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  • Organization: Mercy Corps
  • Location: Harare | zimbabwe
  • Grade: Junior
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Public Health and Health Service
    • Project and Programme Management
    • Humanitarian Aid and Coordination
    • Emergency Aid and Response
    • Disaster Management (Preparedness, Resilience, Response and Recovery)
    • Managerial positions
  • Closing Date: 2019-05-02

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Humanitarian Response Team Leader, Zimbabwe

Harare (Zimbabwe) | zimbabwe

This role is anticipated at 6 months and is pending funding

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 exists to alleviate suffering, poverty, oppression by building secure, productive, and just communities. Mercy Corps has been present in Zimbabwe since 2002 focusing its interventions on a multi sectoral market systems development portfolio mobilizing communities to promote small scale agriculture and revive local economies. Its current operations focus on helping smallholder farmers increase their incomes and harvests through the power of technology and increasing rural and urban household access to quality, reliable water, sanitation and hygiene services. Zimbabwe continues to experience recurrent environmental, economic and social shocks affecting the well-being of its communities and undermining development investments. Mercy Corps puts resilience at core of its strategy to contribute to the well-being of Zimbabweans by building communities' capacities and strengthening systems and institutions.

Providing emergency relief in times of crisis, we move quickly to help communities recover and build resilience to future shocks, and promote sustainable change by supporting community-led and market-driven initiatives. Mercy Corps' key programming areas in response to Cyclone Idai in Manicaland include a combination of longer-term development and immediate humanitarian response programs in order to improve water service delivery and ensuring equitable access to Water, Sanitation and Hygiene services, in urban and rural areas. Corps plans to scale up and expand its humanitarian response to reach more beneficiaries with additional and varied assistance in a wider geographic area.

General Position Summary

The Response Team Leader is responsible for coordinating the multi-sectoral implementation of the Cyclone Idai response. Position includes daily management of program activities and program staff, ensuring appropriate systems and support mechanisms are in place to track, analyze and report on results. The Team Leader is an effective communicator, able to work remotely with internal and external stakeholders to achieve common objectives. S/he is responsible for managing relationships with local partners and international colleague agencies, beneficiaries, local authorities and donor representatives, thus contributing to achievement of agency goals through innovation, program development and displaying expertise in humanitarian programming. S/he will be a strong technical leader and will have excellent planning and remote management skills.

Essential Job Responsibilities


  • Identify existing gaps in the Cyclone Idai response and support program development efforts to secure additional funds for a multi-sectoral response
  • Recognize opportunities for innovative and collaborative action and create an environment where alternative viewpoints 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.
  • Support senior management in developing the strategic direction of the Mercy Corps cyclone response.


  • Identify, build and manage collaborative partnerships, sub-grantees, donors, local authorities and other stakeholders.
  • Communicate effectively to ensure overall targets and donor obligations are met.
  • Identify, build and manage partnerships on state and local levels with different stakeholders such as state and local government, civil society, UN agencies, peer INGOs, businesses and program participants.
  • Host and ensure logistic support for donor or other stakeholders field visits including donors, partners, and technical support visits.
  • Participate actively to coordination meetings with cyclone-response and humanitarian stakeholders (WFP, WHO, OCHA, UNICEF, UNDP, OFDA and other relevant response actors).
  • Demonstrate flexibility, resilience and ability to maintain positive relationships and composure.
  • Represent Mercy Corps programs with national and international media, donors, and participate in community activities as appropriate.


  • Oversee program start-up and ongoing program management and administration of the teams across the various field locations;
  • Ensure that program implementation is conducted with the respect to the security protocols, responsive to communities and partners and consistent with Mercy Corps' relevant program guidelines, principles, values, quality standards and strategic plan;
  • Ensure that beneficiaries are effectively targeted according to established vulnerability criteria;
  • Provide technical leadership and guidance to programmatic approaches for cyclone response;
  • Ensure MC has up-to-date information on the affected and targeted community and coordinates beneficiary lists and numbers with different stakeholders;
  • Ensure program implementation is on time, target and budget, using effective M&E systems to reach desired impacts.
  • Create and maintain systems ensuring effective and transparent use of financial resources for timely and informative reporting in line with donor and Mercy Corps policies and procedures.


  • Collaborate and communicate with finance, procurement, logistics, HR and admin teams in an effective and inclusive way, ensuring program planning is participatory of support departments.
  • Oversee and ensure that procurement and logistic planning is done in a routine and effective way,
  • Ensure compliance with donor and Mercy Corps regulations related to emergency programming;
  • Draft and/or review scope of work to hire and manage any technical consultants, including review for technical efficacy and contract budget.
  • Oversee the program budgets, project cash flow and expenditures.


  • 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.


  • 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.


Supervisory Responsibility: Emergency WASH Program Manager, additional sector program managers to be recruited

Reports Directly To: Director of Programs

Works Directly With: Emergency WASH Program Manager, Response field teams, Operational and Procurement teams, HQ-based Program Operations, Finance, and Technical Support Unit team, Humanitarian Leadership Response team

Knowledge and Experience

  • BA in management, international development or other relevant field, or MA/BA with additional experience.
  • 4-6 years of international relief and development program management experience, in emergency program management, preferably in Southern Africa. Experience in Zimbabwe a plus.
  • Combination of direct and remote management experience required.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage and communicate effectively with team members of varied work styles.
  • Demonstrated flexibility and creativity in planning and problem solving.
  • Proven ability to learn quickly, lead a program to achieve stated results and objectives.
  • Experience with the development, implementation & compliance of UNICEF, USAID (OFDA or FFP) and WFP funded programs.
  • Experience working with local authorities, host governments, national and international NGOs.
  • Understanding of best practices for gender and protection mainstreaming in programs required.
  • Ability to effectively represent Mercy Corps and its interests to key stakeholders.
  • Effective verbal and written communication, multi-tasking, organizational and prioritization skills.
  • Excellent oral and written English
  • Ability to work effectively with an ethnically diverse team in a sensitive environment.

Success Factors The successful Response Team Leader will combine exceptional management skills and experience in maintaining donor and partner relationships. S/he will have an outstanding ability to develop, implement and manage programs within the current and future program structure of Mercy Corps in the region. S/he will also have proven experience with cross-cultural team and capacity building, individual staff development and strong mentoring skills. S/he will possess high level of adaptability and be able to adjust to the constantly changing working environment. S/he will have previous experience in implementing large scale emergency programs. Prioritizing, problem solving, ability to seize opportunities, attention to detail and strategic vision are essential. The most successful Mercy Corps staff members have a strong commitment to teamwork and accountability, thrive in evolving and changing environments and make effective written and verbal communication a priority in all situations.

Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions

This is an unaccompanied position. The position is based in Harare and travel may be required up to 40% of the time to program areas within Manicaland province. Travel to field sites will be required where living conditions are clean and secure, but basic. Mobile phones and cellular service are widely available. Internet is available in all Mercy Corps offices. There are a number of health services available with evacuation options for serious illnesses. There is reasonable access to most consumer goods, although they can be expensive.

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.

Fostering a diverse and open workplace is an important part of Mercy Corps' vision. Mercy Corps is an Equal Opportunity Employer regardless of background. We are committed to creating an inclusive environment.

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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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