Civil Society Development Program Manager - Mercy Corps, Congo (Democratic Republic), Deadline: Apr-30-2011

Tracking Code
Job Description
Expected duration:  18 months

Duty Station:  Dungu, Haut Uélé, Province Orientale, Democratic Republic of the Congo

Mercy Corps has been operating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) since August 2007.  Mercy Corps’ activities are currently in Water, Sanitation & Hygiene (WASH), Economic Recovery, Environment and Food Security. Mercy Corps is also moving towards more transitional development programming in livelihoods, financial services, agriculture and governance.  The Mercy Corps DRC staff is comprised of over 120 members who work in North Kivu and Orientale Provinces, including the national office in Goma. A new EC-funded civil society development program is Mercy Corps DRC’s first governance program, drawing on the agency’s extensive experience in the sector around the world. It aims to build the capacity and credibility of Dungu’s Civil Society members and networks, promote good governance, and to improve linkages with local authorities and the participation on the community in the development and implementation of a Millennium Development Goals Action Plan.

Based in Dungu under the supervision of the Head of Office, the Civil Society Development (CSD) Program Manager is responsible for successful achievement of the CSD program’s objectives, and supporting and coordinating the work of local partner organizations within the required timeframe and budget. This includes training and organizing program staff and ensuring compliance with Mercy Corps and European Commission policies and procedures, accountability to beneficiaries and other stakeholders, and working closely with other Mercy Corps team members, particularly in support departments. The Program Manager is also expected to play a key role in governance-related program development, proposal writing, and contributing to the overall country program strategy.


Capacity Building and Civil Society Development
  • Lead capacity assessments and the formulation of capacity development plans with local partner organizations.
  • Develop and coordinate the implementation of a capacity building program for local partners and participating groups, including civil society organizations and local authorities.
  • Work with local authorities and civil society groups to support the development and financing of actions to contribute to the Millennium Development Goals in Dungu.
  • Support partners to implement micro-projects, providing guidance and formal and informal training in project and organizational management as needed.
  • Foster and support the emergence of linkages between civil society and local government and networks among civil society groups.

Program Management
  • Recruit, train, and mentor program staff, including among other subjects, participatory capacity assessment and capacity building, monitoring and evaluation, reporting, project design and budgeting, and effective advocacy and awareness-raising.
  • Ensure compliance with donor requirements and Mercy Corps administrative, logistical, and financial procedures.
  • Promote relations and coordinate activities with other humanitarian actors, donors, UN, and civil authorities in Dungu.
  • Develop monitoring systems and provide regular reports on program activities for donors as well as for internal learning and appropriate program adjustments due to new opportunities/challenges.
  • As necessary, assist with development, design, and proposal writing for related programming.
  • Develop and oversee fundraising strategy for co-financing for the Civil Society Development/Governance program/s.

Program Implementation:
  • Provide leadership and management of all aspects of program planning, management, implementation, quality and accountability.
  • Ensure that program implementation is responsive to local stakeholders, and consistent with Mercy Corps’ relevant program guidelines (e.g. Guide to Good Governance, Community Mobilization), principles, values, quality standards, lessons learned, and strategic plan.
  • Establish, manage and coordinate work plans for all program activities, including making adjustments in response to any changes in the security situation or political context.
  • Monitor adherence to grant agreements, Mercy Corps and donor policies and procedures, and other relevant external rules and regulations (e.g. Congolese law).
  • Manage the monitoring and evaluation system for all program activities, including the planning and execution of any required baselines, studies, assessments or evaluations.
  • Integrate community approaches, gender sensitivity, Do No Harm concepts, environmental sensitivity, protection, partnership principles, and capacity building into all activities as appropriate.
  • Liaise regularly with Mercy Corps’ Finance, Administration and Logistics departments to ensure the support necessary to carry out activities in accordance with Mercy Corps policies and procedures.
  • Conduct frequent field visits to all program sites.
  • Provide regular internal and external reports on program status, as required. 
  • Ensure that the program engages local stakeholders and develops local capacity and ownership for longer term sustainability.

Coordination and Representation:
  • Represent the program to government, donors, and NGOs and other relevant events in the field as required and appropriate, in coordination with the Head of Office.
  • Develop and maintain working relationships and coordinate with relevant international and local agencies active in governance or civil society development, and other cross-cutting sectors (including the Cluster system), as well as local authorities and associations.
  • Document and communicate program implementation experience and lessons learned to support coordination efforts.
  • Liaise with local government officials, UN and other international agencies, local NGOs and civil society organizations, local religious leaders and other community members to foster coordination and ensure support for and acceptance of Mercy Corps activities. 

  • Directly supervise program team, ensuring all members have received Mercy Corps orientation, program training and regular formal and informal performance feedback.
  • Organize team members to effectively carry out their responsibilities and create an environment conducive to quality work and professional development.
  • Coordinate with the Head of Office on ensuring the security of the team at all times.

  • Conduct him/herself both professionally and personally in such a manner as to bring credit to Mercy Corps and to not jeopardize its humanitarian mission.
  • Other duties as assigned and appropriate.

Organizational Learning:
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.

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.

This position requires direct supervision of a team of 5 national staff.

REPORTS DIRECTLY TO:  Dungu Head of Office

WORKS DIRECTLY WITH: DRC Mercy Corps staff in Dungu, Bunia, Goma and Kinshasa, including the Country Director on technical and strategic issues, and the Governance Senior Program Officer (headquarters).

  • BA/S in social science, management, international development or other relevant field.  Masters degree preferred.
  • At least 3 years experience successfully managing programs and teams in the field, preferably in Africa. Program experience should include program implementation, M&E, needs assessments, report and proposal development and budget monitoring.
  • Experience in at least one area of civil society development, capacity building, advocacy, good governance and/or community mobilization is essential.
  • Good organizational and program management skills and the ability to anticipate program needs.
  • Ability to effectively represent the organization and its interests to a diverse range of stakeholders, including local and international government officials, local civil society organizations, donors, other international organizations, the media, and the community.
  • Demonstrated proficiency with the MS Office software (i.e., Word, Excel, PowerPoint) is required.
  • French proficiency required and excellent oral and written English skills an advantage.

The Civil Society Program Manager will be conscientious with a proven sense of judgment and commitment to integrity, understanding the long-term implications of humanitarian and development work and the importance of building local capacity and ownership.  S/he will be able to interact productively with partner and peer agencies, have effective verbal and written communication, multi-tasking, organizational and prioritization skills as well as demonstrated attention to detail, ability to follow procedures, meet deadlines and work independently and cooperatively with team members. An interest and ability to travel and work in remote environments is critical as is an awareness of and sensitivity to multi-cultural environments and train and facilitate dialogue among diverse groups with various skill sets and working styles. The Program Manager will be able to creatively problem-solve, juggle multiple priorities under tight deadlines and calmly and diplomatically deal with unexpected and sudden events with patience, tenacity and a sense of humor.

This position will be based in Dungu town (Haut Uélé District, Orientale Province), with regular visits to project sites, and periodic travel to other Mercy Corps offices. Dungu has suffered greatly at the hands of the Lord’s Resistance Army, which has caused much loss of life, displacement and trauma. While the area is now stabilizing, security can be variable, and is closely monitored by UN peacekeepers. Years of conflict and corruption have badly damaged the country's infrastructure.  Air travel is necessary to get to/from Dungu from other offices. There are virtually no telephone land lines in the DRC, though mobile services are widely available, although this can be unreliable in Dungu.  Internet is limited, but available in all Mercy Corps offices. Living conditions are clean and secure, but basic and in shared accommodation. This position is eligible for R&R and hardship allowance and is unaccompanied.  

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. Staff are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and Mercy Corps' policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.
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Civil Society Development Program Manager - Mercy Corps, Congo (Democratic Republic), Deadline: Apr-30-2011 Civil Society Development Program Manager - Mercy Corps, Congo (Democratic Republic), Deadline: Apr-30-2011 Reviewed by KHMER-INSIDER on Monday, March 07, 2011 Rating: 5