Country Representative, Myanmar
Helen Keller Intl
Country Representative, Myanmar
Guided by the remarkable legacy of its co-founder, Helen Keller, Helen Keller Intl partners with communities striving to overcome longstanding cycles of poverty. By delivering the essential building blocks of good health, sound nutrition and clear vision, we help millions of people create lasting change in their own lives. Working in more than 20 countries – across Africa, Asia, Europe, and the United States – and together with a global community of supporters, we are ensuring every person has the opportunity – as Helen did – to reach their true potential.
We are currently seeking a Country Representative in Myanmar to represent Helen Keller, develop new programs, expand our funding and lead the country office and its programs in a manner that reflects our mission and values and ensures technical excellence in the delivery of all activities.
Helen Keller will apply its international hire salary scale to an employment package with local Myanmar terms and conditions.
Country Program Overview
Helen Keller has been working in Myanmar since 2001 when it launched a program to reinforce the existing cataract surgery infrastructure and to monitor trachoma, in close cooperation with the Ministry of Health. More recently, Helen Keller has expanded its portfolio beyond eye health to include nutritional assistance to children under 5 years of age. The Comic Relief nutritional support program, which began in 2021, enables households to make sustained improvements in nutrition through a community approach. In the area of eye health, Helen Keller assists the Government’s Prevention of Blindness Program to increase access to diabetic retinopathy services in rural areas of the country.
The Country Representative reports directly to the Regional Director (RD) and leads the country Program Management Team (PMT).
The position directly supervises a team of staff at different professional skill levels, works closely with colleagues at all levels of Helen Keller’s global management structure, especially subject matter experts in programs, accounting, budget and finance, business development, finance systems and grants compliance. S/he may be called upon to participate in global working groups or steering committees and/or to provide support to colleagues in other country offices.
Helen Keller’s programs require close relations with governments, partner universities and NGOs, private industry, donors, and UN agencies and the Program Director will represent Helen Keller at relevant external technical meetings.
Helen Keller has a matrixed reporting structure. Regular communication and a spirit of teamwork among colleagues, both hierarchically and laterally are essential to make this structure thrive.
Scope of the Position
With support from the Regional Director and global colleagues, the Country Representative leads the efficient achievement of program objectives and activities ensuring program quality and program management that integrate all aspects of financial and grants management and project office operations all in compliance with Helen Keller and donor policies to fulfill the Helen Keller mission and the objectives established in grants.
The Country Representative is based in Myanmar with periodic travel to field sites, as well as international travel for meetings and training, as needed and appropriate.
Overall Management and Leadership
- Lead the development of a country office Strategy Action Plan and annual Program Plan that aligns with Helen Keller’s strategy, program objectives and budget lending your unique perspective and expertise to the process, while listening to and integrating the expertise of others.
- Lead the development and implementation of annual program budgets.
- Model collaboration for your matrixed team: effectively consult and inform colleagues to maximize efficiency and knowledge sharing and integrate guidance and direction from subject matter experts in your office and elsewhere in the global organization to maximize performance.
- Work closely with the RD, the technical global team and the Business Development unit to identify funding opportunities that support the country program objectives. Participate in project design and proposal development processes and coordinate local staff to do the same.
- Manage the safety and security of staff and responding promptly to emergent issues.
- Participate in international work groups assigned to develop global policies and/or optimize systems and procedures.
Oversee the design and implementation of effective work plans that allow for timely and ongoing review of all key outputs of the programs.
Ensure that project implementation is in accordance with Helen Keller established plans, policies and procedures and Helen Keller core values.
Facilitate integration with other projects and activities within Helen Keller as well as with other partners and government entities.
Work with staff and partners to ensure strong M&E systems are in place for the development of regular project monitoring systems, the organization’s shared indicator system, as well as for special studies and project evaluations, including baseline, mid-term and end-of-project.
Support project staff with dissemination of findings of research and special studies, as needed.
Conduct field-level monitoring for quality assurance; provide timely and constructive feedback and support to Helen Keller and partner project staff; identify and seek necessary technical support for programs as required.
Work with project and/or finance staff to ensure sound financial planning, forecasting, seamless integration of operations management, reporting and auditing of programs, and thorough budget oversight, including:
- timely and accurate development of individual project budgets to feed into the annual country office budget process;
- close monitoring of budgets versus actuals of project budgets to ensure good stewardship of donor and Helen Keller resources;
- screening of sub-grantees and development of sub-grant agreements, as needed;
- monitoring of financial performance of sub-grantees, as needed;
- timely and accurate reporting of results and expenditures, and required interim and final reports in compliance with donor requirements and Helen Keller standards, policies and procedures across the portfolio; and
- authorization of expenditures for approved budgets within assigned portfolio, or as otherwise assigned, ensuring compliance with procedures required by grant or contract agreements and internal policies and procedures.
Work closely with the RD to address all issues raised by Helen Keller staff, donors or respective line ministries regarding program implementation.
Manage the safety and security of staff and responding promptly to emergent issues.
Team and Performance Management
- Hire, mentor, supervise and evaluate staff for assigned project portfolio and establish an atmosphere conducive to professional growth and development.
- Coordinate and develop terms of reference and supervise consultants and other technical support resources needed for program-related activities.
- Cultivate an atmosphere conducive to sharing of lessons learned and to mutual learning among Helen Keller staff and among partners.
- Consult with and guide staff to achieve goals and ensure accountability to beneficiaries, partners, colleagues, and donors by providing ongoing feedback in a context of mutual respect.
External Representation / Coordination with partners
- Work with program staff to ensure partners are knowledgeable of Helen Keller’s technical and financial policies and procedures, and donor compliance requirements.
- Actively support efforts to ensure that program staff have the skills and tools necessary to build partner capacity.
- Collaborate with respective line ministries and other organizations’ technical staff working in the sectors of interest to Helen Keller to build partnerships.
- Actively support efforts to ensure that Helen Keller programs are recognized/promoted and implemented in accordance with national agendas.
- Participate in meetings and seminars within Helen Keller, nationally, and internationally as requested by RD.
- Assure frequent visibility of Helen Keller Intl work ( in media, social media, events etc ) to all key stakeholders in country and the region as suitable
Minimum eight years of senior level field experience in managing global health or nutrition programs, including demonstrated experience in program development, implementation, and evaluation, plus a minimum master’s degree in public health, nutrition, international development or a related field, or equivalent combination of education and experience.
Demonstrated experience and skills in leadership, staff management, program development and management, strategic planning, monitoring and evaluation and public speaking.
Technical knowledge in at least one area related to Helen Keller’s mission and programs.
Experience in designing and implementing workshops, seminars, surveys, monitoring systems, and evaluations plus research design, data analysis, and interpretation.
Proven experience ensuring the sustainability of program activities is essential.
Familiarity with and experience promoting health systems strengthening in developing contexts is strongly desired.
Demonstrated ability to undertake high-level representation and advocacy.
Experience working in Myanmar and/or elsewhere in Asia, with Ministries, international and local NGOs, and donors based locally, is a substantial asset.
Demonstrated capacity to mobilize program funding including donor cultivation and grants writing.
Knowledge and experience managing compliance to diverse donors (USAID, DFID, GAC, etc.).
Demonstrated ability to supervise key administrative, procurement, logistics and financial functions, including developing and creating budgets and monitoring financial status.
Experience with staff security and safety issues is desirable.
Excellent interpersonal skills, including an ability to effectively lead a team, communicate a vision, make timely and transparent decisions, and manage conflict.
Collaborative, flexible and solution-oriented. An ability to maintain balance when under stress.
Very good oral and written English language skills, including the ability to quickly synthesize complex technical and programmatic issues into concise communications.
Well established and practiced organizational and planning skills.
Computer literate in use of word-processing, spreadsheet and statistical software; experience in data analysis and interpretation is highly desirable.
Demonstrable respect for all persons regardless of religion, ethnicity, class or gender, with a high comfort level working in a diverse environment with a demonstrated commitment to high professional ethical standards.
Ability and willingness to:
- flex work hours to accommodate multiple time zones, as needed.
- travel at least 15-20% within Myanmar and, periodically, internationally.
Personal commitment to Helen Keller’s mission and goals and the values embodied by Helen Keller Intl’s co-founder, Helen Keller: compassion, grit, and optimism.
Qualified candidates should submit a cover letter and resume to [email protected] noting the job title in the subject line.
In the spirit of our founder and namesake, Helen Keller is dedicated to
building an inclusive workforce where diversity in all its forms is fully valued.