Communications Officer at the Directorate of Environment of ECOWAS – USAID

The Directorate of Environment of ECOWAS with support from West Africa Biodiversity and Climate Change (WA BiCC), a USAID funded regional program, invites applications from suitably qualified candidates for the position below:Job Title: Communications OfficerLocation: AbujaContract Duration: 12 Months (renewable depending on funding availability)BackgroundTetraTech ARD (Tt/ARD) and its consortium of partners – Palladium, Columbia University’s Center for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN), PCI Media, Born Free USA and Pact – were awarded the USAID contract for implementation of West Africa Biodiversity and Climate Change (WA BiCC) Program in May 2015. The Program goal is to improve conservation and climate resilient, low-emissions growth across West Africa, and is designed to strengthen the resilience and sustainability of West African institutions, ecosystems, and communities. WA BiCC consists of three main components which comprise:Combating wildlife traffickingIncreasing coastal resilience to Climate Change andReducing deforestation, degradation and biodiversity loss in key forest areas.WA BiCC has three main regional partners: The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS); Mano River Union (MRU); and the Abidjan Convention. By working through these partners, and with targeted national and sub-national institutions, WA BiCC increases the capacity of institutions at all levels to address the three core WA BiCC components mentioned above. A key area is support to these partner organizations to ensure they transition into more effective and efficient agents of fund management and project implementation.To ensure that sustainability is placed at the forefront of all interventions, WA BiCC developed in the first quarter of Year 1, three Institutional Strengthening Plans (ISPs) with the ECOWAS Directorate of Environment, the Abidjan Convention Secretariat, and the Mano River Union (MRU) Secretariat. The ISPs were designed collaboratively with the partners, and targeted training plans were developed to improve specific organizational tools and processes in line with the mandates of the partners.WA BiCC supported the ECOWAS Directorate of Environment to develop the communication strategy. ECOWAS holds communications and Information as prerequisites for regional integration, poverty eradication and socio-economic development, and commits to improve Policy and availability of information to the peoples of the region as expressed through the adoption of the ECOWAS new Communication Policy by the Information Ministers in January 2011. The regional communication policy emphasizes the need to co-operate in information dissemination, recognizing that information is a requirement for political, economic, social and cultural development.Position PurposeThe Communications Officer will lead the implementation of a robust Communications and Advocacy Strategy of the ECOWAS Environment DirectorateThe person will be responsible for improving policy and availability of information to national governments, sub regional and regional partners and international development funding agencies associated with DOEHe /She will also be responsible for raising the profile, building audiences and effectively communicating the mission and disseminating messages and information of the Environment Directorate to meet strategic and operational objectives.Specific ResponsibilitiesWork closely with the Environment Directorate team to implement the Directorate’s Communications Strategy and other activities related to disseminating messages to governments, partners, donors, decision-makers, the media, the private sector and the public at large.Support the Environment Directorate in identifying and developing effective messages for dissemination to relevant target audiences and stakeholders.Review, edit and contribute to reports and other materials prepared for the website, social media to ensure that all outgoing materials meet rules and regulations of the ECOWAS Commission.Manage and update regularly the website and key social media platforms of ECOWAS Directorate of Environment.Prepare content and provide assistance to ensure the development, production and dissemination of Newsletters and related distribution list.Collect, gather and review information from national policy makers and legislators, and other regional and international development Partners and Agencies associated with the ECOWAS Environment Directorate.Conceptualize, prepare and design content and liaise with various stakeholders and print houses (vendors) in the development and production of information, education and communications (IEC) materialsIdentify and draft content for compelling articles, news and change stories for publication as well as liaise with partners and conduct research to identify news and materials from other sources to be shared and published on the website of the ECOWAS Environment Directorate.Collaborate with other team members of the Directorate to implement all relevant communications activities.Contribute to the Directorate’s brand identity and ensure consistency in branding of all information, education and communications materials and activities, to promote an accurate image of the organization and its programs amongst media and other targeted audience.Assist in the day-to-day communication activities and overall coordination activities;The Communications Officer will work under the supervision of the Director of Environment, be a member of the Directorate Technical Team and develop functional relations with the technical staff, National Focal Points and collaborate with partners.Other Tasks:Execute any other tasks linked with the objectives of the Institution and with the responsibilities and capacities of the technician.Basic RequirementsAt least 5 years experience in developing and using communications strategies and tools to advance local, regional and international program objectives, including media relations, web/mobile/social media, graphic design, print and eventsUndergraduate Degree in Communications or Journalism and / or other relevant fields relevant to Media/Communication and DevelopmentExperience in working with regional institutions and governments in West AfricaFluency in written and spoken English and/or French is required. Work experience in the ECOWAS region is required

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