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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

Associate Protection Officer: Girba, Sudan

April 26, 2013


 Application Deadline: May 24, 2013

Applications must be emailed to by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time on the date indicated in order to be considered. Thank you.

How to Apply:

Please note that PRM-sponsored JPO positions are open to U.S. Citizens only.

Applicants must submit a completed United Nations Personal History form (UN P-11) via email to by the deadline noted above. Applications received after the deadline will not be considered. The UN P-11 form is available for download from the UNHCR website at PRM will accept the UN P-11 form without a signature. If desired, you may also submit a resume, curriculum vitae and a letter of interest. Please specify the position for which you are applying in the Subject line of the email (i.e. Associate Protection Officer – Kabul, AFGHANISTAN). You must send a separate email and application for each position for which you are qualified and wish to be considered. For more information, please see the Frequently Asked Questions on the PRM website.

PRM Notes:

• For more information about UNHCR’s operations at this post, please visit the UNHCR website at

• Fluency in English required. Candidates proficient in a second UN language (French, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, or Russian) in addition to English are strongly preferred for participation in the JPO program.

• University degree in Law/International Law, Political Sciences, or International Relations required. An advanced degree is strongly preferred for participation in the PRM-sponsored JPO program.

• At least 4 years of relevant professional experience, including 2 years in an international capacity.

• Experience in International Refugee Law, in counseling refugees/asylum seekers, in social works (particularly children's rights and protection) and in individual case management.

• JPO contracts are initially issued for one (1) year and then renewed. U.S. JPOs are expected to serve a complete (2) two-year JPO term.

• The JPO job description and related information which follow are provided by UNHCR.

Job Description (JPO)


Title of the post: Associate Protection Officer (JPO)

Sector: Protection

Location/Duty Station: Girba Antenna Office

Duration of the assignment: Initial period of 1 year


Title and name of Supervisor: Ms. Samar Mazloum, RSD Officer/ Head of Girba Antenna Office

Title of other international staff members in same duty station: Mr. Sorie Ibrahim Marah, Associate filed Officer

Content and methodology of the supervision

The Associate Protection Officer will work under the direct supervision of the RSD Officer. The supervision will consist of regular discussions and feed-back from the supervisor and other international staff members whom the Associate Protection Officer will closely be working with. After an initial training period, the Associate Protection Officer is expected to effectively manage his/her portfolio and supervise one or several national staff members.


1. Manage and harmonize the protection counselling system in the camps and monitor case management and referral system;

2. Identify protection concerns, make proposals for how these can be efficiently addressed and coordinate with concerned stakeholders the realization of identified solutions;

3. Monitor the situation of persons of concern in the field through regular visits to the camps and urban settlements;

4. Conduct field assessments to evaluate refugees’ access to services;

5. Provide leadership, guidance and support to the field team providing protection to persons of concern and supervise junior international and national protection staff;

6. Coordinate protection interventions in cases of gender based violence;

7. Oversee the child protection programmes in the camp through regular monitoring and guiding implementing partners, supporting staff on individual case follow-ups/referrals, and coordination with relevant actors;

8. Monitor the management of the Centre for Unaccompanied Children in Shagarab, steer the implementing partner in proper identification, registration, documentation, tracing and identification of appropriate care arrangements;

9. Capacity building of implementing partners involved in the protection of persons of concern through training and on-the-job training;

10. Interact with local authorities, refugee leaders, other UN agencies as well as international and national NGOs;

11. Advocate for the full respect of the Human Rights of UNHCR’s persons of concern and intervene with authorities in the case of violations;

12. Develop, organize and conduct protection trainings for local authorities, implementing partners and other UN organizations;

13. Contribute to the planning, programming and reporting of the Antenna Office;

14. Any other duties as required.


  • Ensure the protection of persons of concern and delivery of services
  • Build the protection capacity of national staff, government counterpart and IPs
  • Ensure smooth running of the protection counselling system and the Centre of UAC
  • Improve the relocation system among camps currently in place as one of the protection options

AUTHORITY: The Associate Protection Officer has the authority to:

  • Identify training needs and devise a training plan;
  • Develop monitoring tools;
  • Add his/her inputs to all protection -related SOPs and operational documents;
  • Directly supervise the national protection and community services staff currently based in Girba.


  • University Degree in Law, Political sciences or International Relations;
  • Minimum 4 years of relevant job experience at professional level with a maximum of 2 years in international capacity;
  • Experience in International Refugee Law, in counselling refugees/asylum seekers, in social works (particularly with children) and in individual case management;
  • Additional training or experience in child rights/child protection;
  • Excellent spoken and written English and knowledge of another relevant UN language;
  • Computer literacy;
  • Excellent research, writing and analytical skills;
  • Flexibility and strong interpersonal and cross-cultural communication skills;
  • Demonstrable interest in human rights or refugee issues.


Managerial Competencies:

M001 Empowering and Building Trust

M002 Managing Performance

M003 Judgement and Decision Making

M004 Leadership

Cross-Functional Competencies:

X001 Analytical Thinking

X002 Innovation and Creativity

X003 Technological Awareness

X004 Negotiation and Conflict Resolution

X005 Planning and Organizing

X006 Policy Development and Research

X007 Political Awareness

X009 Change Capability and Adaptability


Training components: The Associate Protection Officer will be encouraged to complete the UNHCR Protection Learning Programme.

Learning elements:

• Assess project proposals related to protection;

• Gain filed experience through working in the camps;

• Improve managerial skills through exercising direct supervision of national staff, etc.


UNHCR Girba Antenna Office covers 5 refugee camps in Eastern Sudan (Shgarab I, II, III, Kilo 26 and Girba camps). The Office currently comprises of 2 international staff (1 RSD Officer/Head of Office, 1 Associate Field Officer) and 11 national staff members (2 Field Associates, 1 Field Assistant, 1 Senior Protection Assistant, 1 Senior Community Services Assistant, 1 interpreter, 1 admin staff and 4 drivers. Some other posts are under recruitment.

The Office deals with the full spectrum of UNHCR’s mandate: a protracted refugee situation, new-arrivals, refugees in camps as well as urban settings and mixed-migration.

As a result of the long lasting conflict between Ethiopia and Eritrea, Eastern Sudan has been hosting Ethiopian and Eritrean refugees since 1967. Presently, there are 12 refugee camps in the Eastern States of Sudan hosting approximately 68.000 refugees, mainly from Eritrea, but also from Ethiopia and Somalia. UNHCR supports the government of Sudan in the provision of assistance to refugees in the camps. In addition, approximately 35.000 refugees have settled in urban areas. UNHCR seeks to find durable solutions for the protracted caseload by enhancing the refugees’ self-reliance prospects and advocating for their full integration in Sudan, including the granting of nationality.

In addition, approximately 1.300 persons seek asylum in Eastern Sudan per month, however, only a small percentage of them remain in Eastern Sudan. Most of them move on and try to make their way to Europe or the Middle East. Kassala can therefore be considered as one of the major transit points for migrants on their way to Europe and the Middle East. On their way in, through and out of Sudan, migrants are frequently exposed to kidnapping, extortion and sexual violence by smugglers. Ensuring adequate legal and physical protection of refugees and persons of concern therefore forms part of the daily challenges of the office.

Girba is 85kms away from Kassala town with a population of 100,000, 25% of which are refugees. Kassala state is bordered by Eritrea from the east, Red Sea and River Nile States from the north, Gezira State from the west and Gaderef State from the south. The state is part of the dry and semi dry rainfall zone, with annual rainfall ranging from 150 mm in the northern parts to over 300 mm in its southern parts. The raining season starts from June to September.

Kassala state has a total population of 1.5 million (4.6% of total Sudan population) about 20 % (300,000) of them live in Kassala town, the state capital. Kassala is about 650 kilometers away from Khartoum.

The Associate Protection Officer will be able to stay at the UNHCR guesthouse in Kassala on arrival at a daily accommodation fee of USD18.25 until he/she transfers to his/her duty station in Girba that has also recently been furnished with a guest house until the staff finds his/her own accommodation. Girba is a newly established duty station and staff usually rent their houses and apartments from private landlords. The rents range from $350 to $1000 although decent accommodations in Girba are rare.

The weather is very hot with temperatures reaching 45 degrees Celsius generally. Electricity supply from the national grid is not reliable and there are power outages from time to time.

Most of the basic services are found in Kassala town and staff therefore has to travel to Kassala for the desired service.

Health facilities are basic, rudimentary and crippled with severe reduction in the government investments in the health sector. There is a UN designated physician in Kassala town. There also are private clinics and laboratories that provide basic medical services in Kasala town. For dental and other key medical treatment most staff (local and international) travel to Khartoum for treatment. There are pharmacies which stock most prescriptions but the quality of the drugs are low because most of them are made in India, China, and Pakistan by generic brand producers.

According to the locals the pipe-borne water is potable; however, to be on the safe side international staff buys bottled water for drinking. Water supplies in certain parts of the town are unreliable so most houses store water in water tanks. Sanitation is poor with little or no organized garbage collection system in place, thus garbage is generally dumped around residences and in drains and later burnt.

Most food items are available in the local market in Kassala town and there is abundant supply of fruits including water melons, bananas, apples, mangoes, oranges etc. Some food items can be found in Girba town but storage conditions are not reliable.

Travel between Khartoum and Kassala is facilitated by a shuttle service provided by the Office.

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