Staff Welfare Officer


Staff Welfare Officer


Given its performance requirements, the dynamism of staff movements, (rotation and constant requirement to move and readjust) and the increasingly volatile working environment, UNHCR is an environment where the stress factors are highly relevant. Although stress in general can be a motivating factor, when poorly managed or ignored, it has a significant potential to undermine the mental and physical health of the UNHCR workforce impacting adversely on the overall performance of the operation(s).

The organisational response to this challenge is entrusted to the Staff Health and Welfare Service (SH&WS) and more specifically to its Staff Welfare Section (SWS). The regional Staff Welfare Officers based in Dakar, Kinshasa, Nairobi, Islamabad and Amman are a part of the Staff Welfare team that works together in addressing the above challenges.

In the context of the operation of South Sudan, the Staff Welfare Officer will be in charge of setting up and implementing a country focused staff welfare programme that will include:

- implementation of the global staff welfare project (psychological preparation, end of assignment debriefing, crisis response, training and coordination of the Peer Support Personnel Network) that are already put in place.
- provision of the technical expertise in the area of psychological well-being of staff and their family members within the context of the countries of coverage (assessment of psychosocial needs, program design, program implementation and management, evaluation, training design and delivery)
- clinical work with colleagues and their family members (psychological assessment, individual/group counselling, crises interventions, referrals) when needed. 
- provision of guidance to the Representative, the Senior Regional Staff Welfare Officer in RH Nairobi and the Staff Welfare Section/ Staff Health and Welfare Service (SH&WS) at HQ.


- Although expected to work rather independently, the Staff Welfare Officer receives guidance and functional supervision from the Senior Regional Staff Welfare Officer at the Regional Hub, Nairobi. The incumbent will provide the reports to the same on the achievements.
- The administrative supervision is provided by the Representative. The incumbent will also refer to the policies, standards, rules and regulations which are in force within UNHCR and which are relevant to the functions of the post.


Within  UNHCR

- Liaise closely with staff in the Senior Regional Staff Welfare Officer in RH Nairobi for technical planning, coordination and support; collaboration on individual case management as needed.
- Work closely with the Senior Regional Medical Officer in RH Nairobi for collaboration on individual cases involving the medical issues and necessitating the medical follow up
- Closely cooperate with the Representative in order to agree on the staff welfare priorities for the operation and report to the Representative on the key staff welfare issues
- Closely collaborate with the HR staff, (Senior) Field Safety Advisers in the S. Sudan operation whereas staff welfare overlaps with HR or security issues.
- Maintain close contacts with the Heads of Sub-Offices and Field Officer in order to ensure that the staff welfare needs are covered in their locations
- Be available for counselling to all UNHCR colleagues in the region in person, by phone or by email. 

With EXTERNAL Parties:

- Closely collaborate with other UN staff counsellors within South Sudan.
- Maintain link with NGO in South Sudan working in the area of psychosocial support in general.
- Maintain affiliations with professional organisations and associations to maintain the required level of professional expertise.
- Make oneself available to other organisations in the humanitarian community when appropriate and feasible



- Staff Welfare Programs for the UNHCR staff in South Sudan including the work with the individual staff, their family members, teams and managers are effectively implemented.
- Staff is familiar with the elements of the staff welfare program and is comfortable using the staff welfare services.
- The Staff Welfare program has a positive impact on the staff well-being in South Sudan.
- Staff Welfare duties are delivered in accordance with the ethical principle of the psychological profession where confidentiality is paramount consideration.


- Assess Staff Welfare needs in the operation and design an appropriate psychosocial support programme, in close collaboration with the Senior Regional Staff Welfare Officer and the management in South Sudan. Such programme should include but is not limited to individual or group counselling, workshops/training, raising awareness and sensitization meetings, team building or other professional forms of support.
- Ensure access to individual counselling of staff and family members for a variety of issues, related to both work (stress, trauma, interpersonal conflicts, harassment, and job insecurity) and personal (family, marital, children or finance related).
- Ensure timely response to all critical incidents in the operation in accordance with the UNHCR SOP on Support to staff affected by critical incidents. Ensure that psychological first aid is provided (personally, through the Peer Support Personnel Network or other UN Staff Counsellors available in the country), assessments, referrals and necessary follow-up is undertaken and coordinated with the Senior RSWO, Senior Regional Medical Officer and relevant HR functions in the operation. Be a part of the Crisis Management Team and provide guidance to the management in relation to managerial response to psychosocial needs of affected staff. 
- Undertake regular travel to duty stations within the country to assess the psychosocial needs of the field locations, provide support to the staff and follow up on the implementation of the SW recommendations.
- Implement the global UNHCR staff welfare projects with the staff of South Sudan (psychological preparation for hardship assignment, end of assignment debriefing following hardship assignment). 
- Maintain regular contact with the counselling resources in the country including the members of the UN Staff/Stress Counsellors Group and other local/regional mental health professionals/ resources outside the UN system, e.g. NGOs, private practitioners.
- Coordinate and manage the UNHCR Peer Support Personnel Network in the country through monitoring of their activities, supervising their work with the staff.
- Maintain a record of individual staff welfare actions and interventions in the confidential folder of the MSRP or in the separate confidential database in accordance with the UN Confidentiality Guidelines for Staff/Stress Counsellors and relevant UNHCR policies on confidentiality of SW data. Provide monthly statistics to the SWS, HQ. Ensure timely reporting on field missions, general staff welfare assessments and related recommendations to the Representative and the Heads of Offices and the Senior RSWO.
- Actively participate in the global SW activities initiated by the Staff Welfare Section aimed at further development of the staff welfare programme in UNHCR. Provide input in global reports by the SWS as required. 
- Any other duties agreed in consultation between the Representative and the Senior RSWO at the RH Nairobi.


- As appropriate, communicate directly with other functional units at Headquarters (FSS, Medical Service, PAPS, Ombudsman, Staff Council, IGO, LAS, Desk) involved in case management when a specific case or incident requires.
- Make proposals relevant to improvement of staff well-being in the operation including identifying additional resources to support the programme implementation to Representative and the Senior RSWO.
- Make confidential recommendations pertinent to mental health and psychosocial well-being of individual staff to the Senior RSWO and the Senior Regional Medical Officer. 
- Provide support to other organisations in the humanitarian community when appropriate and feasible.


- Advanced University Degree in Psychology, Social Work (clinical orientation), Psychotherapy, Counselling or other mental health care profession.
- Minimum 6 (six) years of previous job experience relevant to the function of which 2 years should be in an International capacity.
- Demonstrated clinical experience and counselling skills.
- Proven skill of supporting teams and groups.
- Proven training skills.
- Demonstrated ability to work in diverse cultural environments.
- Proficiency in English.


- Humanitarian experience in the Field is an asset.
- Conflict resolution and mediation skills are an asset.

C001L3 - Accountability Level 3
C002L3 - Teamwork & Collaboration Level 3
C003L3 - Communication Level 3
C004L3 - Commitment to Continuous Learning Level 3
C005L3 - Client & Result Orientation Level 3
C006L3 - Organizational Awareness Level 3
M003L3 - Judgement and Decision Making Level 3
M004L3 - Strategic Planning and Vision Level 3
X001L3 - Analytical Thinking Level 3
X005L3 - Planning and Organizing Level 3
X008L3 - Stakeholder Management Level 3

Please note that the closing date for all vacancies in Add.1 to the September 2015 Compendium is Tuesday 17 November 2015 (midnight Geneva time).

Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.
  • Organization: UNHCR - United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
  • Location: Juba
  • Grade: P-3, International Professional
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Human Resources
    • Human Resources
    • Human Resources
    • Human Resources
    • Human Resources
    • Human Resources
    • Human Resources
    • Human Resources
    • Human Resources
    • Human Resources
    • Human Resources
    • Human Resources
    • Human Resources
  • Closing Date: 2015-11-17

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