Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) – Psychologist & Mental Health Support Officer (Nairobi).

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Médecins Sans Frontières Spain – OCBA (Operational Centre Barcelona-Athens) is looking for a


General Context 

Médecins Sans Frontières is an international independent medical-humanitarian organization, which offers assistance to populations in distress, to victims of natural or man-made disasters and to victims of armed conflict, without discrimination and irrespective of race, religion, creed or political affiliation.

MSF is a civil society initiative that brings together individuals committed to the assistance of other human beings in crisis. As such MSF is by choice an association. Each individual working with MSF does it out of conviction and is ready to uphold the values and principles of MSF.

The MSF movement is built around five operational directorates supported by MSF’s 21 sections, 24 associations and other offices together worldwide. MSF OCBA is one of those directorates. The operations are implemented by field teams and the mission coordination teams; together with the organizational units based in Barcelona, Athens and decentralised in Nairobi, Dakar and Amman. The field operations are guided and supported by 5 Operational Cells, the Emergency Unit and other departments supporting operations, including the HR Department.

Job description and Objective 

As part of the Human Resources Department and hierarchically under the supervision of the Head of the Psychosocial and Mental Health Support for HR, the general objective of the Technician for Mental Health Support to Field Human Resources is to contribute to the improvement of the psychosocial health of the teams and its members, guaranteeing mental health support by:

  • Providing psychosocial support in case of critical incidents.
  • Support the implementation of interventions aimed at the mental health of the field teams

He/she will cooperate with the Operational Cells and with the “Country Management Team” of the missions, in order to analyze the psychosocial situation of the teams as well as to prepare proposals and implement them.

The primary counterparts in the Operational Cells are Medical Technician of the Operational Cells (TESACOs) and HR Technician of the Operational Cells (REHUCOs)

He/she will promote the information facilitating the best understanding of the role of the PSU, the benefits of psychological support and ensure the collaboration with counterparts in the field.


Main Tasks

Critical Incident support

  • He/she is back up for the on-call service for critical incidents. 
  • Participates as Crisis Team back up to Head of PSU.
  • In order to strengthen the PSU response, identifies among East African Section, team members able to be part of the Security Incident team as internal resources accompanying and supporting the PSU response.  
  • Will participate in critical incident field visits.
  • Will provide remote support to team members affected by security incidents
  • Will reinforce the CI PSU external team identifying trained psychologist in the region able to be part of this roster.
  • Will be available for OCBA teams evacuated in NAIROBI and will ensure their psychological follow up during the evacuation and liase with the relevant services in HQ.

Coordination and implementation of psychosocial DBF procedures

  • To participate in the coordination of the procedures ensuring international OCBA staff, and especially in the region, have a return talk organized on return (emotional debriefing).
  • To carry out return talks.
  • To refer expatriates to an external referral network of psychologists when needed.
  • To identify volunteers motivated to reinforce the PSU capacity to ensure return talks for the people from the region working with OCBA.
  • To register the interventions done in PSU data bases.
  • To participate of BFs – DBFs of HOMs, Medcos, HRCOs, Fieldcos and PMRs as they have a psychosocial responsibility linked to their role.

 Psychological Support

  • To provide psychological support to team members in the field, national and international, remotely and during field visits.
  • Support punctually in the referrals of HQ personnel presenting mental health distress.
  • Medical Evacuations: supporting staff members and their families evacuated to NAIROBI;
  • To advise on the management and support of team members in distress. To advise and provide support to the Mission Coordination Teams (HQ cell and field coordination teams) in the management and follow up of issues related to the team’s mental and psychosocial health.
  • To maintain regular contact with counterparts in the field (HoM, MedCO, FC) and in HQ (in the cells: Rehuco and Tesaco; in the partner section, dir HR).


  • To participate in awareness and preparatory programs for the psychosocial support of the field teams, advising, proposing and developing actions
  • To carry out context-specific briefings to coordinators and key personnel.
  • To prepare and participate in training modules in HQ or in the field.
  • To prepare and develop psychosocial workshops  
  • He/she will participate to the definition of the TOR for OCBA field visits and for other OC’s missions visit when they will express their interest to OCBA’s PSU of taking advantage of programmed field visits OCBA will do  to a given country in the region.
  • Subject to availability, to participate in the support of other OC’s team members in the countries where OCBA is doing a field visit.

Capacity Building

  • He/she will identify and develop a network of regional psychologists in different countries able to collaborate with the incidents response from the PSU, to participate in programmed field visits and support return talks with the regional pool working for OCBA.
  • He/she will organize update and training meetings aimed to consolidate a roster of collaborators familiar with OCBA’s PSU protocols, material for interventions and ways of management developed in OCBA PSU

Knowledge production

  • To support in the research actions and psychosocial assessments related to the mental health of the teams.
  • To participate in the development of documents aimed to support the teams and to reinforce resilience
  • To participate actively in the preparation or translation of tools and technical documents

As member of the Human Resources Department

  • To participate in meetings of the Human Resources department, as well as in some other meetings of the Field HR and Medical Operations Service.
  • To participate in interdisciplinary working groups of the department.


Selection criteria

Education and Experience

  • Psychologist or Psychiatrist with social and clinical experience.
  • Knowledge and experience in emotional support/management of teams under crisis situations.
  • Knowledge and experience in group management.
  • Fluent in English.
  • Experience in training.
  • User-level IT skills (Microsoft Office applications).
  • Comprehension and/or work experience in the international context of MSF will be highly regarded.
  • Experience in mental health interventions, in conflict situation, violence and or catastrophes.


  • Training skills.
  • Availability to travel and to work flexible working hours.


  • Commitment to MSF’s Principles
  • Cross-cultural Awareness
  • Behavioral Flexibility
  • Stress Management
  • Analytical Thinking
  • Results and Quality Orientation
  • Service Orientation
  • Planning and Organizing
  • Teamwork and Cooperation


  • Capacity to influence
  • Good stress management skills


Post Conditions

  • Based in Nairobi, and occasional travel to the field.
  • Starting the 1st of March 2021
  • Full-time position/FTE.
  • Annual gross salary HQ-3A of KES 2,358,905 (divided in 12 monthly payments) plus Secondary benefits based on MSF Eastern Africa office Reward Policy.

How to apply

Apply by 21st February 2021 through the following link; APPLY




Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF)

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