United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)

Consultant (Cold Chain and Immunization Supply Chain Management Support)

United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)

Job Description

Under the general guidance of the Chief Child Survival and Development (or OiC) and in close collaboration with Ministry of Health the selected consultant will assist the planning, monitoring and implementation of Cold Chain related activities for COVID 19 UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. To save their lives. To defend their rights. To help them fulfill their potential.

Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, every day, to build a better world for everyone.

And we never give up.

For every child,


Covid-19 pandemic is a global health crisis that becomes the greatest challenge to countries in a short period of time. Since its emergence late last year the virus has spread to every continent. The pandemic is more than a health crisis that created an unprecedent socio-economic crisis stressing every country it touched. In order to fight this pandemic, a group of global health actors launched an initiative called Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator (ACT-A) to promote and accelerate the development, production and equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines, diagnostics and therapeutics.

One of the goals of ACT-A is to avail 2 billion doses of COVID 19 vaccine by end of 2021. Rapidly deploying and quickly vaccinating target group will be of most goal of the exercise. In this regard the importance of effective supply chain in general and cold chain management remains vital. In such situation, several activities  need to be accomplished within a record time, this includes but not limited to determination of the required logistics the will be informed by vaccination strategies, The storage and transportation need for the vaccine should be understood and the required capacity should be determined in a short window of time.  A detailed storage and distribution plan need to agree and followed strictly. These activities require additional time and knowledge.

Hence, UNICEF Lesotho, is seeking assistance in the form of a consultancy equivalent to P3/NOC of full-time work to be completed in a maximum of six (6) months, to support on planning, monitoring and implementation of Cold Chain and logistics related activities during the deployment of COVID-19 vaccine.


The overall objective of this consultancy is to ensure that country supply chain has the capacity to receive, store, package and safely ship the COVID-19 vaccine and ancillary items to specified distribution/usage points within the agreed timeline. In this regard the consultant is expected to understand supply chain management processes required to successfully deploy vaccine and ancillary items. This should be done through assessment and documentation of the capacity of the country supply chain system, identification of gaps, and preparation of surge capacity as required along with the budget to support it Discription of Assignment 

Under the general guidance of the Chief Child Survival and Development (or OiC) and in close collaboration with Ministry of Health the selected consultant will assist the planning, monitoring and implementation of cold chain related activities for COVID 19 as outlined below.

PLANNING PHASE (PRE-CAMPAIGN COVID_19 ACTIVITIES) Coordination / Project management role

  • Coordinate with national level technical group such as NLWG and NITAG to ensure timely planning, monitoring and implementation cold chain related activities. This includes but not limited to preparation of detail planning with timeline, roles and responsibilities, timing and resource requirement.
  • In collaboration with NLWG assign members with their roles and responsibilities to ensure efficient implementation and avoid delays.
  • In collaboration with NLWG, Conduct country specific stakeholder Mapping (specific to cold chain) and support NLWG in articulating communication strategy,
  • Map cold chain related risks and prepare management strategy in collaboration with the country NLWG.
  • Develop a checklist for ensuring cold chain and waste management readiness prior to the campaign
  • Support the preparation of waste management and reverse logistic plan that clearly describes how, when, where and by whom filled safety boxes and left-over vaccines should be transported and stored/incinerated/discarded?
  • In collaboration with NLWG, implement an efficient temperature monitoring system
  • In collaboration with NLWG and other technical groups, review / develop training materials related to CC and supply needs, distribution, storage and maintenance and waste management
Assessment role

  • Conduct quick assessment of cold chain. Transport and waste management capacities at all levels to determine adequacy and identify gaps. Support in maintenance management of existing cold chain equipment.
  • Develop procurement and distribution plans as applicable and follow up procurement process.
  • Identify training needs of health workers including the reverse cold chain, develop training plans and participate on training and Micro plan activities.
  • Waste Management Maintenance of incineration facilities for SIAs.
  • Assess if the received supplies of vaccines and other inputs consistent with target population and expected wastage factors.
  • Assist in AEFI investigation as applicable
  • Evaluate the quality of the training with the designated health worker on correct use and preventive maintenance of the new CCE.
  • Plan, evaluate and participate on random quality survey during and at the end of the campaign
  • Evaluate the content and quality of the training to technicians on preventive maintenance, installation, trouble shooting and repair of the new CCE.
  • Use intra-campaign supervision visits to identify and correct inappropriate cold chain practices and safety and waste management.
  • Participate in daily data aggregation, reporting and Analysis
  • Reinforce importance of adequate stock levels, accurate forecast of vaccine requirements and wastage reduction.
  • Document lessons learnt and convene stakeholders to share lessons learnt
  • Include cold-chain equipment purchased for the SIA in the RI Programme equipment inventory and maintenance plan
  • Make sure that vaccines collected after the campaign are accounted for are stored in correct storage conditions
Key Deliverables

  •   Detailed cold chain / supply chain deployment plan with roles and responsibilities, timeline and associated budget
  • Stakeholder who can provide support in cold chain (as applicable) are mapped and prior communication strategy articulated.
  • Cold chain related risks are regularly mapped, and management strategy devised
  • Checklist for ensuring cold chain, waste management and reverse logistic plan developed
  • Efficient temperature monitoring system implemented
  • Training materials related to CC and supply needs, distribution, storage and maintenance and waste management reviewed/ developed.
  • Quick assessment of cold chain. Transport and waste management capacities at all levels to determine adequacy and identify gaps conducted.
  • Procurement and distribution plans developed
  • Participate in daily data aggregation, reporting and analysis
  • lessons learnt documented
Payment Schedule

Monthly payments will be made each month upon submission of a report and invoice, based on the pre-approved workplan deliverable.

Qualification Requirements

This position is open to both nationals (Lesotho nationals) and internationals.


Advanced university degree from a recognized academic institution in one or more of the following areas is preferred: Supply Chain Management, Engineering, Project Management, Data Management and Analysis or related to supply and Logistics Operations in UNICEF program areas.

First university degree combined with relevant professional work experience and understanding of relevant functions may be considered in lieu of advanced university degree.


Minimum five years progressively responsible professional work experience at national and international levels in Supply Management, vaccines programming including cold chain and vaccine management. Work experience in outbreak context such as Ebola , H1N1 is considered as an asset. Work experience managing large-scale projects, working with governments, working in resource-limited settings, monitoring and evaluating supply chains, and risk management, mitigation will be an asset.


Product knowledge on cold chain equipment, new cold chain technologies and understanding of the principles of vaccine management, knowledge and experience with data collection, data management analysis and reporting are essential. Knowledge of procurement processes and good distribution practice could be beneficial.


Fluency in written and spoken English is required.

 Administrative issues

  1. The consultant will use his/her own equipment to produce deliverables. Office space will be provided at UNICEF as available and necessary.
  2. The consultant is expected to travel and work in-country. The consultant is required to indicate an all-inclusive fee for this assignment. Airfares and in-country living expenses will therefore be part of the all-inclusive fee for International Consultants.
  3. As per UNICEF DFAM policy, payment is made against approved deliverables. No advanced payment is allowed unless exceptions against bank guarantees, subject to a maximum of 30 percent of the total contract value, in cases where advance purchases, for example for supplies or travel maybe necessary.
  4. Consultants are not entitled to payment of overtime.  All remuneration must be within the contract agreement.
  5. The candidate selected will be governed by and subject to UNICEFs General Terms and Conditions for individual contracts.
  6. No contract may commence unless the contract is signed by both UNICEF and the consultant.
  7. Consultant will be required to complete online courses related to Ethics, Prevention of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse and Security related trainings prior to taking up the assignment and/or travel.
  8. Consultant will be required to sign the Health Statement for consultants/individual contractor prior to taking up the assignment, and to share an appropriate proof of health insurance covering COVID-19, including Medical Evacuation.
  Qualified candidates are requested to complete an application including profile to the respective advertisement on  https://www.unicef.org/about/employ/ Please indicate your ability, availability and financial proposal/quote to complete the terms of reference above. For Lesotho Nationals, your financial quotation should be in LSL and Internationals in US$.

UNICEF is committed to diversity and inclusion within its workforce, and encourages all candidates, irrespective of gender, nationality, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of the organization.

UNICEF has a zero-tolerance policy on conduct that is incompatible with the aims and objectives of the United Nations and UNICEF, including sexual exploitation and abuse, sexual harassment, abuse of authority and discrimination. UNICEF also adheres to strict child safeguarding principles. All selected candidates will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles and will therefore undergo rigorous reference and background checks. Background checks will include the verification of academic credential(s) and employment history. Selected candidates may be required to provide additional information to conduct a background check.


Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.

Individuals engaged under a consultancy or individual contract will not be considered “staff members” under the Staff Regulations and Rules of the United Nations and UNICEF’s policies and procedures, and will not be entitled to benefits provided therein (such as leave entitlements and medical insurance coverage). Their conditions of service will be governed by their contract and the General Conditions of Contracts for the Services of Consultants and Individual Contractors. Consultants and individual contractors are responsible for determining their tax liabilities and for the payment of any taxes and/or duties, in accordance with local or other applicable laws.

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