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HelpAge International Social Protection Manager Job in Nairobi Kenya


HelpAge International is a global network of not-for-profit organisations with a vision of a world where older people fulfil their potential to lead active, dignified, healthy and secure lives.

With 80 affiliates and many partners across more than 40 countries the HelpAge International network brings together hundreds of organisations worldwide. HelpAge International has a secretariat with offices in London and Brussels, regional centers in Africa, East Asia/Pacific, South Asia, Latin America, the Caribbean and Central Asia and country offices.

Help Age International’s new 2015 strategy focuses on delivering five global actions aimed at bringing practice and policy changes through the provision of services and influencing work at all levels.

This post will be based and managed within the Africa Regional Development Centre in Nairobi, Kenya. See

Securing an income for older people through social protection mechanisms and in particular through social pensions is a strategic priority area for HelpAge. The HelpAge Board approved an ambitious Social Pensions Strategy which aims to ensure that HelpAge further consolidates its position as a leading international NGO in this field.

HelpAge believes that broad based social pension schemes are a critical component of a comprehensive social protection system, as advocated for in the UN Social Protection Floor Initiative of which HelpAge is a member.

Job Title: Social Protection Manager

Location: Africa Regional Development Centre, with regional travel

Reporting to: Regional Representative

Grade: NS1

Relations with Others: Regional team leaders for: HIV/AIDS and Health, Emergencies, Rights and Entitlements, Network development, Administration and Finance; Country Programmes and the London Social Protection (SP) teams.

Concretely the work this post will be supporting covers the following areas:

  • supporting civil society partners and older people in advocating for social pensions
  • engaging in policy dialogue and providing evidence on the impact of social pensions and social protection
  • providing technical advice to governments on social pensions (such as on costing, affordability, design and implementation, monitoring etc)
  • influencing the international community, regional and national bodies (including governments, donors, civil society, media) including through the provision of training
  • direct implementation in partnership with governments of cash transfer programmes (e.g. in Mozambique and Kenya)
Working relationships

Over the last two years HelpAge has made significant progress in the implementation of its pension strategy.

The work is carried out in close cooperation with the London based social protection officers and advisers in the Policy, Influencing and Learning team of the Programmes Department as well as the Social Protection Staff located in country programme offices (notably Tanzania, Ethiopia, and Mozambique).

Scope of the role

The focus of this role is to facilitate and coordinate the implementation of the pensions strategy in Africa. This will include building on the existing learning and engagement at national levels (i.e. Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia, Sudan and Mozambique) and agreeing and delivering engagement in countries where we have no offices (i.e. Zambia, Sierra Leone, Rwanda etc).

The role requires the ability to engage in policy influencing and advocacy at national and regional levels and to develop expertise on delivery and implementation of social pensions or wider cash transfer mechanisms. It will require close networking with government officials as well as civil society and donor representatives and a strong alignment with the long term vision for universal entitlement to income security pension for older people.

Job purpose

The post will ensure full utilisation of the experience and skills of national and international social protection staff in leading on the implementation of the pensions strategy in the Africa region. The post holder will represent HelpAge at national and regional policy forums and contribute to driving and further developing HelpAge’s social protection and pensions agenda.

Roles and responsibilities

Policy influencing and technical engagement at national level
  • Lead and coordinate a programme of advocacy throughout the region in line with HelpAge’s organisational Social Pension’s strategy - in collaboration with country offices and London - to build political commitment to the implementation social pensions and achievement of the wider social protection agenda
  • Uphold a collaborative approach to advocacy and influencing strategising at national, regional and international levels
  • Provide advice based on technical evidence (i.e. analysis of national data sets) to support national governments in policy formulation and implementation of social pension schemes
  • Provide technical advice to key civil society actors by providing advisory support to HelpAge country offices and leading engagement with partners of the network in countries without offices
  • Represent HelpAge in engagements with national government staff, civil society organisations, development partners and international agencies
  • Manage consultants undertaking technical work on social protection for HelpAge
Coordination, communication and capacity building
  • Manage the SP and Civil Society Capacity Building Manager
  • As a member of the SP group support the strategic direction and forward thinking on HelpAge’s social protection and pensions work
  • Support the development of training materials and provide training to HAI staff and external stakeholders, in particular HAI network partners
  • Contribute to the development of learning and good practice on social pensions in achieving comprehensive nationally owned social protection systems by writing articles, publications and contributing to the pensions-watch website
Programme development and management
  • Lead on the development and management of social protection projects. Ensure effective communication and coordination with national and international social protection staff.
  • Work with the SP team and Resource Development Department to develop/write effective and detailed project proposals for programmes of work and research projects which secure funding for social protection work at HAI in line with, and building on engagements and partnerships held with Governments and Partners.
  • Lead in identifying and developing donor relations with a focus on funding social protection initiatives and work with the ARDC team to develop proposals on social protection for submission to donors
  • Contribute to the strategic development of the remaining four global actions: HIV/AIDS and Health, Emergencies, Rights and Entitlements, Network Development.
Technical expertise
  • Develop technical expertise on key aspects of design and implementation of Cash Transfer and social pension schemes
Person Specification


Given the niche that social protection and social pension presents in the development sector we are looking for a talented individual with transferable skills and dedication to the cause
  • Proven /demonstrated experience of advocacy and policy influencing
  • Experience of strategic and programme planning & management including financial planning and management
  • Experience of working in a cross cultural and dynamic working environment
  • Knowledge and experience of capacity building and training
  • Diplomacy and the ability to work with widely varying organisations from CBOs to Government, regional bodies and donor agencies
  • Ability to effectively represent the work of HelpAge and promote social protection and ageing issues in Africa
  • Ability to initiate, coordinated and deliver work with little direct supervision and to tight deadlines
  • Excellent written and oral communications skills
  • Excellent team management and cross-departmental engagement skills and ability to engage others on decision making and strategy
  • Willingness to travel extensively within the region and beyond
  • Educated to degree level in a relevant subject
  • French language skills
  • Experience of working on social protection in particular, cash transfer design and implementation
  • An understanding of ageing issues and commitment to realising the rights of older people
  • Skills in poverty analysis, in particular ex-ante analysis using national data sets
To apply for this position, please send an updated CV and covering letter by 16th February, 2011, explaining how you meet the criteria for the role to:

Human Resources Officer
HelpAge International
Africa Regional Development Centre,
P.O. Box 14888 - 00800
Westlands, Nairobi


Only shortlisted applicants will be contacted.

HelpAge International is an Equal Opportunity Employer

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