WASH Specialist

United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)

Panama City, Panama 🇵🇦

Job no: 565656
Contract type: Fixed Term Appointment
Duty Station: Panama City
Level: P-4
Location: Panama
Categories: WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene)

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.

For every child, hope. 

UNICEF LACRO works for ensuring that regional and national stakeholders have increased evidence and capacity to develop and monitor policies and programmes that address equitable access to safe and sustainable drinking water, sanitation and hygiene services in communities in urban settings and in fragile and humanitarian contexts. The pillars of the strategic interventions for WASH agenda include: Evidence-based advocacy for equity policies and dialogue with risk informed lens; promotion of innovative means to reach the underserved, poorest and most vulnerable women, girls and children with focus on ending open defecation/feacal contamination; strengthening capacities to plan, fund and deliver equitable, affordable, climate resilient WASH services to the underserved and most vulnerable; support across sectoral linkages, regional and South-South cooperation to promote successes, stimulate demand, social accountability and political will towards serving the underserved and most vulnerable; strengthen regional networks on climate resilient WASH, risk reduction, preparedness and humanitarian WASH response with a focus on most vulnerable and at risk communities in both urban/peri-urban and rural settings. 

How can you make a difference? 

The WASH Specialist reports to the Regional Climate Change Adviser(P-5) for general guidance and direction. The Specialist  supports the Regional Climate Change Adviser in managing the WASH section, and in leading the development, preparation, management, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of the WASH programme within the Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) region. The Specialist provides technical guidance and management support throughout the programming processes, to ensure the achievement of the WASH-related output results in the LAC region. The Specialist provides advisory services to UNICEF Country Offices (COs),  governments and sector support agencies.

Key functions/accountabilities

  1. Management support to the Regional Climate Change Adviser
  2. Programme development and planning
  3. Programme management, monitoring and delivery of results
  4. Advisory services and technical support
  5. Advocacy, networking and partnership building
  6. Humanitarian WASH preparedness and response
  7. Innovation, knowledge management and capacity building

For further details on the responsibilities for the WASH specialist, please refer to the job profile: Download File WASH Specialist P4.pdf

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

  • An advanced university degree (Master’s or higher) in Environmental Public Health, Civil Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Geology, Hydrogeology, or Sanitation Engineering, or other related field. 
  • A minimum of 8 years of relevant professional experience in WASH-related programmes for developing countries is required.
  • Developing country work experience and/or familiarity with emergency is considered an asset. 
  • Fluency in English and Spanish is required. Knowledge of another official UN language (Arabic, Chinese, French, or Russian or Spanish) or Portugues is an asset. 

For every Child, you demonstrate…

UNICEF’s Core Values of Care, Respect, Integrity, Trust and Accountability and Sustainability (CRITAS) underpin everything we do and how we do it. Get acquainted with Our Values Charter: UNICEF Values

UNICEF competencies required for this post are…

(1) Builds and maintains partnerships (2) Demonstrates self-awareness and ethical awareness (3) Drive to achieve results for impact (4) Innovates and embraces change (5) Manages ambiguity and complexity (6) Thinks and acts strategically (7) Works collaboratively with others. (8) Nurtures, leads and manages people.

During the recruitment process, we test candidates following the competency framework. Familiarize yourself with our competency framework and its different levels: competency framework here.

UNICEF is here to serve the world’s most disadvantaged children and our global workforce must reflect the diversity of those children. The UNICEF family is committed to include everyone, irrespective of their race/ethnicity, age, disability, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, nationality, socio-economic background, or any other personal characteristic.
We offer a wide range of benefits to our staff, including paid parental leave, breastfeeding breaks and reasonable accommodation for persons with disabilities. UNICEF strongly encourages the use of flexible working arrangements.
UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF is committed to promote the protection and safeguarding of all children. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks, and will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.


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

UNICEF appointments are subject to medical clearance.  Issuance of a visa by the host country of the duty station, which will be facilitated by UNICEF, is required for IP positions. Appointments are also subject to inoculation (vaccination) requirements, including against SARS-CoV-2 (Covid). Government employees that are considered for employment with UNICEF are normally required to resign from their government before taking up an assignment with UNICEF. UNICEF reserves the right to withdraw an offer of appointment, without compensation, if a visa or medical clearance is not obtained, or necessary inoculation requirements are not met, within a reasonable period for any reason.

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

Advertised: 05 Sep 2023 Eastern Daylight Time
Deadline: 19 Sep 2023 Eastern Daylight Time






IHE Delft Institute for Water Education - MSc in Water and Sustainable Development