The Maternal and Child Survival Program (MCSP) is a global Cooperative Agreement funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) aimed at introducing and supporting high-impact health interventions. This global program focuses on 24 high-priority countries, including Nigeria, with the ultimate goal of ending preventable maternal and child deaths within a generation. MCSP country programs strive to ensure that all women, newborns and children have equitable access to the quality health care services that save lives.
MCSP supports programming in maternal, newborn, and child health, immunization, family planning (FP) and reproductive health, nutrition, health systems strengthening, water/sanitation/hygiene, malaria, prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV, and pediatric HIV care and treatment. The program engages governments, policymakers, private sector leaders, health care providers, civil society, faith-based organizations and communities in addressing the major causes of maternal, newborn and child mortality and improving the quality of health services from household to hospital. Health systems strengthening, household and community mobilization, gender integration and eHealth are also cross-cutting themes and areas of the program’s work.
MCSP will play a key role in facilitating central-level policy change necessary to accelerate the decline in preventable maternal, newborn, and child (MNCH) deaths. This includes ensuring increased treatment options for childhood pneumonia, diarrhea, and malaria, especially at community level. MCSP also supports states to improve access to high-quality preventive and curative MNCH services, as well as the availability of essential commodities at both the facility and community levels.
- Based in Kogi, Nigeria, the Measurement, Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Officer (MMEL Officer) will work as a member of the integrated MCSP/Nigeria MNCH team, under the supervision of the State Child Health Coordinator, to support MCSP activities designed to improve the quality and equity of preventive and curative child health interventions.
- The MMEL Officer will play a key role in program monitoring, documentation, reporting, and learning around MCSP child health technical support activities in Kogi state. Focusing on community-level child
- health activities (namely, integrated community case management, or iCCM) and data, this individual will also help strengthen the local monitoring and evaluation (M&E) and health management information systems (HMIS), monitor and document program results and learning on child heath, supervise MCSP M&E activities for child health at the state level, manage data collection and reporting of child health service delivery data against program/USAID indicators, and ensure the quality of state government M&E capacity-building activities supported by MCSP for child health.
- The MMEL Officer will also closely collaborate with other technical and management team members on program planning and implementation, and will advise on the adjustment of program strategies, activities, and approaches related to child health based on ongoing monitoring data and performance. This individual must be a strong collaborator, manager, technician, and innovative thinker who is detail-oriented, highly organized, passionate, and able to work in a challenging, rural environment with minimal day-to-day supervision.
Roles and Responsibilities
Specific responsibilities include but are not limited to the following:
- Program M&E system development and management
- Play a lead role, under the guidance of MCSP’s Regional MNCH M&E Director, Kogi State Child Health Coordinator, Child Health Team Leader, and state government staff to develop, track, and report on appropriate child health indicators and targets. This includes supporting updates to and the implementation and monitoring of the program’s Performance Monitoring Plan (PMP).
- Work closely with the program’s Regional MNCH M&E Director, Kogi State MNCH Team Leader, Kogi State Child Health Coordinator, and other technical program staff to help create and maintain child health data in the program’s M&E database, and to encourage the use of this database to track the progress of program implementation.
- Support the introduction of a community-based M&E system for iCCM in Kogi state, ideally through the development of a system that links community child health data with the Health Management Information System (HMIS) (e.g., District Health Management System-2, or DHIS2). Track performance results and data quality for iCCM through this system.
- Work closely with the Regional MNCH M&E Director, Kogi State MNCH Team Leader, and other technical program colleagues to harmonize and coordinate data collection, reporting, and state government M&E capacity building efforts/activities across MCSP’s various technical areas (i.e., maternal, newborn, and child health), as appropriate.
- Provide day-to-day technical leadership in Kogi state to help ensure that all USAID planning and reporting requirements that are related to M&E for child health activities are met by the program, and that these M&E approaches are sound, evidence-based, and responsive to the needs of the state.
- Provide regular updates on child health activity progress/results to senior management and technical program staff in country and/or at Home Office as requested. Proactively flag program performance issues for action as they arise, in close collaboration with other senior MCSP management and technical staff. Initiate and/or facilitate periodic internal program planning and review exercises.
- Support Kogi State in the compilation, analysis, and presentation of M&E data for child health at various levels, to encourage the use of information for decision making.
- Support the State to develop and implement quality control and quality assurance mechanisms to ensure completeness, accuracy, and consistency of MNCH reporting at all relevant levels.
- Supervise (and conduct as needed) child health data entry, cleaning, and analysis, as well as baseline, formative, and routine data collection; this includes working with MCSP’s country and home office teams, and with State and other partners, to design, test, implement, and document routine data collection and the implementation of baseline assessments/surveys and research protocols.
- Participate in relevant state- and/or LGA-level stakeholder working groups and meetings (or advocate for establishing appropriate technical working groups as appropriate, if they do not exist) related to M&E and/or child health.
- Participate in and/or convene regular management, technical, and other meetings as needed, including Country Support Team (CST) and Child Health team meetings with MCSP’s Washington-based Home Office teams.
- Promote the transparent, timely, and consistent flow of information and internal and external communications as required.
- Work with MCSP staff and partners to identify short-term technical assistance needs and opportunities to strengthen technical approaches and implementation.
Program Documentation and Reporting:
- Contribute to the development and/or reviews of USAID quarterly technical progress reports, annual workplans and activity budgets, monthly cash flow requests, and other key program deliverables as required.
- Contribute to the drafting/development of success stories, case studies, conference abstracts, and other materials and messages that demonstrate program achievements and progress related to child health; tracking and “telling a story” around program results, including factors critical to success and/or areas needing improvement.
Local M&E Capacity Development:
- Support M&E capacity development among program and state government staff to strengthen the quality and completeness of child health data (including by promoting the use of data quality self-assessment techniques), and for the improved collection, management, and use of child health data for decision making.
- Champion opportunities to promote, facilitate, and document both formal and informal learning experiences that emerge during the course of MCSP/Nigeria MNCH program implementation. This includes sharing knowledge, experiences, and best practices with other MCSP colleagues and program partners as required; supporting process documentation and dissemination around program implementation; highlighting success stories, and examples of “positive deviance” around what is working; and stimulating creative thinking with other partners around how to improve performance, data management, and data use.
- Represent the program’s interests and provide technical advisory support in public and professional circles through meetings, technical working groups, task forces, and conferences.
- Develop and maintain excellent relationships with key public and private partners and stakeholders.
- Advanced Degree in Public Health/ Epidemiology/ Biostatistics/Statistics/Economics or relevant field required.
- At least 5 years of experience in the monitoring and evaluation of public health programs.
- Demonstrated understanding of and experience with USAID reporting frameworks and indicators.
- Experience in research methods, and in the design, conduct, and analysis of research studies (quantitative and qualitative).
- Familiarity with the Nigerian HMIS, including DHIS2, and other M&E systems.
- Technical knowledge of and experience using various applied research and M&E techniques; ability to link information systems to program implementation.
- Excellent technical writing and communications skills, including demonstrated technical writing skills for publication; ability to “tell a story” with data, and to explain the “so what” of data when writing program reports.
- Experience (preferred) with statistical analysis, database, and/or data visualization software such as EpiInfo, Access, SPSS, STATA, R, NVIVO, and/or ArcGIS.
- High proficiency in Microsoft applications (Word, Excel, PowerPoint).
- Demonstrated experience in outcome monitoring and impact evaluation using robust techniques.
- Excellent verbal and written communication skills, including outstanding presentation and meeting facilitation skills; good verbal and written communication skills in English; knowledge of at least one other relevant local dialect required.
- Ability to work in a complex operating environment with minimal day-to-day supervision, and to prioritize multiple tasks and deadlines with pressure to perform.
- Ability to travel to harder-to-reach communities up to 30%-50% of the time for program monitoring, data collection, supervision, and technical and capacity-building support.
- Proven ability to motivate and mentor other colleagues, with demonstrated experience and skills in training and capacity building.
- Strong representational, partnership, and interpersonal skills.