Working for UN Agencies
For most people the ‘United Nations’ conjures up images of blue-helmeted peace-keepers, ambassadors in a general assembly jostling for support of a super-power or maybe even the faded UNHCR logo on a refugee’s tent. For me the image associated is of a TOR or Terms of Reference document, the start of a lot of paperwork and months and months of waiting.
Over the years Wired Video has produced work for the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the World Food Programme (WFP), the Office of the High Commissioner Human Rights (OHCHR), the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) – all part of the “UN family” – which comprises a bewildering number of autonomous agencies, programmes and funds.
It will come as no surprise that an organisation of this scale, with an unparalleled reach, has an equally unparalleled bureaucracy.
Here’s a chart which will give you a taste of the complexity of the UN system.
In March 2020, at the start of the Covid 19 pandemic, UNDP Somalia approached Wired Video – which has impeccable contacts and a reputation for reliably producing work remotely for varied audiences – to create a communications hub to reach everybody in Somalia.
We immediately set about hiring experts in communications in Somalia and developing a plan to produce TV, Radio, Social Media events as well as building websites for straight health advice and for the Ministry of Endowment and Religious Affairs and other assets for the Somali government. We have produced a lot of material – and have been asked to continue with an extension to our contract.
You can see the range of work here in a UNDP report.