1. Job context
As a result of the ongoing crisis in North West and South West Regions, affected persons’ mental health and well-being, growing incidences of self-harm is increasing in many communities. The drivers and associated risk factors of mental health issues are varied and complex including, amongst others, physical, sexual, and emotional violence, socio economic conditions, discrimination and exclusion, gender norms, being parents themselves, and being in humanitarian and fragile settings, as well as a lack of access to quality support and services. Failing to address mental health issues amongst IDPs, host communities and returnees can impact their physical and mental health. Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) is recognized as a cross cutting issue for sectors addressing health and social welfare of affected persons. MHPSS describes any type of local or outside support that aims to protect or promote psychosocial well-being and/or prevent or treat mental disorder. It is therefore, by definition, a multi-sectoral issue. Within the work of IRC, MHPSS activities do not constitute a separate sector, but are mainly realized within existing sectors and work fields such as community-based protection, child protection, and SGBV. The main task of the MHPSS Specialist is to build and maintain capacity for MHPSS interventions within IRC to foster delivery of quality MHPSS interventions for internally displaced persons, host communities and returnees.
2. Main Responsibilities:
The MHPSS Specialist will provide overall technical and programmatic oversight of IRC’s intervention in South – West. Accordingly, the MHPSS Specialist will be expected to contribute to programmatic outcomes of ECHO funded project. The MHPSS Specialist will be responsible for the following:
Program Management and Quality
– Lead the design of MHPSS interventions, tools and materials, leading training, and coaching IRC staff – Undertake regular site visits to assess MHPSS needs of persons of concern, with attention to people with specific needs – Support staff welfare in identification, recommendation, and referral of mental health related matters among staff – Support the development of functional referral and follow-up mechanisms between community, MHPSS services and protection partners. – Provide mental health and psychosocial support services along with health staff as needed – Actively lead or participate in coordination mechanisms in the area (e.g. Health, general coordination, potential MHPSS coordination group) and advocate for principles of IASC MHPSS guidelines – Ensure compliance of implementing partners with global protection policies and standards of professional integrity in the delivery of MHPSS services. – Upon indication, assist in assessing the MHPSS needs of persons of concern (people with high priority needs and or persons with complex or severe problems), initiate treatment and define appropriate follow up interventions. – Implement social and recreational activities in different affected communities – Share information on MHPSS services: when, where and how to access the services, provide feedback or complaint on services provided or staff conduct etc – Maintain a record of feedback from PoCs and sharing with relevant focal point or the Head of Office – Establish communication with communities’ mechanisms to address stigmatization and quality of rights in mental health. – Keep regular contacts with local authorities, Community leaders and partners
Staff Management and Development
– Coach, train, and mentor staff with the aim of strengthening their technical capacity, exchanging knowledge within the team, and providing professional development guidance on MHPSS. – Supervise and mentor staff, including communicating clear expectations, and in partnership with the direct line supervisor, setting performance objectives, providing regular and timely performance feedback, and contribute to the annual and mid-year performance reviews. – Provide constructive feedback and counsel on appropriate career paths and professional development – Promote and monitor staff care and well-being; approve and manage all leave requests to ensure adequate coverage – Provide leadership support for successful adherence by staff to IRC’s Global HR Operating Policies and Procedures. – Adhere to and act in accordance with the IRC Global HR Policies and Procedures and communicate through word and example a high standard of compliance with all applicable policies and regulations.
Project activities reporting
– Working closely with PROL Manager, design program reporting templates and ensure regular reporting from staff in the field – Ensure completion of monthly internal report highlighting progress of activities, trends, and contextual changes for reporting to region and external stakeholders – Ensure that all internal and external reporting requirements are met, that reports are of a high quality and are submitted on time – Ensure that adequate M&E systems and practices are in place to allow for data-driven programmatic decision making and reporting. – Prepare and submit weekly, monthly and three-month work plans in a timely manner, and incorporate supervisor feedback as requested; – Compile monthly activity report for submission to the PRoL Manager – Ensure that all relevant financial documentation is accurately completed and submitted, as required by IRC policies.
– Ensure all activities are carried out in accordance with IRC Operational policies. – Other duties as assigned by the supervisor to enable and develop IRC programs.
– Commit to respect the IRC Way (IRC Ethics) – Commit to ensuring optimal implementation of these policies in its framework. – Be available to perform any other punctual task deemed useful by his direct superior or the IRC – Produce programmatic activity reports at the end of each month.
Directly supervised by the Protection and Rule of Law Manager.
Required expertise, qualifications, and competencies, including language requirements:
University degree in (Master’s level or equivalent) in social work, mental health, psychology or related fields from a recognized university or academic institute
Knowledge and Experience:
– At least 3 – 5 years of specialized experience in community based psychosocial support interventions particularly as it relates to social norm change, and experience in this field at international level in a humanitarian context. – Demonstrated knowledge of IASC Guidelines on MHPSS in Emergency Settings. – Demonstrated experience on counseling skills and clinical supervision of lay counsellors. – Demonstrated experience developing technical curriculum and materials for delivery of MHPSS programming/activities in low resource settings. – Strong training and supervision experience required.
– Strong skills in communication including clear and concise writing skills and the ability to discuss MHPSS in an accessible and intelligible manner. – Strong interpersonal skills including for effective relationship management. Skilled in facilitating collective decision-making and consensus building. – Analytical thinking to support strategizing for the strengthening of MHPSS and peacebuilding interventions
Languages: – Fluency in oral and written English. Fluency in Pidgin English and/or a local language of the job location.
Place of Submission of Applications
The complete files should be deposited online or can also be deposited in an anonymous envelope bearing the mention: ” Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Specialist, Kumba Office” in the offices of IRC in Maroua district Pitoire; Yaoundé behind Usine Bastos, Kousseri Residential Area, Buea Camp sic, Bamenda Governor’s Street