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Health Cluster Co-Lead

RI - Relief International

Gaziantep, Turkey

Role of the Health Cluster:

The aim of a Health Cluster is to ensure a more coherent and effective humanitarian response by all international, national and local actors operating in the health sector in areas affected by crisis. The HC Co-Lead in Gaziantep Turkey for Northern Syria will ensure the good performance of the HC, promoting and upholding the Humanitarian Principles and the Principles of Partnership. The HC performance, in turn, will be monitored and evaluated according to the extent by which the activities and programmes of the HC members meet the health needs of the crisis-affected populations in Syria.

Reporting and Accountability

The HC Co-Lead of the designated HC's co-lead agency, while maintaining the reporting lines of her/his own organization, reports and is accountable to the HCC and the Health Cluster for what pertains the key areas of accountability outlined below. This includes ensuring that views and plans of the HC members reach and is considered by the HC.

Position Summary:

The HC Co-Lead, works in partnership with the health cluster coordinator as the cluster lead to provide leadership and facilitate the processes that will ensure a well-coordinated, strategic, adequate, coherent, and effective response. In holding the position, hosted by RI the Co-Lead will have specific responsibility for ensuring that the HCC position is informed by the NGO perspective. The HC Co-Lead will also be responsible for ensuring that the NGO membership is contributing to and sharing HC responsibilities, and will play a lead role in developing the active engagement and technical capacity of Syrian NGO members of the HC. As the HC lead and co-lead, WHO and RI will provide secretarial services to the HC including organizing meetings, drafting minutes and compiling reports and plans.

The accountabilities of the position set out below are aligned to the core functions of cluster delivery at the country level (i) Supporting Service Delivery (ii) Informing Strategic decision making (iii) Planning and Strategy development (iv) Advocacy (v) Monitoring and Reporting (vi) Contingency Planning and Preparedness.

Position Duties and Responsibilities:

Supporting Service Delivery

  • Identify, make contact and maintain communications with health cluster’s stakeholders and existing coordination mechanisms, including health authorities, national and international organizations and civil society actors;
  • Hold regular coordination meetings with HC members, building when possible on existing health cluster coordination fora. The Co-Lead will share the responsibility of organizing and co-chairing HC meetings with the HC Coordinator (co-chairing the meetings and drafting meeting minutes);
  • Facilitate the collection of information from all members on the 4Ws-Who’s Where, since and until When, doing What, and ensure the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA)-managed 4W database is regularly updated. Provide consolidated feedback to all members and the other working groups/clusters on a regular basis;
  • Ensure that HC members are primarily accountable to affected populations through consultative mechanisms;
  • Coordinate the establishment and work of the HC sub-groups or TWGs, including taking the lead in supporting one or several sub-groups according to needs and gaps.

Informing strategic decision-making of the HC/HCT for the humanitarian response

  • Ensure the assessment and monitoring of the availability of health services (through work with the Information Management team) in the crisis areas provided by all health actors using the Health Resources Availability Mapping System (HeRAMS);
  • Ensure that humanitarian health needs are identified by planning and coordinating joint, inter-cluster, initial rapid assessments adapting to the local context the Multi Cluster/Sector Initial Rapid Assessment (MIRA) tool, as well as follow-on more in-depth health sub-sector assessments, as needed;
  • Mobilize HC members to contribute to establishing and maintaining an appropriate Early Warning Alert and Response Network, and regularly report on health services delivered to the affected population and the situation in the areas where they work;
  • Lead and contribute to the joint HC analysis of health-cluster information and data leading to joint identification of gaps in the health cluster response and agreement on priorities to inform the development (or adaptation) of a health crisis response strategy;
  • Work with the HCC to ensure that the Cluster Lead Agency (CLA) is informed of priority gaps that cannot be covered by any HC partner and require CLA action as provider of last resort;
  • Represent the HC in inter-cluster coordination mechanisms at country/field level, contribute to jointly identifying critical issues that require multi-sectoral responses, and plan the relevant synergistic interventions with the other working groups/clusters concerned;
  • Ensure members are represented and decisions are reflective of majority of members of the HC;
  • Ensure that NGO members of the HC are kept fully informed of the meetings and decisions that take place outside of regular HC meetings, especially with external stakeholders.

Planning and strategy development

  • In consultation with members, produce an annual work plan for the health response that supports HRP strategic priorities and aligns with the overarching humanitarian response. The work plan should be inclusive of training and research initiatives which build knowledge and capacity within the health cluster. Milestones will be included in the work plan to allow progress monitoring;
  • Promote adherence of standards and best practices by all HC members taking into account the need for local adaptation. Promote use of the Health Cluster Guide to ensure the application of common approaches, tools and standards;
  • Provide leadership and strategic direction to HC members in the development of the health cluster components of appeals, proposals and interagency planning and funding documents.

Advocacy and Resource Mobilization

  • In consultation with members, develop an annual advocacy strategy and work plan that includes advocacy topics and activities as prioritized by the HC members;
  • Put forward proposals for funding in consultation with the HC members and share responsibility with HCC for resource mobilization;
  • Take additional steps to ensure that resource mobilization and advocacy efforts, particularly the consolidated annual appeal, fairly represents and benefits NGOs as well as UN agencies.

Monitoring and Reporting

  • Ensure members’ active contribution to and involvement in joint monitoring of individual and common plans of action for health interventions; ensure the collation and dissemination of this and other information related to the health cluster in HC sit-reps and/or regular Health Bulletins.

Contingency Planning/Preparedness/Capacity Building

  • Lead joint HC contingency planning for potential new events or set-backs, when required;
  • Identify urgent training needs in relation to technical standards and protocols for the delivery of key health services to ensure their adoption and uniform application by all HC members;
  • Coordinate the dissemination of key technical materials and share responsibility with the HCC on organizing training for HC members’ response with a special focus on standards and best practice.

Early Recovery

  • In a protracted crisis or health sector recovery context, ensure appropriate links among humanitarian actions and longer-term health sector plans, incorporating the concept of ‘building back better’ and specific risk reduction measures;
  • Other tasks assigned by the cluster coordinator.

Qualifications & Requirements:

  • Advanced university degree (Master's level or equivalent) in public health, medicine, disaster management, or related fields from a recognized university or academic institute;
  • Desirable: Health Cluster Coordinator training and/or WHO surge training, or training in emergency response in the context of public health;
  • Excellent written and spoken English and Arabic are essential;
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office;
  • Excellent presentation and communication skills;
  • Building and promoting partnerships across the health cluster and beyond;
  • Creating an empowering and motivating environment;
  • Ensuring the effective use of resources;
  • Respecting and promoting individual and cultural differences.

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