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PROJECT MANAGEMENT SPECIALIST (SOCIAL PROTECTION AND HES DREAMS)

USAID Kenya NAIROBI, KENYA

Summary

GENERAL INFORMATION

1. SOLICITATION NO.: 21-68

2. ISSUANCE DATE: September 8, 2021

3. CLOSING DATE/TIME FOR RECEIPT OF OFFERS: September 22, 2021 (4:30 PM East Africa Time)

4. POSITION TITLE: Project Management Specialist (Social Protection and HES Dreams).

5. MARKET VALUE: Equivalent to FSN-PSC 11 (Step 1: 4,597,211.00 KSH to Step 13: 7,815,239.00 KSH per annum). In accordance with AIDAR Appendix J and the Local Compensation Plan of USAID/Kenya and East Africa. Final compensation will be negotiated within the listed market value.

6. PERIOD OF PERFORMANCE: Initial six (6) months probationary period, with an additional six (6) months upon successful completion of probation period. Additional four (4) option years contingent on fully successful or better performance rating, funds availability and the continued need to retain the position.

7. PLACE OF PERFORMANCE: Nairobi, Kenya; with possible travel as stated in the Statement of Work.

8. SECURITY CERTIFICATION REQUIRED: Prior to joining USAID, the selected candidate will be required to:

  • Undergo a comprehensive background investigation
  • Undergo a health check to obtain medical clearance and;
  • Obtain and Retain an embassy issued Security Certification.

9. STATEMENT OF DUTIES: (See Below).

10. AREA OF CONSIDERATION: Open to qualified Kenyan citizens and current employees of the U.S. Government. USAID provides equal opportunity and equitable treatment for employment of all people without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, political affiliation, marital status or sexual orientation.

11. PHYSICAL DEMANDS: The position requirements do not involve rigorous physical demands.

BACKGROUND

USAID/Kenya and East Africa invests in population and health programs at national and county levels that aim to improve the survival, well-being and productivity of the Kenyan population by reducing the burden of major infectious diseases such as HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis, and addressing the main causes of maternal and child illness and deaths. This includes cross-cutting work to strengthen healthcare systems and build capacity, and to support the national government to formulate key policies and guidelines while assisting counties to better plan, manage and finance quality health services to meet local needs. The Health Population and Nutrition (HPN) office is USAID/Kenya and East Africa’s (KEA) largest office, managing a portfolio valued at over $400 million annually. The office receives funding from a number of U.S. Presidential Initiatives, including the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), the President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI), Feed the Future (FtF) as well as other USAID health funds for family planning, maternal newborn and child health, nutrition, emerging pandemic threats, and water, sanitation and hygiene.

In Kenya, a consortium of United States Government (USG) agencies is charged with coordinating and managing the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) under the leadership of the U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator. These agencies include USAID/KEA, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Peace Corps, the Department of State (DOS) and the Department of Defense (DOD). The goal is to develop and implement one coherent USG HIV/AIDS program in Kenya combining the strengths and capabilities of all agencies.

The DREAMS (Determined, Resilient, Empowered, AIDS-free, Mentored and Safe) partnership is an ambitious public-private partnership to reduce rates of HIV among adolescent girls and young women (AGYW) in the highest HIV burden countries. In 2015, 10 DREAMS countries in sub-Saharan Africa, including Kenya, accounted for nearly half of all the new HIV infections that occurred among AGYW globally. Girls and young women account for 74 percent of new HIV infections among adolescents in sub-Saharan Africa and nearly 1,000 AGYW are infected with HIV every day. Social isolation, poverty, discriminatory cultural norms, orphanhood, gender-based violence and inadequate schooling all contribute to girls’ vulnerability to HIV and a life not lived to its full potential. The DREAMS initiative goes beyond typical health initiatives to address these factors, working toward meeting the Sustainable Development Goal of ending AIDS by 2030 through a combination of interventions that address biological, behavioral and socioeconomic determinants of HIV risk.

The USAID Project Management Specialist (Social Protection and Household Economic Strengthening-HES DREAMS) – provides strategic guidance, program monitoring and support to selected USAID implementing partners (IPs), which deliver HIV and social protection services throughout Kenya. The position will directly manage USAID DREAMS funded activities and provide support to other HIV programs that address the unique needs and vulnerabilities of adolescents. At the same time, the Specialist works across U.S. Government Agencies (State Department, U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Department of Defense, Peace Corps) and will be responsible for ensuring harmonized and strategic programming and oversight of initiative-funded activities.

The general responsibilities of the position are to ensure that all activities contribute to protecting children, adolescents, and empowering them to protect themselves from HIV, ultimately enabling Kenyans to live longer, healthier lives. The Specialist will support USAID/Kenya and East Africa’s activities to ensure that children and young people, adolescent girls and young women access combination of social protection services with a focus on strengthening the economic circumstances for vulnerable households, including those caring for affected orphans and vulnerable children.

Technical duties include leading efforts to ensure social protection and prevention of violence against children (VACS), including sexual, physical, emotional, safeguarding policies targeting, children, adolescents, and young adults. Household economic strengthening activities are based on the latest relevant science and that scientific knowledge is translated into program guidelines and practices for the national program, incorporating new interventions into the national strategy.

Strategic planning duties include representing USAID and the USG at the mid-career level, including interagency and technical strategy and policy working groups. The position functions under the supervision of the Social Services Deputy Team Leader. The jobholder has a mastery of global health, child protection issues, case management approaches that empower beneficiaries towards sustainability, children, adolescents and youth issues, and economic development issues, evidence-based household economic strengthening models that bolster vulnerable households and youth, integration, beneficiary graduation and transition strategies, social protection environment, policies, programs, implementation approaches, linkages and reporting,  as well as the entire USAID/USG health portfolio.

Description

MAJOR DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES 

1.  PROGRAM/PROJECT MANAGEMENT AND MONITORING      50%

  • Oversees and coordinates USAID supported activities for all aspects of social protection with a focus on household economic strengthening activities and DREAMS projects implemented at multiple delivery sites and among multiple partners to conform to national guidelines and USAID technical strategies. Leads the implementation of monitoring and evaluation activities for adolescents and young adults social protection-focused programs including the PEPFAR and DREAMS initiative. Liaises closely with colleagues and the Team Lead for implementation and evaluation for social protection and economic strengthening activities.              
  • Serves as an Agreement/Contracts Officer’s Representative (A/COR) for HIV social protection, HES and DREAMS activities. Analyze financial reports, including reporting on activity burn rates and pipelines and expenditure accruals, reviewing reports from partners with particular attention to activity and financial indicators. 
  • Manage interactions with partners including helping to develop sustainable strategies to facilitate medium to long-term impact of partner activities, providing direction and capacity strengthening, reaching agreement on follow-up activities and to ensure they are effectively carried out. Conduct regular site visits to review implementation of social protection programs. Based on information collected during field visits, communicate findings and recommendations for strengthening HIV social protection activities to the HIV Team and, as appropriate, implementing partners and Government of Kenya counterparts. Assists implementing partners to understand compliance with all relevant USAID and PEPFAR regulations and procedures. Based on observations, assessment reports, performance statistics and other available data, make programmatic recommendations to the PEPFAR Inter-Agency Team (PIAT). 
  • Serves as the technical expert providing strategic direction to economic strengthening activities that are innovative and sustainable.
  • Assists in the preparation of USAID project documentation and reports and maintains records ensuring systematic monitoring of performance. Assists in assessing implementing partner performance; conducts regular Site Improvement Monitoring System (SIMS) visits to monitor availability and quality of services; reviews all written reports and furnishes feedback to partners; verifies asset use; assists with and conducts site visits for partner oversight; recommends and pursues measures to improve performance; provides regular status updates to the USG PEPFAR Team; and monitors the implementation of HIV social protection, particularly HES and DREAMS programs, to ensure that they remain in full compliance with Government of Kenya policy and PEPFAR guidance and serve the needs of Kenyans.                                       
  • Provide technical and program assistance, including drafting narrative content for information and action for social protection activities particularly value chain development and the socio-economic strengthening models and activities. Prepares and writes documents related to the assigned area of responsibility, including drafting briefing papers, country operational plan entries, and annual, semi-annual, quarterly and interim reporting inputs. 

2.  TECHNICAL LEADERSHIP                                                 40%

  • The Specialist provides a high level technical advice and guidance, including social protection and HES DREAMS recommendations, to the Mission and the Ministry of Health, including counterparts and senior level officials, on appropriate linkages between HIV/AIDS services for young people and children, and between HIV/AIDS services, agriculture and economic growth, microcredit, value chain, social protection and other health and development interventions, and provides direction in the design, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation of social protection and HES DREAMS programs/projects/activities and interventions. 
  • As the subject matter expert on the intersection of adolescent girls, young people and HIV, the jobholder keeps abreast of current literature, trends and program experiences and provides ongoing technical assistance, training, guidance and advice about HIV with a focus on increasing social protection interventions and strengthening the economic circumstances for vulnerable youth and their households. 
  • Provide strategic direction around economic strengthening activities that are innovative and sustainable. 
  • Leads formulation of USAID/KEA/HPN’s strategic approach to HIV/AIDS programming for adolescent girls and young women, aligned with the Agency’s Global Health Strategy and DREAMS Policy and PEPFAR guidance. Participates in the development of guidelines, operational procedures and manuals, educational materials, teaching modules, and other resources to implement value chain, household economic strengthening and HIV social protection activities and for incorporating new protection interventions and livelihood and economic models/approaches into the national program. 
  • Represents USAID/KEA/HPN at technical, policy and strategic meetings, including with other national collaborators and donor agencies. Makes presentations at meetings and conferences on issues relating to household economic strengthening and HIV, and shares USAID’s experiences in this area. Working with the Team Leader and other USG counterparts, organizes learning events to update USG partners on and build their capacity in state-of-the-art approaches. 
  • The Specialist develops and maintains relationships with relevant government officials and provides technical assistance to MOH in the development of policies, strategies, and guidelines related to social protection. The Specialist works closely with national and sub-national/County and local government officials in order to enhance success of social protection interventions and advance USAID and USG strategic objectives. 
  • Provides expert advice to the PEPFAR Intern-Agency Team (PIAT), GOK and stakeholders on evidence-based and best practice approaches to addressing the social protection needs of diverse segments of young people in different geographic contexts, with special attention to tailored economic/livelihoods and gender-differentiated approaches. Consults on the development and implementation of social protection activities focused on AGYW, including assistance in the application of new data and research findings to program activities. Promotes program innovations, along with strong evaluation, e.g., test behavioral economics and structural interventions, use of private sector channels and new information and communication technology to promote contextualized economic strengthening activities and young people engagement. 
  • Serves as a technical advisor for HPN-managed integrated household economic strengthening/livelihoods activities and AGYW-specific mechanisms; work with HPN activity managers to ensure that HIV/AIDS activities addressing young women and adolescent girls are technically sound.  

3.  PREPARATION INFORMATION DOCUMENTS AND REPORTING                                                                                                         10%

  • The Specialist will be responsible for reporting on Kenya-specific information related to select aspects of the HPN portfolio as part of the Mission’s and PEPFAR’s annual planning and reporting process; participates in the preparation of Congressional presentations; drafts technical and congressional notifications; and prepares implementing documents such as program descriptions and scopes of objectives/work for new solicitations. 
  • Contributes to project appraisal documents, results reviews and resource requests, portfolio reviews, annual budget submissions, and other Mission documentation. 
  • Prepares and clears HPN-related documentation such as action memorandum, implementation letters, scopes of work and accompanying budgets. Also prepares trip reports, activity status reports, project briefing materials and meeting summaries as needed.                                                                                                 
  • Liaises closely with all USAID/KEA HPN supported activities and team members to provide analysis and reports as required, including those for presentation at national, regional and international meetings and conferences.

POSITION ELEMENTS:

A.  SUPERVISION RECEIVED: The USAID Project Management Specialist (Social Protection and HES DREAMS) works under the very general supervision of the Prevention and Social Services Team Leader, and the closer but general supervision of the Social Services Deputy Team Leader. The supervisor makes assignments in terms of overall objectives and resources available. Completed work is reviewed in terms of achievement of program/project/activity goals, effectiveness in meeting host-country and USAID objectives, and integration with other initiatives in the HPN Office and Mission portfolio. The Specialist will be expected to exercise considerable autonomy and best judgment in discharging the duties of the assignment.

B. SUPERVISION EXERCISED: Continued supervision of other Health Office and/or Mission staff is not contemplated.

C. AVAILABLE GUIDELINES: Available guidelines include USG program/project/activity guidance, rules, and requirements; USAID Mission Orders, Mission strategy, and other relevant reports; the Automated Directives System (ADS); USAID Mandatory and Standard Provisions, and the FAR and AIDAR; and, Emergency Plan guidelines, Country Operational Plans, the Mission and Host Government Five-Year Strategic Plans, and other published and unpublished guidelines. Guidance and Directives are also provided by the Office of the Global AIDS Coordinator (OGAC), which directs the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), its Interagency Care and Treatment Technical Working Groups, and from relevant MOH documents relating to pediatric care and newborn health. The jobholder is required to understand Mission and Agency-specific policies and procedures that govern project activity management in addition to administrative operating procedures, policies and formats established by the Department of State. Guidelines are often general in nature and not specific to the situation at hand, requiring considerable interpretation.

D. EXERCISE OF JUDGEMENT: Substantial judgment (discretion) is used daily in providing technical opinion and guidance to USG, USAID, and host-government colleagues, to IPs, and in representing USAID in stakeholder forums. Management decisions over certain IPs are at the discretion of the Specialist. Independent judgment is required for developing, implementing, and managing assigned programs/projects/ activities, for reporting, and for other assignments. Substantial judgment is required in analyzing and determining whether or not to recommend approval of proposed programs/projects/activities, in choosing among alternative proposals, and in evaluating data for reliability.

E.  AUTHORITY TO MAKE COMMITMENTS: The Specialist exercises the authority given to CORs/AORs and activity managers and may make administrative arrangements consistent with ADS guidance and Mission and Health Office policy. The Specialist takes action and establishes priorities based on available guidelines and professional judgment. Guidance is sought when needed, and superiors informed of activity and project status. Within the scope of the authority delegated, the Specialist may indicate to ranking counterpart and IP officials that they will make a recommendation to USAID on a specific activity, issue, or problem. The Specialist has no independent authority to commit the USG to the expenditure of funds but may negotiate ad referendum for the supervisor.

F. NATURE, LEVEL AND PURPOSE OF CONTACTS: The Specialist has a full range of contacts within the Mission, at all levels, and maintains contact with IPs implementing USAID-funded programs/projects/ activities in the sector. Within the Embassy, contacts are with counterpart staffs, and with senior staff as needed. Host-government, local, and other, contacts vary widely with the type of activity being implemented, and may be at any level – including Ministerial, Deputy Minister, etc. Frequent and substantive personal contacts with senior-level officials of the host government, and with the private sector, are for the purpose of explaining and defending USAID policies, objectives, and procedures, and to transmit and interpret host-government and private-sector attitudes and concerns to senior USAID officials. In addition, the Specialist provides technical assistance and guidance on social protection best practices to USG staff, and host government and NGO partners.

G. TIME EXPECTED TO REACH FULL PERFORMANCE LEVEL: One year.

 

Education
Master’s Degree In Public Health, Social Sciences, Commerce, Economics, Business, Marketing, Management

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS REQUIRED FOR THIS POSITION

Any application that does not meet the minimum requirements stated below will not be evaluated. Only short-listed applicants will be contacted. If you have not been contacted within one month from the closing date of this advertisement, please consider your application unsuccessful.

REQUIRED QUALIFICATIONS

EDUCATION: A Master’s degree in public health, social sciences, commerce, economics, business, marketing, management or a closely related social science field.

POST ENTRY TRAINING: The jobholder will receive familiarization training in USAID-specific procedures, regulations, and methods, and orientation to working from a donor-agency perspective, etc. AOR/COR certification will be required. Participation in job-related seminars, workshops and other development studies programs organized by USAID, such as USAID University modules and courses, e-Learning Institute Courses including Introduction to Program Cycle, Project Development, etc. are expected to be completed, as is participation in general training or regional conferences on USAID programming, and other areas in the sector, subject to course offerings and availability of funds.

LANGUAGE PROFICIENCY: Level IV fluency in both oral and written English and Kiswahili is required.

More Details on Experience

PRIOR WORK EXPERIENCE: Minimum of five (5) years of progressively responsible experience in design, implementation, and evaluation of evidence-based economic/livelihood projects for vulnerable households and managing social protection programs is required.

JOB KNOWLEDGE: Advanced public health knowledge and experience in social protection programming for young populations, adolescents, and adults, specifically AGYW, is required. Thorough specialist knowledge of economic strengthening programming is required. Comprehensive knowledge of the Kenyan government social protection policies, health care and social welfare systems and structures including familiarity with Ministry policies, program priorities and regulations is required. The jobholder must have professional-level knowledge of development principles, concepts, and practices, especially as they relate to the devolution of the health sector and the increasing roles and responsibilities of the Counties within this new formulation. The jobholder must have a thorough knowledge, or the potential to quickly acquire such knowledge, of USG legislation, policy, and practice relating to development assistance, programming policies, regulations, procedures, and documentation, and of the objectives, methodology, and status of assigned activities is required. The jobholder must have outstanding knowledge and understanding of the organization and respective roles of the different levels of the GOK, and the role of units within each level, in order to enhance effective communication, and to develop consensus on program/project strategy and implementation plans.

 

More Details on Skills

SKILLS AND ABILITIES: Demonstrated diplomatic and leadership skills with strong oral and written communication abilities is required. Ability to analyze, understand and discuss new program design, management and implementation approaches is required. This includes the development of evaluation designs, protocol/guideline development, and methods for data collection, analysis and reports. Ability to lead project teams and work groups and to develop effective working relationships with national and international working partners is required. The jobholder will be expected to exercise a high level of independence, ingenuity, and tact in applying guidelines to unique and different settings, as the work is highly complex. The ability to influence and persuade others will be required to work collaboratively with organizations engaged in social protection, DREAMS programming, and household economic strengthening activities. Skills in project programming, policies, and plans, and in developing strategies for implementation, is required. The ability to work effectively in a collaborative team environment, and to achieve consensus on policy, program/project, and administrative matters, is necessary. The work requires good computer skills in order to manage assigned activities and to achieve set goals and achievements, both technical and financial.

Terms And Conditions

EVALUATION AND SELECTION FACTORS

Applicants must submit a resume/cv which describes how their relevant professional experience and education has prepared them to meet the specific challenges of the duties and responsibilities described above.  As part of the interview process, those applicants ranked highest may be required to submit a timed writing sample on a topic provided.  The selection committee may conduct reference checks at any time during the selection process.

Applications that do not meet the required minimum qualifications will not be scored. 

  • Prior work experience (30 points)
  • Job Knowledge (40 points)
  • Skills and abilities (30 points)

Total possible points:  100

Candidates meeting the above required qualifications for the position will be evaluated based on information presented in the application and reference checks.   References will be asked to assess the applicant’s technical knowledge, work performance, communication skills, and group dynamics, using the above criteria.   USAID reserves the right to conduct interviews with the top ranked short-listed applicants.  The interview will be one of the determining factors in the final selection.

HOW TO APPLY

Step 1: Register in MyJobsInKenya at www.myjobsinkenya.com

Step 2: Current USG Employees: Attach an updated curriculum vitae/resume (no more than five pages), a copy of your most recent Performance Evaluation Report, and copies of all relevant certificates. Scan and attach all the documents and upload to MyJobsInKenya.

                                                 OR

External Applicants/Not Current USG Employees: Attach an updated curriculum vitae/resume (no more than five pages) and copies of all relevant certificates. Scan and attach all the documents and upload to MyJobsInKenya .

Note to Applicants:

1. Applications must be received by the closing date and time specified in Section I, item 3, and submitted through myjobsinkenya.com as stated in Section IV.

2. Submissions will only be accepted through myjobsinkenya.com/usaid. Late and Incomplete applications (those that do not contain the applicant’s most current and up to date detailed CV and relevant education certificates) will not be considered for the position. The closing date for receipt of applications is indicated above.

3. USAID provides equal opportunity and equitable treatment for employment of all people without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, political affiliation, marital status or sexual orientation.

4. Only short-listed candidates will be contacted. Any form of canvassing will lead to automatic disqualification. 

5.  USAID DOES NOT CHARGE A FEE AT ANY STAGE OF THE RECRUITMENT PROCESS (APPLICATION, INTERVIEW MEETING, PROCESSING, OR TRAINING) AND DOES NOT CONCERN ITSELF WITH INFORMATION ON APPLICANTS' BANK ACCOUNTS.