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Generic Vacancy Announcement for Consultancy Roster: Polio Outbreak Response Social and Behaviour Change Communication Consultant


Community & Social Services

KES Confidential
1 week ago

Job Summary


Job Description/Requirements

* This generic vacancy announcement is published to fill the Global Polio Outbreak Response Consultancy Roster - Please see context and background below*

UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential. 

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone. 

And we never give up. 

For every child, Health

Context & Background - UNICEF Global Polio Outbreak Response Roster

Polio eradication is a UNICEF Corporate priority. Although there are only two endemic countries with wild poliovirus type-1 (WPV1), the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) is currently facing multiple distinct polio outbreaks (30 countries have active outbreaks in 2024) across many UNICEF regions.

UNICEF and WHO work closely together within different fora and at different levels to ensure a well-coordinated outbreak response and synchronized approach with Regional and Country offices in alignment with the outbreak SOPs. Faced with an outbreak of polio, country offices must quickly identify and recruit Social Behavior Change (SBC), Vaccine Management (VM), Cold Chain Logistics (CCL), Coordination, Human Resources (HR), Operations, and other specialized personnel needed to respond adequately.

With a mounting number of Polio outbreaks and the need to rapidly implement responses in multiple geographies, we developed a roster of experts, the UNICEF Global Polio Outbreak Roster, which consolidates existing HQ and RO rosters into one easily accessible, updated database for Polio teams globally. This efficient talent management system has been designed to facilitate country-level outbreak response activities. 

With this generic vacancy announcement, we are looking for talented professionals that are interested to be part of our Polio Outbreak Response Social and Behaviour Change Communication Consultant Roster.

How can you make a difference?  

The Outbreak SBC Officer will lead the polio social mobilization and communication support provided to the country during the response to a poliovirus outbreak. Working under the supervision of the UNICEF Country Office (to be determined by the CO as appropriate for the context), the officer will coordinate closely with the SBC, external communication, and health teams in the country, region, and HQ.

The Outbreak SBC officer’s support to the team at the country office will ensure that the response is:

Aligned with the government/Ministry of Health (MOH) plans and strategies and Aligned with the latest outbreak response SOPs.

Key accountabilities and responsibilities will be determined for each deployment, but may include the following:

General :

Assess Social mobilization and communication needs and existing capacity at the country level.

Report to WHO/UNICEF Country Office on progress, achievements, and where additional assistance is required. Contribute to developing community engagement, social mobilization, and communication plans to underpin the technical response in collaboration with the WHO/UNICEF offices. Provide technical inputs to the overall response strategy, including implementing the operational work plans and providing authoritative advice and support to operational units. Provide leadership and strengthen the existing teams by emphasizing team building and collaboration as a daily routine with national/international partners.

Social and Behavior Change Communication:

Ensure the conduct of the required social investigation of polio cases as part of evidence-based SBC for the early outbreak response. Develop/update/review data on the target audience's immunization knowledge, attitudes, behavior, and practice, especially for high-risk and mobile populations. Lead the facilitation of the reinvigoration of a social mobilization and communication working group or the expansion of an existing one. Initiate the development of the social mobilization component of the 6-month outbreak response plan document, including details for subnational implementation in high-risk areas, 0 dose, under-immunized children and mobile populations, gender matter, the means for monitoring field activities, and a budget to cover those activities.  Finalize community engagement and information dissemination strategies to promote polio and routine immunization even in between round activities. Develop and tailor health information products for various target populations/audiences based on carefully assessing community knowledge, practices, and behaviors. Ensure that polio micro plans (at least in priority areas) include social data and information on social mobilizers and leaders by the time of the first response. Provide support for training health workers and other stakeholders on SBC for polio and routine EPI demand. Help implement the strategic communication response plan, including mass communication plan, advocacy, digital communication, and crisis communication plans, as appropriate. Undertake in-depth reviews of potential vaccine refusals or issues of mistrust to be addressed even in between round activities. Conduct regular analyses of independent monitoring data and other available resources to identify priority areas and devise social mobilization micro plans targeting those areas that incorporate social mobilization indicators within program monitoring indicators.  Set up social mobilization teams with delegated authorities at the subnational level, as needed, and oversee the structure with performance monitoring until the end of the outbreak. Facilitate documentation and dissemination of lessons learned / good practices from the planning, implementing, and monitoring of Polio Outbreak Response SBC activities.

External Communication:

Conduct a media landscape analysis. Develop a media engagement plan and develop media products such as jingles, messages, etc. Support the outbreak response team in preparing an external communications strategy, including engagement with political, religious, and community leaders and other stakeholders. Develop polio-related media and external communication packages. Identify a media focal person and spokesperson from the government, WHO, and UNICEF. Work with partners and government counterparts to conduct a press brief/media release, if appropriate, and update donors and partners on work progress. Host weekly calls with WHO polio communications counterparts in country offices, regional offices, and HQ. Receive and review all media releases/news feeds related to the outbreak and share them with focal points. Target other non-media communication channels that could be more effective in specific settings.  Update talking points and FAQs (, with changing epidemiology and ahead of vaccination rounds).


Undertake other assignments and responsibilities as requested by heads of country offices, regional directors, and other partners to support the successful response to the outbreak.


Be a locally recruited staff member in a country in the related UNICEF region OR Be available for deployment when requested as far as practically possible OR Meet the criteria outlined below.

To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have…  

An advanced university degree in one of the following fields is required: social and behavioral science, sociology, anthropology, psychology, education, communication, public relations, or another relevant technical field. At least two years of additional relevant work experience in the same field may be considered in lieu of a master’s degree. A minimum of five years of professional experience in one or more of the following areas is required: social development program planning, communication for development, public advocacy, or another related area. Relevant experience in a UN system agency or organization is considered an asset. Experience working in a developing country is considered as an asset. Experience working in a public health emergency context, particularly polio outbreak response, is an asset. Fluency in one of the following languages is required: English, French, Arabic, or Portuguese. Fluency in any other UN language is an asset.


Applicants must be able to demonstrate:

Strong self-awareness and ability to self-manage and operate safely and securely in rapidly changing emergency contexts. Drive to achieve impactful results. Ability to work effectively in a diverse and multi-cultural team to achieve goals. Ability to develop new and nurture existing internal and external networks, partnerships, and relationships that deliver results. Ability to communicate clearly, confidently, and persuasively, orally and in writing. Ability to analyze information, solve problems, and make decisions in complex, challenging, and rapidly evolving environments. Ability to think and act strategically. The highest levels of personal integrity and commitment to adhering to required standards of conduct and behavior. A willingness and commitment to serve the children and their communities affected by disasters in the face of potential hardship and personal sacrifice.


Working in an emergency is challenging and can sometimes be done on short notice. Therefore, applicants must consider their personal circumstances before registering an interest in this assignment. This includes:

Consider whether any aspect of your personal circumstances (, a new baby or a sick relative) could make it difficult for you to deploy at short notice. Discussing the possibility of emergency deployments with your family is recommended so their views can be considered. Realistically assessing your mental and physical health to ensure you are fit and well. This includes ensuring you have had the essential vaccinations recommended by UNMD (UNMD recommendations). Ensuring you have up-to-date and valid travel documents, including your passport.

For every Child, you demonstrate…  

UNICEF's values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust, Accountability, and Sustainability (CRITAS). 

To view our competency framework, please visit here. 

UNICEF is here to serve the world’s most disadvantaged children and our global workforce must reflect the diversity of those children. The UNICEF family is committed to include everyone, irrespective of their race/ethnicity, age, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, nationality, socio-economic background, or any other personal characteristic.

UNICEF offers reasonable accommodation for consultants/individual contractors with disabilities. This may include, for example, accessible software, travel assistance for missions or personal attendants. We encourage you to disclose your disability during your application in case you need reasonable accommodation during the selection process and afterwards in your assignment. 

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check. 


Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process. 

Individuals engaged under a consultancy or individual contract will not be considered “staff members” under the Staff Regulations and Rules of the United Nations and UNICEF’s policies and procedures, and will not be entitled to benefits provided therein (such as leave entitlements and medical insurance coverage). Their conditions of service will be governed by their contract and the General Conditions of Contracts for the Services of Consultants and Individual Contractors. Consultants and individual contractors are responsible for determining their tax liabilities and for the payment of any taxes and/or duties, in accordance with local or other applicable laws. 

The selected candidate is solely responsible to ensure that the visa (applicable) and health insurance required to perform the duties of the contract are valid for the entire period of the contract. Selected candidates are subject to confirmation of fully-vaccinated status against SARS-CoV-2 (Covid-19) with a World Health Organization (WHO)-endorsed vaccine, which must be met prior to taking up the assignment. It does not apply to consultants who will work remotely and are not expected to work on or visit UNICEF premises, programme delivery locations or directly interact with communities UNICEF works with, nor to travel to perform functions for UNICEF for the duration of their consultancy contracts. 

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