Environmental Health (EH) Operational Advisor via ReliefWeb

Médecins Sans Frontières

Brussels, , BE

Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is an international humanitarian aid organisation that provides assistance in more than 60 countries to populations in distress, to victims of natural or manmade disasters and to victims of armed conflicts, without discrimination and irrespective of religion, creed or political affiliation. To develop this work from our headquarters in Brussels, the Environmental Health Unit of the Operational Centre Brussels is looking for an: Environmental Health (EH) Operational Advisor (m/f)


The Medical Department is in charge of the medical aspects of MSF-OCB programs. It provides direct support to missions, as well as training and research. It is made up of medical polyvalent collaborators in the Operational Cells and referents from various technical backgrounds outside the cells.

The Environmental Health unit is based in the Medical Department, but operates with a trans-departmental logic whereby persons are seconded to other relevant departments to ensure a close collaboration (e.g. operational Department, HR Department). The Environmental Health (EH) unit is composed of:

· Four operational advisors seconded to the operational department with emergency and regional program support responsibilities

· One mobile technical support and implementation specialist seconded to the operational department

· One mobile medical entomologist in support of the Vector Control activities

· One hydrogeological specialist in support of the Groundwater Oriented Project (GOPRO)

· One HR & Training focal point seconded to the operational department with HR support responsibilities.

· One innovation and support focal point providing support and centralizing innovation of EH technologies.

· A EH unit coordinator situated in the medical department to assure adequate coherence and coordination

The Environmental Health objectives of MSF are defined in common accord with the medical director and in function of operational priorities and tendencies. The concretisation of these objectives in transversal operational activities on the field requires an active collaboration with colleagues of the operational, logistical and medical department. The definition and elaboration of appropriate strategies are based on medical needs. The EH objectives of MSF as defined in the mandate are:

§ To support and promote good hygienic environments in medical infrastructures

§ To define and support the implementation of better strategies of immediate response in emergencies

§ To promote and organize the preventive health aspects linked with water, hygiene and sanitation of MSF programs in emergencies and in longer term programs

§ To promote Environmental Health strategies that improve the impact and the sustainability of the systems installed, by emphasizing:

  • The participation of the beneficiaries throughout the whole project cycle

  • The use of appropriate technologies

  • Developing counterparts and their capacities

§ Assure continuation of ongoing networking with the other MSF sections, with universities, with the WASH sector at large, with WHO and with specific diseases-oriented initiatives (e.g. Global Task Force for Cholera Control, Antimicrobial Resistance etc …)

The concretization of these EH objectives in transversal operational activities on the field requires an active and close collaboration with colleagues of the operational, logistical and medical department. The definition and elaboration of appropriate strategies are based on medical needs.


MSF operations/field visits and assessments

The EH operational advisor will:

· Participate in exploratory missions, emergencies (in an advisory, operational and support capacity), program support visits and project committee meetings

· Evaluate EH programs (pre-, ongoing- and post-), specific EH activities within projects, project proposals, EH personnel in the field

· Participate in the development of appropriate project strategies

· Provide advice on selection of EH personnel in accordance with the specialties required

MSF field support for 2 Operational Cells

The EH operational advisor will be required, while in the Head Office in Brussels, to provide support to field operations. This


· providing advice to the Operational Cells, mission staff and project staff in the field

· proposing projects (and staff) strategic development,

· following-up and monitoring of projects

· briefing and debriefing project staff

MSF Training

The EH operational advisor will participate in presenting MSF training modules. Participation in review and design of training will also be required.

Capitalization of experiences and Operational Research

The EH operational advisor will be responsible for the capitalization of experiences in addition to the follow-up on operational research and development of new EH technologies. Also required is a continuous assessment of the adequacy of MSF standard equipment and strategies for operations.


· Trained specialist or engineer in the water, hygiene and sanitation sector

· Previous MSF experience in emergency situations is essential, particularly in EH context

· Expertise/interest in the technical and human related aspects of the following topics: Water Supply – Excreta Disposal – Waste Water management – Waste Management – Vector Control

· Experience in defining, monitoring and evaluating EH-strategies/activities in Medical Programs is an advantage

· Be ready to spend about 40% of its time in the field and to work flexible working hours

· Working knowledge of English and French. Knowledge of other languages is an asset

· Efficiently combines a strong short-term focus on concrete results with a more proactive, strategic and therefore long-term approach.

· Demonstrates analytical skills, critical sense and is able to take decisions.

· Works as a part of a team and cross functionally but also autonomously.

· Stress resilient.

· Sociability and team spirit

· Adherence to the MSF principles and to our managerial values: Respect, Transparency, Integrity, Accountability, Trust and Empowerment and to the MSF Behavioral Commitments


· Full-time contract of indefinite period – Based in Brussels with frequent field visits

· Hospital Insurance (DKV) – Pension plan – Canteen – 100% reimbursement for public transportation costs

· Start of contract: June 2020

How to apply

Deadline for application: latest 7th of June 2020

CV + cover letter to be sent to Caroline Maes, Rue de l’Arbre Bénit, 46 – 1050 Brussels or to [email protected]

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