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Mercy Corps specializes in development in transitional areas. We have been operating in Uganda since 2006, directly implementing programs in the northern regions of Acholi and Karamoja with funding from USAID, the USDA, and private donations. Mercy Corps Uganda’s largest project, Healthy Practices, Strong Communities (HPSC), is a Multi-Year Assistance Program (MYAP) that takes a broad, integrated, and market-oriented approach to food security in post-LRA Acholi sub-region. We are hiring for the position of Chief of Party in anticipation of a new five-year MYAP focused on the Karamoja region.
GENERAL POSITION SUMMARY:
The Chief of Party is the senior management position for the upcoming Mercy Corps MYAP management team, with supervisory and managerial responsibility over all aspects of program implementation and staff development. S/he works closely with the Deputy Director and Country Director to develop and carry out the vision for project implementation. The Chief of Party leads the coordination, financial and administrative compliance, and monitoring and evaluation of the consortium of implementing partners, engendering a collaborative team spirit focused on achievement of the project’s goals.
ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS:
Strategy and Vision
- Attain program goal and objectives through the development, implementation, reviews, presentation and management of strategic plans, programs and projects by personal application and delegation of responsibility.
- Recommend program priorities and explore, evaluate and present new country opportunities that leverage impact and/ or complement core activities.
- Provide managerial and programmatic oversight to sub-grantee(s). Manage all operations related to the project according to the work plan, project document and implementation strategy. Troubleshoot, as needed, to prevent disruptions in daily program activities. Liaise with Deputy Country Director, as necessary.
- Monitor program implementation, measure impact and calibrate program strategy and implementation accordingly.
- Document process and achievements to ensure best practices are captured and disseminated. This will include the continual re-evaluation of program activities and information, with resulting activity adjustments in keeping with new insights.
- Ensure that there are fluent communication channels with the program structure, that the reporting schedule is met on time, and that program objectives are verifiably achieved.
- Coordinate and share information with the Deputy Country Director to ensure overall project targets and donor obligations are being achieved. Advise Deputy Country Director on suggested improvements and necessities, as required.
- Produce written reports on the program activities capturing impacts related to all activities, in the format provided by the Deputy Country Director.
- Ensure proper logistics, administration, human resources and transport needs of the program are conducted within MC policy and with the maximum benefit to the program. Ensure that commodity tracking and food distribution activities are in compliance with USAID FFP Regulation 11.
- Exercise sound judgment to ensure project expenses are reasonable, allocable and prudent. Ensure all project funds are spent in accordance with donor rules and regulations. Work with the Deputy Country Director to forecast expenditure surpluses and deficits to enable adjustments to be made to the program in a timely fashion.
- Oversee the program filing system and ensure that information is organized according to the reporting and auditing needs of the program. Ensure required levels of confidentiality.
- Ensure that all work follows international quality standards and best practices and that agriculture and water programs are technically and environmentally sound.
- Conduct him/herself both professionally and personally in such a manner as to bring positive recognition to Mercy Corps and to not endanger Mercy Corps’ humanitarian mission.
- Other duties as assigned by your supervisor.
- close collaboration with the Deputy Country Director, build the program staff’s capacity for a facilitative approach to develop in transitional environments.
- Manage the recruitment and training of program staff to ensure staff are of the quality and capacity to ensure the successful implementation of activities. Monitor and advise on staffing needs throughout the program. Ensure evaluations and disciplinary measures are made, as necessary according to MC policy.
- Provide direct and ongoing supervision and managerial support to all staff on the program.
- Support all efforts towards accountability – to beneficiaries and to international standards guiding development work. This includes understanding and following established international guidelines and actively engaging beneficiary communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of projects.
- Ensure good relations and accountability with any partner international NGOs.
- Ensure close coordination and sharing of information with other stakeholders such as other Title II cooperating sponsors, other NGOs and local authorities
- Ensure establishment and maintenance of relationships with communities, village councils and local government.
As part of our commitment to organizational learning and in support of our understanding that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities they serve – we expect all team members to commit 5% of their time to learning activities that benefit Mercy Corps as well as themselves.
Accountability to Beneficiaries:
Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts towards accountability, specifically to our beneficiaries and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging beneficiary communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.
The Chief of Party is responsible for supervising national staff and international staff of the program. Number of direct and indirect reports to be determined.
REPORTS DIRECTLY TO: Deputy Country Director
WORKS DIRECTLY WITH: Finance Manager, Head of Office XX, and MYAP Program Staff
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
- Master’s Degree in economic development or other relevant field is preferred.
- At least 5 years of relevant international experience with positions of progressively greater responsibilities.
- Experience managing development programs in pastoralist areas required.
- Experience in project management related to agriculture, water/sanitation, community mobilization and Food/Cash-for-Work is preferred
- Experience with market facilitation, supporting systemic change and promoting supporting services indirectly, is preferred.
- Prior experience with bilateral funding agencies is required.
- Practical experience managing umbrella grants involving international NGO partners.
- Complex program management and demonstrated success building, managing and leading a team of professionals.
- Strong writing, communication, organization, prioritization and negotiating skills.
- Excellent (English) verbal and written communication skills with proven financial management skills.
- Experience in building and maintaining strong/productive relations with implementing and strategic partner agencies. This includes coordinating with government authorities and counterparts.
- Strong computer literacy with a full knowledge of office applications.
- Previous experience with Food for Peace Title II programming required.
- Previous experience in Africa and East Africa preferred.
The successful candidate will possess strong leadership skills with the ability to maintain a broad perspective. S/he will undertake innovative approaches, be agile in the conceptualization of new program ideas and will be well versed in strategic thinking and planning. The ideal candidate will be familiar with Food Programs, and will demonstrate cultural knowledge and sensitivity. The ability and desire to grow individually and professionally is important.
LIVING CONDITIONS/ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS:
The Chief of Party is expected to spend 50% of his/her time in Kampala, and the remaining 50 percent in Karamoja. Residence will be in Kampala. Kampala is susceptible and has been the target of terrorist attacks but continues to provide a fairly secure living environment with many of the amenities you would expect in a capital city. With preparation and strong foresight one can avoid many of the frustrations that occur. The city center is congested with major traffic delays. One can anticipate the occasional power and/or water outages. The candidate will have the opportunity to reflect on the inconveniences and has the flexibility to choose her/ his own housing within budgetary limitations. This is an accompanied post for spouse and children.
Mercy Corps Team members represent the agency both during and outside of work hours when deployed in a field posting or on a visit/TDY to a field posting. Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and MC’s policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.