Mercy Corps has been operating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) since August 2007, with a staff of approximately 500 people working in Eastern DRC. Mercy Corps’ national office is in Goma with sub-field offices in North Kivu, South Kivu and Ituri provinces. Mercy Corps’ key programming areas include a combination of longer-term development and immediate humanitarian response programs in order to: 1) Improve water service delivery and ensuring equitable access to Water, Sanitation and Hygiene services, in urban and rural areas; 2) Improve food security and nutrition; 3) Promote diversified livelihoods, economic recovery and development.
Mercy Corps is currently implementing a Development Food Security Activities (DFSA) in Kabare and Kalehe territories, South Kivu province, funded by the USAID Office of Food for Peace. The USAID-South Kivu Food Security Project (FSP-Enyanya) covers a 5-year period (October 2016- September 2021) and is implemented by a consortium of five NGOs for which Mercy Corps is the prime. The program aims to ensure that households and communities in the targeted areas improve their food and nutrition security and economic well-being. The program works across the three different purposes agricultural livelihoods and market integration (P1), maternal and child health and nutrition-MCHN (P2), and effective governance (P3), with a primary focus on women and youth. The program will reach more than 200,000 participants.
The Program Grant Manager fills a number of program coordination, administration and management roles to cover the FSP program, ensuring adequate systems are in place to allow the program’s teams to successfully implement activities on scope on time and on budget.
Working closely with the Chief of Party (CoP) and the Program Managers, s/he will ensure the smooth running of efficient and effective program management processes and maintain effective grant management information, documentation, compliance and tracking systems in accordance with Mercy Corps standards (PM@MC). S/he will be the lead responsible for the quality of project performance reports and the timeliness of their transmission to USAID-FFP.
The Grant Manager will also assist with the organization of coordination meetings, communications, responding to information requests. As member of the Consortium Management Unit, s/he will coordinate with partners and other agencies as required by the Chief of Party.
Essential Job Responsibilities
Strategy & Vision
- Identify and support opportunities for innovative action and synergies among FSP partners.
- Create an environment where alternative viewpoints are welcomed and learning is leveraged to ensure adaptive program strategy.
Program Coordination – Grant Management
- In coordination with the FSP Consortium Managers, Finance and MEL departments, oversee and advise on the proper implementation of established work plans and budgets, review activity planning, financial forecasts and procurement in support of activity implementation.
- Coordinate regular meetings with Program, MEL, Finance and Operations teams to support the CoP to ensure Program performance is tracked effectively, risks and issues are flagged and action taken as appropriate.
- Maintain effective grant management information, documentation, compliance and tracking systems, in line with Mercy Corps standards and requirements (PM@MC) to ensure compliance with Mercy Corps complex program management standards.
- Keep hard and soft program file folders up to date at all times as per PM@MC standard.
- Lead and coordinate with other managers and partners on all donor reports, including quarterly and annual reports and resources requests (PREP). Document, communicate and maintain schedules of the official reporting.
- Coordinate with FSP MEL Manager to ensure all data is available in due time to fulfill reporting requirements.
- Assist the CoP in managing key administrative and operational components of the FSP Program.
- Work closely and in coordination with Mercy Corps offices in USA, establishing a strong working relationship with HQ program officers to support program implementation.
- In collaboration with the MEL and Program teams, promote program-level and organizational learning and support the adaptation of activities and strategies to the needs of participants to improve effectiveness.
- In collaboration with program teams, monitor the implementation of the action plans following lessons learned and monitoring findings to ensure continuous quality improvement.
- Keep the program’s “intervention profiles” up to date to document approaches, tools, successes and challenges for the program.
- In collaboration with the SBCC department, design and draft communications material (social media, speeches, editorials, press releases, website content, newsletters, drafting success stories…).
- Ensure that program information shared with stakeholders is presented in languages and formats that are appropriate for, accessible to, and can be understood by the target population.
Finance & Compliance Management
- Ensure compliance with USAID grant regulations and educate staff on Mercy Corps and donor policies and PM@MC tools and processes.
- Liaise with Finance to address any challenges in a timely manner and track and flag issues on budgets vs actuals (BVA)s produced by Finance.
- Review partners’ fund requests and activity reports
- Track partner grants in terms of meeting key program and compliance requirements.
- Draft and/or review scope of work to hire and manage any technical consultants, including review for technical efficacy and contract budget.
- Sustain a work environment of mutual respect where team members strive to achieve excellence.
- Assist with the supervision, hiring and orientation of new team members as necessary.
- Provide team members with information, tools and other resources to improve performance and reach objectives.
- Contribute to country team-building efforts, help team members identify problem solving options.
- Participate in the strategic evaluation process for new funding opportunities;
- Contribute to proposal development processes, including drafting and producing high quality concept notes and proposals that support FSP’s strategic programming goals.
- Coordinate funding opportunities with relevant staff.
Influence & Representation
- Act as day-to-day representative of Mercy Corps to organizations as requested by the COP, including attending key internal and external meetings.
- Ensure collaborative partnerships with consortium partners and other stakeholders.
- Communicate effectively to ensure overall project targets and donor obligations are met.
- Represent FSP at certain meetings and/or forums, as authorized by Chief of Party
- 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.
Accountability to Beneficiaries
- 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.
- Team and Consortium 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.
Reports Directly To: FSP Chief of Party
Works Directly With: other FSP Managers (Agriculture, Governance, Nutrition, SBCC, Gender/Youth, M&E, Finance and Operations) and Consortium partners
Knowledge and Experience
- BA/S: economics, finance, business administration, international development or related field. MA/S preferred
- 2-4 years of experience in international development, with notable project management skills.
- Experience in grants management and knowledge of USAID regulations
- Fluent in spoken and written English and advanced/fluent French are required
- Ability to multi-task and juggle several relationships at one time
- Excellent communication and organizational skills
- Strong report writing skills
- Proven ability to work effectively in multi-cultural teams
The successful candidate will have the ability to work independently, take the initiative in tasks and self-learning, and be proactive in communications and professional relationship development. He/she will be able to live and work closely with a diverse team of people in an intense work environment with a demonstrated sensitivity to the people and issues of the region. He/she will demonstrate exceptional interpersonal, relational and intercultural communication skills. He/she will have the ability to solve problems creatively, juggle multiple priorities under tight deadlines and deal calmly and diplomatically with unexpected and sudden events that impact program operations.
Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions
The position is based in Bukavu, South-Kivu (DRC) and it requires up to 30% travel to field locations in Kabare and Kalehe territories. The position is unaccompanied. Shared accommodation will be provided in Bukavu. The position is eligible to R&R.
Bukavu is a provincial capital of approximately 1,200,000 inhabitants. Living in Bukavu is comfortable, although water and electricity can be unstable. While conditions in the country are improving, and security is quite stable in Bukavu, there are still pockets of violence and insecurity. Air travel is necessary to get from one end of the country to the other. Mobile phones and cellular service are widely available. Internet is available in all Mercy Corps offices. Travel to field sites will be required where living conditions are clean and secure, but basic. 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.