Child Protection Consultant

Job Type

Full Time Contract




Kurdistan Region


Organizational Background: Heartland Alliance International (HAI) is a service-based human rights organization headquartered in Chicago whose mission is to secure the rights and well-being of marginalized people and communities. HAI envisions a world in which those whose rights have been violated are safe and empowered to actively engage in their communities and be at the forefront of social change. HAI specializes in two core program areas: trauma-informed mental health and access to justice, while taking a human rights approach and integrating a progressive gender analysis into all of its programming.


Summary: For this posting, HAI is searching for an expert in: Child Protection standards. The Child Protection Consultant implements a range of assessments and trainings to improve legal protections, promote human rights, and expand social services for Iraqi children and adolescents in the criminal justice system, or in danger of coming into conflict with the law. The Consultant will work closely with the Iraq Country Director to assure that juvenile protection programs are fully integrated with ongoing gender-based violence prevention, mental health and education programs. The Consultant reports to the Iraq Country Director. The essential purpose of this consultancy is to develop further the child protection tools of HAI in Iraq, including the training and capacity building of staff members. The position is based in Sulaymaniyah or Erbil, Iraqi Kurdistan, and requires national and international travel. The Consultant will spend (three months) in Sulaymaniyah/Erbil as a Child Protection trainer, supervisor, and adviser.


Program Goal: The Child Protection Consultant shall be responsible for determining gaps in HAI staff’s current knowledge of child protection best practices and procedures, and reviewing existing policies and procedures. Based on that review and assessment, the Consultant will then assist HAI in developing appropriate policies and procedures for programs working with children and adolescents, develop an overall agency Child Safeguarding Policy, design and implement staff training to assure understanding and compliance with international standards and best practices. Upon completion of training, HAI staff will exhibit practices and knowledge consistent with core child protection competencies. Finally, the Consultant will develop tools for HAI to train new and current staff on core child protection competencies and systems.



Objective 1: Assess baseline of staff’s knowledge of, and compliance with, child protection standards. The consultant will interview key staff on general knowledge, and will review critical incidents and responses over the last six months. The consultant will also review internal reporting systems for abuse and neglect, for critical incidents, and for confidentiality.


Objective 2: In consultation with HAI HQ, compile a brief reading list of materials on best practices for Children Associated with Armed Forces and Armed Groups (CAAFAG), including evaluation reports of comparable programs elsewhere.


Objective 3: Review current policies and procedures in place for projects with a significant service component focusing on children or adolescents. (UNICEF, PRM and UNHCR emergency protection projects, EC Juvenile Justice program, DRL women and children protection program.)


Objective 4: Develop curriculum for child protection standards training with materials specific to Iraq, and based on gaps in staff knowledge, attitudes and practice identified earlier in the assessment.


Objective 5: Train staff in Iraq on child protection best practices and procedures. This may require a full day training in two locations.


Objective 6: Conduct a half-day collaborative workshop together with M&E and CP staff on program design for projects addressing the needs of CAAFAG, and evaluation of CAAFAG projects.


Objective 7: Incorporate suggested changes into HAI policies and procedures so that they are compliant with international standards and best practices; assist in the development of a comprehensive internal Child Safeguarding Policy document for Heartland Alliance International.  




  • Conduct orientation on child protection/protection mainstreaming;
  • Assess baseline of staff on their compliance with child protection and humanitarian core standards;
  • Review current written policies and procedures to determine gaps in policies and procedures.
  • Develop curriculum with dynamic training methods, to include dialogue, brainstorming, group discussion, and lecture, as well as training materials and samples of training agenda that can be used by the staff according to their targeted groups;
  • Implement structured training on core child protection standards and best practices in service provision;
  • Develop and cascade Child Safeguarding Policy for all staff members, consultants, volunteers, visitors, etc.;
  • Set up effective feedback and response mechanisms as part of our Accountability to Affected Populations (AAP) and Communicating with Communities (CWC) mandate;
  • Work with HAI-Iraq Legal Adviser and MHPSS Technical Coordinator where necessary;
  • Develop the child protection case management forms for HAI based on the cluster approved guidelines;
  • Handover with other Heartland Alliance staff the results of the training, to assure project continuity;
  • Compile child protection principles literature review of short- and long-form documents for staff to reference as needed;
  • Determine any overlapping/cross-cutting issues between child protection principles and juvenile justice principles.



  • Education and experience: Social work or related field and extensive experience in child protection in humanitarian, early recovery and development contexts, legal services for immigrant minors, probation or supervised release, or other relevant experience. Training and teaching experience will be helpful for this position;
  • Expertise in the methods and practices outlined in UNICEF’s Minimum Standards for Child Protection in Humanitarian Action and the Child Protection Working Group’s Child Protection in Emergencies Competency Framework;
  • Ability to articulate and explain child protection and humanitarian core principles and practices to a non-expert audience and ensure their understanding of those subjects, as well as ensuring that the trainees are competent in implementing those principles and practices;
  • Experience assessing NGO staff’s adherence to child protection standards and conducting child protection training, coaching, and mentoring using participatory and practical methodologies;
  • Ability to assess the needs of participants during the training experience and modify application of themes as appropriate;




  • Fluent in English
  • Arabic and/or Kurdish is a plus.



  • Assessment and training of Iraq program staff on child protection standards;
  • Review of HAI internal policies and procedures to determine compliance with CPWG and UNICEF standards;
  • Review of internal policies and procedures for reporting abuse and neglect, and other critical incidents;
  • Quick desk review of CAAFAG project best practices and existing program evaluations, including in other countries;
  • Assessment report on program staff capacity on child protection and child protection in emergencies (CPiE) standards and programming;
  • Modify or adapt existing training curriculum on child protection and CPiE with facilitator’s manual, participant’s manual, PowerPoint presentations, pre- and post-test forms, training evaluation sheet, and training resources checklist;
  • Training report on the CP and CPiE training and capacity building activities carried out with program staff;
  • Develop Child Safeguarding Policy for Heartland Alliance International, and update policies and procedures for individual projects, as necessary;
  • Submit a trip report detailing activities carried out, self-evaluation and evaluation of staff;
  • Handover of the project to Heartland Alliance International personnel;
  • Digital and hard copies of materials constructed and/or shared during assessments and training seminars, to assist in continuity of program implementation.


Interested candidates should send a cover letter, CV, and list of three references to: In your cover letter, you should describe your experience in the child protection field and your experience performing similar assessments and trainings for NGO staff. Please be aware that the successful candidate must work in Erbil or Suliyamaniyah, Iraqi Kurdistan Region.

Level of Language Proficiency

  • Fluent in English
  • Arabic and/or Kurdish is a plus.

Professional Level


Minimum Education Required

4-year degree

How To Apply

Interested candidates should send a cover letter, CV, and list of three references to: In your cover letter, you should describe your experience in the child protection field and your experience performing similar assessments and trainings for NGO staff. Please be aware that the successful candidate must work in Erbil or Suliyamaniyah, Iraqi Kurdistan Region.