Project Administrative/Finance Associate vacancy - Promotion of climate change and disaster risk reduction solutions in the water and civil protection sectors for enhanced rural resilience - UNDP Moldova

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Background

Considering its economic structure and geographic features, Moldova is highly vulnerable to climate change and is exposed to disasters due to the hydrometeorological phenomena and natural hazards. While drought and floods are among top hydro-meteorological hazards caused by extreme weather and climate events, due to the current and projected abnormal high temperatures leading to water scarcity the incidence of forest fires is increasingly posing a threat to the natural ecosystems, agricultural system and human settlements. With the projected decrease in surface water availability by 16-20% by 2020 due to climate change, the water supply for all users requires adaptation options to reduce the vulnerability of rural communities related to water stress. In Moldova’s climate induced disasters are occurring more frequently and on a recurring basis, causing an average of 4 million US dollars per year of economic damage.

Climate scenarios also indicate the country is trending strongly towards becoming more arid. This will intensify not only droughts but also fires. Unfortunately, rural communities experience a capacity deficit in terms of fire prevention, preparedness and timely response mainly due to liquidation of over 400 equipped and capacitated firefighting units following the extensive privatization process from the 90s. Subsequently, the intervention radius of 3 km (according to norms) increased to up to 10-15 km in urban areas and 40-50 km in rural areas (where 70% of the total number of fires occur). It resulted in increased response time and lower awareness of fire risks by the rural population, subsequently leading to considerable increase in loss of life, material damages and affected ecosystems. It is widely accepted that rural women are disproportionately affected by fires due to them being mostly engaged in cooking in unsafe cookstoves and collection of firewood in ecosystems that might be at high risk of fires. Overall, during 2008 and 2017, in Moldova were registered about 8 725 fires resulting in 1 356 deaths, including 61 children. In the rural areas, poor and low-income households are mostly exposed to fire risks due to also lack of proper fire prevention measures and adapted techniques, education and awareness.

Against this background, the project aims to increase resilience and adaptive capacities of rural communities to climate change and disasters through improved water storage infrastructures and disasters risk reduction measures. The project is supporting implementation of climate-smart water management solutions for agriculture, flood management and fire prevention and expansion of community-based rescue/firefighting teams in rural communities of Moldova with the purpose to reduce the exposure and vulnerability of the rural communities to climate change and disaster risks. The project will be implemented over a period of 36 months and the activities are clustered around 2 major outputs intended to produce an impact in 5 districts of Moldova, Central (Hincesti, Criuleni and Ungheni districts) and Southern (Leova and Cantemir).

The expected impact of the project is: improved resilience of rural communities’ livelihoods in the face of climate change.

The overall project outcome is: strengthened local policies, capacities and infrastructure which enable climate and disaster resilient development at the community level.

The projects outputs are the following:

Output 1 - Adaptation interventions in the water sector for agricultural purposes and flood management demonstrated and local climate change related policy frameworks in place in a selected number of districts.

Output 2 - Community-level climate and disaster management capacities improved for risk reduction, prevention and timely response.

Under the 1st Output 2 major activities will be implemented: 1.1. Mainstream climate change adaptation and disaster risk management priorities into local development planning frameworks with intention to widely involve various stakeholders ranging from private sector to vulnerable groups (out of which 50% will be women) into policy and decision-making over priorities that affect their well-being; and 1.2. Water storage infrastructures piloted in 5 districts of the country to enhance adaptation to climate change in the water and agricultural sectors by supporting with grants at least 15 farmers, including women, to put in place climate-smart water systems, such as for instance, water storage basins.

Under the 2d Output 2 major activities will be implemented: 2.1 Establish Community-based rescue and firefighting brigades in the most vulnerable and risk exposed districts of the country which are seen as an instrument for resilient community development that will cover up to 10-20 km radius with maximum intervention time of 15 minutes; and 2.2 Conduct capacity development for climate and disaster response local teams and raise awareness towards building a culture of safer living in order to ensure that the performance of the climate and disaster response local teams in the target communities is exercised at its full capacity and that the local population have an enhanced understanding of the response patterns in case of disasters.

The benefits of the project will materialize by increased water availability for resilient livelihoods, reduced exposure to disasters and fire risks for 55 villages (approximately 58,714 people, including 39 300 women), where 990 households are identified as vulnerable (2930 vulnerable persons) from the economic and social point of view.

As per the General Inspectorate for Emergency Situations, for the purpose of this project, as vulnerable groups and individuals are defined people with diminished capacity to anticipate, cope with, resist and recover from the impact of a natural or man-made hazard. Those include: 1st Group – Persons who are alone and/or sick that are tied to bed and cared by social assistant; 2nd Group – Poor families with many children and families without one or both parents; and, 3rd Group – Old persons with limited mobility.

Duties and Responsibilities

Under the guidance and direct supervision of the Project Manager, Climate Change, Environment and Energy Programme Analyst, the incumbent assists in the effective management of the project through a range of actions contributing to the design, planning, management and monitoring of project activities. The Project/Administrative/Finance Associate applies and promotes the principles of results-based management (RBM), as well as a client-oriented approach consistent with UNDP rules and regulations.

Project/Administrative/Finance Associate works in close collaboration with the Programme, Operations, Communications and other project teams in the Country Office (CO) for effective achievement of results, anticipating and resolving complex project-related issues and information delivery.

The incumbent is expected to exercise full compliance with UNDP programming, financial, procurement and administrative rules, regulations, policies and strategies, as well as implementation of the effective internal control systems.

Administrative management

  • Pro-actively contribute to day-to-day project implementation and ensure conformity to expected results and project work-plans;
  • Provide support to international consultants in the implementation of their tasks for the achievement of project results (communication, contracts, agenda, visas, accommodation, etc);
  • Maintain records on all project personnel/national consultants and their respective status (contracts, ToRs, and attendance – if appropriate, etc.) in accordance with accepted policies and procedures;
  • Coordinate other support staff, translators, and short-term consultants;
  • Prepare and issue contracts;
  • Make pertinent logistical arrangements for the prompt and effective implementation of the programme activities;
  • Draft minutes of Project Board and other project related meetings;
  • Assume overall responsibility for administrative matters of a more general nature, such as registry and maintenance of project files and records;
  • Arrange external and internal meetings (including the meetings of the Project Board, Technical level, as well as other relevant meetings etc.).

Financial management

  • Prepare requests for advance of funds and/or direct payments;
  • Monitor budget expenditures and maintain a proper record of approved project budgets and their revisions;
  • Prepare proposals for budget revisions;
  • Prepare and submit expenditure and programme budget status reports;
  • Respond to queries from the Government and UNDP with respect to financial aspects of the programme, liaise with UNDP-appointed and external auditors wherever required;
  • Prepare recurring reports as scheduled and special reports as required for budget preparations and audit;
  • Advise and assist international advisors and national consultants on all aspects of allowances, travel claims and other financial matters and calculate payments due for claims and services;
  • Assist the auditing performed by the project managers over the funds allocated to project. Ensure the compliance of allocated funds with the UNDP norms and regulations;
  • If necessary, travel for control and auditing purposes to the project;
  • Undertake other financial and administrative tasks on an ad hoc basis.

Procurement

  • In accordance with the Work Plan arrange for procurement of equipment, supplies and services;
  • Create and mange e-requisitions in ATLAS;
  • Prepare the procurement plans for the projects and monitoring of their implementation;
  • Prepare the submissions to the Contract, Asset and Procurement Committee (CAP);
  • Arrange for equipment maintenance and insurance as required;
  • Ensure that contractual processes follow the stipulated UNDP procedures;
  • Physically clear and ensure delivery of equipment and supplies procured for the various programme sites;
  • Maintain the equipment and spare inventory including verification and transfer when required.

Other duties as assigned.

  • Assume full responsibility for and manage effectively and efficiently financial, physical / material assets, etc. in order to meet expected results;
  • Apply UNDP programming tools utilization, and namely, introduce and control over the financial data in ATLAS.

Competencies

Corporate Competencies:

  • Demonstrates commitment to UNDP’s mission, vision and values;
  • Exerts strict adherence to corporate rules, regulations and procedures. Familiarity with the internal control framework and results-based management tools is a must;
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability.

Functional Competencies

Knowledge Management and Learning

  • Shares knowledge and experience;
  • Actively works towards continuing personal learning, acts on learning plan and applies newly acquired skills.

Development and Operational Effectiveness

  • Ability to perform a variety of specialized tasks related to Results-Based Management, including support to design, planning and implementation of programme, managing data, reporting;
  • Ability to provide input to business processes, re-engineering, implementation of new system, including new IT based systems;
  • Ability to establish and maintain contacts with senior-level officials of the host government required.
  • Strong communication and inter-personal skills; including the ability to effectively communicate with persons from a variety of backgrounds;
  • Excellent planning and organizational skills;
  • Ability to achieve results and deadlines in a timely manner, maintaining a high standard throughout.

Leadership and Self-Management

  • Focuses on result for the client and responds positively to feedback;
  • Consistently approaches work with energy and a positive, constructive attitude;
  • Remains calm, in control and good humored even under pressure;
  • Demonstrates openness to change and ability to manage complexities.

Required Skills and Experience

Education:

  • University Degree in economics, finance, accounting, law, public administration or other related field.

Experience:

  • At least seven years of experience in administrative work, accounting/finance, economics, or other substantive area is required;
  • Previous experience in development assistance or related work for a donor organization, consulting company, or NGO, or previous experience with UNDP is a very strong advantage;
  • Experience in the usage of computers and office software packages (MS Word, Excel, etc) and advance knowledge of spreadsheet and database packages, experience in handling of web based management systems.

Language Requirements:

  • Fluency in both oral and written English and Romanian. Knowledge of Russian is desired;
  • Knowledge of one or more minority languages relevant for Moldova, including Romani, Gagauzian, Bulgarian, Ukrainian and sign language, is an asset.

Disclaimer

UNDP is an employer devoted to gender equity and to providing equal opportunities to both women and men.
UNDP is committed to workforce diversity. Women, persons with disabilities, Roma and other ethnic or religious minorities, persons living with HIV, as well as refugees and other non-citizens legally entitled to work in the Republic of Moldova, are particularly encouraged to apply.

This is a local position, therefore only citizens of the Republic of Moldova or others legally authorized to work in the country are eligible to apply.

Please note that only applicants who are short-listed will be contacted.

Online applications can be submitted by registered users only. Self-registration link is available at the next page and requires candidates to provide a valid email address.

To learn more and apply for this and other positions please visit our site at: http://www.md.undp.org/content/moldova/en/home/operations/jobs.html

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