Child Protection Specialist, Nouakchott, Mauritania

Organization: Unicef

Country: Mauritania

City: Nouakchott, Mauritania

Office: UNICEF in Nouakchott, Mauritania

Grade: P-3

Closing date: Friday, 13 November 2020

Child Protection Specialist, P3, Temporary-Appointment, Nouakchott/Mauritania

Job no: 535957

Position type: Temporary Appointment

Location: Mauritania Division/Equivalent: Dakar (WCAR), Senegal

School/Unit: Mauritania

Department/Office: Nouakchott, Mauritania

Categories: Child Protection, P-3

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, [insert tagline]

The Government of Mauritania ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) in 1991 and other international legal instruments pertaining to child protection. The country has further enhanced its national legal framework with the promulgation of a new General Code for the Protection of Children in 2018 and revised the National Child Protection Strategy in 2019 validated by the Government in November 2019, which provides a clear framework for actors to shape a protective environment for children in all contexts, including in times of emergencies.

The current situation in Mauritania is characterized by high levels of sexual, physical and emotional violence against children and a high prevalence of harmful practices, such as child marriages and female genital mutilations (FGM). A combination of economic, cultural, religious and social factors - including gender roles, social obligations and expectations - perpetuate the practice of violence in Mauritania, which is often associated with low level of education and poverty. Mauritania also continues to face the consequences of the armed conflict in Mali, which has affected tens of thousands of people in both countries since 2012. With more than 60,445 Malian refugees (59% of which are children aged 0-17 years) currently living in M’Berra camp in the Hodh Chargui (HEC) region and others living in host communities. Despite the signing of peace accords in 2015, voluntary repatriation of refugees fluctuates and remains limited while Mauritania continues to receive new waves of arrivals in M’Berra, with 3,228 of new arrivals (UNHCR, April 2020) recorded since the beginning of 2020 due to ongoing instability in northern Mali. The presence of refugees in one of the poorest areas of Mauritania places additional pressure on already-strained resources in host communities.

As the fourth most vulnerable country to climate change in the world, Mauritania faces long-term challenges such as chronic drought and flooding, which has worsened poverty and food insecurity and induced a rapid and unplanned urban drift. Due to recurrent cycles of food insecurity, many families have migrated from rural communities to urban areas, many in the suburbs of Nouakchott where they live in very poor conditions with limited access to basic social services. Throughout the country, and in a context highly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, the poor economic and physical conditions contribute to high-risk coping strategies and increased vulnerability to neglect, abuse, discrimination and violence including SGBV. Poor governance and limited access to basic social services at decentralized levels remain major obstacles in monitoring and addressing protection concerns. This limited and inadequate capacities facilitate a culture of impunity for child rights violations and communities often resort to traditional mechanisms of dispute resolution, which are not always in the best interests of children and women.

How can you make a difference?

Under the direct supervision of UNICEF’s Chief Child Protection, the incumbent will be based in Nouakchott and will provide technical assistance in support of the entire UNICEF Child Protection Programme, particularly interventions carried out in the zone of convergence (Assaba, Guidimakha and Hodh Chargui).

This assignment will cover the following objectives:

Provide technical assistance for the development and implementation of programmes in all regions targeted by the Child Protection programme.

Oversee and support the implementation and documentation of programs, including those related to the humanitarian situation.

Support institutional and non-governmental partners in the development of measures and activities contributing to the reinforcement of the child protection sector and to set-up preventive response and provide tailored assistance to children.

Contribute to the development and implementation of comprehensive trainings to partners on a variety of child protections issues, including those contributing to the attainment of the Sustainable Development Goals and the key results for children.

Tags child marriage child protection child rights climate change covid development planning dispute resolution female genital mutilation food insecurity gender roles human rights international law malian refugees refugees rural communities social development social services sustainable development sustainable development goals trainings urban areas voluntary repatriation

Support the implementation of an effective monitoring, verification and reporting mechanism on grave violations committed against children in the context of the Malian armed conflict, in coordination with UNICEF Mali and UNHCR Mauritania.

The incumbent will be based in UNICEF Child Protection section in Nouakchott, with frequent travel in the regions, including in HEC for a minimum of three weeks every two-months. Thus, the incumbent is expected to be flexible and able to meet tenacious challenges, work closely with child protection officer(s), specialist(s), volunteer(s) and expert(s), other focal points of United Nations protection agencies, non-governmental organizations and national authorities.

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

An Advanced University degree in international development, human rights, psychology, sociology, international law and other social science field is required.

*A first University Degree in a relevant field combined with 2 additional years of professional experience may be accepted in lieu of an Advanced University Degree.

A minimum of seven years of professional experience in social development planning and management in child protection at the international level, some of which preferably served in a developing country is required.

Relevant experience in child protection and related areas, program/project development and management in a UN system agency or organization is required.

Developing country work experience and/or familiarity with emergency is considered an asset.

Fluency in French and English is required. Knowledge of Arabic 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.

The functional competencies required for this post are...

[insert functional competencies]

Advertised: Nov 04 2020 Greenwich Standard Time Application close: Nov 13 2020 Greenwich Standard Time