United Nations World Food Programme (WFP)

Project Coordinator (SSA), Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

Job Overview

Project Coordinator (SSA)

WFP Kyrgyz Republic

Location: Bishkek, with oversight responsibility for activities in Jumgal and Kadamjai districts

Contract length: September 2021 – June 2022

Organisational Context:

The Kyrgyz Republic is a small, landlocked, mountainous country bordered by China, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan, with a population of just over 6.2 million people, mainly living in rural areas. After it gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, the economy grew, poverty fell, child mortality declined, and life expectancy increased. However, since 2008 there have been a series of economic and political setbacks, and now the pandemic increased the number of poor people in the country, because of reduced economic activities, decreased remittances, price spikes and a growing fiscal gap.

Within the current Country Strategic Plan 2018-22, WFP as a mechanism to strengthen the national social protection system will pilot the ‘Social Contract’ – an agreement between eligible vulnerable families and the government, in which participants take part in a graduation programme and the government provides an integrated package, including: business plan, subsidized loan/grant (up to 1200$), agro and vocational training, social and health services, nutrition training, financial literacy and linkages to the market and coaching to assist families to get out of poverty.

During the pilot, the ‘Social contract’ will be signed with poor families, with entrepreneurs or with a group of poor families to explore the most viable set-up (WFP will pilot the programme in two districts (north and south) both in urban and rural areas. In each district there could be up to 50 poor families selected).

Job purpose:

To coordinate and perform overall project supervision and capacity strengthening activities within the scope of the ‘Social contract’ pilot programme, providing reports to WFP and the Ministry of Health and Social Development (MHSD) about the progress and lessons learned from the pilot and identifying potential sustainable avenues to scale-up the initiative.

KEY ACCOUNTABILITIES (not all-inclusive):

Under the direct supervision of the national VAM officer and the general direction of the Head of Programme/Deputy Country Director , with day-to-day coordination with WFP staff in charge of government collaboration, the coordinator will be responsible for the following: Preparation and launch

  • Coordinate the preparatory activities for the launch of the “Social Contract” project, i.e. field visits to the selected districts, meetings with local self-government and district departments of the ministries, local leaders. Provide awareness raising information about the project.
  • Prepare training materials and instructions for the launch of the “Social Contract” project (incl. financial literacy training materials for poor families).
  • Support local commissions in the selection of poor families, revision of their applications, supporting families with improving and finalisation of the applications.
  • Identify partners and implementation structures (incl. central apparatus of MHSD, social workers, local self-government, district departments of the ministries on the elements of the project), including inter-ministerial coordination, for approval by WFP and the MSHD.

Pilot implementation

  • Overall coordination role at all stages of field activities.
  • Supervise the team composed of two field-based assistants.
  • Optimize the implementation structures as the pilot progresses:

    • Conduct meetings with financial institutions and the government to establish sustainable practises in the provision of start-up capital for poor families.
    • Coordinate baseline and end-line evaluations.
  • Facilitate coordination between different ministries, central and local governments for effective implementation of and learning from the pilot initiative.
  • Conduct trainings for partners involved; including in form of ‘train the trainer’ approach the training of those involved in the selection and training of families (provision of support package, monitoring tools, and continuous on-the-job coaching), which may include but not be limited to:

    • Revision of business plans and conduct feasibility assessments of business ideas, including through small marketing surveys if needed.
    • Coordinate provision of trainings, delivered by WFP, in the areas of nutrition, financial literacy, etc.
    • Support replication of SKAP – agricultural training in project districts as offered by the Ministry of Agriculture.
  • Provide technical assistance to local self-government and district departments of MHSD, local and district commissions for establishing the robust M&E system for social contract implementation.

    • Coordinate the utilisation of grants by poor families, revise their financial reports and provide adjustments to the Social adaptation programmes if needed.
    • Conduct lessons learnt analysis of previous pilots in terms of financial sustainability of used models. Conduct analysis of budget opportunities for future replication of the social contract.
  • Revision of M&E processes and set-up and other adjustments in the implementation, if necessary.
  • Provide periodic reports on the status of the project, including financial reports.
  • Participate in meetings at the central and local level with interested stakeholders to discuss the status of project implementation.

Scale-up efforts

  • Based on the lesson learnt study and desk review, propose a plan to create a “revolving scheme” for future replication of social contract.
  • Conduct capacity strengthening activities with central apparatus of MHSD and local departments, as well as local self-government to effectively implement and replicate the social contract programme.
  • Seek partnerships with other projects implemented by partner organisations, NGOs.
  • Participate at the final presentation of the results of social contract pilot during the workshop in Bishkek.
  • Other ad-hoc tasks as required.

OUTCOMES / DELIVERABLES / KPIs:

  • Social contracts and social adaptation programmes, business plans for all beneficiary families in the project.
  • Periodic reports on the status of the project implementation, including monitoring and evaluation data.
  • Total number of successfully implemented and fulfilled social contracts.
  • Training package and other capacity strengthening materials.
  • The detailed proposal on the “revolving scheme” for provision of start-up loans for poor families under the social contract.
  • Baseline and end-line evaluation reports.
  • Final report and presentation with the results of the pilot including policy recommendations.

DESIRED EXPERIENCES FOR ENTRY INTO THE ROLE:

  • Strong interpersonal skills: courtesy, tact and ability to work effectively with people of different national and cultural backgrounds with demonstrated track-record to work in a team environment and achieve common goals: Presentation, networking and knowledge management skills.
  • Ability to interpret and analyse a wide variety of programme issues and statistical information, and to maintain accurate and precise records for utilization in quality reports and presentations.
  • Ability to work systematically (to plan and organize work under tight deadlines), use initiative, good judgment, and to communicate complex matters both orally and in writing, including when working in different locations.
  • Ability to work independently and efficiently, aligned with WFP Kyrgyzstan’s safety net programmes and social protection positioning.

MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS REQUIRED:

Education: University education (master’s degree) in the finance, economy, business administration, social sciences, law, agriculture, or similar.

Experience: At least ten years of work experience in financial services and/or microcredit, MSME support, regional development or poverty reduction projects.

Experience in preparation of business plans, marketing and feasibility studies for MSMEs.

Knowledge of micro-credit and rural financing principles.

Good familiarity with M&E methodologies and key concepts.

Computer skills:

Literacy in MS Office365 applications, incl. collaborative working through MS Teams (or similar tools) .

Language: Fluency in Russian and Kyrgyz language both oral and written, English desirable.

The consultant will be equipped with a WFP laptop and phone for the duration of the assignment and will have the desk in the Ministry of Health and Social Development.

TALENTED WOMEN ARE ENCOURAGED TO APPLY

We look for applicants with the highest integrity and professionalism who share our humanitarian values. We commit to promote diversity, gender parity and equality between men and women.

WFP strives to build a work environment that is safe and respectful, and free of sexual harassment and abuse of authority. We believe in open communication, and every individual at WFP is treated with respect regardless of gender, age, ethnicity, religious and political beliefs, etc.

Closing date: 7 September 2021

WFP does not charge any fees at any stage of its recruitment process.

Only candidates who are short-listed will be contacted.

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