Consultant; MHPSS and EQUIP Help Desk Lead, New York At UNICEF – United Nations Children’s Fund

Closing date: Monday, 17 July 2023

Consultant; MHPSS and EQUIP Help Desk Lead. Req. # 563874

Job no: 563874

Position type: Consultant

Location: United States Division/Equivalent: Programme

School/Unit: Programme Group

Department/Office: Child Protection Section, UNICEF NYHQ

Categories: Child Protection

UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up.

For every child, LOVE

Vacancy Announcement: Consultant

Consultancy Title: MHPSS and EQUIP Help Desk Lead Consultant

Section/Division/Duty Station: Child Protection – Programme Group /NYHQ

Duration: 01 August 2023 to 31 October 2023 – Remote/Home based.


If you are a committed, creative professional and are passionate about making a lasting difference for children, the world’s leading children’s rights organization would like to hear from you. Over 75 years, UNICEF has been working on the ground in 190 countries and territories to promote children’s survival, protection, and development. UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is funded entirely by the voluntary contributions of individuals, businesses, foundations, and governments.


Purpose of Activity/Assignment:

Global priorities show increased need for attention to mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS), particularly for girls, boys, women and men in communities affected by emergencies and other adversities (e.g., torture, war, intimate partner violence, poverty, malnutrition, amongst others). Such challenges are worsening following COVID-19 limitations on movement. Some individuals will develop mental health symptoms in the long term (e.g., posttraumatic stress disorder, anxiety, and depression) and others will be impacted in less visible ways. While most people are resilient to adversity, best estimates suggest that on, average, 22% of adults report symptoms consistent with mental disorders if they have experienced conflict in previous 10 years. Observed rates of mental health problems after extremely horrific events (e.g., torture, rape) tend be over 40%. Estimates are unclear for children and adolescents, but likely to be similar. Nonetheless, millions of people, notably those in low resource settings, do not receive evidence-based mental health treatment. Poor mental health can impair individuals’ functioning, influence children’s behavior, and create barriers to accessing education, interfere with engagement in work or work productivity, and hinder one’s ability to engage in social or community functions. Therefore, integrating MHPSS services across sectors has been essential, but has left a remaining question on the quality of the training and the competency of the workforce. Making certain that the MHPSS workforce across sectors such as education, protection and health are able to attend to these challenges can ensure that individuals with impaired function will have access to effective evidence based MHPSS interventions. Access to a competent and skilful workforce will aid the community as well. In the post-COVID-19 reality, this will be especially prominent given global disruptions to services, incomes and unique changes to social interaction.

Most people with mental health conditions around the world do not receive effective care. Among people living with depression, only 1 in 5 persons in high-income countries and 1 in 27 in lower-middle-income countries receive minimally adequate treatment, in part due to an insufficient number of workers trained in mental health care. One way to address access to care is to expand psychological and psychosocial support services delivered by diverse cadres in different settings. With appropriate training and supervision, professionals and non-professionals can provide support and effective help.

Effective, evidence based MHPSS and interventions used by non-specialist mental health and psychosocial support helpers to assist girls, boys, women, and men are well established. However, ensuring, at scale, the quality of helper implementation across sectors is lacking.

Ensuring Quality in Psychological Support (EQUIP) is a platform that makes freely available a workforce package to support organizations (non-governmental organizations (NGOs), UN agencies, governments, academic institutions, and others), both in humanitarian and development settings, in training, supervising, and assessing the workforce to deliver effective support for adults and children across sectors. EQUIP aims to improve the competence of helpers and the consistency and quality of training, supervision, pre-service training, and service delivery.

EQUIP provides resources, tools, and guidance for the assessment and enhancement of essential competencies, and foundational helping skills, necessary for all people working with children and adults, to ensure helpers achieve the skills needed for safe and effective care, including non-specialist persons being trained to deliver mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS).

Using EQUIP and a competency-based approach to training and supervision increases the number of helpers that meet minimum competency standards in foundational helping skills and MHPSS as well as the number of quality non-specialist helpers delivering general support services as well as scalable psychological interventions and psychosocial support activities.

The purpose of the Consultant, EQUIP MHPSS Help Desk Lead, is to support the integration, use and scale up of EQUIP in organizations’ MHPSS and cross-sectoral programming to deliver safe and effective services to adults and children.

Scope of Work:

The consultant will support the development, roll out and uptake of the EQUIP competency assessment tools, existing and newly developed tools within the areas of case management, parenting, and inclusion of the EQUIP project in the function of the EQUIP MHPSS Help Desk Lead on the WHO/ UNICEF Global Project “Ensuring Quality in Psychological Support” (EQUIP).

  •  The MHPSS Help Desk Lead will work closely with the EQUIP Project Coordinator, the EQUIP team as well as with the MHPSS Specialist based in NYHQ in the MHPSS unit within the Child Protection in Humanitarian Action Section.
  •  The EQUIP MHPSS Help Desk Lead will further work closely with the WHO, members of the Project Advisory Group, and other staff of UNICEF and external organizations (e.g. UNHCR,, MHPSS Collaborative, INGOs, and national NGOs/ CBOs at global and country level) to ensure that all organizations seeking to use and integrate the EQUIP competency assessment tools and training into their programs receive adequate support.
  •  The EQUIP MHPSS Help Desk Lead will orient new organizations and child protection, MHPSS & cross-sectoral partners on the use and integration of EQUIP into their organizations and give training on the use and integration of EQUIP into country programs.
  •  The EQUIP MHPSS Help Desk Lead will work with academic institutions on the integration of EQUIP into their vocational training and degree programs.
  •  The consultant will work with the core EQUIP team as well as relevant partners on the WeACT training modules of the Foundational Helping Skills Training Package and the overall Foundational Helping Skills Manual (FHS) for working with children and adolescents.
  •  In collaboration with the core EQUIP team and relevant partners, the consultant will support the development of monitoring and evaluation tools, data collection and analyses on EQUIP use, training and supervision, implementation, and barriers; as well as support the development and dissemination of operational tools that promote the effective use of EQUIP as well as support communication dissemination of the EQUIP platform and resources.

The consultant will manage and respond to any requests that come up in the EQUIP Community of Practice (CoP) and ensure the streamlining and knowledge management and sharing of global, regional, and local lessons learned and case studies across development and emergency contexts.

Terms of Reference / Deliverables/Deadlines

  •  5 orientation and capacity building sessions. By 14th August.
  •  5 reviews of organization’s EQUIP. By 21th September.
  •  Training and supervision plans and their capacity building materials to ensure alignment with EQUIP procedures and tools. By 18th October
  •  4 full trainings based on the EQUIP Consultation Model. By 21st August
  •  Development of training materials and handouts. By 21st August
  •  1 webinar EQUIP in Practice. By 18th August
  •  WeACT 11 training manual modules draft finalized. By 6th September
  •  All accompanying material of the training modules developed. By 6th September
  •  1 webinar EQUIP in Practice. By 18th September
  •  Table of content of the FHS manual. By 10th October
  •  10 consultations with 10 organizational representatives from the CPHA, education, protection, health, and mental health sector. By 16th October
  •  Development of 15 content headlines and first descriptions of the overall Foundational Helping Skills Manual (FHS) for working with children and adolescents (15 sections). By 29th October
  •  Consultation workshop implemented. By 20th October
  •  Selection of case management competencies for a new EQUIP competency assessment tool with the Global Alliance Case Management TF made and approved by CMTF. By 28th October
  •  Report given to EQUIP team and EQUIP Competency Assessment Tool Advisory Board. By 30th October


(1) Education

Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology, Child Protection in Humanitarian Action

(2) Work experience

  •  A minimum of 10 years’ experience in Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in development and humanitarian contexts
  •  Experience (remote and in-country) supporting a diverse range of UN agencies, NGOs (international and local), academic institutions, governments in the area of MHPSS, child protection, health, education and other cross-sectoral partners in the implementation of EQUIP use, trainings, supervision and pre-service training.
  •  Experience developing MHPSS monitoring and evaluation/ measurement tools

(3) Competencies

  •  Expert knowledge of the EQUIP platform, resources and tools and experience using it in development and humanitarian settings
  •  Strong knowledge of MHPSS in Child Protection in Emergencies
  •  Strong knowledge in competency frameworks and competency-based assessment tools, trainings and supervision specifically within the areas of MHPSS in Child Protection (for development and emergencies settings)
  •  Language proficiency: English, French, Spanish


  •  Completed profile in UNICEF’s e-Recruitment system
  •  Upload copy of academic credentials
  •  Financial proposal that will include:
  •  Costs for each deliverable and total All-inclusive (lump sum) fees for the deliverables noted above.
  •  Travel costs and daily subsistence allowance, if internationally recruited or travel is required as per TOR
  •  Any other estimated costs: visa, health insurance, and living costs as applicable.
  •  Indicate your availability
  •  Any emergent / unforeseen duty travel and related expenses will be covered by UNICEF.
  •  At the time the contract is awarded, the selected candidate must have in place current health insurance coverage.
  •  Payment of professional fees will be based on submission of agreed satisfactory deliverables. UNICEF reserves the right to withhold payment in case the deliverables submitted are not up to the required standard or in case of delays in submitting the deliverables on the part of the consultant.

U.S. Visa information:

With the exception of the US Citizens, G4 Visa and Green Card holders, should the selected candidate and his/her household members reside in the United States under a different visa, the consultant and his/her household members are required to change their visa status to G4, and the consultant’s household members (spouse) will require an Employment Authorization Card (EAD) to be able to work, even if he/she was authorized to work under the visa held prior to switching to G4.

Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process

For every Child, you demonstrate…

UNICEF’s core values of Commitment, Diversity and Integrity and core competencies in Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results. View our competency framework at: Here

UNICEF offers reasonable accommodation for consultants/individual contractors with disabilities. This may include, for example, accessible software, travel assistance for missions or personal attendants. We encourage you to disclose your disability during your application in case you need reasonable accommodation during the selection process and afterwards in your assignment.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.


Individuals engaged under a consultancy or individual contract will not be considered “staff members” under the Staff Regulations and Rules of the United Nations and UNICEF’s policies and procedures and will not be entitled to benefits provided therein (such as leave entitlements and medical insurance coverage). Their conditions of service will be governed by their contract and the General Conditions of Contracts for the Services of Consultants and Individual Contractors. Consultants and individual contractors are responsible for determining their tax liabilities and for the payment of any taxes and/or duties, in accordance with local or other applicable laws.

The selected candidate is solely responsible to ensure that the visa (applicable) and health insurance required to perform the duties of the contract are valid for the entire period of the contract. Selected candidates are subject to confirmation of fully vaccinated status against SARS-CoV-2 (Covid-19) with a World Health Organization (WHO)-endorsed vaccine, which must be met prior to taking up the assignment. It does not apply to consultants who will work remotely and are not expected to work on or visit UNICEF premises, programme delivery locations or directly interact with communities UNICEF works with, nor to travel to perform functions for UNICEF for the duration of their consultancy contracts.

Advertised: Jul 10 2023 Eastern Daylight Time

Application close: Jul 16 2023 Eastern Daylight Time

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  •  Closes Jul 16 2023Consultant; MHPSS and EQUIP Help Desk Lead. Req. # 563874 in United States

    UNICEF Child Protection section, is seeking to engage a consultant to support the development, roll out and uptake of the EQUIP competency assessment tools, existing and newly developed tools within the areas of case management, parenting, and inclusion of the EQUIP project in the function of the EQUIP MHPSS Help Desk Lead on the WHO/ UNICEF Global Project “Ensuring Quality in Psychological Support” (EQUIP).


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