Technical Advisor II – Market Engagement and Value Chains
Baltimore (United States of America)
The CRS Agricultural Livelihoods program area has a strategic goal to provide a pathway to prosperity for millions of rural households. Working with our network of partner, CRS aims to provide poor rural farming families with the assets, skills and links to markets and services that they require in order live more dignified, prosperous and resilient lives. CRS is committed to working with the most vulnerable families all along the pathway to escape poverty, attain food security, and achieve prosperity through asset building, skills acquisition, risk reduction, and systems strengthening for greater resilience to shocks. To deliver on this strategy, CRS is seeking to increase our level of support to local market engagement and broader value chain development and through this work to improve the market performance of target smallholder farmers.
The Technical Advisor II – Markets and Value Chai ns will provide technical advice, guidance and support to the design and implementation of a wide range of agriculture and livelihoods programs, with a focus on strengthening market engagement and value chains among farmers who are transitioning from subsistence to commercial farming or who are growing their commercial production. This position will focus on fostering farmers’ linkages primarily with local markets, often centering on staple and locally consumed crops, while also supporting cash crops and linkages to regional and international markets. The Technical Advisor will develop and deploy new methods, tools and training to achieve market-oriented approaches that support farm families to build skills and increase productivity, laying the foundation for active engagement with markets. The Technical Advisor will support CRS program quality principles and standards, donor guidelines, and industry best practices to regional and Country Program (CP) teams to advance the delivery of high-quality programming to the poor and vulnerable. The Technical Advisor’s technical knowledge, advice and guidance will contribute to determining how effective, adaptive and innovative CRS’ Agriculture and Livelihoods programming is across the globe.
Roles and Key Responsibilities:
* Contribute to the development and implementation of agency-wide strategies, standards, tools, and best practices in market engagement, value chain analysis, and agri-business processes that effectively engage partners, private sector, donors and governments. Help ensure a cross-sectoral approach integrating gender, protection mainstreaming, and disaster risk reduction.
* Provide technical solutions to regional and CP teams, remotely and on-site, for strategic planning and how to best apply program design and implementation standards, best practices, partnership principles, tools, and M&E, ensuring high-quality impleme ntation.
* Contribute to regional and CP efforts to pre-position CRS for growth opportunities in market engagement and value chain programming. Lead or contribute to the development of the technical design for large and/or complex proposals, including defining appropriate monitoring systems and indicators. Advise project teams on integrating donor strategies, priorities and technical requirements into CRS’ approach.
* Contribute to capacity strengthening initiatives in market engagement and value chain programming for staff and partners by helping develop learning agendas, training curriculums, conducting trainings and workshops, and mentoring and coaching to CP staff.
* Contribute to knowledge management and learning through collecting and analyzing program data, evaluating strategic projects, assisting with measuring program impact, capturing and sharing lessons learned and best practices, and research and internal reports.
* Establish and maintain r elationships with donors, peer organizations, research and other institutions. Participate in forums in the area of market engagement and value chains to collect and share best practices and promote CRS’ work.
* Support CRS and partner technical staff in the field to design, implement and evaluate agricultural programs that incorporate CRS tools and products, such as Smart Skills and the Value Chains Toolkit, as well as selected approaches and tools from outside of CRS.
* Train CRS and partner staff in the use and process of skills acquisition by farmers for practices and technologies appropriate to improve their agriculture activities.
* Provide technical support to CRS projects and partners in strengthening farmer organizations at the community level, including farmer producer organizations, marketing groups, and others.
* Support farmers and their cooperatives to improve productivity, added value, quality and volume for market-led agricultural livel ihood activities.
* Master's Degree in a development-related field, such as agricultural economics, economic development, agro-enterprise or agribusiness management.
* Minimum of five years relevant international working experience in an advisory or management role with progressive responsibilities, ideally with an international NGO, with minimum of three years working for programming interventions in market engagement and/or value chains
* Previous experience providing technical assistance and developing successful proposals for external donor funding is required.
* Demonstrated application of technical principles and concepts in market engagement and value chains. General knowledge of other related disciplines to ensure proper cross-sectoral approach.
* Experience in business development, project design and proposal development in market engagement and value chains, including technical writing.
* Experience in mentoring, coaching, facilitation and training applying adult learning principles and practices.
* Experience with program monitoring and evaluation, including applying data collection tools and methodologies, data analysis, and data presentation.
* Experience and skills in networking and relations with donors, peer organizations, and faith-based and civil society partners. Understanding of partnership principles.
* Proficient in MS Office packages (Excel, Word, PowerPoint), Web Conferencing Applications, information and budget management systems, knowledge-sharing networks
Required Languages - Fluency in English. French and/or Spanish language skills preferred.
Travel - Willing and able to travel up to 30%.
Disclaimer: This job description is not an exhaustive list of the skill, effort, duties, and responsibilities associated with the position.
CRS' talent acquisition procedures reflect our commitme nt to protecting children and vulnerable adults from abuse and exploitation.
CRS is an Equal Opportunity Employer
Catholic Relief Services carries out the commitment of the Bishops of the United States to assist the poor and vulnerable overseas. Our Catholic identity is at the heart of our mission and operations. We welcome as a part of our staff and as partners people of all faiths and secular traditions who share our values and our commitment to serving those in need.