Interpreter (Creole/Spanish) - Tenders Global

Interpreter (Creole/Spanish)

  • Contract
  • Mexico
  • Posted 2 months ago

World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF)

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Jobs


Terms of Reference

1. General Background

The current drivers of forced displacement in North of Central America (NCA) are worsening in 2019. Figures of asylum seekers for the first quarter duplicates the numbers in the same period of 2018. An increasing number of Central Americans are crossing Mexico’s southern border in significant numbers to seek protection. Due to a lack of information, detention policies, the limited number of locations with COMAR presence as well as inadequate reception arrangements, many people with international protection needs still attempt to make the dangerous journey north to the United States without making an asylum claim in Mexico. Progress has been achieved in building the asylum system and in improving reception arrangements, as well as in the provision of local integration opportunities, but increased numbers of asylum-seekers keep putting additional strain on the existing reception conditions.

With the recent statements from the Mexican government to increase the presence of the national guard along the southern border as well as increasing the detention of migrants who try to move towards the northern parts of Mexico, UNHCR is concerned that persons in need of international protection will suffer detention in greater number than what has previously been the case. Even before the last change in the policy, a drastic increase has been observed in the number of persons seeking asylum and UNHCR now projects that these will be more than 80,000 claimants in 2019, up from 30,000 in 2018.

Interpreters are essential to UNHCR in fulfilling its core mandate functions, including registration, refugee status determination, resettlement, and counselling, which, in many cases, also involves sensitive issues related to gender-based violence (GBV). Thus, interpreters perform a key role in many UNHCR offices. The role of the Intepreter is to assist in this process by providing a channel for communication. It is an important role that must be accomplished with a high degree of professionalism.

2. Purpose and Scope of Assignment

The interpreter will undertake Creole-Spanish translation and will be working under the overall supervision of the Protection Officer and the Protection Team, although he/she may be required to support specific activities of other units. He/She will be required to work at UNHCR premises, as well as in the field in Tijuana and Mexicali, to assist UNHCR staff in performing protection and integration activities, part of the UNHCR strategy in Mexico.

These are some of the tasks in which UNHCR officials meet with persons of concern to UNHCR and might need the help of an interpreter:

• Document translations
• Registration procedures: when the personal information of refugees, internally displaced persons or returnees are recorded.
• Refugee status determination: when an interview is conducted with an asylum-seeker to determine whether she/he meets the criteria of the refugee definition.
• Protection interviews: when an interview is conducted with an asylum-seeker or refugee in order to determine whether they have a particular protection risk and require specific assistance.
• Monitoring: when UNHCR collects information relating to the protection, rights and well-being of refugees, returnees and internally displaced persons through interviews.
• Participatory Assessments: when a structured dialogue is conducted with women, girls, boys and men of concern to UNHCR, in order to gather accurate information on the specific protection risks they face and underlying causes, to understand their capacities, and to hear their proposed solutions.
• Counselling sessions and/or medical interviews: when informed and professional advice on private and/or illness-related matters is made available to refugees and other persons of concern to UNHCR.
• Screening survivors of violence or torture: when more information on psychological and/or physical consequences of torture is sought.
Participate in special durable solutions and protection activities with local population
Support in responding specific doubts in public attention

3. Monitoring and Progress Controls

UNHCR Staff working with the interpreter will evaluate his/her performance on regular basis; in particular, his/her job performance and adherence to professional standards. Staff members will fill out the evaluation report form, which will be used for consideration of contract extensions in the future.

Commitment to continuous learning: Following the recruitment, interpreters shall be provided with an induction training which should include, among other things, basic information on UNHCR specialized terminology (see the UNHCR Thesaurus), content of their work, clarification of their role, content of the UNHCR Code of Conduct, PSEA standards according to ST/SGB/2003/13 and the Undertaking of Confidentiality and Impartiality, security briefing, and interpretation training. For the latter the UNHCR Training module “Interpreting in a Refugee Context” should be utilized.

Definition of the Final Product (i.e., survey completed, data collected, workshop conducted, research documents produced, etc.):

Oral interpretation and translation of documents as required.

4. Qualifications and Experience

a. Education
•Social Sciences, Politics, Economics, Human Rights, Languages, or any other related field. Education in a distinct field but coupled with an interpretation certification may be accepted. A high-school education grade coupled with an interpretation certification may be accepted.
•Certification of interpretation/translator skills in an asset.
•A perfect command of the Creole and Spanish language is necessary

b. Work Experience
•1 year of relevant experience, ideally on interpretation functions.

c. Key Competencies
•Excellent communication skills
•Ability to work well under pressure and deliver quality output in a most time-efficient manner.
•Professionalism: ability to demonstrate a high level of concertation; split-second accuracy; ability to deliver clear interpretation on a broad range of subjects; ability to work in a sensitive environment interpreting/translating refugee specific terminology.
•Strictly complies with the UNHCR Code of Conduct.


• This position is advertised to internal and external applicants. Candidates must be legally present in México at the time of application, recruitment and hire. Only Mexicans or candidates holding a valid work permit in México will be considered eligible.

• Recruitment as a UNHCR staff member and engagement under a UNHCR affiliate scheme or as an intern, is subject to proof of full vaccination against COVID-19, independently of contract type and duration. The selected candidate(s) will be required to provide the proof of vaccination prior to recruitment.

• Only short-listed candidates will be notified. The recruitment process might include written test and/or oral interview for this job opening. No late applications will be accepted.

• UNHCR does not charge a fee at any stage of the recruitment process (application, interview meeting, processing, training or any other fees).

• This position is offered under UNOPS Local ICA contract until 30/06/2023 with possibility of extension.

• Remuneration: A competitive compensation and benefits package is offered depending on relevant experience as per the requirements of the job advertisement. For information on UN salaries, allowances and benefits, please visit the portal of the Office of HR Management of United Nations. 

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This position doesn’t require a functional clearance

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