Programme Policy Officer (Sustainable Food Systems) NOB, Accra

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The office of the United Nations World Food Programme invites applications from suitable candidates to fill the vacancy below. Programme Policy Officer

Job Title: Programme Policy Officer (Sustainable Food Systems)

Duty Station: Accra

About

The United Nations World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide.  The mission of WFP is to help the world achieve Zero Hunger in our lifetimes.  Every day, WFP works worldwide to ensure that no child goes to bed hungry and that the poorest and most vulnerable, particularly women and children, can access the nutritious food they need.

Context

Ghana’s CSP is anchored on capacity strengthening, which runs through all the five strategic outcomes with their various activity categories. The priorities of WFP’s first country strategic plan (CSP) covering the period 2019-2023 are in line with the findings of the Ghana zero hunger strategic review; interventions focus on direct food assistance using commodity vouchers and social behaviour change communication (SBCC) to improve the nutritional status of targeted populations, in line with national targets. The country office (CO) also aims to ensure vulnerable communities benefit from: (a) efficient and resilient food systems which support nutritional value chains; (b) capacity strengthening interventions to manage food security, nutrition and social protection programmes; and (c) advocacy and coherent policy frameworks support to key cooperating partners

The Country Office is planning to implement a project:  Strengthening Food Systems to Empower Smallholder Farmers and Young People project with the goal to contribute to the modernization and transformation of Ghana’s agricultural sector and improved livelihoods of smallholder farmers (SHFs) with deliberate focus on youth. The project is aimed at creating jobs and contributing to reducing unemployment in Ghana among youth especially females through improvement in existing and creation of new opportunities in the agriculture sector. This will be achieved through reduction in post harvest losses, connecting smallholder farmers (SHFs) predominantly the youth, and other agriculture value chain actors to organised value chains and structured markets.

The project main objectives include.

  • To reduce post harvest loss among smallholders, improve food safety and quality standards of the targeted commodity value chains.
  • To enhance capacity of farmers and provide access to structured and digital markets to Improve Livelihoods.

The project intends to reach 100,000 smallholder farmers (direct beneficiaries-56 percent women) organised in 400 farmers organisations and engaged in production of maize, soybean, rice, sorghum, and millet as the primary target commodities or value chains.  The project will cover 9 regions of Ghana including Ashanti, Bono East, Bono, Upper East, Upper West, Savanna, Eastern region, Northern and North East. Of the 100,000 SHFs, 60 percent of project beneficiaries (60,000) will be youth aged between 18 -35 years, 60 percent of the youth beneficiaries will be young women (36,000). The focus of the project is on creating job opportunities for the youth especially young women and will analyse all bottlenecks that hinder young women from accessing available opportunities and will provide sustainable solutions to those bottlenecks. The project also intends to engage 50 aggregators/SME buyers, 20 agro-processors, commercial, institutional, and regional buyers and will ensure that the targeted youths acquire new work created through wage and self-employment. The project is expected to be implemented in 5 years effective January 2022 to January 2027

The project will adopt an integrated value chain approach to implement context-specific interventions aimed at reaching the following outcomes: 

  • Young people, especially women, have improved employment opportunities along the value chain  
  • Smallholder farmers, especially youth and women, increase the value of their sales, resulting in improved income 
  • Smallholder farmers, especially youth and women, reduce post-harvest losses and improve the quality for targeted crops 
  • Improved inclusiveness of marginalized groups in agricultural value chains 
  • Improved value chain efficiency for young people, in particular women 

In addition, whenever possible the initiative will explore and advance digital solutions to attract young people to the sector and increase value chain efficiencies. 

JOB PURPOSE:

Oversee and be responsible for the implementation of all sustainable food systems (SO2) activities in the 4 regions of the Middle Belt: Ashanti, Bono, Bono East and the Eastern regions – with a focus on efficient production systems, post-harvest loss management, innovative market linkages, access to affordable financial services and support to community and medium scale food processors and aggregators

MAJOR DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

Under the overall supervision of the Head of Programme/DCD, the technical supervision of the Sustainable Food Systems Coordinator in Accra, the Programme Policy Officer – Sustainable Food Systems will be expected to perform the following duties:

  1. Support the Food Systems Coordinator in all efforts and activities to guide the implementation of WFP’s Smallholder Agriculture and Market Support (SAMS) programme in the 4 regions of the Middle Belt: Ashanti, Bono, Bono East and the Eastern regions. (May be called upon to serve in other regions)
  2. Support the Food Systems Coordinator in the management, implementation and reporting on the Strengthening Food Systems to Empower Smallholder Farmers and Young People project.
  3. Engage with stakeholders, explore, develop and/or maintain partnerships that support efficient and effective food systems programme implementation, monitoring, and reporting.
  4. Liaise with the regional departments of agriculture through the designated regional focal points for implementation, monitoring, and reporting; follow-up on monthly activity/project progress reports, review, consolidate and share with the Food Systems Coordinator and the Head of Programme/DCD.
  5. Facilitate capacity strengthening of Small Holder Farmers (SHF), Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), aggregators, and other rural actors to participate in structured markets; through improved agricultural commodity quality standards and promote market linkages through e-commerce platforms and other end buyers.
  6. Collaborate with key government agencies like Ghana Standards Authority (GSA), Ghana Commodity Exchange (GCX), and other private sector agencies to facilitate acquisition of national certifications to support Farmer Based Organisations (FBOs) and other value chain actors to access digital platforms; and promote both traditional and digital marketing models.
  7. Ensure active participation of smallholder farmers including women and youths in organized value chains and structured markets to facilitate job creation for the youths.
  8. Facilitate and promote youth innovations that create efficiency in marketing for smallholder farmers e.g., e-commerce innovations, digital payments, transport, packaging, storage, and other logistical innovations.
  9. Support with the coordination, implementation and monitoring of Post-Harvest Management interventions and technologies among farmer-based organizations and aggregation systems.
  10. Support Smallholder Farmers and Communities’ Resilience building through crop insurance, training or other forms of assistance including Climate Smart and Nutrition-Sensitive Agricultural Initiatives.
  11. Liaison with the Food Technologist, and the Food Systems Coordinator, to provide technical support and coordinate efforts to strengthen food safety and quality management systems along the agricultural value chain.
  12. In coordination with the Food Systems Coordinator, and the Head of Programme/DCD, liaise with the Research Assessment and Monitoring (RAM) team to develop sound monitoring and evaluation plan for learning and accountability.
  13. Liaise with the Food Systems Coordinator to contribute towards the development of routine reports, Annual Performance Plan (APP), Annual Country Report (ACR) and other corporate requirements.
  14. In coordination with the Food Systems Coordinator actively participate in Resource mobilization activities including development of Food systems concepts and proposals aimed at raising funds from international donors and financial institutions. 
  15. Perform any other duties as may be provided by Supervisors from time to time.

STANDARD MINIMUM ACADEMIC QUALIFICATION

Education

  • First degree in Agricultural sciences, Agricultural economics, Agribusiness, Development studies or other related fields.
  • A master’s degree in any of the above fields is an added advantage

Experience

  • In-depth technical knowledge on sustainable food systems, e-commerce/commodity exchange platforms, youth in agriculture, agriculture and nutrition value chain, programme co-ordination and projects implementation.
  • A minimum of 3 years of post graduate professional progressive experience managing programmes related to sustainable food systems, agriculture and nutrition value chains or other related fields.

Language: Fluency in English language is essential. Knowledge of local languages spoken in Ghana will be an advantage.

Method Of Application

Click here to read more and apply

Closing Date: 06 April 2022

APPLY: 

NOTE:

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