fhi360 RMNCH/Nutrition Specialist, Senegal - Alive &Thrive in Dakar, Senegal

*This position is to be hired locally in Senegal.

Project Summary:

Alive & Thrive (A&T) is an initiative to save lives, prevent illness, and ensure healthy growth and development. Good nutrition in the first 1,000 days, from pregnancy to two years of age, is critical to enable all children to lead healthier and more productive lives. A&T is scaling up improved maternal, infant and young child health and nutrition (MIYCN) as a component of large-scale Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn and Child Health (RMNCH) programs in several countries in Asia and Africa. Alive & Thrive has recently received funding for its next generation funding. A&T Gen 2 is a flagship investment of the foundation’s Nutrition Strategy aimed at saving lives and improving infants’ cognitive development.

A&T is providing technical support on MIYCN to francophone ECOWAS countries in West Africa through regional collaboration with WHO, UNICEF, WAHO, USAID, Intra Health, GAC/Canada, UNFPA, the World Bank and IFPRI, and through support to a core group of countries in the region. Across these initiatives, A&T contributes to improved maternal and child health and nutrition through:

Strategic technical assistance and advocacy to governments and key stakeholders, including implementing partners, to accelerate delivery and scale up of MIYCN interventions though RNMNCH policies and programs; Implementation research, analyses and studies to generate the evidence required to drive change at scale; Technical support to strengthen and promote policies and capacity on francophone West Africa through regional RMNCH and MIYCN partnerships

Position Purpose and Summary:

The position requires working closely with the Ministry of Health in Senegal. The RMNCH Specialist will be seconded to the RMNCH Directorate in the FMOH. The specialist will provide technical guidance for system’s strengthening and support the government in the strategic use of data to accelerate delivery and scale up of MIYCN interventions through existing RMNCH policies and programs. She/he will work closely with the RMNCH staff and partners, related donor initiatives, A&T technical team, and support the government in all issues related to MIYCN.

In coordination with the A&T Africa Program Director and Deputy Director (based in HQ), and the two regionally based directors, the RMNCH and Nutrition Specialist, ECOWAS will also provide project representation and technical expertise at high-level meetings.

ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS:

  • Assisting the government of Senegal to develop policies and strategies that build on research and best practice in RMNCH and MIYCN.

  • Providing high-level MIYCN technical assistance to national- and state-level RMNCH programs of government and implementing partners to accelerate coverage of evidence-based MIYCN interventions; including but not limited to –

  • Conducting an operational intervention to monitor Early Initiation of Breastfeeding in health facilities where deliveries occur (maternities) and improve the prevalence of this practice/behavior .

  • Identification of one district (NORD) in Dakar Region with Head of Maternal and Newborn Unit (Pr Marieme Gueye Ba and A&T Program Director),

  • Providing technical support to ensure implementation of RMNCH and MIYCN strategies in Senegal, including technical support to help Regional and District Governments achieve sectoral targets in a timely manner, including:

  • Visit the District Nord to share the EIBF intervention with the DHT, the midwives, nurses and all staff conducting deliveries in delivery rooms.

  • Conduct a regular monitoring visit to collect EIBF indicators in all selected health facilities in District Nord, in collaboration of MOH/Maternal and Newborn Unit, DSIS (NMIS) and District MIS unit).

  • Prepare the report of EIBF operational intervention conducted in District Nord of Dakar and share the results at the national and district level and validate the approach and the results.

  • Introduce EIBF in the DHIS 2 and conduct a new design of DHIS 2 parameters including EIBF indicator alone, in addition to ENC package indicators that already exist in the system.

  • Prepare a workshop with national MIS service (DNSIS) and District Nord key staff (DHT) to validate the introduction of EIBF in the DHIS 2 and preparation of scaling up process to all country districts (issue of national guideline/directive).

  • Supporting improved service delivery for MIYCN within the RMNCH platforms in Senegal, and assist in creating enabling environments for the delivery of MIYCN priorities, performance targets and results.

  • Providing technical guidance in identifying the technical needs and priorities for TA and capacity development required for MIYCN within the RMNCH platforms.

  • Attending National workshops with key actors to share the new WHO ANC guidelines and update on compliance with these new ANC guidelines particularly the Ca+ supplementation to pregnancy women and the diet diversity of pregnant women.

  • Pursuing formative research on diet diversity of pregnant women and young children in Senegal (a consultant will be hired to conduct this specific research and Aita will help to draft the SOW of the research).

  • Ensuring capacity development to enhance knowledge of and ability to program evidence-based MIYCN interventions within the RMNCH platforms.

  • Guiding counterparts in developing terms of reference and scopes of work for TA, and managing consultancy outputs to ensure quality of deliverables at both provincial and district level.

  • Organizing and managing technical meetings and workshops (national and regional ECOWAS level), including developing design and technical materials and ensuring achievement of desired outputs.

  • Taking the lead in supporting the national government in following areas:

a) Reviewing health policies and strategies and institutional frameworks for improving MIYCN services and outcomes within the RMNCH platforms.

b) Reviewing the overall health systems at provincial and district level in terms of their effectiveness in facilitating MIYCN services to the beneficiaries.

c) Reviewing the leadership and governance mechanisms that affect MIYCN service delivery.

  • Develop and/or contribute written technical expertise to thought leadership pieces, concept notes, program plans, tools, materials, advocacy, monitoring and evaluation, and SBC approaches, messages, materials, and tools;

  • Contribute to writing program reports and collating and synthesizing data and presenting the evidence in simple and easy to understand formats as required by FMOH and A&T.

  • Facilitate the activities of international and regional consultants and partners as directed.

Implementation:

  • Develop and/or support the development of A&T relationships with regional and national donors and government and non-government partners;

  • Assist in the scoping and delivery of technical assistance to governments and partners;

  • Provide technical input, leadership, and coordination for the design and implementation of all program components, particularly but not solely in A&T’s four key components: policy advocacy, SBC, and strategic use of data;

  • Oversee the use of data on evidence, program design, program monitoring and advocacy/policy, in the delivery of high quality MIYCN services, and evaluation of innovations in the region;

  • Facilitate and maintain close communication and coordination with the A&T staff at HQ, and in the regionally-based offices, and consultants;

  • Ensure effective use of A&T policies and procedures regarding program design, procurement and communication, in consultation with A&T HQ.

  • Other duties as assigned.

REQUIRED SKILLS AND QUALIFICATIONS:

Education:

  • Medical degree or PhD in health sciences preferred.

  • Master’s degree in one of the following or related fields: Medicine, Public Health, Human Nutrition, International Health, Behavior Change Communications or Behavioral Science.

Experience:

  • Typically requires 5-8 years of experience in a specialized technical/medical field of study.

  • Prefer 10 years of relevant experience required with at least 2 years in a senior technical leadership role providing technical input to a large scale international nutrition or public health project in a developing country (preferably francophone West Africa).

  • Expert knowledge of MIYCN, infant and young child feeding and maternal nutrition global recommendations, programs and policies

  • Familiarity with the Senegalese public health system and government actors.

  • Extensive knowledge of nutrition indicators, especially MIYCN data collection, analysis, and reporting

  • Oversight and/or design or large-scale program implementation and/or operations research of community activities

Skills:

  • Ability to work independently, assess priorities, and manage a variety of activities while communicating, connecting, and collaborating with HQ and field office staff, subcontractors, and a broad coalition of international agencies, government and NGO partners

  • Strong interpersonal and diplomacy skills

  • Outstanding organizational skills

  • Excellent problem-solving skills

  • Excellent writing, editorial, and communication skills, including strong oral presentation skills

  • Fluency in French and English required

Travel:

  • Travel outside of duty station at least 40-50% time. Possible travel to the US.

This job description summarizes the main duties of the job. It neither prescribes nor restricts the exact tasks that may be assigned to carry out these duties. This document should not be construed in any way to represent a contract of employment. Management reserves the right to review and revise this document at any time.FHI 360 fosters the strength and health of its workforce through a competitive benefits package, professional development and policies and programs that support healthy work/life balance. Join our global workforce to make a positive difference for others — and yourself.

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