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Cash Transfer Programme to OVC Specialist, L-4, Maseru, Lesotho (TFT)

If you are a passionate and committed professional and want to make a lasting difference for children, the world's leading children's rights organization would like to hear from you. UNICEF seeks a Cash Transfer Programme to OVC Specialist to be based in its Maseru, Lesotho Office, with frequent field travel.

Under the overall guidance of the Deputy Representative, you will provide technical assistance to the Government of Lesotho (GoL) and UNICEF to accelerate the implementation of the OVC response in particular the conceptualization, design and implementation of OVC Cash Transfer Programme (CTP).

Specific objectives
• To facilitate and guide the preparation and implementation of the Manual of Operations for the OVC Cash Transfer;
• To coordinate the design and implementation of geographical and per household/beneficiary targeting mechanisms for the OVC Cash Transfer Programme (CTP);
• To guide and coordinate the implementation of baseline survey for OVC cash transfer programme and the preparation of a methodologically sound impact evaluation strategy and implementation plan for the OVC CTP; 
• To facilitate and coordinate the design and development of management information system (MIS) for its OVC Cash Transfer Programme (CTP);
• To facilitate and support the acceleration of the OVC programme in particular the implementation of Cash Transfer programme.

Major Tasks 
• In consultation with the Department of Social Welfare of the ministry of Health, Project Implementation Technical Team, and other partners involved in OVC response, facilitate and guide the preparation and implementation of the Manual of Operations for the OVC cash transfer;
• Guide and coordinate the establishment and operationalisation of the Management Information System for the national OVC programme as well as monitoring and evaluation plan and data collection tools for OVC programming;
• In consultation with the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, members of NOCC and UNICEF regional office, guide and coordinate the implementation of baseline survey for OVC cash transfer programme and the preparation of a methodologically sound impact evaluation strategy and implementation plan for the OVC CTP;
• In coordination and consultation with relevant development partners, facilitate and coordinate the design and implementation of geographical and per household/beneficiary targeting mechanisms for the OVC Cash Transfer Programme (CTP);
• Facilitate and support the acceleration of the implementation of Cash Transfer programme;
• Undertake field visits to monitor the programme implementation and conduct periodic programme reviews with the government counterparts and other partners. Participate in meetings with ministries responsible for programme/project review, and follow up on implementation of recommendations and agreements.

Background and context
With HIV prevalence of 23 per cent among adult population, Lesotho stands as the third country world wide with the highest prevalence of HIV and AIDS. The epidemic is having a wide-range of impact on children, one of which is the rapidly increasing number of orphans and vulnerable children (OVC).  UNAIDS data in 2005 estimate 180,000 orphaned children projected to rise to 210,000 by 2010. OVC are at high risk of being exposed to various forms of abuse, neglect and exploitation. Hence, ensuring that these orphans and other vulnerable children realise their rights to special protection and assistance and access to quality education, health, psychosocial support, shelter, and adequate nutrition has been of immense challenge both to the Government of Lesotho and development partners.

Government commitment to address issues of orphans and other vulnerable children is demonstrated by various policies, programmes and structures such as the establishment of the Child and Gender Protection Unit of the Police; the development of OVC Policy and OVC National Action Plan (NAP); a National OVC Coordinating Committee; and initiating the process of establishing a Child Help line. The development of Child Welfare Bill 2004, was a milestone achievement by the Government. Nevertheless this vital piece of legislation still awaits enactment. The lack of provisions for handling children throughout the justice system including inheritance and placement of orphans who frequently have their rights violated without recourse to the law - are difficult issues to address without this vital legislation being enacted. 

The European Commission has in 2007 contributed 11.3 million Euros (approximately $14 million) to the Government of Lesotho through UNICEF for a programme that addresses orphaned and vulnerable children over a four year period, 2007-2010. The funds have been mobilised in the context of the costed OVC NAP.  The main thrusts of the funds are to support the establishment of programme structures as well as the financial and information management procedures; identify beneficiary communities; select and train Caregivers; provide support to OVC through Caregivers; provide food security training and material; disburse OVC grant funds through Care givers; build the capacity of the Government to implement, monitor and evaluate progress.

The most challenging component of the OVC response programme is the cash transfer component of the programme that entails designing suitable and appropriate options for delivering cash grants to beneficiary households. For these purposes three pilot sites have been identified based on a pre-defined selection criteria developed jointly with the implementing partners. The three pilot sites are to demonstrate operational, logistics, administrative and financial feasibility with respect to cash transfer for scaling up to other districts. UNICEF and the Government of Lesotho has been exploring existing mechanism and structures that can reach the grassroots level and used to deliver the cash transfers to the caregivers of the targeted orphans and vulnerable children.

The acceleration of implementation of cash transfer and other components of  OVC programme requires a skilled human resource with good knowledge and understanding and conceptualisation of social protection issues in general and social cash transfer in particular. In this context, UNICEF Lesotho Country office urgently requires an expert on TFT position to  assist the Government and UNICEF in the implementation, monitoring and evaluation of cash transfer programme for OVC.

Your profile:
Advanced university degree in social sciences.
Eight years of progressively responsible professional work experience at international levels in policy formulation, programme management, monitoring and evaluation, in a related field. Experience in managing OVC related interventions in particular cash transfer programme is an asset.
Fluency in written and spoken English.

If you have got experience of working in a similar capacity and want to make an active and lasting contribution to build a better world for children, send a detailed curriculum vitae in English, AND a duly completed United Nations Personal History form (available at www.unicef.org/employ), quoting “VN-08-Cash Transfer Programme” to: adflambert@unicef.org and cmasilo@unicef.org. Applications should be received by 21 April 2008. Only candidates who are under serious consideration will be contacted.

The successful candidate will be offered a temporary appointment for a period of eight months, from 1 May until 31 December 2008.
 
UNICEF’s salary and benefits package is based on the United Nations Common System; visit  www.un.org/Depts/OHRM/salaries_allowances for further information.

UNICEF is committed to gender equality in its mandate and its staff. Well qualified candidates, particularly females are strongly encouraged to apply.


 

 
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