UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs Public Information Officer/ Communications - Temporary Jobs in South Sudan

UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs Public Information Officer/ Communications - Temporary Jobs in South Sudan

Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is located in the Operations and Advocacy Division (OAD), in the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA). OCHA is part of the United Nations Secretariat, which is responsible for bringing together humanitarian actors to ensure a coherent response to emergencies.

OCHA also ensures there is a framework within which each actor can contribute to the overall response efforts. OCHA's mission is to mobilize and coordinate effective and principled humanitarian action in partnership with national and international actors in order to alleviate human suffering in disasters and emergencies; advocate the rights of people in need; promote preparedness and prevention and facilitate sustainable solutions.

This temporary job opening is being advertised for the position of Public Information Officer/ Communications and is based in Juba, South Sudan. Under the overall supervision of the Head of Office, OCHA South Sudan, the incumbent reports the Deputy Head of Office.


Within delegated authority, the Public Information Officer / Communications will be responsible for the following duties:

  • Undertakes travel for humanitarian surge in Southern and Eastern Africa and beyond as requested, including to support humanitarian communications (including public information, media relations, social media and key messages) and reporting on humanitarian crises.

  • Manages, provides guidance to, and supervises, the Communications Team within OCHA South Sudan, including supervising junior staff, under the leadership of the Head of the Communications and Information Management Unit.

  • Prepares high-quality reporting and analysis, by establishing and maintaining reporting system within the region; drafting and distribution of regular products on the humanitarian situation in the region; ensuring flow of information and analysis of developments in the region, including tracking trends and sharing reports with HQ, and key partners.

  • Ensures implementation of public information activities to publicize priority issues and/or major events, to include drafting information strategies, coordinating efforts, monitoring and reporting on progress, taking appropriate follow-up action, and analyzing the outcome.

  • Monitors and analyzes current events, public opinion and press, identifies issues and trends, and advises management on appropriate action/responses and approaches for media relations; coordinates with key regional stakeholders on advocacy initiatives to ensure coherent media strategy and common messaging.

  • Produces or oversees production of a specific type or types (e.g. print, broadcast, social media etc.) of information communications products (e.g. press kits, press releases, feature articles, key messages, brochures, backgrounders, audio-visual materials, social media content, etc.), to include proposing topics, undertaking research, determining appropriate medium and target audience, preparing production plans, writing drafts, obtaining clearances and finalizing texts, editing following corporate editorial style guide, reviewing data and ensuring consistency of the information provided, designing the final public products (including working on the layout, proposing visual material, etc. following corporate visual guidance) and coordinating design approval, printing procedures and distribution.

  • Undertakes activities to promote media coverage (e.g. press conferences, press releases, interviews, background briefings and other special activities), including film and photo coverage, of priority issues and/or major events, including World Humanitarian Day, to include development of a media strategy and action plan, initiating pro-active media outreach efforts, proposing and arranging press conferences/media coverage, disseminating materials and consulting with press on approach/story angle and other information requests, undertaking appropriate follow-up action and analyzing and reporting on the impact of coverage.

  • Contributes to content and maintains appropriate and timely web and social media outreach.

  • Prepares, on the basis of
    official UN documentation and other sources, initial drafts of content for inclusion in global OCHA products (e.g. Global Humanitarian Overview, Annual Report etc), periodicals, reports and books and ensures coherence between regional-level communications initiatives and OCHA Communications Strategy.

  • Initiates and sustains professional relationships with key constituencies, including establishing and maintaining a network of regional humanitarian communications focal points.

  • Acts as focal point on specific issues, monitoring and reporting on developments, responding to inquiries, etc; supports efforts to highlight the value-added role of OCHA to Member States as well as the media and the public, in support of fundraising and visibility of OCHA.


  • Professionalism: Knowledge of different aspects of public information and communication. Ability to address a range of issues in the context of political developments, public attitudes and local conditions. Ability to conceptualize, design and implement major information campaigns. Ability to rapidly analyze and integrate diverse information from varied sources. Ability to diplomatically handle sensitive situations with target audiences and cultivate productive relationships. Ability to produce a variety of written communications products in a clear, concise style and utilizes creativity to improve products. .

  • Communication: Speaks and writes clearly and effectively; listens to others, correctly interprets messages from others and responds appropriately; asks questions to clarify, and exhibits interest in having two-way communication; tailors language, tone, style and format to match audience; demonstrates openness in sharing information and keeping people informed.

  • Creativity: Actively seeks to improve programmes or services; offers new and different options to solve problems or meet client needs; promotes and persuades others to consider new ideas; takes calculated risks on new and unusual ideas; thinks “outside the box”; takes an interest in new ideas and new ways of doing things; is not bound by current thinking or traditional approaches.


  • An advanced university degree (Master’s degree or equivalent) in communication, journalism, international relations, public administration or related field. A first-level university degree in combination with an additional two (2) years of qualifying experience may be accepted in lieu of the advanced university degree.

    Work Experience

  • A minimum of five (5) years of progressively responsible experience in public information, journalism, international relations, public administration or related area is required.

  • Experience with crisis communications and social media is required.

  • Knowledge of graphic design, and photo or video editing software is required.

  • At least two (2) years in the past five (5) years of field experience (actual setting where a mission or project is being implemented) in aid operations (complex emergency or natural disaster) is desirable.

  • Field experience in the Region (Eastern, Central and/or Southern Africa) is desirable.


  • English and French are the working languages of the United Nations Secretariat. For the position advertised, fluency in English is required. Knowledge of another UN official language is desirable.

    How to Apply

    For more information and job application details, see; UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs Public Information Officer/ Communications - Temporary Jobs in South Sudan

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