Food insecurity is a serious issue in Pakistan due to stagnation or decline of nutrition and economy. The Marginal and poor farmers are among the most suffered sections of society due to food and insecurity. The government considers food insecurity as a major challenge in the 21st century and has prioritized food security as one of their agendas in their development plans and the reports. Food security does not depend simply on producing more food. The only sustainable way to achieve food security for the marginalized poor is by increasing their access to food. This can be done by making appropriate agricultural technologies available to poor farmers; improving the rural poor’s access to credit for agriculture; investing in productive assets like small-scale irrigation systems that benefit the small farmer; supporting rural non-farm economic activities; improving health and primary education, especially for girls; and ensuring that the poor are able to participate in the planning of development programmes. Agriculture also offers an additional pathway to address value addition.
The eradication of hunger through food security is one of the central mandates of FAO. The achievement of the target of halving the number of undernourished by 2015 will require a strong, concentrated and adequately financed effort by all those committed and able to contribute to hunger and poverty reduction through sustainable agricultural and rural development. Overall food security program goal would be to develop comprehensive understanding about food security itself, its linkages, role of various interest groups and impacts on various sections of the society.
Under the overall guidance and supervision of the FAO Representative, direct supervision of the Assistant FAO Representative (Programme) and Senior Advisor on Programme Development in Pakistan, the Programme Officer-Food and Nutrition Security shall perform and be responsible for the implementation of the mentioned duties.
The program in charge has to perform the following functions in collaboration with the relevant public, private and international organizations.
· Networking for Food Security - Set up food and nutrition security networks that could potentially provide support in the implementation of social safety net programmes; liaise with agencies/organizations working to enhance food security in the country; map out details regarding FAO’s contribution towards/support for implementation of PINS;
· Country level food insecurity and food security scenario assessment with partner organizations for strategic development planning and prioritization;
· Devise strategies for achieving gigantic task of household level nutritional food security across different regions;
· Promotes kitchen gardens, home gardens, nutrition gardens, backyard poultry, and fish culture in farm ponds;
· Suggesting measures for enhancing purchasing power–income and employment generation through diversification and micro and small enterprises;
· Develop procedure and linkages for the Impact assessments of food price changes on various agents in food chains from producers to consumers as gainers and loosers;
· Measures role of food and financial based safety nets in addressing household food security;
· Identify poverty escaping opportunities for marginal and landless farmers; and
· Develop projects for Capacity building, training programmes for uptake of improved agricultural technologies, food processing, policy formulation and monitoring and evaluation methodologies;
· Background Paper - on the status of national and household food security; this will help put things in perspective;
Prepare website contents - Coordinate with IT focal person at FAO to populate FAO’s website with contents pertaining to FAO’s achievements/progress etc.
Advanced University Degree (Masters Degree) in nutrition, public health or related discipline.
Experience working with local government, private sector and NGOs
Excellent listening skills and an aptitude to pay due respect and attention to poor illiterate people in rural settings and to decision makers at national level alike
Ability to coordinate the work of others, work to tight deadlines and handle multiple concurrent projects/activities
Skills in data analysis are desirable
Experience in nutrition education and behaviour change approaches
Experience in programme development and implementation in the area of food and nutrition security
Knowledge and experience in development, implementation and delivery of nutrition education and training programmes
Focus on outputs and results based management (RBM) using standards and indicators system as well as other related information systems
Knowledge of international initiatives aimed at reducing chronic undernutrition
Excellent communications skills, both orally and writing in English
Creativity combined with persistence to achieve excellent outputs
Ability to use standard office software, such as MS Office (Windows, Word, Outlook, Excel, Power Point, and Internet) and project management software and other information systems /databases.
Minimum 5 years of relevant experience in food and nutrition security policy and programme development.