Child Protection Coordinator
Since 1979, Afghanistan has experienced continuous armed conflict. The IRC began work in Afghanistan in 1988, launching relief programs for persons displaced by the invasion of the Soviet Union. The IRC continued to provide aid under Taliban rule and expanded community development projects. The organization now works with thousands of villages across nine provinces, with Afghans making up more than 99% of IRC staff in the country. As Afghanistan works to recover from ongoing conflict and natural disasters, the IRC supports by: working with local communities to identify, plan and manage their own development projects; provide safe learning spaces in rural areas; provide prevention and response services to violence; provide uprooted families with tents, clean water, sanitation and other basic necessities; and helps community members access employment. Integrated Protection in Afghanistan includes Child Protection alongside Women’s Protection and Empowerment and Protection and Rule of Law (PRoL) programming, with a strong focus on ensuring gender equality in both programming and organizational practice.
The IRC Afghanistan is currently looking for a lead for its ongoing Child Protection (CP) activities. The ideal candidate has excellent technical capacity in Child Protection with practical experience working in an emergency context and protracted crisis, coordination and networking skills, having the capacity to innovate and solve problems efficiently and the ability to work effectively with a focus on programming in different geographic locations, providing cohesion and strategic direction to IRC Afghanistan Child Protection programming.
The Child Protection (CP) Coordinator will work to oversee the quality and timely implementation of all aspects of the CP program. S/he will work closely with IRC staff ensuring the IRC’s interventions are context appropriate, complement other responses, are operational and meet minimum standards. Focus is on program quality, with program progress being monitored and evaluated against quantifiable benchmarks, providing technical oversight across all sites of implementation as well as supporting and mentoring CP staff. A significant component of the role focuses on capacity strengthening, including through the delivery of technical training, coaching on child protection interventions and managerial skills, tool development and ensuring that the team’s workload is manageable to allow for growth.
The CP Coordinator reports to the Senior Integrated Protection Coordinator and is based in Kabul with travel to the field sites. This position supervises the Deputy CP Coordinator and the CP Specialist, providing them with technical backstopping and support.
1. Program Management
•Together with Senior IP Coordinator and with inputs from the team, provide strategic direction and vision for the IRC’s CP programming in Afghanistan, while observing high program quality and ensuring alignment with IRC’s best practices.
•Oversee the technical aspects of the implementation and coordination of CP programs, including PSS for children and caregivers, community-based child protection, child protection awareness raising and child protection case management
•Oversee the managerial aspects of the implementation of PRoL programs, leading on the creation and use of work, procurement, spending and MEAL plans to guide implementation of approved grants.
•Support the CP deputy coordinator, CP specialist, CP managers and field teams in the implementation and monitoring of the work plans ensuring that activities reflect the commitments IRC made to the donor and the community.
•Develop and/or adapt technical and managerial tools to support day to day program implementation.
•Work collaboratively with the MEAL coordinator to ensure that monitoring and evaluation systems are effectively designed and integrated into all stages of the project; that output and impact data are captured and that data is used to optimize program quality.
•Participate in cross-departmental collaboration and coordination with Protection Rule of Law, Women’s Protection and Empowerment, Economic Recovery and Development, Environmental Health and Emergency colleagues to ensure that linkages between programs are made and programs gain from protection best practice.
•Ensure that all interventions are in compliance with minimum standards and best practices as well as national laws and policies and relevant international laws. Additionally, IRC’s protection mainstreaming guidelines will need to be observed during the implementation of all project activities.
•Support the field-based staff to put in place capacity building plans as necessary.
•Participate in grant opening, midterm review and grant closing meetings for all CP grants and ensure that the same process is implemented in the field.
•In collaboration with program and grants staff, set up a budget tracking system and review Budget vs. Actual expenditure for CP programs on a monthly basis with staff
•Review all reports prepared by the field staff and provide appropriate feedback to the concerned staff, and ensure that reports are written and submitted to concerned bodies in a timely manner
•Liaise regularly with the relevant HQ technical units.
2. Staff Support
•Provide technical guidance, on the job mentoring and coaching for the CP specialist and CP managers.
•Ensure ongoing training and targeted capacity building of CP staff in both technical and managerial skills. This includes staff training in program management areas such as reporting, budgeting, monitoring, evaluation, and supervision as well as facilitating protection training sessions
•Support Field Coordinators/Managers to ensure that the CP specialist and CP managers put capacity development plans in place for the national CP teams based on documented capacity needs assessments exercise.
•Provide continuous support to and ensure targeted capacity building of staff, including through the introduction of supervision structures
•Review performance of the Deputy CP Coordinator and CP Specialist and provide supportive approaches to address issues identified.
3. New Business Development
•Ensure CP strategy is updated as required in close collaboration with the CP and Integrated Protection teams, Senior IP Coordinator and PRoL Technical Advisor.
•Identify opportunities for, design and develop concept notes and proposals to grow the CP portfolio.
•Ensure all designed protection projects use to the IRC theories of change and that outcomes are evidence-driven and evidence-generated.
•Coordinate and participate in the development of budgets for program proposals in conjunction with the grants and finance departments.
•In coordination with the MEAL coordinator, develop proposal log frames and indicators that will optimize program quality.
•Develop and/or input into child protection assessments and child protection reporting analysis for the purpose of program development.
•Identify opportunities for partnership and strategic collaboration.
4. Representation, coordination and advocacy
•Coordinate with Senior IP Coordinator to forge connections with key government counterparts, UN, I/NGOs, human rights actors and other sub-national government actors.
•Represent the IRC in high level and strategic meetings involving protection actors such as CP AoR meetings, inter-agency coordination meetings, and bilateral meetings.
•Regularly coordinate with internal program and operational stakeholders, including the CP Technical Advisor and other IRC colleagues.
The Child Protection Coordinator will need to meet the requirements below:
•Post-graduate degree in social sciences, political sciences, law, human rights or other related field or equivalent experience;
•At least five years’ experience working in the field of Child Protection and/or Children’s Rights in conflict-affected areas;
•Experience implementing emergency child protection programming;
•Previous experience working with IRC and an understanding of IRC’s systems and processes is preferred;
•Strong commitment to humanitarian work and values;
•Familiarity with key donor regulations such as BHA, BPRM and ECHO;
•Experience in working with and coordinating with the UN, INGOs and other stakeholders;
•Demonstrated experience in staff supervision, capacity building, project design and budget management;
•Strong communication and interpersonal skills with excellent analysis and writing skills;
•Excellent analytical, writing skills and fluency in English; Dari and/or Pashto an advantage
•Strong team and people leadership, management, organizational and development skills;
•Works well in and promotes teamwork, comfortable in a multi-cultural environment, flexible and able to handle pressure effectively and productively; and
•Additional qualities: ability to multi-task, ability to handle pressure well, ability to improvise, flexibility, adaptability to transitions.
National Candidates: We strongly encourage national candidates to apply for this position. The IRC strives to attract, motivate and retain qualified national staff in our programs.
Standards of Professional Conduct: The IRC and IRC workers must adhere to the values and principles outlined in the IRC Way – Code of Conduct. These are Integrity, Service, Equality and Accountability. In accordance with these values, the IRC operates and enforces policies on Beneficiary Protection from Exploitation and Abuse, Child Safeguarding, Harassment-Free Workplace, Fiscal Integrity, Anti-Retaliation, Combating Trafficking in Persons and several others.
Gender Equality & Equal Opportunity: We are committed to narrowing the gender gap in leadership positions. We offer generous benefits that provide an enabling environment for women to participate in our workforce including parental leave, gender-sensitive security protocols and other supportive benefits and allowances. We welcome and strongly encourage qualified female professionals to apply.
IRC is an Equal Opportunity Employer. IRC considers all applicants on the basis of merit without regard to race, sex, colour, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, disability or any other characteristic protected by applicable law.