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Senior Research and Policy Officer (humanitarian contexts)

Deadline: 5 December Download job description

Girls Not Brides is seeking a Senior Research and Policy Officer to lead the secretariat’s efforts to bridge research and practice and foster effective action to address child marriage in humanitarian contexts.[1] This newly-created role will be responsible for collating insights from civil society organisations on strategies to address child marriage and support married girls in humanitarian contexts, supporting our regional teams in their work with Girls Not Brides members and National Partnerships in specific country contexts, and supporting our policy & advocacy team in encouraging greater investment in initiatives to prevent child marriage and support married girls by humanitarian actors. The role will lead on learning initiatives for member organisations based in the Middle-East, and represent Girls Not Brides on various external humanitarian research groups and programmatic fora. The successful candidate will have a strong track record of working in the humanitarian sector, preferably on education, child protection, gender-based violence or sexual and reproductive health.

About Girls Not Brides

Girls Not Brides is the only global partnership entirely focused on creating and sustaining a worldwide movement to end child marriage, and ensuring that this movement leads to tangible change for the girls at risk or affected by the practice. We are a network of more than 1,300 civil society organisations in over 100 countries, all committed to working in partnership to end child marriage. Our vision is a world without child marriage where girls and women enjoy equal status with boys and men, and are able to achieve their full potential in all aspects of their lives.

Our members are diverse. They vary in size, location, and the type of work they do. They include groups focused on research and advocacy as well as programme implementers and service providers working directly in their communities in a variety of contexts. Our members address the issue of child marriage from various perspectives, including health, women’s and girls’ rights, child protection, education, economic empowerment and general development.

The global partnership is supported by the Girls Not Brides secretariat with teams in the UK (London), Mexico, Kenya, India and Senegal and has an annual budget of approximately £5 million. The secretariat coordinates and supports the activities of the Global Partnership in line with our 2017-2020 strategy, which was developed in consultation with 500 members and partners.

The Secretariat plays three broad roles in relation to our membership:

  • A central support and coordination body for the only global civil society partnership to end child marriage.
  • A representative of and advocate for civil society on efforts to end child marriage.
  • An expert resource on child marriage, and central actor in the global movement to end child marriage.

This role sits within the Learning Team, which works to build an understanding of why and how child marriage happens in different contexts, and what needs to be done to address it. It works to bridge research and practice by identifying and building consensus about solutions to address child marriage, collating and sharing research and evidence, and using this to support Girls Not Brides members’ work and advance knowledge and practice among the broader movement to end child marriage.

Salary:                             £35,000-£42,000, depending upon experience, plus a generous benefits package

Place of work:               Central London, with regular international travel

Accountable to:            Head of Learning

Key responsibilities

Support Girls Not Brides regional teams and members with humanitarian work in selected countries

  • Support regional teams and members to assess strategies to address child marriage in humanitarian contexts, including support needs of civil society, and develop and implement plans to address them.
  • Work with partnership and regional teams to identify strong humanitarian organisations at national and field level, to join the national movement to end child marriage.
  • Ensure a strong humanitarian lens is integrated into child marriage messaging frameworks developed by members.
  • Maintain an updated record of research and evidence on child marriage in humanitarian contexts in selected countries, and synthesise learning from members’ programmes in these contexts.

Lead efforts to connect learning from Girls Not Brides members in the Middle-East with a global learning agenda

  • Support learning across members in Middle-Eastern countries, including by managing consultants as needed.
  • Maintain an updated record of research, evidence and best practices on child marriage in humanitarian contexts in the Middle-East, and work with the communications team to amplify stories of change at the global level.
  • Track funding, consultation and speaking opportunities for members in the Middle-East and connect them where relevant.
  • Develop and implement a plan to support learning and capacity development needs identified by members in Lebanon.
  • Monitor and provide technical input as needed to external actors leading on the national strategy to address child marriage in Lebanon.

Represent Girls Not Brides on relevant research and programmatic groups, fora and events

  • Participate in inter-agency reference groups on early marriage in refugee and emergency settings at a global and regional level.
  • Assess opportunities to influence greater action by humanitarian actors to address child marriage.
  • Represent Girls Not Brides at relevant events with a focus on addressing child marriage in humanitarian contexts.

Review and share the latest research and evidence on child marriage with a focus humanitarian contexts

  • Maintain relationships with key researchers and NGOs across regions affected by humanitarian crises to build the evidence base around what works to address child marriage in humanitarian settings.
  • Review, synthesise and share findings from the latest research and evidence related to child marriage in humanitarian contexts globally.
  • Conduct desk research and synthesis of various thematic issues and prepare briefing documents, issue briefs and other materials to support the partnership’s work.
  • Prepare briefings and presentations for the secretariat on specific issues in advance of upcoming events, meetings and interviews.
  • Encourage relevant actors to fills research gaps on child marriage in humanitarian contexts.

Contribute to the work of the Learning Team

  • Lead on reporting on several indicators for the Learning Team’s monitoring and evaluation.
  • Represent the Learning Team at relevant events.
  • Assist in organising webinars, events and field visits.
  • Respond to enquiries from members and partners about latest research and resources related to child marriage.
  • Contribute to the Learning Team’s work in other priority areas.

Contribute to secretariat-wide work

  • Contribute to cross-team planning, design and evaluation of projects and initiatives.
  • Support the communications team in responding to media requests and external enquiries on relevant thematic areas.
  • Represent Girls Not Brides to external audiences on relevant thematic areas.
  • Write for the Girls Not Brides website on relevant thematic areas.
  • Proofread Girls Not Brides materials in French/Arabic.

Responsibilities of all staff members

  • Commit to the mission and vision of Girls Not Brides, putting them at the forefront of all planning, work and actions.
  • Uphold the core values of Girls Not Bridesin all areas of work and interactions with colleagues, members, partners and other stakeholders.
  • Comply with Girls Not Bridespolicies and processes, with particular note for safeguarding, the code of conduct and data protection.
  • Ensure that internal databases and monitoring information are kept fully up-to-date.
  • Commit to ongoing personal development and learning.
  • Fulfil any other reasonable requests for the advancement of Girls Not Brides.

Person specification

Essential

  • Strong commitment to the aims and values of Girls Not Brides, including an understanding of approaches to empower girls and women, and to ensure gender equality.
  • Significant relevant professional experience, including experience working on education, child protection, gender-based violence or sexual and reproductive health issues in humanitarian settings.
  • Post-graduate qualification in a relevant area (such as public policy, development studies, humanitarian studies, international relations, human rights, refugee rights or gender issues) or proven experience in a related field.
  • Experience in capacity development and in designing and monitoring the impact of learning initiatives among non-governmental or civil society organisations, particularly in low and middle income countries.
  • Experience managing consultants in different regions.
  • Excellent ability to analyse and synthesise complex information and turn it into accessible materials.
  • Excellent written and spoken English.
  • Proficiency in the latest versions of all MS office suite, Dropbox and Google Drive.

Desirable

  • Excellent written and spoken Arabic.
  • Field experience in a conflict, disasters or forced displacement setting.
  • Proficiency in French.
  • Experience working (or strong knowledge of the local contexts) in some of the following countries: Uganda, South Sudan, Democratic Republic of Congo, Niger, Lebanon, Jordan and Bangladesh.
  • Policy and/or programme experience of working on child marriage, or broader work on the empowerment of girls and women.
  • Proficiency in Salesforce.

Safeguarding

At Girls Not Brides, we are committed to the wellbeing, empowerment and rights of children, and to safeguarding children from harm in all of our activities. Girls Not Brides aims to promote an environment of trust and understanding where the welfare of children is paramount. You will adhere to the Girls Not Brides Child Safeguarding Policy and its Code of Conduct and report any concerns relating to the safeguarding of children in accordance with agreed procedures.

Our core values

  • Collaboration
  • Determination
  • Inclusivity
  • Integrity
  • Pragmatism
  • Respect

How to apply

We are an equal opportunities employer and we welcome applications from all suitably qualified persons. To apply, please send your CV and a brief cover letter demonstrating how you meet the criteria for this position to recruitment@GirlsNotBrides.org by 17.00 GMT on 5 December 2019 clearly stating “Senior Research and Policy Officer (humanitarian contexts)” and your name in the subject line. First round interviews will take place on 17-18 December. We regret that due to the large number of applications anticipated, only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

[1] By “humanitarian contexts” we mean contexts of sudden onset or protracted conflicts or natural disasters, contexts in which other events represent a critical threat to the health, safety and wellbeing of communities (e.g. epidemics, famine and environmental emergencies), and situations of forced migration resulting from these events.