A (least hardship)
Residential location (if applicable)
Staff Member / Affiliate Type
Regular > Regular Assignment
December 15, 2022
Head of Field Office
Organizational Setting and Work Relationships
Head of a UNHCR Field Office (HoFO) is a senior managerial position within a given country operation. The incumbent carries the full delegated authority of the UNHCR Representative (or the country Manager or Head of Sub-Office) of the country, who will exercise entire supervisory managerial responsibility over the position. The position, on the other hand, provides all information on developments in relation to the protection (legal protection issues relating to the persons of concern to UNHCR), security (Physical security in relation to the UNCR staff and the persons of concern to UNHCR) and operational matters (programme and office management / administration) within the domain of its geographical area of responsibility to the UNHCR Representative (or the country manager) on a regular and timely manner. Subject to the specific legal or socio economic or security developments in the Area of Responsibility (AOR), Representative will direct and guide the Head of Field Office to take the most appropriate course of action. Concerning overall physical security concerns, HoFO will liaise directly with the competent UN security coordinator while keeping the UNHCR Representative fully informed.
While the functional responsibility of a Head of Field Office will always remain the same despite its grade level, the other parameters (therefore the depth and breadth of the competencies) such as the size of the population of concern to UNHCR, their specific legal/security concerns, volume of assistance, Number of operational / Implementing partners and the size of the Office (i.e. number of UNHCR staff and their grade levels) will determine the appropriate grade level. The operational autonomy also depends upon the same parameters/competencies.
As the most senior UNHCR staff member within the given geographical area, he/she is required to liaise with all the relevant senior government officials, security organs in the area, the Head of various Non-Governmental Organisations (both national and internationals based in the area), Civilian/tribal leaders/elders, local opinion makers and the local media net-work to ensure his/her assigned responsibilities are effectively and efficiently discharged.
As the extended field representative of UNHCR at the front line of High Commissioner¿s operations, he/she remain as the effective advocate and assistant to the local authorities to ensure that the respective government authorities in the area implement their conventional responsibilities in favour of refugees and others of concern to UNHCR.
All UNHCR staff members are accountable to perform their duties as reflected in their job description. They do so within their delegated authorities, in line with the regulatory framework of UNHCR which includes the UN Charter, UN Staff Regulations and Rules, UNHCR Policies and Administrative Instructions as well as relevant accountability frameworks. In addition, staff members are required to discharge their responsibilities in a manner consistent with the core, functional, cross-functional and managerial competencies and UNHCR¿s core values of professionalism, integrity and respect for diversity.
- Monitor and report on the implementation of refugee conventional responsibilities and international obligations of the local authorities Vis a Vis the population of concern to UNHCR within the given geographical area; based on local situations/developments make appropriate recommendation to the UNHCR Representative/HoSO.
- Advocate and promote UNHCR standards concerning the treatment of asylum seekers, refugees and returnees as well as IDPs, where applicable; Advocate, promote and encourage the concerned authorities and local opinion makers to uphold established UNHCR standards that have become the international norms.
- Ensure that the basic needs of the concerned population are properly assessed with the participation of the beneficiaries themselves, the host governments and/or the competent Implementing partners and/or UNHCR itself.
- Subject to the needs, ensure that the planning, formulation and budgeting of identified assistance projects are done as per UNHCR programme cycle; upon approval of assistance project, ensure the timely implementation and rigorous monitoring of identified assistance activities
- Ensure through the subordinate staff that all deadlines for monitoring and reporting of UNHCR operational activities (i.e. include assistance as well as Administrative) are met on a regular basis.
- Manage all UNHCR resources, both human, financial/material, at an optimum level for the wellbeing of the concerned population and the UNHCR staff.
- Ensure that all security measures of UNHCR office (and residential, where ever applicable) compounds are always up to date; any security breaches and/or potential security threat should be reported immediately to competent UN security coordinator in the country.
- Ensure that staff welfare, both in terms of working and living conditions, are maintained at a satisfactory level within the constraints in the operational area; this requires remaining current in health and medical facilities locally available and evacuation options available in a moment of medical urgency.
- Guide, coach and advocate the subordinate staff to maintain highest standards of conduct and behaviour thorough one¿s own practice and deeds.
- Prepare and submit regular reports, both verbally and written, to the UNHCR Representative/HoSO. In the event of substantial telephone conversation that leads to specific action or non-action, it should be recorded and share with the other party.
- Represent UNHCR in inter-agency fora and with local authorities in the AOR.
- Enforce compliance with UNHCR¿s global protection, programme, finance, human resources and security policies and standards.
- Submit project proposals for assistance to refugees and other persons of concern to UNHCR Representation or Sub-Office in coordination with local authorities and NGOs.
- Perform other related duties as required.
Education & Professional Work Experience
Years of Experience / Degree Level
For P4 - 9 years relevant experience with Undergraduate degree; or 8 years relevant experience with Graduate degree; or 7 years relevant experience with Doctorate degree
Field(s) of Education
Human Resources Management;
or other relevant field.
(Field(s) of Education marked with an asterisk* are essential)
Certificates and/or Licenses
HCR Management Lrng Prg;
HCR Managing Operatns Lrng Prg;
(Certificates and Licenses marked with an asterisk* are essential)
Relevant Job Experience
In-depth knowledge in all aspects of UNHCR¿s Field level operation. Applied experience of protection principles, operational arrangements/standards in relation to protection, assistance, UNHCR office management and staff administration. Should be conversant in the current priorities in the organisation and existing mechanisms within the organisation to implement those priorities.
Working experience both in UNHCR HQ and/or a Regional Office and the Field.
IT-Microsoft Office Productivity Software
PR-Protection-related guidelines, standards and indicators
HR-Administration of Staff Contracts and Benefits
(Functional Skills marked with an asterisk* are essential)
For International Professional and Field Service jobs: Knowledge of English and UN working language of the duty station if not English.
For National Professional jobs: Knowledge of English and UN working language of the duty station if not English and local language.
For General Service jobs: Knowledge of English and/or UN working language of the duty station if not English.
All UNHCR workforce members must individually and collectively, contribute towards a working environment where each person feels safe, and empowered to perform their duties. This includes by demonstrating no tolerance for sexual exploitation and abuse, harassment including sexual harassment, sexism, gender inequality, discrimination and abuse of power.
As individuals and as managers, all must be proactive in preventing and responding to inappropriate conduct, support ongoing dialogue on these matters and speaking up and seeking guidance and support from relevant UNHCR resources when these issues arise.
This is a Standard Job Description for all UNHCR jobs with this job title and grade level. The Operational Context may contain additional essential and/or desirable qualifications relating to the specific operation and/or position. Any such requirements are incorporated by reference in this Job Description and will be considered for the screening, shortlisting and selection of candidates.
Desired Candidate Profile
Required languages (expected Overall ability is at least B2 level):
Occupational Safety and Health Considerations:
Nature of Position:
Since 2019, UNHCR Rwanda is providing protection and assistance to refugees and asylum seekers evacuated from Libya to the Gashora Transit center (Nyamata Field Office).
Libya is a major transit route for refugees hoping to reach safety in Europe through the Mediterranean Sea. The unstable situation combined with periodic fighting has further muddied the situation and caused widespread suffering. Many refugees and asylum seekers in the country have been held under dire conditions, including detention, where abuse is rife and violence a potent threat. UNHCR has been at the forefront in efforts to assist the most vulnerable, including relocating refugees and asylum seekers to safe and secure places outside Libya.
Through the MoU signed in 2019, UNHCR in collaboration with the Government of Rwanda (GoR) and the African Union (AU) established an Emergency Transit Mechanism (ETM) in Gashora Sector, Bugesera District, Rwanda. This followed the establishment of a similar centre in Niger in 2017. The ETM can currently support up to 700 refugees and asylum seekers (at any given time). Its main aim is to temporarily host refugees and asylum seekers who have undertaken voluntary evacuation from Libya. While in the ETM, asylum seekers go through refugee case processing undertaken by UNHCR to determine if they meet the requirements for durable solutions which mainly involves resettlement to a third country.
The ETM remains an important mechanism to provide legal remedies for refugee and asylum seeker departure from Libya which is a challenge for UNHCR in view of the absence of asylum legal framework and lawful refugee status in the country.
The Head of Field Office Nyamata reports to the Deputy Representative (Operations), ensures that the following main areas of responsibilities are effectively and efficiently handled:
- Co-Coordinate with the government counterpart the Refugee Coordination Mechanism.
- Coordinate delivery of protection and assistant to people we serve directly by UNCHR and through the project-partners;
- Ensure effective case processing (including, Registration/Verification, Refugee Status Determination and Resettlement) in safe environment;
- Explore and implement Durable Solutions in favor of the People we Serve,
- Ensure safety and security for humanitarian workers (UNHCR and partners) as well as for the People we Serve at the Workplaces as well as at the ETM Centre;
- The incumbent will need to have strong proven leadership, monitoring and planning, negotiating as well as communication skills to lead large team of staff and to interact with the various levels of government authorities and partners.
Living and Working Conditions:
Nyamata Field Office is in Nyamata town, which is the headquarter of Bugesera District, Eastern Province of Rwanda. It is about 36 km away from Kigali, Rwanda’s capital, and is accessible by public transport. It is considered as part of the larger Kigali metropolitan area and has been earmarked as the location for a possible new international airport (currently under construction) to serve Kigali and the rest of the nation, replacing Kigali International Airport.
The area has a higher average daytime temperature than the Rwandan average, and lower precipitation, which sometimes lead to droughts. It is situated along one of the major highways connecting Rwanda to Burundi.
Nyamata town is still developing and has one market where local traders bring their vegetables and fruits on two days of the week. The local market may not offer variety, as most of the residents are involved in subsistence farming. There are several grocery stores but are often not adequately stocked with international products. As such, staff would normally do most of their shopping in Kigali during the weekends.
The residents of Nyamata are generally friendly, but most of them are only able to communicate in the Kinyarwanda language. Housing is not a big challenge, although the available houses may need adjustmentss. As such, it may take staff up to a few weeks to identify a suitable house. There has been no security incident reported concerning international staff.
There are 2 banks available in Nyamata: COGEBANK and Bank of Kigali, and one Visa enabled ATM machine, which only dispenses Rwandan francs. There is FOREX bureau in Nyamata, and staff can convert their currency locally or while in Kigali. Other major banks such as I & M Bank and KCB are however accessible in Kigali
BA: Economics (Required), BA: International Relations (Required), BA: Law (Required), BA: Management (Required), BA: Personnel Administration (Required), BA: Political Science (Required)
HCR Management Learning Program - UNHCR, Programme Management (PM) 1 - UNHCR
Accountability, Analytical thinking, Client & results orientation, Commitment to continuous learning, Communication, Empowering & building trust, Judgement & decision making, Leadership, Managing performance, Managing resource, Organizational awareness, Planning & organizing, Political awareness, Strategic planning & visions, Teamwork & collaboration
Bi-annual Compendium 2022 Part B – November 2022
This position doesn't require a functional clearance