UN Volunteers supported the UN system's response to the Ebola virus outbreak in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea in 2014. (UNV, 2014)

Now recruiting: UN Volunteers for health emergencies with UNICEF

This call has been closed on April 25, 2017. UNICEF is looking for talented individuals who have a range of experience in disease outbreaks to serve as UN Volunteers for rapid deployment in health emergencies and provide support in the areas indicated below.

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.

Areas of focus

  • Health outbreak/emergency general coordination/incident manager, planning, risk assessments, partnerships (inter-agency/cluster leads, government, or implementing partners).
  • International Health Regulations (IHR) core country capacities.
  • Communication for Development (C4D) in health emergencies (social mobilization, community engagement, behavior change communication, planning and coordination at national/sub-national levels, social/ anthropological research, capacity building).
  • Water and Sanitation in health emergencies, including social inclusion and/or prevention of disease outbreaks.
  • Vaccine preventable diseases: meningococcal disease (meningitis), yellow fever, measles, polio, rubella, pertussis.
  • Airborne diseases: influenza (seasonal, pandemic, avian), severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), Middle Eastern respiratory (MERS) /Coronavirus (CoV), Diphtheria.
  • Vector-borne (mosquito) diseases (i.e. dengue, chikungunya and Zika, malaria, yellow fever, West Nile fever, other arboviruses).
  • Vector Control/entomologist (in health, water, sanitation and hygiene, WASH, or communications for development).
  • Water-borne (fecal-oral route) diseases: cholera, shigellosis, typhoid fever, hepatitis E, enterohemorrhagic E (E. coli).
  • Rodent-borne diseases: plague, leptospirosis, hantavirus, Lassa fever, rickettsia (murine typhus).
  • Viral haemorrhagic fevers: Ebola, Marburg, Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever, Rift Valley fever.
  • Small pox, monkey pox.
  • Other zoonotic diseases: Nipah virus infection, Hendra virus infection, Japanese encephalitis.
  • Veterinarian, veterinary science.
  • Other epidemic/pandemic-prone diseases.
  • Supply and supply chain in outbreaks.
  • Pest control (prevention of diseases transmitted by rodents).
  • Surveillance – early warning alert and response networks / systems.
  • Lab expert.
  • Infection Prevention Control (IPC).
  • Clinical expert for specific epidemic or pandemic diseases (physician, nurse, psychologist, psychiatrist).


A minimum of five years of professional experience in planning, implementation, coordination, project management, and/or partnerships with a background in one or more of the above mentioned areas.

Be proficient in at least one of UNICEF’s working languages: English, French or Spanish. Any additional language (such as Arabic or Russian) is an asset.

Preferably, candidates will be deployed within a week of notice but dates may be flexible.

How to apply

This call has been closed on April 25, 2017.

Selection process

The selection process may include the following steps: telephone screening/video interviewing, technical assessments and competency-based interviews. Since this process will be for a group of candidates, and not be limited to one assignment.

The assignment

The assignment would either take place onsite, at the country or region in which there is a threat, or an actual, outbreak of a communicable disease, or the assignment would be a remote (online) one. The duration of the assignment and entitlements will vary. For surge response to a disease outbreak, the assignment could range from three weeks to three months. Longer assignments could cover building the capacity of health emergencies in a country office.

UNICEF is UNV’s fifth largest partner. In 2016, 311 UN Volunteers served with UNICEF.