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Senior Adviser - SWA, WASH Section, PD - New York HQ, # 00070665

Apply now Job no: 514209
Work type: Fixed Term Staff
Location: United States
Categories: WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene), P-5

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.

Hosted by UNICEF, Sanitation and Water for All, (SWA) is a global partnership of governments, external support agencies, civil society organizations and the private sector, united in their commitment to delivering universal access to water, sanitation and hygiene, in line with the Sustainable Development Goals.  Established in 2010, the SWA partnership works towards this goal by strengthening collaboration, improving performance, ensuring mutual accountability and seeking increased political support and financing for WASH.  The partnership is governed by a Steering Committee, elected by its members. UNICEF is a founder member of SWA, sits on SWA’s Steering Committee, and has hosted SWA’s Secretariat since 2010.

As part of this process, SWA is now seeking a highly-qualified individual who will support the SWA CEO and managing the work and performance of the Secretariat.  The COO will report to the Principal Adviser (Chief Executive Officer, SWA).

For every child, a good Health….

You will be responsible for managing the work and performance of the Secretariat of Sanitation and Water for All. You will also provide clear leadership to the Secretariat, and act with independence and initiative, balancing the requirements of accountability to the Steering committee with the supervisory role of UNICEF as the Secretariat host.

How can you make a difference?

Executive and Steering Committee Support

  • Support the Principal Advisor/CEO in his/her role as Secretary of the Sanitation and Water for All Steering Committee (as per the Governance Document).
  • Responsible for ensuring the Steering Committee has the resources it needs to provide leadership to the partnership, and will contribute to and oversee Secretariat staff as they carry out tasks determined by the Steering Committee, such as implementing the SWA strategy and workplan, drafting documentation, organising meetings and undertaking research.
  • Contribute to the direct support of the Steering Committee and its working groups as needed, and oversee Secretariat staff as they carry out tasks in support of the Steering Committee.

SWA Partnership Meeting

  • Lead in designing, planning and organising the Partnership Meeting, overseeing the Secretariat staff to carry out their responsibilities with respect to organisation of the Partnership Meeting.

SWA High Level Meetings and Other Events

  • Lead the planning, organisation and documentation of all High-Level Meetings convened by SWA, and SWA’s engagement in other high-level events (for example, side-meetings to the UN General assembly, the High Level Political Forum, etc.). It will also provide support to the roll-out of SWA’s Mutual Accountability Mechanism.

Country Engagement

  • The Senior Adviser will ensure that the Secretariat fosters the creation of awareness and understanding of the components of the SWA framework; supports partners to put the SWA framework into practice ; facilitates knowledge exchange between and among partners; increases visibility of the sector at the political level and ensuring evidence is put into the hands of decision-makers and influential leaders; rolls out the SWA accountability mechanism and mobilizes and orients new SWA partner countries, as well as re-activates old partners


  • Set out in approved workplans and budgets, and are achieved in a timely and resource efficient manner. He/she will ensure that Secretariat staff discharge their duties satisfactorily, and that progress and financial expenditure are correctly monitored and reported. 
  • Ensure that SWA related High-Level and Ministerial meetings, and meetings of SWA’s Steering Committee, are efficiently organised, with high quality preparation and coordination, with action points formally recorded. 
  • Closely monitor the staffing and financial resourcing of the Secretariat, addressing related issues appropriately, and ensuring that major problems are brought to the attention of the Coordinator for resolution.

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

  • An advanced university degree (Master’s or higher) in one or more of the following disciplines: social sciences, environmental health, and public health, with specialization in the area of water, sanitation and hygiene field is required.
  • A minimum of Ten (10) of relevant professional experience at the national and international levels in the field of partnerships, programme management, strategic planning, policy and strategy development is required.
  • Sector experience at the local, country and global level and familiarity with UNICEF.
  • Experience must be very familiar with current developments, research, best practices and global policy direction in the sector – including in the areas of water, sanitation, hygiene promotion, school WASH, environmental programming and programme integration with health and education.
  • Prior experience in knowledge management and developing tools for monitoring is highly desirable.
  • Fluency in English (written and verbal) is required. Knowledge of another official UN language (Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian or Spanish) or a local language is an asset.

For every Child, you demonstrate…

Our core values of Commitment, Diversity and Integrity and core competencies in Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results. To view our competency framework, please click here.

Mobility is a condition of international professional employment with UNICEF and an underlying premise of the international civil service.

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.

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Applications close: Eastern Daylight Time

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