Nutrition Policy Advisor

Location: Toronto

City  Lilongwe, Malawi

Start Date Apr - Jun 2019 (flexible)

Length of Placement 10 Months

Language Requirements English

English Reading: Level 5, Writing: Level 5, Speaking: Level 5

Language Scale:

Open to Canadian Citizens and Permanent Residents of Canada only

Due to funder restrictions, support for accompanying partners/dependents is not available for this placement.

The Volunteer’s Role


This is an exciting opportunity for a public policy professional to contribute to a new regional nutrition project led by CARE Canada. The Southern Africa Nutrition Initiative (SANI) will improve the nutrition of women of reproductive age and reduce stunting of growth for children under five years old in Mozambique, Zambia and Malawi. The Nutrition Policy Advisor will contribute to the implementation of the SANI project in Malawi with CARE’s partner Civil Society Organization Nutrition Alliance (CSONA).

In order to effectively support existing commitments made by the government to achieve Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) objectives, Malawi established a Civil Society Organization Nutrition Alliance (CSONA). The CSONA works to better organize, coordinate, share best practices, and bring together efforts to leverage resources and maximize impact in nutrition at all levels. The CSONA also ensures that Civil Society Organizations take a leading role in influencing and supporting national efforts through meaningful dialogue and advocacy with stakeholders in order to contribute to a successful roll-out of the national nutrition interventions.

As Nutrition Policy Advisor you will bring strong technical expertise to the SANI team in Malawi, working with colleagues to ensure that SANI builds local capacity with CSO’s to improve nutrition policy and direction in rural regions of the country.

You will bring to this role a solid understanding of nutrition and/or public health and policy approaches and have the ability to work successfully in a cross-cultural environment with multiple stakeholders.

The SANI project is led by CARE Canada in partnership with Cuso International, McGill Institute for Food Security, and the Interagency Coalition on AIDS and Development (ICAD). This initiative is expected to contribute directly to the improved health of approximately 250,000 women, children and men directly, and a further 400,000 individuals indirectly. The project is funded by the Government of Canada through Global Affairs Canada in addition to the generous support of individual Canadian donors.

The Interagency Coalition on AIDS and Development (ICAD) is a registered Canadian charity based in Ottawa, Ontario representing a large coalition of over 100 Canadian HIV and AIDS organizations, international development non-governmental organizations, academic institutions, labour unions, and individuals. ICAD was founded in 1989 as a working group of the Canadian Council for International Cooperation (CCIC) with the mandate to bring together AIDS service organizations and international development organizations to address the HIV crisis at home and abroad.

ICAD helps Canadians contribute to international HIV work and encourages Canadian organizations to use the lessons learned from the global response that ICAD makes available, to improve prevention, care, treatment, and support services across diverse settings in Canada. ICAD provides leadership in reducing the global and domestic impact of the HIV and AIDS epidemic through improving public policy, providing information and analysis, and sharing lessons learned.

Cuso International is contributing to the SANI project through the recruitment, training and deployment of 30 skilled volunteers for deployments of between six months and one year. Specifically, Cuso International volunteers will lead on providing technical assistance in areas including (but not limited to): monitoring and evaluation, nutrition, finance, governance and policy, program management, and health. Volunteers support the development of organizational and individual capacities in specific and key areas of need, identified, and agreed upon, with local partner organizations.

As a volunteer, you will:

-Map, review and monitor food and nutrition security priorities, policies and objectives

-Review the National Nutrition Policy and StrategicmPlan and assess their implications on the SANI project

-Develop and produce policy briefs for use at district and community level

-Coordinate the development of a nutrition research agenda and oversee its implementation

-Provide nutrition policy direction and guidance to key Stakeholders

-Identify issues of nutrition at national and district levels, as well as best practices from SANI and CSONA

Essential Academic Qualifications:

Degree in Public Policy, Health Policy, Public Health, or Nutrition in a related field

Essential Professional Background:

-At least 2 years of experience working in public health

-Analytical skills

-Experience with participatory methodology


About Our Partner



Founded in 1945, CARE is a leading international humanitarian organization fighting global poverty.

CARE works with the poorest communities in 95 countries to:

  • Improve basic health and education
  • Enhance rural livelihoods and food security
  • Increase access to clean water and sanitation
  • Expand economic opportunity
  • Help vulnerable people adapt to climate change
  • Provide lifesaving assistance during emergencies

CARE places special focus on working alongside women and girls living in poverty because, equipped with the proper resources, women and girls have the power to help whole families and entire communities escape poverty.


Terms and Conditions


Cuso International terms and conditions allow you to lead a modest and healthy lifestyle while being effective in your placement. This support package will cover basic living expenses for one volunteer and is not intended to cover home-based expenses (ex. loans, support payments, etc.) or luxury items such as imported items in placement or international personal travel.


Support Package

- Modest monthly living allowance (varies depending country)

- Accommodation while in placement

- Return airfare and visa/work permit costs

- Cost of required vaccinations, antimalarial medication and health insurance

- Pre-departure training and in-country orientation

- Travel and accommodation for reintegration debriefing weekend

- Access to Employee Assistance Program while in placement and upon return

- Travel and accommodation for the five-day pre-departure training course and for in-country orientation

- Bonus: Additional return flight home or cash in lieu after 12 months of service for volunteers who extend for another 6 months


Residency and Citizenship  



The majority of Cuso International volunteer applicants are residing in Canada at the time of application and during the pre-departure process. Occasionally we received applications from volunteer applicants who are residing outside of Canada at the time of application. In both instances, between your application date and placement start date, we must be able to contact you and you must be able to contact us easily and promptly throughout the process.

We may require your passport and would need to be aware of your current place of residence and any travel plans you may have during this time. You will also require unrestricted access to Canada during this time for training, as applicable.



Leaving your country of residence can have significant effects on your citizenship status in that country. It is your responsibility to research the consequences of travelling to Canada during the pre-departure process if you are living outside of Canada and of leaving your country of residence for a placement with the immigration authority where you live.

By applying to this placement, you accept full responsibility for any consequences related to your citizenship, residency and immigration status or penalties as a result of travel to pre-departure training, an international placement or other Cuso International related travel.

You  must  check the implications that apply to you, but examples include:

- Canadian permanent residents may need to make arrangements with immigration authorities before travelling. These arrangements allow them to travel without risk to their status in Canada. Without them, residency status may be withdrawn.

- Citizens of other countries, including those visiting Canada on a visa, may have travel restrictions.