Associate Protection Officer (Community-Based)


UNHCR Sub-office Zahle is seeking to strengthen community based protection mechanisms in the area of child protection. The incumbent would be undertaking a critical function within the operation, working to strengthen protection mechanisms both internally and externally through the child protection in emergencies network for children and women at risk.
The incumbent may have supervisory responsibility for protection staff including community services. He/she provides functional protection guidance to information management and programme staff; and supervises protection standards, operational procedures and practices in protection delivery in line with international standards.
The Junior Professional Officer is expected to coordinate quality, timely and effective protection responses relating to the needs of populations of concern, ensuring that operational responses in all sectors mainstream protection methodologies and integrate protection safeguards. He/she will contribute in the design of a comprehensive protection strategy and in representing the organization externally on protection doctrine and policy as guided by their supervisor. He/she will also ensure that persons of concern are involved with the UNHCR Office in making decisions that affect them, whether in accessing their rights or in identifying appropriate solutions to their problems. To achieve this, the incumbent will need to build and maintain effective interfaces with communities of concern, authorities, protection and assistance partners as well as a broader network of stakeholders who can contribute to enhancing protection.

1. Strengthening Inter-Agency Child Protection Coordination
- Co-chairing the Child Protection in Emergencies Working Group (together with UNICEF)
- Overseeing the geographic division of labour for child protection case management /PSS and ensuring these are clearly mapped
Supporting the review/revision of inter-agency referral pathways for child protection cases
- Contribute to operationalizing of the Interagency Child Protection Minimum Standards
- Develop with the working group a work plan for the year
2. Enhancing BIA / BID process
- Conducting training on Best Interest Assessment (BIA) for UNHCR staff and partners
- Reviewing completed BIAs and provide feedback as part of coaching programme
- Supporting the establishment of a BID panel in Zahle, in coordination with Branch Office and partners/local authorities
3. Enhancing individual case management processes
- Reviewing current case management systems and procedures
- Providing guidance to staff/partners on complex individual high risk cases
- Ensuring cases are appropriately tracked / recorded
- Undertaking periodic analytical reports on child protection issues/ trends

Required Qualification and Experience

Qualifications: University degree (Masters) in Law, International Law, International Development, Human Rights, Social Sciences or related discipline.

Working experience :
Two to maximal 4 years relevant working experience, including internships and voluntary work .
Professional working experience in the area of Community Services, Social Work (e.g. gender, GBV, child protection, work with refugees or/and Human Rights or related tasks in government, NGO or international organization is considered an asset.
Languages: Excellent knowledge of English is essential and working knowledge of another UN language, preferably Arabic is desirable.

Key competencies
- Previous knowledge and experience of working in the  child protection arena an asset
- Good communication and coordination skills necessary
- Flexibility to adapt to emergency type situations an asset
- Previous experience of working with Government in promoting child protection an asset

Title of supervisor: Protection Officer
Content and methodology of supervision
The incumbent will be part of the protection team which will be supervised by the Protection officer on a daily basis. Regular unit meetings along with weekly workplans will be agreed on priority activities. Beirut technical staff will also assist in providing technical support and offer guidance on a regular basis through protection meetings and through sector specialists attending the monthly meetings.
UNHCR performance appraisal system will be adopted for the candidate, includes setting of objectives which will be jointly done with the supervisor, mid-year review of the objectives will officially be documented along with the final evaluation.

Training component: Learning elements and expectations
The incumbent will be required to undertake specific mandatory trainings (including COC, Basic/Advanced Security and Protection Induction).  Trainings are organized throughout the year at both the Zahle and Beirut offices (including on protection, presentation skills, interview techniques, information management, proGres, programme) which the incumbent would be expected to participate in. In addition the Branch Office provides technical support and guidance on issues pertaining to all sectors including child protection.
Upon completion of the assignment the JPO will have/ will be able to:
- Ensure that their knowledge and understanding of key protection issues pertaining to children at risk, including UAMs/SC, will be strengthened, through the timely completion of BIAs and enhanced case management;
- Effectively grasp how coordination mechanisms for child protection will be enhanced, further strengthening protection of children;
- Promote how child protection strategies can be incorporated through an age, gender and diversity analysis and will reflect the specific priorities of the operation.

The JPO training programme includes the following learning elements
- Protection Learning Programme (PLP) Self ¿ Study
Child Protection
- Best Interests of the Child ¿ Basic Principles and Procedures
- Creating Safe Learning Environments
- Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV) curriculum
Mandatory Courses
- Protection Induction Programme
- UN Programme On The Prevention Of Harassment, Sexual Harassment and Abuse Of Authority
- Advanced Security in the Field
- Basic Security in the Field
- IPSAS: Introduction to IPSAS

The JPO position includes a Duty travel and training allowance (DTTA) of $4000 per year which may be used for learning activities related to the assignment and career development.

Background information on Agency/Department/Section
Sub-Office Zahle is located in the Bekaa Valley in eastern Lebanon.  Bekaa hosts more than 35% of the Syrian refugee population in Lebanon, with over 413,000 individuals registered with UNHCR (as at March 2015).  Living conditions for refugees in Bekaa are extremely challenging, with more than 140,000 persons living in over 880 informal settlements scattered across the Bekaa. Women and children are at heightened risk in this context, particularly from early marriage, gender based violence and negative coping mechanisms. A significant proportion of school-aged children have no access to formal education and child labour is common.
Given the above context, UNHCR Bekaa is seeking to strengthen community based protection mechanisms, through further development of community services and child protection teams, in order to ensure robust protection programming and implementation. 
In particular, a gap has been identified in terms of child protection and GBV expertise, following the departure of UNHCR¿s protection counseling implementing partner at the registration centre. It is essential to ensure that refugee women and children identified as being in need of an immediate protection intervention have access to this at the registration centre itself.  Child protection (and GBV) expertise is also required during the resettlement process and within general protection and community services field work. 
The incumbent would thus be undertaking a critical function within the Zahle operation, working to strengthen protection mechanisms for children and women at risk in Bekaa.
For more information visit:

Information on living conditions at Duty Station
Zahle is category B, Family Duty Station. Staff may install their family member(s) in Zahle for the length of their assignment.
There are fully furnished, semi-furnished and unfurnished apartments containing from 1 to 3 bedrooms. The price ranges from US$700 to US$2,500 and it is largely influenced by the size, location and facility that come with the apartment. There are 3 hotels cleared by UNDSS for UN staff accommodation.
In Zahle and its¿ vicinity, there are 11 recognized hospitals and 3 major dispensaries which can be assessed by staff members. Except in the case of emergency and based on the policy of each staff health insurance, all staff are expected to pay for health services and claim reimbursement from his/her insurance company.
Most schools in Zahle use French or Arabic as instructional language and English as second language. However, there are a few schools which use English as instructional language with French and Arabic as second languages.
Employment for spouse
There are over twenty INGOs operating in the Bekaa where there may be opportunities for spouses to find work. However it should be noted that due to funding constraints many are downsizing and nationalizing positions.
The overall Security situation in the country is relatively calm but fragile.In Zahle there have been no major incidences recently. The possibility of feuds between families, individuals and or gangs for whatever reason cannot be ruled out. So far the Lebanese Armed Forces and the Internal Security Forces have had good control of the general security situation in the Bekaa.
The general cost of living in Zahle is average. The rate of exchange between United States Dollars and Lebanese Pound is USD 1 to LBP 1,500 and both currencies can be used interchangeably. There are local taxis that will shuttle you around Zahle for between LBP 2,000 up based on the distance and the time of the day you use the shuttle. Both GSM networks ALPHA and MTC are available in Zahle in addition to OGERO landlines. UNHCR official bank in Zahle is Audi but there are several other options including BML with which most international staff finds easy to establish personal account.

Initially one year with the possibility to extend up to 3 years
P1 step 1 or P2 step 1 in the first year, depending on the level of education and relevant working experience

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: Zahlé
  • Grade: P-2, International Professional
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Legal - International Law
    • Legal - International Law
    • Legal - International Law
    • Legal - International Law
    • Legal - Broad
    • Legal - Broad
    • Legal - Broad
    • Legal - Broad
    • Social studies
    • Social studies
    • Social studies
    • Social studies
    • Human Rights
    • Human Rights
    • Human Rights
    • Human Rights
    • Administrative support
    • Administrative support
    • Administrative support
    • Administrative support
    • Civil Society
    • Civil Society
    • Civil Society
    • Civil Society
  • Closing Date: 2016-02-24

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