Technial Advisor, Protection and Gender
About Mercy Corps
Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible.
In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions
into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within.
Now, and for the future.
Program / Department Summary
Mercy Corps has been meeting the needs of conflict-affected communities inside Syria since 2012. Mercy Corps Syria currently operates from three locations in Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria with an experienced team of staff and partners who are supported and led by a Country Team based in Amman that ensures consistent, technical and quality driven programming. Mercy Corps implements a range of activities aimed at supporting positive coping strategies by addressing the basic needs of vulnerable families while strengthening opportunities to generate income and increasing access to livelihoods.
General Position Summary
Protection and Gender Advisor will be a member of the Program Performance and Quality (PaQ) unit and will provide technical support and direction in the design, implementation, quality assurance and program strategy development for the Whole of Syria (WoS). The Advisor will support the country program to mitigate risks and integrate protection outcomes through sector interventions that focus on accessing basic needs, WASH, FSL and early economic recovery. The role will also provide targeted technical support to standalone protection programming including child protection and GBV and protection monitoring. Together with PaQ colleagues, the Advisor will work to ensure that accountability to affected populations is consistently embodied in programming, including via establishment and maintenance of a safe, effective, and efficient beneficiary feedback mechanism and referral systems. The Advisor will also be responsible for providing technical support to teams in meeting organizational Gender Minimum Standards, ensuring safe, dignified and inclusive delivery of services for people of different gender, age and special needs. The Advisor will also engage as Mercy Corps' representative within the relevant inter-agency WoS coordination spaces. S/he is expected to provide support remotely and through regular country visits, working closely with a range of program implementers and senior management teams.
Essential Job Responsibilities
Technical Support and Strategy Development
- Lead strategy development and vision for protection within WoS program.
- Provide technical inputs and oversight to the design of protection interventions.
- Support new and ongoing programs with best practice advice and assistance on assessment, implementation, research, and evaluation needs.
- Take ownership of integration and mainstreaming of protection, with an emphasis on enhancing program quality.
- Participate in cross-departmental collaboration and coordination in order to ensure that protection is mainstreamed into all program activities.
- Contribute to the development of assessments, monitoring and analyses that better understand and analyze protection risks.
- Support Mercy Corps' different sectors in their efforts to mainstream sector best practices of safe, dignified, and inclusive delivery of services for people of different gender, age and special needs.
- Engage and support Mercy Corps' global gender minimum standards initiative.
Program Development & Quality
- Collaborate with the Director of Programs, Grants Manager, Sector Managers and to provide protection input on proposals for other sectors to ensure protection and gender are mainstreamed across Mercy Corps programming, as well as look for opportunities to integrate protection outcomes into sector programming
- Strengthen the capacity of standalone program staff to better design, implement and monitor programs that meet industry best practices and standards
- Identify opportunities for the design and development concept notes and proposals for further protection programming.
- Ensure the effective design and integration of gender sensitive monitoring and evaluation systems and protection monitoring methodologies into all stages of the project; that output and impact data are captured, and data is used to optimize program quality.
- Ensure gender is integrated across MEL tools, theory of change, indicators, and logframes.
- Lead discussions on vulnerability assessments and targeting to ensure inclusiveness of basic protection standards.
- Develop Protection SOPs; ensure staff follow and understand procedures and policies.
Representation and Coordination
- Develop and maintain effective working relationships with all stakeholders - including NGOs, clusters, UN agencies, community-based organizations, the Regional Advisors and other Mercy Corps sectors to enhance cooperation and coordination.
- Attend protection coordination meetings and/or represent Mercy Corps in other relevant forums.
- Ensure that information from coordination meetings is shared internally and with other sectors, as appropriate.
- Identify and nurture strategic partnerships with other organizations and institutions present in the region.
- Serve as the focal point for regional and agency wide protection and gender policies.
- Identify gaps in current protection capacity within Mercy Corps and partner teams.
- Lead the development of protection capacity within the Mercy Corps team, particularly focusing on Humanitarian principles, Protection Mainstreaming principles and other relevant industry standards.
- Work with TA Partnership to identify suitable methods for supporting protection capacity building among partners
- Recommend and implement a capacity building/development plan for staff; provide continuous support to ensure the targeted capacity building of staff.
- Ensure compliance with security procedures and policies as determined by country leadership.
- Proactively ensure that team members operate in a secure environment and are aware of policies.
- 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 toward 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.
Reports Directly To: Program Performance and Quality Director
Works Directly With: Deputy Country Director, Directors of Programs, PaQ Unit, and program teams
Knowledge and Experience
- MA in international development, women's studies, gender or a comparable area of study.
- 3-5 years of experience in international development work, with a minimum of three years in field postings; experience working with displaced populations strongly preferred.
- Substantial background in protection and development work including experience conducting training, doing analysis and program integration and engaging in advocacy.
- Detailed understanding of the centrality of protection in humanitarian principles and their application, including community-based and rights-based approaches.
- Comprehensive knowledge of protection norms and standards as well as holistic and practical methods towards implementing protection mainstreaming and integrated protection outcomes.
- The ability to work closely in a team, be patient, adaptable, flexible, able to improvise and work in an environment that is often stressful and potentially volatile.
- Strong report writing skills, including experience in writing proposals and donor reports. For this excellent analytical skills and computer literacy is required.
- Good interpersonal skills with the ability to communicate and negotiate clearly and effectively at all levels, taking into account cultural and language difficulties. Tact and diplomacy are essential.
- Experience working on and/or managing projects with gender based violence mitigation components.
- Strong written and public speaking skills required.
- Fluency in written and spoken English required.
- Proficiency in Arabic is beneficial.
- Proficiency with Microsoft Office
The Advisor will demonstrate a winning track record in program development, and bring flexibility, creativity, and enthusiasm to every project he/she undertakes. The individual must have exceptional writing skills and the ability to multi-task, set priorities, pay attention to detail, and work under tight deadlines within complex team environments. The Advisor must take an active role in building and maintaining external relationships as well as demonstrating the drive and initiative to contribute to internal team efforts. The individual must learn quickly how to provide technical data and support in the most efficient and effective form possible for each unique field team and environment. All technical advisor positions require strong interpersonal and cross-cultural communication skills, and a level of emotional intelligence proficiency that quickly builds and maintains productive relationships across teams. Being aware and sensitive to international development issues and diverse cultures is critical.
Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions
The position is based in Amman, Jordan and it requires up to 40% travel to Lebanon, Iraq, and Syria. Housing is individual accommodation with unlimited freedom of movement beyond the house/office. This is an unaccompanied post. There are several good International schools in Jordan. Staff have easy access to services – medical, electricity, water, etc
Mercy Corps team members represent the agency both during and outside 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.