SAFE TO LEARN
Safe to Learn was launched in 2019 as a global initiative to catalyse commitments and evidence-based action to end violence in and through schools by 2030. As a joint initiative of the violence against children (VAC) and education sectors, Safe to Learn is an opportunity to unlock the multiple wins of ending violence in schools, improve learning outcomes, better leverage investments in education, and raise awareness and change attitudes towards VAC more broadly.
The Safe to Learn Call to Action, a high-level political tool, sets out five areas where change needs to happen to end violence in and through schools. A strategic Roadmap details these areas and identifies how diverse partners can accelerate the achievement of Safe to Learn's ambitious goals.
Safe to Learn is hosted by the Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children (End Violence Partnership), which has guided its progress to date and engaged key education organizations and funders in its development. To deliver on its full ambition, Safe to Learn now needs even greater buy-in, co-creation and co-ownership from both the VAC and education sectors.
END VIOLENCE PARTNERSHIP
Every year, over 1 billion children experience violence. Violence in childhood undermines all other investments in children: in their health, education and development, often with negative lifelong consequences and intergenerational impact. Recognizing the devastating impacts of violence against children, in 2015 world leaders committed to end all forms of violence, abuse and neglect by 2030, as part of the Sustainable Development Goals. In July 2016, the UN Secretary-General launched the Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children and an associated Fund.
The End Violence Partnership includes governments, UN agencies, international organizations, civil society, faith groups, the private sector, philanthropic foundations, research practitioners, academics and children themselves - uniting their voices, actions and resources in a unique public-private collaboration focused solely on ending all violence against children.
In its first four years, the Partnership has helped develop and promote the INSPIRE solutions to end violence; enrolled 30 governments as 'Pathfinder' countries; launched an innovative initiative with education sector partners to end violence in and through schools; awarded over $40 million in grants to tackle violence against children online and in humanitarian situations; welcomed over 450 organizations as members; and galvanized those working to end violence through collective advocacy and events including the inaugural End Violence Solutions Summit.
COVID-19 has disrupted learning for nearly all children. At times during 2020, almost 1.5 billion children were out of school and physically isolated at home due to the pandemic, facing higher risks of domestic violence and greater exposure to online abuse as learning and leisure moved more online. COVID-19 has also raised awareness of violence against children, and the important role that schools play for children's health, well-being and safety, beyond the educational benefits.
Building on the initial progress of Safe to Learn, and as COVID-19 prompts educationalists to reimagine some aspects of learning, there is an opportunity to translate the audacious ambition of zero violence in schools into a reality in every country. This will require leadership-level agreement on a small number of priority actions that will make a significant difference in every country, coupled with a step-change in collective advocacy, action and investment to make it happen.
The Safe to Learn Director will work with current and new partners to develop this vision and the shared workplan that will be needed to deliver it. The ideal candidate will be a proactive leader with experience of galvanizing high-impact coalitions within the international development sector. Experience and understanding of how international partners/funders operate at country level will be important, as will an appreciation for how a global initiative can catalyse country-level change. Knowledge of both the VAC and education sectors and strong networks within both would be an advantage, as would experience of mobilizing financial resources. S/he will have a proven ability to lead a (small) team, balancing short-term deliverables with measurable progress against an ambitious longer-term strategy. S/he will build relationships with Safe to Learn partners, thought leaders and experts, the wider VAC and education sectors and champions, to deliver change and help influence global attention and approaches to ending violence in and through schools.
MANAGEMENT, LOCATION, TRAVEL AND DURATION
The Safe to Learn Director will be hosted by the Secretariat of the End Violence Partnership, based in New York. S/he will work alongside and in close partnership with the Executive Director to deliver Safe to Learn's ambitious goals. S/he will be a member of a small End Violence Leadership Team, collaborating with those leading complementary work to make children Safe at Home and Safe Online. S/he will manage a small team and will contribute to a culture of professionalism that emphasizes curiosity, learning, collaboration and delivery.
COVID-19 has prompted remote and more flexible working, and we do not expect to return to full-time office-based working. Therefore, the location of the Safe to Learn Director is open to discussion with well-qualified applicants; our priority is to identify the right person to lead Safe to Learn in its exciting next phase.
COVID-19 has also temporarily curtailed international business travel. As and when business travel is possible, some international travel will be expected.
The position will initially be for two years.
In addition to leading the Safe to Learn team and contributing to the Leadership Team of the EVAC Secretariat, the primary responsibilities of the Safe to Learn Director are to:
Provide visionary leadership and develop a multi-year strategy for Safe to Learn
Mobilize resources to implement the strategy and realise Safe to Learn goals
Lead the End Violence Safe to Learn team and contribute to wider End Violence leadership
Experience and qualifications
The successful candidate will be highly collaborative, creative and results-oriented with a proactive, flexible approach and a commitment to working with and through others to achieve results. S/he will have:
As a UNICEF-hosted partnership, End Violence 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.
End Violence 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. End Violence 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.
 Partners include UNESCO, UNICEF, UK FCDO (formerly DFID), UNGEI, the End Violence CSO Forum, World Bank, Education Cannot Wait, the Global Partnership for Education, WHO, Global Affairs Canada, the Global Business Coalition for Education, Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack, and the Global Partnership to End Violence Against Children.
For 70 years, UNICEF has been working on the ground in 190 countries and territories to promote children’s survival, protection and development. The world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries, UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS.
UNICEF is the driving force that helps build a world where the rights of every child are realized. UNICEF supports child health and nutrition, good water and sanitation, quality basic education for all boys and girls, and the protection of children from violence, exploitation, and AIDS. UNICEF is also the world’s largest provider of vaccines for developing countries. As a global authority UNICEF is able to influence decision makers at the global level and turn the most innovative ideas into reality.