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WHO-MHPSS Expert-P4-Warsaw, Poland

Warsaw, Poland
Position Title: MHPSS Expert
Receiving Agency: WHO
Duration: 3 months with the possibility of an extension
Location: Warsaw, Poland
P Level: P4
Language: English required, Russian/Ukrainian/Polish an asset
  1. Background
The large-scale humanitarian emergency caused by the eruption of the war in Ukraine on 24 February 2022 has had a devastating human cost in subsequent weeks, resulting in over 6.5 million internally displaced individuals in Ukraine and over 12 million affected. As of 29 March, over 4 million Ukrainians have entered surrounding countries as refugees, 2.3 million of which entered Poland.

Mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) is a crucial, cross-cutting area of emergency response. Experiencing armed conflicts, war, displacement, family separation, witnessing atrocities, and other life-threatening events can have immense and often long-lasting negative consequences for people’s mental health, particularly for groups such as children, women, and people with existing mental health conditions.

The delivery of effective MHPSS interventions early on in humanitarian emergency situations is one of the most important means of mitigating lasting suffering due to mental ill-health. To be effective, these interventions must be well-coordinated, informed by a comprehensive but rapid assessment of needs, fully based on a participatory approach (i.e., involvement of national authorities, local communities, and refugees themselves in their development and roll-out), integrated with the delivery of other health and social protection services, and fully compliant with international human rights standards.

To this end, WHO is seeking a consultant to provide technical MHPSS expertise in Poland for the refugees arriving there, including coordination of the MHPSS response as part of the established technical working group, contributing to the development of various communications outputs, and regular updating on the progress in implementing MHPSS actions in Poland.
  1. Deliverables
The consultant will perform the following tasks over the contracting period:
  • Lead WHO’s MHPSS activities in Poland, including co-chairing the MHPSS Technical Working Group under the Interagency Refugee Coordination Structure in Poland.
  • Organize capacity-building activities on WHO evidence-based MHPSS interventions.
  • Analyze on an ongoing basis the MHPSS situation for refugees and develop action plans to address emerging issues.
  • In close collaboration with WHO Representative in Poland, develop a strategic approach for scaling up evidence-based MHPSS interventions.
  • Serve as a technical advisor in the development of the national MHPSS policy and Standard Operating Procedures and provide ongoing technical advisory services to the relevant government agencies and partners.
  • Contribute to the adaptation/design of MHPSS training materials and tools to respond to the specific and context-driven needs in Poland.
  • Deliver capacity-building actions, such as training of trainers, specialized training sessions, and awareness-raising initiatives (orientation seminars, mini-trainings, briefings, project reviews) for MHPSS Technical Working Group members and for the relevant government agencies in Poland.
  • Coordinate the MHPSS response in Poland with the response in other neighboring countries hosting refugees from Ukraine, and share best practices with MHPSS TWG leaders in other countries.
  • Support recruitment of a National MHPSS consultant in the WHO Country Office in Poland and provide induction training and supervision.
  • Provide regular (weekly) activity updates to the responsible officers at WHO Regional Office for Europe and participate, remotely or in person, in WHO meetings as required.
  • Provide monthly progress reports on WHO’s MHPSS activities and update situation reports for Poland as needed to reflect any pertinent changes in circumstances.
  • Contribute to resource mobilization and proposal writing
  1. Contract duration
15 June – 15 December 2022 (6 months)
  1. Qualifications, experience, skills and languages
Qualifications: First-level university degree, desirable in psychology.

Expert knowledge of:
  • International policy frameworks (WHO. Sphere, IASC) for reduction of public health problems related to mental health in emergency settings.
  • Implementation tools (e.g., WHO/UNHCR MHPSS assessment toolkit, psychological first aid field guide, mhGAP Humanitarian Intervention Guide, etc.)

Demonstrated ability to:
  • Provide expert advice on the development and implementation of MHPSS policies and programmes in the prevention and treatment of mental, neurological, and substance use disorders in emergency settings.
  • Plan and conduct capacity-building activities in MHPSS.
  • Work effectively in an emergency and humanitarian response context, under constraints, and meet deadlines.
  • Work on MHPSS with government health authorities
  • Collaborate on MHPSS across sectors

Experience required:
At least five years of relevant experience, at the national and international levels, in the assessment, development, and implementation of policies, strategies, and action plans for MHPSS in the context of emergencies. Experience in capacity building, developing, and promoting collaborative partnerships.

Relevant work experience in WHO, other UN agencies, and relevant non-governmental or humanitarian organizations.

Skills / Technical skills and knowledge:
  • Excellent oral and written communication and presentation skills
  • Strong interpersonal, negotiating, and consultative skills
  • Ability to work effectively in a team and familiarity with working in a multicultural environment
  • Ability to bring diverse individuals together able to encourage the discussion of challenging subjects

  • Excellent English is essential
  • Knowledge of other UN languages is desirable

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