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  • Organization: Mercy Corps
  • Location: Mogadishu
  • Grade: Mid level
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Women's Empowerment and Gender Mainstreaming
  • Closing Date: 2015-09-30

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Gender Advisor, Somalia (219862-927)

Mogadishu (Somalia)

This position is contingent upon funding and donor approval.

PROGRAM/DEPARTMENT SUMMARY: Mercy Corps does high-quality, analytical work in very difficult places. In Somalia, the SYLI program is a 5-year $38million USD program, funded by USAID, with the goal of, "increasing education and civic participation opportunities for Somali youth to reduce instability in the target areas." The program was not initially designed with a gender perspective but includes a number of women's-specific components, like the girls empowerment forums (GEFs), pre-service teacher training for young women, and non-formal education (NFEs) for out-of-school female youth. A mid-term review conducted by an external evaluator signalled that there was a need to develop a gender mainstreaming plan that could help the program to strengthen its reach and impact. In February 2014, a staff gender training and audit was carried out and a mainstreaming plan is being drafted with the results. Implementation of the plan will require a high level of commitment from the teams, and a dedicated gender officer with the technical expertise needed to drive results.

GENERAL POSITION SUMMARY: The Gender Advisor (GA)'s core responsibility will be to oversee the implementation of SYLI's gender mainstreaming plan. This will include capacity building with staff, the development of tools and checklists that facilitate the implementation of gender mainstreaming and girls specific activities, follow-up with teams to ensure that SYLI stays on target with its gender-related objectives, conducting rapid gender assessments and maintaining a close working relationship with the Ministry of Education's Gender Department. The GA will also work closely with the regional gender advisor and program managers to develop a country level gender policy, recruit female staff and create and maintain a gender-friendly work environment. S/he could also be asked to provide occasional support to Mercy Corps Somalia's emergency programs.


Program Management

  • Oversee the implementation of the SYLI gender mainstreaming plan and consult with partners and stakeholders on a regular basis to assess its suitability and make suggestions for improvements where necessary, in conjunction with the Chief of Party, team leads and regional program managers;
  • Develop tools and resources to assist with gender analysis, gender aware program design, activities' implementation and M&E. Conduct refresher and specialized trainings as needed with staff and partners and design necessary didactic materials (manuals, handouts etc.);
  • Develop appropriate risk mitigation strategies for gender work that could have unintended, negative consequences for the groups that the program seeks to help. Examples include failing to engage community members and men and boys and inadvertently increasing women's time poverty;
  • Ensure close coordination and sharing of information with government officials (particularly the gender department of the Ministry of Education), NGOs and local authorities;
  • Monitor and provide on-going support to women and girls specific program components like the Girls Empowerment Forums (GEFs) and Women's Education Councils (WECs);
  • Provide periodic support to the Mercy Corps Somalia team with gender and emergency programs in the Somalia;
  • Support the team with the collection of sex-disaggregated, gender-sensitive data and the documentation of program activities;
  • Submit timely weekly, monthly, and quarterly reports that reflect program progress during implementation;
  • Support internal and external gender-related evaluations and research;
  • Conduct himself/herself both professionally and personally in such a manner as to bring positive recognition to Mercy Corps and to avoid endangering the organization's mission; and
  • Other duties as assigned by the line manager.

Strategy and Vision

  • Recognize opportunities for innovative action and create an environment where alternative view points are welcomed.
  • Set direction by prioritizing and organizing actions & resources to achieve objectives and contribute to country-wide strategy development.
  • Develop and organize activities to secure resources for programs and convince stakeholders to provide support.


  • Identify, build and manage collaborative partnerships with consortium partners, sub-grantees, donors, local governments and other stakeholders.
  • Communicate effectively to ensure overall project targets and donor obligations are met.

Team Management

  • Create and sustain a work environment of mutual respect where team members strive to achieve excellence.
  • Promote accountability, communicate expectations and provide constructive feedback via performance reviews.
  • Contribute to country team-building efforts, help team members identify problem solving options and ensure the integration of all team members into relevant decision-making processes.
  • Provide team members with information, tools and other resources to improve performance & reach objectives.
  • Supervise and regularly coordinate with project staff and support departments to ensure smooth planning, preparation, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation of program activities.

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.

Organizational Learning: 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.



WORKS DIRECTLY WITH: Deputy Chief of Party; Team leads; Regional Program Managers; Regional Gender Advisor and other Mercy Corps programs and operations staff


  • Degree in gender and development, women's studies, masculinity studies, sociology, law or a related field.
  • Between 3 to 5 years of professional experience in the field of gender and development.
  • Familiarity with the tools of gender mainstreaming, including gender analysis.
  • First hand knowledge of gender dynamics in Somalia is a must as well as a basic understanding of the national legal and policy framework on gender.
  • Demonstrated commitment to women's rights, human rights and social justice.
  • Knowledge and experience in GBV prevention and response is an asset.
  • Demonstrated writing and analytical skills.
  • Excellent reporting, communication and representation skills.
  • Fluency in Somali is an advantage.
  • Proven knowledge and capacity in using computer basic applications Ms word, Excel and internet.


The successful Gender Advisor will have the ability to multi-task, set priorities, and work under tight deadlines within a complex team. S/he will demonstrate strong interpersonal and cross-cultural communication skills and be committed to the values and mission of Mercy Corps. S/he will take initiative and contribute to team efforts, as well as demonstrate an ability to communicate, assume leadership, and make solid decisions while working remotely from country leadership.


The GA will be based in Hargeisa and will plan, implement, and monitor project activities throughout Somalia. This is an unaccompanied post in a highly insecure environment. This location is eligible for R&R and the Mercy Corps Hardship allowance.

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 MC's policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.

Please follow this link to apply:

We do our best to provide you the most accurate info, but closing dates may be wrong on our site. Please check on the recruiting organization's page for the exact info. Candidates are responsible for complying with deadlines and are encouraged to submit applications well ahead.
Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.

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