Position: Program Assistant
Supervisor: State Team Lead
Program Duration: November 2018 to March 31, 2020
Alive & Thrive is an initiative to save lives, prevent illness, and ensure healthy growth and development through improved breastfeeding and complementary feeding practices. In its first five years (2009 to 2014), A&T demonstrated that innovative approaches to improving feeding practices could be delivered with impact and at scale in Bangladesh, Ethiopia, and Viet Nam. Alive & Thrive continues its work there and is supporting others to scale up nutrition by applying and adapting tested, proven approaches and tools in Burkina Faso, India, Southeast Asia, and Nigeria. Alive & Thrive is funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the governments of Canada and Ireland and is managed by FHI360.
The A&T Program Assistant will work closely with State Team Lead (Associate Director), to provide technical assistance (TA) and program oversight in the design and implementation of A&T Nigeria’s Program implementation portfolio in the state. This portfolio will be focused on the design, implementation, and monitoring of the A&T program components and its partners’ implementation of these.
The position is responsible for providing IYCF technical and program coordination of Implementing Partners in the State – SCI and WBFA and ensuring IYCF (IPC/CM) activities conducted at Intervention LGAs are well coordinated including tracking and reporting on the improvement of breastfeeding and complementary feeding practices in supported LGAs. In addition, the Program Assistant will work closely with LGA/Community stakeholders to ensure tracking of community mobilization activities for improved IYCF coverage.
The Program Assistant will also support the Technical Officer, M&E in the implementation of an integrated M&E system for A&T to track the inputs, processes, outputs and outcomes of each of A&T Nigeria’s core activities, whether directly carried out by A&T or by its international and local subcontractors and partners.
The Nigeria A&T IYCF social and behavior change program focuses on improving rates of early initiation of breastfeeding, exclusive breastfeeding, timely introduction of complementary feeding, and minimum dietary diversity for infants over 6 months old. A&T will work across the public, commercial/private, and NGO sectors to improve IYCF through A&T’s four components: advocacy, interpersonal communication and community mobilization, mass communication, and strategic use of data. At the national level, A&T will predominantly work with its public, private/commercial, and NGO sector partners (Scaling Up Nutrition and other national IYCF initiatives) to improve the implementation, monitoring, and enforcement of key IYCF policies (Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes; maternity entitlements; work place policies; breastfeeding-friendly health care and delivery facilities). A&T will also work in two states—Lagos (metropolitan) and Kaduna (urban and rural)—to apply the four components to reach households, communities, and facilities with targeted, age-appropriate social and behavior change communication (SBCC) messaging on IYCF practices.
At both the national level and in the two states, while the emphasis is to build the capacity of the public sector to improve IYCF practices, the involvement and resources from the private and commercial sectors is actively pursued to advance IYCF policies, expand the promotion of positive social norms, and extend timed and age-appropriate behavior change messaging through private and commercial facilities to households and communities. Formative research was conducted to further understand target populations and audiences (stakeholders, providers, beneficiaries), and monitoring systems have been established to ensure that program inputs, outputs, and outcomes are tracked and fed back into improving the program.
ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS:
Provide capacity building (TA and training) as needed in IYCF Program implementation, strategic collection and use of IYCF data.
Assist the State Team Lead to develop/refine Program implementation plans for A&T programming including suggesting possible learning / improvement opportunities based on the plan of action and project log-frame.
Provide TA to IYCF Implementing partners & A&T sub-grantees in Lagos/Kaduna states to improve the quality of implementation, to track the inputs, processes, outputs, and outcomes of the supervisor-health care worker-community volunteer connection to the community and households. This may include TA to develop implementation work plans, data collection strategies, activities, analysis and reporting formats.
Work with Health facility staff on IYCF documentation, data analysis and data display
Help interpret and disseminate data on IYCF and ensure that results are reported to clients and partners.
Keep abreast of international developments concerning programming strategies for IYCF projects and share state-of-the-art information, tools, and approaches with A&T Nigeria and partners.
Participate in various state working groups and task forces related to IYCF.
Specific roles/responsibilities include:
Support and provide technical oversight on IPC and CM Scale up activities as implemented by SCI and WBFA in all A&T’s intervention LGAs.
Continuously liaising with high level officials within the state government, key stakeholders across the SMOH, SMEPB/KSPHCDA and relevant professional bodies towards work plan costing and harmonization
Rallying with state offices and implementing partners including Save the Children, The Wellbeing Foundation for Africa on development, submission and tracking of work plans and other planning and reporting documents
Supporting Capacity Building, Training of Trainers sessions for Nutrition focal persons, Local Government Health teams and Health workers within the state.
Supporting the planning of local project implementation team meetings in Intervention locations and managing relationships with LGA health teams, implementing partners and stakeholders at the state, LGA and Community levels
Providing regular monitoring and supportive supervision to project sites within implementation locations and actively interacting with partners and key players in the IYCF sector within the state
Collating and compiling monthly data reports and project updates
Preparing requests for program implementation related costs
Ensuring monthly or quarterly follow up with Health workers and community mobilizers through review and feedback meetings
Contribute to the development of A&T annual work plans, budgets (especially the program implementation component) and project reports and ensure timely reporting and responses to requests for information to HQ.
Present/disseminate program results, based on program experience to GON platforms, projects and partners, and other professional colleagues and organizations in Nigeria.
Other duties as assigned.
The above statements are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by people assigned to this job. They are not intended to be an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, skills, efforts, or working conditions associated with a job.
REQUIRED SKILLS AND QUALIFICATIONS:
Bachelor’s degree in public health, nutrition, demography, statistics, or related field.
At least 1-3 year of programming experience in Nigeria (similar global experience may be acceptable) required in a role providing technical input to a large-scale nutrition or public health/development project.
Public health/nutrition field experience in designing, implementing, monitoring and reporting on various types of service delivery platforms (i.e. interpersonal communication, community mobilization and mass communication).
Experience working with routine health facility and community reporting tools
Knowledge, skills and abilities:
Knowledge of health and development programming in a developing country.
Working knowledge of major donor policies as well as international not-for-profit organizations.
Proven ability to coordinate a multi-sectoral development project.
Ability to organize systems to monitor administrative and implementation results.
Basic budget tracking or financial management skills.
Previous experience with website content development, success story writing, or social media a plus.
Training and presentation skills would be an added advantage.
Ability to work independently with initiative to manage high volume work flow.
Cultural sensitivity and diplomacy.
Excellent written, oral and interpersonal communication skills with ability to work as a team member.
Ability to plan and prioritize own work under tight deadlines, as well as to work on own initiative and as a member of a team.
Computer proficiency in Word, Excel, Internet and other relevant software.
Ability to travel up to 50% of the time.
Excellent written and oral communication skills in English; fluency in Yoruba strongly preferred.
Special Requirements: This job will require a criminal background check.
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.
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