Local recruitment: Gender & Youth Specialist (“Addressing Climate Vulnerability in the Water Sector (ACWA) in the Marshall Islands")

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

Majuro, Marshall Islands 🇲🇭

Background
 

The project “Addressing Climate Vulnerability in the Water Sector (ACWA) in the Marshall Islands)” implemented by the Government of the Republic of Marshall Islands (GoRMI) in collaboration with UNDP became operational in January 2020 with the objective to address expected impacts of climate change on water security on Republic of Marshall Islands (RMI).

RMI is a small island developing state in the Pacific.  The nation is a large-ocean state, with a total land area of only 182 km2, spread across over 2 million km2 of ocean.  There are 24 inhabited atolls and islands, which are mostly remote and lie merely 2 m above sea level on average.  There are no rivers, streams or lakes in RMI and the number of small surface ponds is very limited.

GoRMI, with the assistance of UNDP, has developed a project on adaptation to climate change impacts to water supply in RMI.  The project is co-financed by GoRMI and Green Climate Fund (GCF).  The project will build resilience to the impacts of climate change on water supply, particularly in 24 atolls and islands that are highly vulnerable to drought. The project will invest in improving water security, water resilience and water governance through:

  • Water Security – Improving household and community rainwater harvesting and storage structures to increase resilience of water supply in 77 rural communities in the outer islands and atolls accounting for approximately 28% of RMI’s population, including 7,630 (49%) women, currently at risk.
  • Water Resilience – Securing groundwater resources from contamination due to inundation caused by wave overtopping of seawater.
  • Water Governance – Strengthening the technical capacities of national and subnational institutions and key stakeholders to integrated climate change risks into water governance processes so that management of climate change risks are coordinated, effective, participatory, equitable, and sustained over the long-term when risks are expected to worsen.

From a gender equity and social inclusion (or GESI) perspective, it is clear that improving water quality and supply at both community and household level through the project will create more equitable access to water resources for vulnerable groups including women, children, the elderly and those with disabilities, and will improve health and education outcomes, enhance livelihoods, and reduce household and community level conflict caused by water shortages.

The project aligns with GoRMI’s key climate change policies and strategies and has been developed through extensive consultation with government, Non-Government Organisations (NGOs), Community-Based Organisations (CBOs) and beneficiary communities. The proposed project is aligned with RMI’s NDC and country work programme to the GCF.  The NDA has issued a letter of no-objection and the proposed project is aligned with the work programme of the AE (UNDP) selected by the NDA.

This GCF project will be executed by UNDP, in close partnership with the GoRMI, given UNDP’s extensive experience in implementing climate change adaptation projects globally. The project implementation will be led by a team based in Majuro, RMI and Suva, Fiji.

 
Duties and Responsibilities
 

Under the direct supervision of the Project Manager, the Gender and Youth Specialists will be responsible for ensuring that gender and youth concerns are fully addressed by the project by working closely with all project staff and with communities as needed and implementing the gender equity and social inclusion (or GESI) Action Plan. The Gender and Youth Specialists will also seek inputs from and consult with the UNDP Pacific Office Gender Team as well as Regional Technical Specialists (RTA) and Gender Expert from the Bangkok Regional Hub (BRH) for guidance. The consultant is expected to be guided by the examples and best practices from the GESI strategy and action plans of other GCF approved projects, as well as by the priorities of the relevant government policies such as the RMI National Water and Sanitation Policy and the RMI National Climate Change Policy Framework.

The main objectives of the Gender and Youth Specialist role are to:

  1. Review the GESI Action Plan under Annex J of the Project Document; and
  2. Develop a GESI Strategy and finalize the GESI Action Plan for the RMI ACWA project.

Key GESI implications identified in the GESI Action Plan that will need to be taken into consideration in the community level project design and implementation include:

  • Ensure the initial Water Resource Survey to be conducted in all targeted rural communities at project inception captures the views of women, men and youth.
  • Ensure women, men and youth are equitably represented and actively involved in all Community-based Water Committees.
  • Train women and youth from targeted communities in operations and maintenance (O&M) and construction skills of household and rainwater harvesting systems, groundwater wells etc.
  • Ensure new Standard Operating Procedures for household and community water security measures are gender and age sensitive.
  • Work with the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) to improve water testing capabilities at community level and ensure that women and youth are involved in this process.
  • Ensure that drought warnings and other relevant weather information is conveyed in accessible formats to all community members so that everyone has access to information required for improved readiness.
  • Facilitate Inter-island knowledge exchange visits with women and youth sharing experience and best practice on climate change risk reduction on water resources.
  • The Gender and Youth specialists will take the lead in implementing the GESI Strategy and Action Plan for the RMI ACWA project. It will be the joint responsibility of the entire project team and key stakeholder groups to ensure that the GESI quantitative and qualitative outcomes in the GESI Action Plan are achieved.

Summary of Key Functions:

Ensure that the community level project design and implementation takes into consideration the GESI Strategy and GESI Action Plan. The following are some of the areas the consultant will be expected to focus on to facilitate development of the Strategy and the Action Plan:

  • Review the GESI Action Plan under Annex J of the Project Document;
  • Review available national laws and policy document(s) in RMI on gender and social inclusion;
  • Review key project planning documents to inform suggestions on specific gender-implementation strategies and actions;
  • Review the roles and responsibilities of project partners with regards to developing the GESI Action Plan;
  • Review GESI strategies of other approved GCF adaptation projects;
  • Consult with the GCF’s Gender Policy and Action Plan;
  • Consult with the GCF document on mainstreaming gender and social inclusion in GCF programmes;
  • Assess existing institutional, policy and legal frameworks of sectors relevant to ensuring gender mainstreaming in the project’s implementation;
  • Assess gender sensitiveness of the:
    1. project objectives
    2. project activities and
    3. project indicators and targets.
  • Identify gender and youth inequality issues specific to the project’s proposed activities, such as barriers to women’s and girl’s participation in decision making, capacity building and climate change adaptation planning;
  • Identify opportunities to address the gender and youth related barriers;
  • Identify gaps and strategies for collecting age and sex disaggregated data for conducting gender analysis and project reporting;
  • Identify appropriate gender and youth sensitive indicators, targets and activities in the implementation of the project; and
  • Conduct consultation meetings with the relevant public and private sectors, line ministries, women’s groups and NGOs, development partners and the local communities to improve gender equality and empowerment outcomes for the project.

Key Deliverables:

  • Preparation of Inception Report to include the following:
    1. detailed recommendations from the review of the GESI Action Plan under Annex J of the Project Document;
    2. detailed technical approach, methodology to be adopted and a concise work plan to achieve the RMI ACWA GESI Strategy & Action Plans.
  • Gender and youth targeted, stakeholder consultations in Majuro with field travel to the project sites in the remote communities as required.
  • Final GESI Strategy and Action Plan that includes an associated timeline and budget (incorporating feedback from the project team and the project’s corporate team). 
 
Competencies
 

Functional Competencies:

Job Knowledge/Technical Expertise

  • Understands gender equity and social inclusion issues, particularly related to climate change and water supply security and resilience;
  • Understands the general issues of climate change and water supply security and resilience, especially in the low-lying island context;
  • Keeps abreast of the new developments in the area of professional discipline and job knowledge and seeks to development him/herself professionally.

Promoting Organizational Change and Development

  • Documents ‘best practices’ in organizational change and development to address GES issues within and outside the UN system
  • Demonstrates ability to identify problems and proposes solutions

Client Orientation

  • Anticipate Government needs;
  • Works toward creating an enabling environment for a smooth relationship between the Government and UNDP;
  • Keeps the Government informed of problems or delays in the provision of services;
  • Solicits feedback on service provision and quality.

Building Strategic Partnerships

  • Effectively networks with partners seizing opportunities to build strategic alliance relevant to UNDP´s mandate and agenda;
  • Identifies needs and interventions for capacity-building of the Government, potential partners and project staff;
  • Sensitizes UN partners, donors and other international organizations to UNDP´s agenda identifying areas for joint efforts.

Core Competencies:

  • Demonstrates commitment to the GoRMI mission, vision and values.
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability
  • Focuses on result for the client and responds positively to feedback
  • Consistently approaches work with energy and a positive, constructive attitude
  • Remains calm, in control and good humoured even under pressure
  • Demonstrates openness to change and ability to manage complexities
  • Good inter-personal and teamwork skills, networking aptitude, ability to work in multicultural environment.

Compliance with UN Core Values:

  • Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN’s values and ethical standards;
  • Promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of UNDP;
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability;
  • Treats all people fairly without favouritism;
  • Fulfils all obligations to gender sensitivity and zero tolerance for sexual harassment. 
 
Required Skills and Experience
 

Education:

  • Degree in development, gender, rural development, climate change adaptation or related fields.

Experience:

  • At least 10 years’ experience in conducting gender analysis and developing gender strategies in the climate change adaptation sector.
  • Demonstrated expertise in gender issues in the climate change adaptation sector.
  • Demonstrated experience on working with stakeholders in the government as well as development partners on gender issues.
  • Proven experience of conducting similar nature of assignment in the past preferably for UN organizations.
  • Ability to operate in different cultural settings and with a variety of stakeholders who are culturally and gender sensitive.
  • Experience on working in the Pacific or sub-tropical environment – ideally in an atoll island environment.

Language Requirements:

  • Fluency in English (oral 

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DEGREE REQUIRED

LANGUAGE REQUIRED