Unaccompanied Children and Youth Legal Officer
Saint Andrew’s Refugee Services, Cairo
Vacancy Announcement: Unaccompanied Children and Youth Legal Officer
Founded in 1979, StARS is a refugee service provider in central Cairo that works to enhance the quality of life for refugees and vulnerable migrants through five broad program areas: education, psychosocial, legal, community outreach and unaccompanied youth and children support services. We provide high-quality services meeting the unaddressed needs of refugees, and we provide a safe and inclusive space for displaced people to come together as a community. We work for refugees, with refugees, to make rights recognition a reality.
StARS’ Mission: Driven by a commitment to justice and fairness, StARS works as displaced people and for displaced people to respect human dignity and enhance quality of life.
StARS’ Vision: Displaced people lead in the creation and implementation of responses to different forms of migration to establish safe, just, welcoming, and inclusive communities globally.
We serve people from many places, including Eritrea, Ethiopia, Iraq, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.
To learn more please visit our website: www.stars-egypt.org or our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/standrewsrefugeeservices?fref=ts
Project Description: Refugee Legal Aid Program
The Refugee Legal Aid Program provides advice and representation to refugees seeking recognition by UNHCR through Refugee Status Determination procedures in Egypt and assists refugees in accessing resettlement to safe third countries.
StARS has established a full-service center dedicated to meeting the education, protection, support and advocacy needs of Unaccompanied Children and Youth in Cairo. Refugee Legal Aid Program is seeking an Unaccompanied Children and Youth Legal Officer to work as part of a small legal team within the center to provide specialized legal representation and advice to the Unaccompanied Children and Youth refugee population in their Refugee Status Determination process. The Unaccompanied Children and Youth population in Egypt is made up of approximately 4,000 children and youth, of which, StARS serves a majority within its programming.
Under the supervision of the Unaccompanied Children and Youth Legal Aid Coordinator and Senior Legal Officer, the Refugee Status Determination Legal Officer for Unaccompanied Children and Youth is responsible for the provision of legal advice and representation to refugee children and youth in matters related to their Refugee Status Determination procedures and protection matters. This includes: assessment of initial requests for assistance; the screening of clients to identify those of heightened vulnerability, specific need, legal complexity, or strategic importance; accompaniment of Unaccompanied Children and Youth clients to Refugee Status Determination interviews at UNHCR; preparation of detailed written statements addressing accounts of persecution in countries of origin; and drafting legal briefs in support of refugee claims in appeal and reopening procedures, as well as drafting referrals to the Child Protection Unit. The Legal Officer for Unaccompanied Children and Youth is also expected to contribute to advocacy efforts regarding the urban refugee population and to supervise and train volunteer staff. The Legal Officer for Unaccompanied Children and Youth is a member of a team of approximately 10 legal staff and reports to the Unaccompanied Children and Youth Legal Aid Coordinator. The Unaccompanied Children and Youth Legal Officer will be primarily based in StARS’ center for Unaccompanied Children and Youth in Mohandeseen, Giza, and will focus on providing legal services to Unaccompanied Children and Youth living in greater Cairo.
All duties are carried out under the supervision of the Unaccompanied Children and Youth Legal Aid Coordinator and Senior Legal Officers.
Legal and Technical
· To provide general legal counseling and assistance to Unaccompanied Children and Youth regarding their applications for registration, protection, and Refugee Status Determination before UNHCR.
· To conduct individual screening and intake interviews with Unaccompanied Children and Youth seeking representation and advise on Refugee Status Determination matters.
· To prepare Unaccompanied Children and Youth for registration and Refugee Status Determination interviews and represent clients in such interviews as needed.
· To draft legal briefs and prepare witness declarations and other evidence in support of Refugee Status Determination appeals and reopening requests for Unaccompanied Children and Youth.
· To serve as an on-call legal advisor, assisting Unaccompanied Children and Youth clients by providing legal advice and assistance on a walk-in basis.
· To prepare and facilitate Refugee Status Determination preparation workshops and Know Your Rights trainings for Unaccompanied Children and Youth.
· To undertake country of origin research in support of individual claims and for general organizational research purposes and to maintain good working knowledge of the current political and social situations in the countries of origin of Refugee Legal Aid Program’s Unaccompanied Children and Youth clients.
· To assess extra-legal client needs and work collaboratively with other StARS teams or refer to external organizations as appropriate, keeping in close communication and cooperation with StARS Unaccompanied Children and Youth caseworkers for counseling and follow up.
· To maintain good working knowledge of UNHCR’s Refugee Status Determination policies and procedures.
· To undertake comprehensive case management practices including maintaining and updating electronic databases and records for each client and keeping detailed notes of all casework activities.
· To adhere to the Nairobi Code of Ethics, the StARS Policies and Procedures Manual, and the StARS Code of Conduct.
To assist the Unaccompanied Children and Youth Legal Aid Coordinator and Senior Legal Officer in development and implementation of team policies and procedures.
· To assist the Unaccompanied Children and Youth Legal Aid Coordinator and Senior Legal Officer in conducting data and trends analysis of Unaccompanied Children and Youth clients approaching Refugee Legal Aid Program for Refugee Status Determination related services and of UNHCR’s Policies and Practices.
· To build and maintain relationships with StARS’ psychosocial and education staff and operational partners.
· To attend and contribute to Refugee Status Determination team meetings and other trainings and orientation as required.
· To undergo probation and regular performance appraisals.
· To communicate regularly with the Unaccompanied Children and Youth Legal Aid Coordinator and Senior Legal Officers, reporting on all major issues and developments in the field and within Refugee Legal Aid Program.
· To promote information-sharing within Refugee Legal Aid Program and StARS on all issues affecting the populations we serve.
Qualifications & Experience
The ideal candidate will be a refugee, asylum seeker or from a forcibly displaced community will have a demonstrated interest in working with children and youth. They will be energetic, articulate, and comfortable interacting with diverse segments of society. They will have demonstrated a firm commitment to defending human rights and to refugee issues with particular emphasis on vulnerable populations.
· English being the official language of UNHCR Cairo and StARS, the Refugee Status Determination Legal Officer for Unaccompanied Children and Youth must be fluent in oral and written English.
· Fluency in Arabic or other refugee languages is an advantage.
· High computer literacy level.
· Legal research and drafting skills.
· Ability to learn and apply UNHCR guidelines and procedures.
· Knowledge of the general protection situation and vulnerabilities of refugees in Egypt.
· A demonstrated commitment to and sensitivity toward vulnerable or displaced people.
· Ability to live and work in a fluid security environment.
· Ability to exercise sound legal judgment, well organized, self-motivated, and reliable.
· Demonstrated compassion for refugees and displaced people.
· Demonstrated ability to communicate effectively both orally and in writing.
· Demonstrated ability to work in a team as well as individually.
· A positive attitude and sensitive manner when dealing with clients including a range of interviewing skills for dealing with challenging scenarios, particularly in advocating for children and youth, survivors of violence, trafficking, torture, and SGBV.
· Commitment and diligence and to work to meet UNHCR client deadlines.
· Experience designing and conducting trainings for non-technical audiences.
· Formal legal qualifications preferred.
· Experience working with children and young people.
· Life and work experience in the Middle East or Egypt or with an urban refugee population.
Working Hours: The Unaccompanied Children and Youth Legal Officer is expected to be at work for 40 hours per week, between the hours of 9am and 5pm, from Sunday to Thursday. Longer hours, evening and weekend work are sometimes necessary. Work will be conducted both in StARS premises and also in refugee communities and centers.
Supervised by: Unaccompanied Children and Youth Legal Aid Coordinator
Salary: 4,650 EGP/month, rising to 5,150 EGP/month following successful completion three-month probationary period. Plus 4,020 EGP/year Health Coverage and 100 EGP/month Saving Scheme Contribution upon completion of probationary period.
Additional official benefits as stipulated in StARS Staff Handbook Guidelines.
This position is subject to a three-month probationary period, at which time the employee’s performance will be reviewed and probation may be extended.
Closing date for applications: 2 April 2022
Anticipated Starting date: As soon as possible
Initial contract term: 12-months, renewable by agreement of both parties.
How to apply:
To apply: Please send your Cover Letter, CV and brief legal writing sample to firstname.lastname@example.org using the subject line “Unaccompanied Children and Youth Legal Officer”. All applications should provide contact information of two professional/academic references (referees will only be contacted after Interviews).
Note: Only short-listed applicants will be contacted for an interview.