UNICEF recruits lead consultants for intensifying adolecent HIV programming in Benue and Kaduna

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UNICEF recruits lead consultants for intensifying adolecent HIV programming in Benue and Kaduna

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.

For 70 years, UNICEF has been working on the ground in 190 countries and territories to promote children’s survival, protection and development. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, 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 the Assignment

Nigeria has the second highest global burden of HIV. 10% of the global population of adolescents living with HIV live in Nigeria. The planned outcome for the UNICEF Nigeria Children and AIDS section for the 2014-2017 program cycle is “By 2017, MTCT is eliminated; HIV transmission is reduced among especially vulnerable women, children and adolescents; and women, children and adolescents living HIV receive treatment, care and support”. Within this result, the specific output for adolescents is that “By 2017 partners in Nigeria have increased commitment and strengthened systems for scaled-up delivery of HIV combination prevention, treatment and care services for adolescents”. The operationalization of this output has been aligned to the four work streams of the “ALL IN” initiative namely – a. Changing social context by working with adolescents as agents of change, b. Sharpening adolescent components of national programs, c. Promoting innovation and approaches for scale-up, d. Advocacy, communication and resource mobilization

To achieve its planned results for adolescent and in alignment with the ALL IN initiative, UNICEF has prioritized actions in 6+1 high burden states where a lot of systems strengthening work and advocacy to leverage resources is going on. Two states (Benue and Kaduna states) were further prioritized as flagship demonstration states. Thus, intensive programming took place in Kaduna and Benue states between 2014 and 2016 through an 18 month intervention to pilot an approach for comprehensive HIV service delivery for adolescents and young people. This intervention built in capacity strengthening of the adolescent HIV service delivery systems, partnerships, community mobilization and advocacy at state and LGA levels to achieve results. The intervention created demand for services, provided HIV Testing services and referral for prevention, treatment and care. Two LGA areas of each of the states were selected for saturation of demand creation, testing and referral for treatment and prevention services. At the end of the 18 month period about 75% of adolescents and young people in the LGAs had been reached with demand creation and testing services, communities have been mobilized, service providers have strengthened capacity. To assess the outputs and further scale up the intervention described above, a review of the intervention was done using the “All In” assessment tools in the 2 states. The process included a rapid assessment, an in-depth analysis of selected interventions to identify bottlenecks and an analysis of the bottle necks to proffer solutions and a development of plans to remove the bottle necks. 17 LGA work plans were developed through this process.

The work in Nigeria has gained global attention within UNICEF and attracted additional funding. 1.7 million dollars has been allocated to intensify Adolescent HIV programming in Nigeria with the aim of helping to identify and place 90% of the 200,000 ALHIV in Nigeria, ensure 90% of those identified are placed on treatment and 90% of those on treatment achieve viral suppression (UNAIDS 90-90-90 targets).

The funds shall be utilized for four key intervention areas. One of the four areas is “Intensifying Adolescent programming in Benue and Kaduna states”.

Specific required activities required to successfully rollout this intervention area include:

  • Implementation of the “All In” plans in the 18 LGAs identified by the “All In” assessment in Benue and Kaduna states
  • Intensive programming, engaging government, communities, young people
  • Creating evidence (profiling positive ALHIV, contact tracing, pregnant adolescents, integration for youth friendly services, determinants of uptake of services, adherence, transition etc)
  • Documentation, innovation (mHealth for increasing HCT, adherence of ART).
  • Evidence generation and dissemination of lessons learnt to inform a learning collaborative to influence UNICEFs advocacy and convening for taking to scale, removing law barriers (eg age of consent).

A State lead consultant is required to ensure a timely implementation of all planned activities and reporting of activities in the 2 states.

For more detals and to apply, click here.

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About Author

A medical scientist and global health enthusiast. ICFP2016 and AIDS2016 rapporteur, country coordinator (Nigeria) for the International Youth Alliance for Family Planning

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