Internship on Resilience To Climate Change

United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)
Bridgetown, Barbados
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
International Organization
Experience Level: 
Not Specified
Degree Required: 
Advanced Degree (Master's or JD)


Please note: this job post has expired! To the best of our knowledge, this job is no longer available and this page remains here for archival purposes only.

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 fulfil 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

How can you make a difference?


In May 2018, at the R20 Austrian World Summit, UN Secretary General António Guterres emphasized the centrality of climate action to the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda. In urging governments, and developing partners to take strong climate action, he said, “if we fail to meet the challenge of climate change, all other challenges will become greater and threaten to swallow us. Climate change is, quite simply, an existential threat for most life on the planet—including, and especially the life of human kind.”

Small Island Developing States (SIDS), which comprise a significant portion of the Caribbean, are particularly vulnerable to this threat. As planetary warming increases, with 2016 marking a new record of about 1.1 Degrees Celsius (Centigrade) above the preindustrial period, the world witnessed a rise in sea-temperature with a correlating decrease in global sea ice, increased coral bleaching and reef degradation, rising sea levels that directly threaten low-lying SIDS and increasing intensity and frequency in extreme weather events (such as cyclones and hurricanes). The Caribbean is also negatively impacted by climate variability, with droughts, intense rainfall episodes and flooding posing threats to human settlements, infrastructure and the economy.

With Caribbean SIDS relying heavily on climate-sensitive sectors (including agriculture, fisheries, forestry, tourism and water), climate change presents a multi-pronged threat to the viability of the countries. The crippling social, economic and environment impacts of climate change further exacerbate the pre-existing socio-economic challenges in the region. With the passage of more frequent and intense hurricanes, a country may witness decades of investment and sustainable development be erased in a few hours.

In 2017, the region faced a particularly active and destructive hurricane season, which saw the passage of two Category 5 hurricanes, Irma and Maria. These hurricanes caused substantial damage to the Commonwealth of Dominica, Antigua & Barbuda, Saint Maarten, Anguilla and British Virgin Islands, leaving a trail of physical devastation and extensive breakdown of essential services. In addition to displacing thousands of persons, the hurricanes undermined countries’ resilience and undercut their economic growth. For example, Hurricane Maria caused damages equivalent to 226% of Dominica’s GDP in 2017; British Virgin Islands suffered similar losses in GDP. The island of Barbuda was decimated by Hurricane Irma, forcing a mandatory evacuation of all citizens. Climate change also comes with gradual and debilitating effects, notably through coastal erosion and saltwater intrusion into coastal agricultural lands. It is estimated that climate change will cost the Caribbean an additional 1.4 billion dollars in annual losses by 2050.

Climate change, energy access and environmental degradation are equity issues, with children and young people often being the most vulnerable and affected.

The following evidence is significant to give an indication of the climate change, energy and environment issues on children at global level:

  • The number of extreme climate-related disasters has doubled since the early 1990s, with an average of 213 events per year from 1990-2016;
  • More than half a billion children live in extremely high flood risk zones and more than 160 million live in high or extremely high drought risks zones;
  • Approximately 300 million children live in areas with extremely toxic levels of outdoor air pollution and it’s becoming increasingly clear that air pollution affects children’s cognitive development
  • Some 600 million children – or 1 in 4 children worldwide – will be living in areas with extremely limited water resources by 2040;
  • Of the approximately 6 million deaths of children under 5 in 2015, more than 1.5 million could have been prevented through the reduction of environmental risks;
  • Over 60% of health facilities in low & middle-income countries don’t have reliable electricity for basic services;
  • A recent UNICEF poll conducted found that 77% of children considered climate change one of the most pressing issues facing YP today, while 98% thought that Govts needed to tackle this through urgent action;
  • The 2018 Environmental Performance Index reports that the greatest environmental threat to public health is from poor air quality; over 65% of all life-years lost due to environmental causes can be attributed to polluted air;
  • Breathing polluted air not only results in death and respiratory diseases, it lessens cognitive function and increased cardiovascular diseases. Children are particularly vulnerable due to their developing physiology and higher rates of air intake (as compared to adults);
  • Rising temperatures increase incidence and severity of droughts, flooding, sea level rise and extreme events such as cyclones. This undermines provision of water and sanitation services.

Addressing climate change, energy access and environmental degradation is therefore vital for building a more sustainable future for children. In addition, it is imperative that we integrate our actions on the SDGs and our humanitarian responses.

Each of the of the five goals of the UNICEF Strategic Plan 2018-2021 – every child survives and thrives; every child learns; every child is protected from violence and exploitation; every child lives in a safe and clean environment; every child has an equitable chance in life - is affected in some way by climate change and/or environmental degradation. Fortunately, each stream of UNICEF work also presents opportunities to take action on climate, energy and/or the environment in order to deliver more sustainable results. There are major implications of climate change, lack of energy access and environmental degradation for children and UNICEF has strong potential to strengthen the response to these issues.

UNICEF Eastern Caribbean Area Office has planned to conduct by early 2019 a Climate Landscape Analysis for Children, examining the baseline situation of climate, energy and environment-related issues affecting children and how they relate to UNICEF’s priorities. The report will look at stakeholders, government policies and relevant programmes across the Eastern Caribbean Area. It will also provide recommendations on how UNICEF ECA could further incorporate and strengthen work on climate, energy and environment-related issues in its multi-country programme.

Furthermore, the Ministry of Planning of the Commonwealth of Dominica approached UNICEF Eastern Caribbean requesting a technical support from UNICEF to the ministry of education to develop a concept note on SMART schools to be submitted to the Green Climate Fund. The same request was sent to WHO/PAHO to support the ministry of health in the development of a concept note on SMART hospital to be sent too to the Green Climate Fund.


The intern will support UNICEF Eastern Caribbean to: i) develop the terms of reference for a consultancy on the development of a concept note on SMART schools to be submitted by the Commonwealth of Dominica to the Green Climate Fund; ii) to follow up on the consultancy related to the production of a report on Climate Landscape Analysis for Children (CLAC) for the Eastern Caribbean Area; iii) to follow up on the consultancy on the development of a concept note on SMART schools to be submitted by the Commonwealth of Dominica to the Green Climate Fund.


  1. Less than ten-page summary on the strategic planning framework on climate resilience of the Commonwealth of Dominica
  • Review of relevant existing documentation of national development strategic frameworks
  • Review of existing documents of sectoral strategic frameworks
  • Review documentation on existing programmes and projects

    2. Less than ten-page summary of the concept of SMART schools

  • Review existing documentation at global level of the concept of Comprehensive School Safety
  • Review existing documentation on the Safe School Programme adapted to the Caribbean Context by CDEMA (Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency)
  • Review existing documentation of UNICEF Eastern Caribbean, LACR (Latino America and Caribbean Region) on Safe School Programme
  • Search from the literature what critical actions in relation with climate change mitigation such as clean energy, water and waste management that could be included in the concept of Safe School Programme

   3.  Comments on the different draft reports produced by the CLAC consultant as well as the one on the concept note on SMART schools mentioned above

   4.  Contribute to the finalization of the CLAC report as well as the concept note on SMART schools


To qualify as an advocate for every child you will have…

  • Advanced university degree in journalism, development studies, communications, environment, climate change, social and economic development, international cooperation or related areas and be currently enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate programme
  • Knowledge of climate change issues
  • Previous experience with the UN/UNICEF/International organizations; Sound understanding of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC)
  • Strong analytical and English report writing and presentation skills;
  • Strong communication, coordination and negotiation skills;
  • Fluency in English

For every Child, you demonstrate…

UNICEF’s core values of Commitment, Diversity and Integrity and core competencies in Communication, Working with People and Drive for Results.


  • The UNICEF Representative for the Eastern Caribbean will regularly monitor the progress of the intern’s work. 
  • The intern will use his/her computer
  • The intern will submit draft and final report in electronic form
  • A room for work will be provided to the intern
  • UNICEF Eastern Caribbean will provide if need administrative support to the intern


  • Prior to commencing internship, the selected candidate will be required to sign a Health Statement and to document that s/he has appropriate health insurance, if applicable. The intern will be responsible for the accuracy of that statement.


  • A stipend as contribution towards living and transportation expenses equivalent Barbados $1458 will be given to the intern monthly
  • Reimbursement of a return ticket in case the candidate is not from Barbados
  • Payment of DSA in case of official mission outside Barbados


Intern will submit certificates of completion of the following mandatory trainings no later than 30 days after the start of the internship:


  1. BSAFE
  2. Ethics and Integrity at UNICEF
  3. Prevention of Sexual Harassment and Abuse of Authority
  4. Sexual Exploitation Abuse (PSEA)
  5. UN Human Rights and Responsibilities
  6. UNICEF Information Security Awareness Course


Prospective interns should apply through UNICEF’s E-recruitment System by accessing the following link: and typing in the job number 519126 in the search engine, no later than January 17th, 2019. The application package should include the following:

  1. A cover letter
  2. A detailed curriculum vitae
  3. Letter of verification from the college or university of current enrollment in an undergraduate or graduate program with expected completion date
  4. Copy of most recent official transcript showing excellent academic performance
  5. Copy of Identification Card
  6. One letter of signed recommendation on letterhead or from professional email address.

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, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks, and will be expected to adhere to these standards and principles.

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

[1] Countries and Territories covered: Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint

Vincent and the Grenadines and Trinidad and Tobago and four British Overseas Territories,

namely, Anguilla, the British Virgin Islands, Montserrat and the Turks and Caicos Islands