving FMOH, EPHI, WHO, UNICEF, INGOs, NGOs, academics etc) and participate in the MHPSS Peer Support Group
    • Provide technical review and inputs related to MHPSS related documentation, Programme Documents etc. developed by the country office/partners.
    • Provide support for coordination between UNICEF CO, regional office and headquarters on MHPSS (including Acceleration Project meetings) and also periodic report writing;
    • Representing UNICEF in forums related to MHPSS
    • Coordination with WHO on common MHPSS issues and initiatives
  1. Technical support to Child Protection, Health and Education sectors to achieve the following components in the draft workplan:
    1. Child Protection
      1. Institutionalizing MHPSS (level to be determined, TBD) into the Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) curriculum for the Community Service Worker (CSW) and Social Workers including performance assessment. This includes discussion of how to incorporate training materials into pre- and/or in-service training and delivering ToTs.
      2. Technical review and support related to Community based MHPSS. This will include training, sharing of tools and monitoring missions to assess the quality of the interventions on the grounds. It may also include supporting a pilot of SH+
      3. Working with Child Protection colleagues to support the Rapid Deployment Model which includes a roster of MHPSS professionals who are assigned to work in emergency areas or other locations where there are critical MHPSS service gaps
      4. Working with the Harmful Practices team on prevention and response initiatives related to MHPSS
      5. Supporting the strengthening of MHPSS in emergencies to meet UNICEF’s core commitments for children, including quality assurance of MHPSS material used by partners (NGOs and Gov), supporting trainings, measuring/monitoring MHPSS indicators for reporting (Sit rep, donor reporting, etc.), and other support needed to achieve results in emergency contexts
    2. Health
      1. Technical support from the consultant to include MHPSS in Health Extension Programme (HEP) skills building, primarily within the integrated refresher training curriculum, based on the roles and responsibilities as outlined in the Optimizing Health Extension Program (OHEP) and Primary Health Care Roadmap.
      2. Deliver MHPSS training for health workers or health extension workers in additional areas (beyond Amhara and Afar) such as drought areas
      3. Provide support to a Technical Assistance officer seconded into the Ministry of Health to work on MHPSS within adolescent health (details to be confirmed)
      4. Provide support to expanding MHPSS training within the HIV sector (to be confirmed)
    3. Education
      1. Technical support to institutionalize MHPSS in teachers’ pre-service training. Support to the development/ review of MHPSS curricula materials for pre-service and in-service trainings
      2. Work with Education partners (Government and SCOs) to develop a strategy to further roll-out MHPSS training modules for teachers, school principals/ administrators, school counsellors, supervisors and students, following roll-out in emergency areas in Afar, Amhara and currently being rolled out in Oromia
      3. Support the ongoing Capacity building of Ministry of Education (MoE) focal points (FP) on MHPSS and support setting-up a pool of master trainers from the MoE and Regional Education Bureaus (REBs) (incl.  people identified from selected Colleges of Teacher Education (CTE) from regions) to support MHPSS system strengthening across its entities, build the capacity of the team and assure they develop a training plan to undertake cascade training at all levels in their respective regions  (I would delete this highlighted statement as it is included in the first bullet)
      4. Support the Ministry of Education and Regional Education Bureaus in nurturing MHPSS within its system at all levels, to be able to detect and address MHPSS concerns of personnel and students.
      5. Advocate for and provide technical backing to integrate MHPSS in annual and multi-year education plans
      6. Provide technical support in developing MHPSS level 1 and 2 monitoring tools and advocate for its integration into SIP monitoring standard.
      7. Support capacity building and quality assurance and of education partners (local and international NGOs with government) delivering MHPSS assistance in learning facilities in emergency-affected areas
    4. Advancing Cross-Sectoral MHPSS work:
      1. Ensure a cross-sectoral approach to case management. This includes review and inputs to the sector specific capacity building materials/sector and identify approaches to help ensure linkages between MHPSS and case management in health, education and child protection.
      2. Identify target groups and existing evidence from across the three sectors and counterparts to develop a strategy to roll out focused advocacy messages on MHPSS to: (a) raise awareness on mental health and psychosocial well-being across education, child protection and health sectors; (b) to strengthen self-care and childcare, and care-seeking behaviors of the target audience, and; (c) reduce stigma for people with mental health conditions.
  2. Strengthen knowledge management and resource mobilization:
    • Contribute to funding proposals, briefing notes and presentations to support MHPSS system strengthening in Ethiopia and across the above-mentioned sectors.
    • Populate and maintain a an MHPSS folder on UNICEF’s SharePoint
    • Highlight needs and solutions related to MHPSS in UNICEF communication products and on relevant regional Sitreps, case studies and human-interest stories, as needed.
    • Share relevant information on upcoming events
    • Developing and improving monitoring and evaluation systems which will help us to better measure the impact of our MHPSS interventions
  3. Provide technical assistance on reporting against progress, learnings, constraints and how they are being addressed as part of implementation of the MHPSS Acceleration Project (7% set aside funding).
  4. Provide support to design and implement MHPSS interventions in the context of humanitarian response
  5. Any other MHPSS strengthening activities that relate to advancing MHPSS across child protection, health, nutrition and education systems in the above-mentioned activities in consultation with the concerned supervisor and Chiefs and technical specialists.


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To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have:

  • Advanced University degree in social sciences; psychology; international development; public health or in similar relevant disciplines.
  • A minimum of Five year of relevant professional work experience in MHPSS programming, including in humanitarian contexts.
  • Solid knowledge and understanding of health, education and child protection including social work systems, humanitarian principles, child safeguarding measures and established international standards on mental health and psychosocial support for children including adolescents.
  • Strong coordination, organizational, relationship building and facilitation skills whether face to face or remotely with diverse stakeholders involving senior government, UN and NGO/INGO and academics.
  • Demonstrated experience with multi-sectoral programme design and knowledge management, including remote coordination.
  • Comfortable to work independently while coordinating closely with different teams.
  • Fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another official UN language or a local language is an asset.

For every Child, you demonstrate…

UNICEF’s values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, and Accountability (CRITA).

The UNICEF competencies required for this post are:

  • Demonstrates Self Awareness and Ethical Awareness (1)
  • Works Collaboratively with others (1)
  • Builds and Maintains Partnerships (1)
  • Innovates and Embraces Change (1)
  • Thinks and Acts Strategically (1)
  • Drive to achieve impactful results (1)
  • Manages ambiguity and complexity (1)

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.

We strongly encourage qualified women candidates to apply.

Advertised: E. Africa Standard Time
Deadline: E. Africa Standard Time


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