Latest jobs in Malawi

Social Policy Specialist at UNICEF

  • Full Time
  • Lilongwe, Malawi
  • Applications have closed
  • Salary: 000


Job no: 557193
Contract type: Fixed Term Appointment
Duty Station: Lilongwe
Level: P-3
Location: Malawi
Categories: Social Policy

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, a fair chance…

UNICEF Malawi Country Programme (2019-2023) is aligned with the Government of Malawi’s Growth and Development Strategy (MDGS III) and the United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF). The programme supports the Government of Malawi to meet its commitment to respect, protect and fulfil children’s rights in line with international conventions and standards. The country programme is guided by the principles of children’s rights, equity, gender equality, inclusion and resilience, and supports evidence-based, integrative and innovative programming. The vision is that ‘all girls and boys in Malawi, especially the most disadvantaged and deprived, realize their rights’.  The programme focuses on: early childhood (parenting, high-impact social services, early stimulation and learning), middle childhood and adolescence (learning, multi-sectoral services, active citizenship), communities (decentralized services and systems, community ownership, social norms), programme effectiveness (monitoring, evaluation, HACT, Innovation, Social Protection and Social Policy and External Communication.  The programme is based on ‘leaving no child behind’, realizing ‘rights for all children in Malawi’.

The Social Policy Programme in Malawi has been expanding significantly over the past years, and UNICEF is now at the forefront of social protection national coordination, policy development and implementation, with a focus on integrated cash transfers including in emergency mode. As Social Policy Specialist (Protection), you will be leading our innovative social protection agenda, managing a rich and ambitious portfolio that will have a direct impact on the well-being of Malawi’s poorest children and their families.

How can you make a difference?

Join our dynamic team where you will be accountable for engaging in social protection dialogue with the Government of Malawi for programme development, advocating for increased public resource allocation and budgeting towards the social protection sector and building local capacity in support of the goal of achieving equity and reaching the poorest and most vulnerable children and their families. This includes, but not limited to, supporting preparedness activities, building shock-sensitive systems, implementing and monitoring linkages between social protection and humanitarian work jointly with other UN agencies and iNGOs, and resilience activities, as well as greater integration with other social services (“cash plus”).

In your role, you will be under the supervision and overall guidance of the Chief of Social Policy.

This job therefore presents a unique and significant opportunity for a qualified, vibrant, motivated and committed person to contribute to the overall achievement of transformative results for children with professional excellence and by delivering on the following key responsibility areas, but not limited to – you are encouraged to read the attached and detailed job description Download File Job Description_P3 Social Policy Specialist (Social Protection)#92841.pdf in order to  view the full role and its requirements:

1. Constructive dialogue and partnerships are brokered between international and local social protection stakeholders to strengthen the social protection system, including development and use of shock responsive features.

2. Social protection interventions, including in emergency settings, are made effective and sustainable through adequate local support, ensuring that the poorest and most vulnerable are adequately reached. Coordination between sectors is increased and links between different levels of government structures for policy implementation are strengthened; capacity, learning and leadership of government staff is built, including for contingency planning and emergency preparedness for a strengthened humanitarian response and planning in future interventions.

3. “Cash Plus” interventions are conceptualized and operationalized to ensure the impact of cash is augmented by creating effective linkages with social sectors that are critical to child wellbeing.

4. Strategic evidence is generated to inform social protection advocacy, policy and programming.

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


  • Advanced university degree in social sciences, international relations, political science, international finance, or other relevant disciplines.

Work Experience

  • Five years of relevant professional work experience in the social protection sector.
  • Background/familiarity with emergency, cash-based programming and social protection at national and international levels, with significant emphasis on analysis and advice on the needs of children and women affected by emergencies.
  • Direct field experience in emergency and “cash plus” programme planning, management and coordination is a distinct advantage.
  • Relevant UN or international NGO experience is an asset.
  • Working experience in African countries facing emergencies would be a strong advantage.

Required Technical knowledge and skills:

  • Demonstrated knowledge of social cash transfers and social protection core systems.
  • Strong coordination, negotiation, communication and organizational skills.
  • Demonstrated solid skills for writing analytical and communicative documents for various audiences.

Language Proficiency

  • Fluency in English, both strong written and verbal skills are essential.

For every Child, you demonstrate…

UNICEF’s Core Values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust and Accountability and Sustainability (CRITAS) underpin everything we do and how we do it. Get acquainted with Our Values Charter:


UNICEF competencies required for this post are…

(1) Builds and maintains partnerships (2) Demonstrates self-awareness and ethical awareness (3) Drive to achieve results for impact (4) Innovates and embraces change (5) Manages ambiguity and complexity (6) Thinks and acts strategically (7) Works collaboratively with others and (8) Nurtures, leads and manages people.

During the recruitment process, we test candidates following the competency framework. Familiarize yourself with our competency framework and its different levels: competency framework 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.

We offer a wide range of benefits to our staff, including paid parental leave, breastfeeding breaks and reasonable accommodation for persons with disabilities. UNICEF strongly encourages the use of flexible working arrangements.

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 is committed to promote the protection and safeguarding of all children. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks, and will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles. 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.


The position is not considered an elevated risk role. However, UNICEF reserves the right to conduct further vetting/assessment within the scope of child safeguarding as appropriate.

UNICEF’s active commitment towards diversity and inclusion is critical to deliver the best results for children. For this position, eligible and suitable females are encouraged to apply.

UNICEF appointments are subject to medical clearance.  Issuance of a visa by the host country of the duty station, which will be facilitated by UNICEF, is required for IP positions. Appointments may also be subject to inoculation (vaccination) requirements, including against SARS-CoV-2 (COVID).

Government employees that are considered for employment with UNICEF are normally required to resign from their government before taking up an assignment with UNICEF.

UNICEF reserves the right to withdraw an offer of appointment, without compensation, if a visa or medical clearance is not obtained, or necessary inoculation requirements are not met, within a reasonable period for any reason.

UNICEF only considers higher educational qualifications obtained from an institution accredited/recognized in the World Higher Education Database (WHED), a list updated by the International Association of Universities (IAU) / United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). The list can be accessed at

The vacancy announcement is open to all candidates – both internal UNICEF staff holding permanent, continuing and fixed term appointments and external candidates.

Priority consideration will be given to eligible staff on the 2022 mobility lists, staff on abolished post and staff returning to service and on SHA.

Advertised: 15 Nov 2022 South Africa Standard Time
Deadline: 29 Nov 2022 South Africa Standard Time