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UN Humanitarian Affairs Officer Job in Kenya

Humanitarian Affairs Officer, P3

Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is located in the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs for Eastern Africa (OCHA EA). The Humanitarian Affairs Officer reports to the Head of Communications Unit.


Within delegated authority, the Humanitarian Affairs Officer will be responsible for the following duties:
  • Monitors, analyzes and reports on humanitarian developments, disaster relief/management or emergency situations in assigned country/area.
  • Organizes and prepares studies on humanitarian, emergency relief and related issues; organizes follow-up work, including interagency technical review meetings to support policy development work and decision-making on important issues.
  • Produces or oversees production of communications products (e.g. situation reports, studies, background papers, policy guidelines, parliamentary documents, briefings, case studies, presentations, correspondence, talking points, press kits, press releases, feature articles, speeches, booklets, brochures, backgrounders, etc.). Partners with other humanitarian agencies to plan and evaluate humanitarian and emergency assistance programmes and help ensure that latest findings, lessons learned, policy guidelines, etc. are incorporated into these activities, including gender-related considerations.
  • Manages/assists in the production of appeals for international assistance; ensures the proper use and spending of donor contributions channeled through OCHA.
  • Establishes and maintains contacts with government officials, other UN agencies, non-governmental organizations, diplomatic missions, media, etc.
  • Undertakes and provides support to technical assistance and other field missions.
  • Undertakes activities to promote media coverage (e.g. press conferences, interviews, press seminars and other special activities) of priority issues and/or major events, to include development of a media strategy and action plan, initiating pro-active media outreach efforts, proposing and arranging press conferences/media coverage, disseminating materials and consulting with press on approach/story angle and other information requests, undertaking appropriate follow-up action and analyzing and reporting on the impact of coverage. Contributes content to and maintains appropriate and timely web and social media outreach.
  • Serves as the primary focal point on specific topics or policy-related issues; keeps abreast of latest developments, liaises with other humanitarian organizations, donors, etc., ensures appropriate monitoring and reporting mechanisms; provides information and advice on a range of related issues.
  • Reviews and provides advice on policy issues related to safeguarding humanitarian principles and ensuring the effective delivery of humanitarian assistance.
  • Organizes and participates in work groups, meetings, conferences, consultations with other agencies and partners on humanitarian and emergency relief-related matters.
  • Provides guidance to, and may supervise, new/junior staff.
  • Performs other duties as required.

• Professionalism
  • Knowledge of a range of humanitarian assistance, emergency relief and related human rights issues, including approaches and techniques to address difficult problems. 
  • Analytical capacity and in particular the ability to analyze and articulate the humanitarian dimension of issues which require a coordinated UN response. 
  • Ability to identify issues and judgment in applying technical expertise to resolve a wide range of problems. 
  • Ability to conduct research, including ability to evaluate and integrate information from a variety of sources and assess impact on the humanitarian rights situation in assigned country/area. 
  • Ability to work under extreme pressure, on occasion in a highly stressful environment (e.g. civil strife, natural disasters and human misery); 
  • ability to provide guidance to new/junior staff. 
  • Shows pride in work and in achievements; 
  • demonstrates professional competence and mastery of subject matter; is conscientious and efficient in meeting commitments, observing deadlines and achieving results; 
  • is motivated by professional rather than personal concerns; 
  • shows persistence when faced with difficult problems or challenges; remains calm in stressful situations. 
  • Takes responsibility for incorporating gender perspectives and ensuring the equal participation of women and men in all areas of work.
• Communication:  
  • Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; 
  • listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; 
  • asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication;
  • tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; 
  • demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.
• 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.
  • Advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in political science, social science, public administration, international studies, economics, engineering, earth sciences or a related field. 
  • A first-level university degree in combination with two additional years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.
Work Experience
  • A minimum of five years of progressively responsible experience in humanitarian affairs, emergency preparedness, crisis/emergency relief management, rehabilitation, development or other related area. International humanitarian experience is required. 
  • Experience reporting the humanitarian situation in a complex emergency or natural disaster is required. 
  • Experience in the UN Common System is desirable. 
  • Field experience working in the region (Eastern Africa) is desirable. 
  • Experience working in the context of natural disaster response and/or complex emergencies is desirable. 
  • Qualifying years of experience are calculated following the receipt of the first-level university degree recognised by the United Nations.
  • English and French are the working languages of the UN Secretariat. 
  • For this post, fluency in English (both oral and written) is required. 
  • Knowledge of another UN official language is an advantage.
Assessment Method

Evaluation of qualified candidates may include an assessment exercise which may be followed by competency-based interview.

Special Notice

This position is funded for a finite period of one year. Extension of the appointment is subject to Extension of the mandate and/or the availability of the funds.

Staff members are subject to the authority of the Secretary-General and to assignment by him or her. 

In this context, all staff are expected to move periodically to new functions in their careers in accordance with established rules and procedures.

United Nations Considerations

The United Nations shall place 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. 

(Charter of the United Nations - Chapter 3, article 8). The United Nations Secretariat is a non-smoking environment.

No Fee
The United Nations does not charge a fee at any stage of the recruitment process (application, interview meeting, processing, or training). 

The United Nations does not concern itself with information on applicants’ bank accounts.

Closing date: 06 Mar 2013

To Apply:

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