Protection Specialist Psychosocial Support (PSS)

PSS Support in Kyiv: Danish Refugee Council, one of the world’s leading humanitarian NGOs working in 40 countries worldwide, is currently looking for a highly qualified Protection Specialist – Psychosocial Support (PSS) to support DRC Protection Programme implemented across Ukraine.

DRC has been operating in Ukraine for more than 10 years with emergency and durable solution interventions for assisting IDPs, returnees, Host communities, and conflict-affected populations. With the outbreak of the conflict in February 2022, DRC has shifted its programming to emergency response to meet the urgent needs of conflict-affected population in the country.

Current DRC programming is focusing on protection activities such as protection monitoring, information dissemination, Individual protection assistance, legal aid, GBV prevention and response, Psychosocial support (PSS), and community-based protection. In addition to protection programming, DRC is currently implementing Multipurpose Cash Assistance (MPCA), NFI and Food distributions, Shelter & WASH interventions, and Economic Recovery, Humanitarian Demining and Explosive Ordnance Risk Education.

About the job

DRC is managing its operations in Ukraine through its country office in Kyiv, and it has established operation offices in Chernivtsi, L´viv, Chernihiv, Kharkiv, Dnipro and Mykolaiv. Under the supervision of the Country Protection Coordinator, and in close cooperation with DRC Protection Managers and protection field units, The Protection specialist – Psychosocial support is responsible to support the quality of DRC psychosocial protection activities that are implemented as a part of a comprehensive emergency protection response in Ukraine. The position will provide technical guidance to DRC protection staff and develop the PSS approach for DRC Ukraine. S/he/they will also contribute to strengthening DRC’s community outreach approach and engaging with displacement and conflict affected communities including through coaching and supervision. S/he/they further contributes to administrative and technical support in close coordination with the and Protection Coordinator and Protection Managers.

 Your main responsibilities will be:                                                                                         

  • In coordination with the Protection coordinator and Protection Managers develop DRC’s PSS strategic direction in Ukraine, including by developing a PSS strategic plan.
  • Conduct Psychosocial needs assessment among the affected populations in areas of DRC operations in Ukraine. For this purpose, lead the development/contextualization of assessment and analysis tools based on international standards
  • Develop a PSS manual and other technical guidance as requested by the Protection Coordinator
  • Provide continual technical support and monitoring of psychosocial support program activities to ensure the applicability of quality standards.
  • Provide supervision to protection staff on community psychosocial support interventions inclusive of ongoing capacity building, professional development and technical support.
  • Lead and facilitate regular thematic team meetings with program staff and conduct on-the-job supervision and training assessments to evaluate key competencies and training needs in the area of psychosocial support.
  • Ensure the effective use of and compliance with relevant tools, forms, SOPs, etc. so as to ensure program quality and impact.
  • Responsible for collating information and reporting progress and challenges to Protection coordinator and Protection Managers
  • In coordination with the Protection Coordinator and Protection Managers, adjust program implementation based on needs and context.

Program development and strategy

  • Representation of DRC and active participation in sectoral and relevant sub sectors/working groups.
  • Oversee knowledge sharing across teams and ensure that monitoring and evaluation results are understood and used to improve existing and develop new program initiatives.
  • Drive the development and growth of the relevant programs within the DRC program objectives and feed into country-wide strategy development.

Accountability and reporting

  • Guided by the DRC Programme Handbook, continuously monitor and develop relevant accountability initiatives within relevant project program as well as strengthening the effort to document the impact of activities.
  • Ensure compliance with internal and external reporting requirements including procurement.


  • Ensure the coordination with relevant protection – MHPSS actors in the area of intervention.

As a Specialist the post-holder is responsible for the following:

  • Accountable for achieving DRC’s strategic goals and objectives within the area of responsibility.
  • Accountable for making sound decisions based on DRC policies, SOPs, standards, and the advice of technical experts in DRC.

Roles reporting to this position: N/A

Reports to:  Protection Coordinator

Required experience and competencies.                                                                                                       

  • Minimum 5 years of proven protection international experience in NGO projects.
  • Proven experience in implementing PSS activities in complex emergency contexts.
  • Experience in carrying out humanitarian interventions through and in coordination with implementing partner organizations is an asset.
  • Knowledge of and experiences in using established inter-agency standards and guidelines in MHPSS, such as the IASC Guidelines on Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Emergency Settings,
  • Excellent technical knowledge of protection standards and principles and demonstrated capacity to develop effective responses to identified psychosocial needs and in accordance with the relevant frameworks
  • Commitment to integrate gender, conflict sensitivity, and accountability into programming
  • Proficiency in English is compulsory.
  • Fluency in Ukrainian or Russian is an asset.
  • Excellent analytical, writing and editing skills for external audiences (including governments and donors).
  • Experience in producing high-quality technical material (training material – including PFA trainings, program tools, proposals, strategic documents, etc.).
  • Experience in working with Monitoring, Evaluation and learning in protection programs.
  • Demonstrate ability in thinking creatively and practically to improve the quality of programming and achieve greater impact
  • Fluency in Ukrainian and/or Russian is a strong asset


  • Calm and diplomatic in nature.
  • Ability to manage competing priorities and to meet deadlines.
  • Effective team-player – problem solver.
  • Previous experience with DRC in emergency context.

All DRC roles require the post-holder to master DRC’s core competencies:  

  • Striving for excellence: Focusing on reaching results while ensuring efficient processes.
  • Collaborating: Involving relevant parties and encouraging feedback.
  • Taking the lead: Taking ownership and initiative while aiming for innovation.
  • Communicating: Listening and speaking effectively and honestly.
  • Demonstrating integrity: Acting in line with DRC’s vision and values.

Required education.                                                                                               

  • University degree, Master’s preferred, in psychology or mental health counseling, Human Rights, Political Science, Refugee Law, or any other relevant field.
  • Or Bachelor’s degree in relevant fields with at least 8 years’ working experience in similar protection positions.

We offer

  • Contract length: 6 months with possibility of extension based on available funding.
  • Level G non managerial
  • Start date: As soon as possible.

The application is open for non Ukrainian  and Ukrainian citizens. Salary and conditions will be in accordance with Danish Refugee Council’s Terms of Employment for National Staff.

Application process

All applicants must send a cover letter and an updated CV (no longer than four pages) in English. Applications sent by email will not be considered.

Closing date for applications: 31 March  2023

We reserve the right to conduct further interviews before the deadline for submission of applications.

For further information about the Danish Refugee Council, please consult our website

Job Description: Click Here

Department: Europe
Country: Ukraine
Workplace: Kyiv
Contract Type: Expatriate National
Categories: Project Management
Education: Master's Degree

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