Project Officer (Spotlight, Pillar 6 - Grants and CSO capacity)

Advertised on behalf of :

Location : Almaty, KAZAKHSTAN
Application Deadline :16-Jan-22 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Service Contract
Post Level :SB-4
Languages Required :
English   Russian  
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract :12 months
Expected Duration of Assignment :12 months with possible extension

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


UN Women, grounded in the vision of equality enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations, works for the elimination of discrimination against women and girls; the empowerment of women; and the achievement of equality between women and men as partners and beneficiaries of development, human rights, humanitarian action and peace and security.

About the Spotlight Initiative Programme:

Funded by the European Union and managed from Kazakhstan (Almaty) in cooperation with all participating countries, the Spotlight Initiative (SI) regional programme for Central Asia and Afghanistan will harness the collective expertise, experiences challenges and energy of gender equality advocates from the five Central Asian countries as well as Afghanistan. This will be done with the purpose of advancing legislative reform, policy dialogue and advocacy, technical assistance in adaptation of most effective measures to address sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) and social norm changes 

necessary to prevent and respond to SGBV and harmful practices such as bride kidnapping, child, early and forced marriage.

Mobilizing the UN country teams (UNCTs) in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, as well as in partnership with Afghanistan, the SI seeks to fill a vital vacuum in the region. Namely, the absence of any Central Asian consensus around SGBV, reliable data on SGBV prevalence, coordinated mechanisms of Multi-sectoral response to SGBV (MSR to SGBV) with access to a coordinated set of essential and quality multi-sectoral services for all women and girls who have experienced gender-based Violence, and the absence of any institutional forum for such consensus to be generated.

Through collective thinking, participatory approaches and collective advocacy, governments, parliamentarians, civil society, including faith-based organizations, human rights and women’s activists, men and boys’ networks, SGBV survivors, women from marginalized groups, young people and religious leaders will develop Central Asia-specific models for evidence based legislative, policy and institutional reforms and social norms change initiatives. These Central Asia-specific models will be grounded in the international norms and standards guiding work on SGBV, including the CEDAW, and the Council of Europe (CoE)’s Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence – also known as the Istanbul Convention. In addition, the Models will reflect the importance of gender-responsive budgeting (GRB) methodologies and mechanisms of MSR to SGBV system with developed essential services for SGBV survivors (with special focus on those most left behind and vulnerable groups, such as adolescent girls, women with disabilities, rural women and migrants) to be provided by the health, social support, police and justice sectors – to ensure prevention and response to SGBV is robust and in line with the Global agenda to leave no one behind. 

It will also focus on improvement of gender data/statistics collection in view that quality, disaggregated and globally comparable data on different forms of VAWG and harmful practices is a key to inform laws, gender-responsive policies, evidence-based advocacy and dialogue addressing the gender equality, prevention of SGBV, ensuring human rights and promotion the realization of the sexual and reproductive health and rights.  

About Pillar 6 - Strengthening CSO (Civil Society Organizations Capacities) and regional women’s movement:

The Spotlight Initiative will invest in strengthening regional leadership, coordination, knowledge sharing and networking of women rights organizations to support CSOs collective and strategic engagement with governments and other actors within the broader Alliance for Central Asia on SGBV. A regional CSO network, linked to the Central Asian Alliance, will be established, involving WROs, CSOs, activists and women’s rights defenders across the six countries: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Afghanistan, to build a coordinated and strong women’s movement for joint advocacy, activism and accountability. In addition, active women leaders in the region will be involved in the CSO network. Linkages will be made between traditional feminist activists in the region and newer, more intersectionality-focused groups, with the aim to foster a more coordinated and coherent women’s movement in the region. Focus will be placed on ensuring participation and voice of less resourced CSO, including rural grassroots organizations, younger less established organizations and youth and LGBTI organizations. Moreover, the network will be supported through exchange with international experts on various topics pertaining to women’s movement building, including potential knowledge sharing and support for setting common standards on areas such as quality control, monitoring and evaluation, financial management and codes of conduct. A virtual knowledge platform will also be established to 

facilitate remote knowledge exchange, sharing of best practices and joint development of advocacy strategies. This will also provide the space for CSOs to introduce and promote the scale up of innovations across countries

With focus on strengthening institutional capacities of grassroots organization that do not currently have the technical capacities to access funding from international organizations, the SI will provide small grants to CSOs in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Capacity development support will be incorporated with the provision of the small grants to support efficient monitoring, ensure quality control, and best use of funds and to ensure coherent approach to strengthening CSOs capacities for involvement in the women’s movement. Moreover, an existing local women’s right organization in Central Asia, with potential to become a regional grant making body, will be identified and will receive technical support on requirements for grant-making and support to gain the capacity to provide regional leadership and influence policy making. CSOs from all 6 countries, involved in regional movement building, will also be engaged to provide capacity building support for the involvement of other CSO in regional movement building, based on a self-assessment of capacity development support needs.

Reporting to the Project Coordinator, the Project Officer (Pillar 6) provides programme support to the effective management of UN Women interventions under the Pillar 6 of the Spotlight Initiative by contributing to the programme design, formulation, implementation and evaluation.  S/he supports the delivery of UN Women implementation of Pillar 6 interventions related to management of grants to CSOs and capacity development of CSOs in the region by analyzing results achieved and supporting appropriate application of systems and procedures. The Project Officer (Pillar 6) works in close collaboration with the programme and operations teams of the Spotlight Initiative, UN Women Country and Regional Offices and HQ staff, Government officials, multi and bi-lateral donors and civil society organizations ensuring successful UN Women/ Spotlight Initiative Pillar 6 implementation under portfolio, including alignment of activities with other pillars of the Spotlight Central Asia Regional Programme

Duties and Responsibilities

Contribute technically to the development of programme strategies in the area of the Spotlight Initiative

  • Provide technical inputs to the design and formulation of programme/ project proposals and initiatives related to Spotlight Initiative Pillar 6.

Provide technical support to the implementation and management of the Spotlight Initiative programme under Pillar 6.

  • Oversee assessment to identify smaller less known grassroot organizations in Central Asia, representing the most vulnerable and marginalized groups;
  • Manage, coordinate and monitor effectively grants/ transfers to CSOs and Counterparts provided by the Spotlight Initiative;
  • Review and coordinate the submission of implementing partner financial and narrative reports;
  • Ensure compliance with internal policies and procedures for transfer of small grants to CSOs;
  • Provide inputs to the annual workplans and budgets as required;
  • Coordinate and monitor the implementation of programme activities of specific pillar 6 components;
  • Coordinate the call/request for proposals, including the organization of technical review committees, and capacity assessment of partners;
  • Oversee and provide capacity development support to CSO to support result-based management, efficient monitoring quality control, and best use of funds by CSO and to ensure coherent approach to strengthening CSOs capacities for involvement in the women’s movement.

Provide technical assistance and capacity development support to project/programme partners

  • Coordinate and manage capacity development of CSOs in the region according to the Regional Programme document, including coordinating and overseeing CSOs self-assessment of capacity development support needs and implementation of capacity development components such as the CSOs training of trainers;
  • Provide technical support to and technically oversee the implementation of programme activities with partners;
  • Coordinate technical workshops and webinars, facilitate workshop sessions;
  • Link supported CSOs with the newly established regional CSOs network and knowledge platform to provide a forum for exchanging experiences;
  • Consolidate lessons learned and key outcomes of workshops and webinars;
  • Analyze emerging needs and provide suggestions for technical follow up;
  • Identify opportunities for capacity building of CSOs and other partners and coordinate and facilitate technical/ programming support and trainings to partners as needed.

Provide technical inputs to the monitoring and reporting of the programme and corporate tasks

  • Monitor progress on programme activity, results and indicators under portfolio and in a framework of activities conducted by CSOs under the grants modality;
  • Ensure 100% financial delivery of the entrusted project budget by the end of the year; 
  • Ensure timely and quality reporting: UN Women corporate reports through timely monitoring in Results Management System (RMS) and Atlas;
  • Timely enter project related information into the RMS, Donor Agreements Management System (DAMS), PGAMS (Partner and Grants Agreements Management System) and Atlas in accordance with the Delegation of Authority;
  • Oversee elaboration of joint knowledge products to ensure adherence to the Spotlight Initiative quality standards;
  • Monitor the implementation of proposals by responsible partners;
  • Prepare procurement plans and oversee timely procurement and logistics for project implementation
  • Conduct monitoring site-visits and participate in project activities in the region
  • Provide inputs to quarterly reports, donor reports and other reports on outputs, results outputs and outcomes;
  • Conduct monitoring of CSOs activities under the grants modality through desk review and site visits.

Provide technical inputs to the management of people and finances of the programme

  • Monitor budget implementation and programme activity expenditures and perform budget revisions when required under portfolio and in a framework of activities conducted by CSOs under the grants modality;
  • Provide inputs to financial reports;
  • Oversee the work of Project  Assistants as needed;
  • Oversee the work of consultants and consultancy companies ensuring high quality and timely results.

Contribute to building partnerships and resource mobilization strategies

  • Provide inputs to resource mobilization strategies; analyze and maintain information and databases;
  • Provide inputs to relevant documentation such as project summaries, conference papers, briefing notes, speeches, and donor profiles;
  • Contribute to the development of the Programme document, budgets results and resources frameworks, if requested.

Provide technical inputs to inter-agency coordination on Spotlight Initiative to achieve coherence and alignment of UN Women programmes with other partners in the region

  • Provide technical support to the Project /Coordinator on inter-agency coordination related activities by providing inputs to background reports and briefs and to ensure alignment of pillar 6 activities with other components of the Spotlight Initiative.

Provide inputs to advocacy, knowledge building and communication efforts

  • Provide technical inputs to background documents, briefs and presentations related to Spotlight Initiative Regional Programme;
  • Coordinate and support the organization of advocacy activities and campaigns events, trainings, workshops and knowledge products;
  • Provide inputs to the development of knowledge management products on Spotlight Initiative.


Core Values:

  • Respect for Diversity
  • Integrity
  • Professionalism

Core Competencies:

  • Awareness and Sensitivity Regarding Gender Issues
  • Accountability
  • Creative Problem Solving
  • Effective Communication
  • Inclusive Collaboration
  • Stakeholder Engagement
  • Leading by Example

Functional Competencies

  • Programme formulation, implementation, monitoring and evaluation skills
  • Knowledge of Results Based Management
  • Ability to gather and interpret data, reach logical conclusions and present findings
  • Good analytical skills
  • Good knowledge of  the thematic area Ending Violence Against Women and Girls, Sexual and Gender-based violence
  • Experience with CSO capacity development
  • Ability to work as a team member, presentation and communication skills
  • Capacity to work effectively under pressure and to take on a range of responsibilities

Required Skills and Experience


Education and certification:

  • University/ Master’s degree or equivalent in social sciences, human rights, gender/ women’s studies, international development, public and business administration, management, communications, international affairs or a related field is required
  • A project/programme management certification would be an added advantage


  • At least 7 years of relevant work experience in development programme/project implementation, coordination, monitoring and evaluation, donor reporting and capacity building (Master degree plus 6 years of relevant experience);
  • Experience in the area of women’s movement building, CSO capacity development and/or grant management;
  • Experience in monitoring and evaluation is an asset;
  • Experience coordinating and liaising with government agencies and/or donors is an asset;
  • Experience of managing multi-stakeholder development programmes is an advantage;
  • Familiarity with UN development programmes and working methods, and particularly with UN Women policies and programming procedures, desirable;
  • Experience working on SGBV related projects will be considered an asset;
  • Good knowledge of issues and programming approaches to end sexual and gender-based violence and harmful practices.

Language Requirements:

  • Fluency in English and Russian/ Kazakh is required;
  • Knowledge of another UN official working language or a Central Asian language is an asset.

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