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Short-term Independent Contractor - Brazil Program Support

Vitamin Angels (VA) is a global non-profit organization with headquarters in Santa Barbara, California, USA. It promotes and implements evidence-based nutrition interventions among hard-to-reach and underserved populations (those that lack access to national health services), in 70 countries.

Position: Short-term Independent Contractor - Brazil Program Support
Location: Brazil (must already be based in Brazil)
Employer: The Vitamin Angels Alliance, Inc. (VA)
Time Commitment: 3 months

About Vitamin Angels

Vitamin Angels (VA) is a global public health nutrition organization that promotes health and economic equity across the lifespan by ensuring that nutritionally vulnerable, underserved populations have access to evidence-based nutrition interventions. VA focuses on interventions that target the first 1,000 days of life (i.e., from conception through 24 months of age) and children up to 5 years of age.

The World Health Organization estimates that at least half of the world’s population still lacks access to essential health services (i.e. are underserved). Lack of access remains greatest in low resource settings globally and disproportionally affects communities experiencing marginalization.

VA responds by removing common barriers to access that prevent nutritionally vulnerable, underserved populations from benefiting from evidence-based nutrition strategies (e.g. supplementation, combatting childhood infections, and dietary diversification). VA works with governments, academia, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), at both the national and local level, to increase access to vitamin A and multiple micronutrient supplementation, deworming, supplementary feeding and promotion of optimal maternal, infant, and young child nutrition. The work includes:

  • Engaging in advocacy and advisory services to support an enabling environment to build and sustain momentum for the initial uptake and ongoing use of evidence-based nutrition interventions,
  • Providing technical assistance to ensure effective delivery of evidence-based nutrition interventions through implementation research, learning solutions, and monitoring and evaluation, and
  • Increasing the availability of evidence-based nutrition interventions to women and children.

Role or Purpose of Position

VA seeks to explore the introduction or strengthening of specified evidence-based nutrition interventions in Brazil and is engaging a Consultant to carry out a desk review and stakeholder mapping of an in-depth country assessment.

The desk review will serve as an important point of reference for the planned country assessment, provide contextual information for the analysis, and contribute to the preparation of the final report. The elements to be included in the review are outlined below and focus on the nutrition situation, policies, and delivery platforms related to (i) antenatal care and maternal supplementation, (ii) vitamin A supplementation, and (iii) deworming for children under 5 in Brazil.

Desk Review

  1. Review of existing policy documents/guidance (Brazil-specific) to inform our understanding of:
    1. Existing policies and regulations,
    2. National and sub-national protocols that health facilities should use,
    3. Budgets.
  2. Review other relevant program documents (Brazil-specific), including white papers, project/program reports, etc. to inform our understanding of:
    1. Existing/ongoing projects and activities,
    2. How the existing policies and national protocols may be operationalized sub-nationally,
    3. The human resource, capacity building initiatives, and support for primary and antenatal care services
    4. Key stakeholders
  3. Review (and analysis) of existing data to provide a brief overview of nutritional situation, focusing on:
    1. Indicators of nutritional status
    2. Indicators of careseeking, particularly on use of health services
    3. Brief analysis of relevant causes at immediate, underlying, and basic level
    4. Knowledge, attitudes and practices of communities, households, and mothers relevant to nutrition or use of health services
    5. If country has recently been affected by an emergency, food, or financial crisis, describe the impacts, the most affected population groups, and their coping actions or strategies
    6. VAS, Deworming, MMS/IFA program context data (as applicable)
      1. Coverage rates and service provision for your district/geographical location
      2. Utilization data (Distribution strategy for VAS+D)
      3. Supply chain
  4. Supply chain assessment of micronutrient vitamins, specifically processes involved in purchases/bidding/importation

Stakeholder Mapping / Analysis

  1. Map key stakeholders and coordination mechanisms related to antenatal care services
    1. Compile information on who is doing what, where, and at what scale.
      1. Who holds power and influence?
      2. Who supports or opposes the program or SBCC intervention?
      3. What are the issues affecting the program or SBCC intervention?
    2. Describe and draw the relationships of government ministries to other key stakeholders; also describe the structures at the provincial, regional or district level.
    3. Provide examples, if available, of high-level policymakers or other influential persons (i.e. nutrition champions) who are advocating for maternal nutrition.
    4. Describe any existing coordination mechanisms that address maternal nutrition.
    5. Briefly describe the role of the private sector in nutrition, especially in relation to the reduction of maternal and child undernutrition.

Required Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Based in Brazil;
  • Fluent in English and Portuguese;
  • Masters degree in Public Health or Nutrition or Community Medicine or equivalent professional experience;
  • Strong understanding of maternal and child health and nutrition in the region;
  • Minimum two years of experience performing consultancies with INGOs, bilateral, or multilateral agencies;
  • Existing network of contacts within bilateral, multilateral, and government agencies in Brazil;
  • Computer literacy, including experience with Microsoft Excel, Word and PowerPoint;
  • Willing and able to travel domestically during the consultancy;
  • Willing to work from home and in possession of reliable telephone/internet connectivity;
  • Superior written and oral communications skills;
  • Superior organizational skills and attention to detail; and

To apply, please email your professional resume and cover letter to [email protected]