This position is contingent on funding.
Mercy Corps has had a presence in Colombia since 2006. We work primarily in collaboration with local partners that target communities affected by the country’s long-running armed conflict. Our programs consist of both emergency assistance and socio-economic integration initiatives to improve the lives of displaced and marginalized populations, including landmine victims, victims of child labor and gender based violence. Mercy Corps’ programs cover 22 departments across the country and include the urban centers of Bogota, Caribbean coastal areas including Cartagena and Barranquilla, and the departments of Nariño, Putumayo, and Chocó. In these areas, we are helping local organizations enable families to establish themselves, achieve stable livelihoods, peacefully resolve land conflict, and live with dignity outside the armed conflict. Building off strong linkages to local government, the Colombia program is currently looking to expand its work to address the political, economic, governance and cultural needs of Afro-Colombian and indigenous communities.
GENERAL POSITION SUMMARY:
The Chief of Party (COP) is a senior management position responsible for the overall management of an anticipated Afro-Colombian and Indigenous Program funded by USAID for $61.4 million dollars over five years, and ensuring that matching resources are obtained and appropriately utilized. The COP has supervisory and managerial responsibility for all staff associated to the program and will work closely both with management and support staff (including finance, administration and program) in Bogotá and field sites to ensure the day to day activities are implemented according to schedule, budget and required quality. The COP will also work closely with sub-grantees to ensure that targets for their portion of program activities are met. The COP will outline a strategic plan for the implementation of the program including identifying target areas/projects, methods of operation for effective programming and maximum results. The COP will liaise with USAID and represent the program to other stakeholders.
ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS:
– Build the program staff ensuring that there are fluent communication channels and that the reporting schedule is met on time and that program objectives are achieved.
– Ensure close coordination and sharing of information with stakeholders such as Afro-Colombian and indigenous organizations, regional government, the private sector, municipal government, NGO partners, community based organizations, women’s groups, IDP organizations and producer groups.
– Ensure proper logistics, administration, human resources and transport needs of the program are conducted within Mercy Corps policy and with the maximum benefit to the program.
– Produce written reports on the program activities capturing impacts related to all activities, in the format provided by the Country Director.
– Coordinate and share information to ensure overall project targets and donor obligations are being achieved. Advise the Country Director on suggested improvements and necessities, as required.
– Coordinate with relevant Colombian government authorities.
– Ensure accountability and good relations with USAID, maintaining a cooperative, collegial and collaborative relationship.
– Develop and maintain both internal and external relationships to ensure optimum program success: to include Mercy Corps headquarters and regional office, international and local NGOs, government officials, donor community officials, diplomatic corps and embassies, vendors, media and the general public.
– Ensure establishment and maintenance of relationships with Afro-Colombian and indigenous communities, village councils and local government in the Project’s target areas.
– Provide direct and ongoing supervision and managerial support to all staff on the program.
– Ensure that all work follows international quality standards and best practices and that all activities are technically and environmentally sound.
– Conduct himself/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.
Accountability: 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.
As part of Mercy Corps’ agency-wide Organizational Learning Initiative, all team members are responsible for spending 5% of their work time in formal and/or non-formal professional learning activities.
The COP will directly supervise a staff of 5 and indirectly oversee a staff of 30-40.
REPORTS DIRECTLY TO: Country Director
WORKS DIRECTLY WITH: Finance Manager
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
– MA/S or equivalent in social sciences, economic development, or international development;
– At least 10 years of relevant experience focused in the management of development programs.
– At least 5 years of senior management experience; Previous COP experience strongly preferred;
– Experience in program management related to afro-descendent and indigenous communities are required.
– Experience working on USAID funded programs is required.
– Excellent verbal and written communication skills.
– Ability to effectively coordinate with local authorities to ensure that there are synergies built with the development priorities of the Government of Colombia.
– Fluency in both Spanish and English.
– Experience working in Latin America, particularly the Andes region and Colombia preferred.
The successful COP will be familiar with the opportunities and challenges of programming for Afro-Colombian and indigenous communities, with a strong combination of team leadership, grant management and reporting, and donor and government communication skills. He/she will have familiarity with the methodologies of policy advocacy, economic development, territorial and local governance and/or cultural identity and diversity policies. The position requires an ability to think creatively about improving the participation and increasing opportunities for Afro-Colombian and indigenous communities. A successful COP will complete activities in a timely manner in accordance with Mercy Corps and donor procedures and guidelines.
LIVING CONDITIONS/ENVIRONMENTAL CONDITIONS:
This is an accompanied post. The position is based in Bogotá with extensive traveling in Colombia. Bogotá is a pleasant, modern city and security is relatively good. Bogotá hosts excellent schools and universities. The city has all the modern amenities and an efficient mass transportation system as well as plentiful and safe taxis. At 2,800 meters, the weather in Bogotá may be classified as «high altitude», with a mean temperature of 59° F. There are two distinct rainy seasons (May-July & Oct-Dec) though it can rain on any given day of the year. Mercy Corps Team members represent the agency both during and outside of work hours when deployed in 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.
Mercy Corps is an AA/EOE.
How to apply:
Apply online at our website: