The International Rescue Committee responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises and helps people to survive and rebuild their lives. Founded in 1933 at the request of Albert Einstein, IRC offers life-saving care and life-changing assistance to refugees forced to flee from war or disaster. At work today in more than 40 countries and in 22 U.S. cities, IRC restores safety, dignity and hope to millions who are uprooted by conflict or disaster. IRC leads the way from harm to home.
The Syria crisis is often described as the worst humanitarian catastrophe since the end of the Cold War. Inside Syria, 7.6 million people are internally displaced and 12.2 million are in need of humanitarian assistance, with 4.8 million in hard-to-reach areas. There are 4 million Syrian refugees in neighboring countries. This is no short-term humanitarian episode. The devastating human consequences to huge numbers of people will endure for decades. The destruction of relationships, communities, livelihoods, homes and infrastructure will take years to repair.
IRC is offering a robust humanitarian response to the Syria crisis. With an annual budget in excess of $140 million and a rapidly expanding portfolio, supported by more than 3,000 staff and workers in the region, IRC is undertaking programs in Syria and the neighboring countries of Turkey, Iraq, Lebanon and Jordan in the fields of health, child protection, education, women’s protection and empowerment, NFI and food distribution, cash assistance, water and sanitation, and livelihood programming. Our work in these challenging settings gives rise to some of the most pressing issues facing contemporary humanitarian action, including questions of access, security, funding and coordination.
The IRC Middle East Region is in the process of modifying its management structures for Syria response from multiple cross-border teams overseeing northwest, south, and northeast Syria programming from Turkey, Jordan, and Iraq respectively, to a single unified IRC Syria management structure based in Amman, Jordan with field-based units in Turkey and Iraq, as appropriate. Planning and consolidation of northwest and southern Syria health program management teams will be initiated first, with a view to including northeast health program management into the structure at a later date in 2018. The Health Senior Specialist will be responsible for conducting an in-depth analysis of the health portfolios and approaches from the three (3) existing cross-border hubs, inclusive of IRC direct and IRC partner health programs, with the objective of providing recommendations on a permanent IRC Syria health management structure. The Health Senior Specialist will be required to travel to the three cross-border hub locations to meet with relevant IRC and partner staff in developing these recommendations.
- Lead a rigorous analysis of IRC Syria health program management approaches and management needs based on existing and planned programming and strategic priorities through consultation with IRC cross-border program and operations teams based in Turkey, Jordan, and Iraq, IRC regional management, health technical unit staff, as well as key IRC health partner staff.
- Map areas of programmatic convergence, divergence, and priorities aligned with and responsive to the IRC Syria strategic plan, situational context/needs by geography, donor awards and priorities, and health partner technical capacity strengthening needs.
- In collaboration with the Deputy Director of Programs, design a health management structure that will optimize management cohesion, technical quality of direct service delivery, technical support to partners, and integration with other sectors to achieve complementary outcomes (e.g. protection, economic well-being) across the three geographic areas of IRC Syria health interventions.
- Develop comprehensive work plans for the transition to the recommended structure while mitigating any disruption to life-saving/supportive services and partner support; consider staggered phases of transition across geographies as well as future planned project expansions/changes based on contextual changes in the conflict in all proposed plans.
- Assess potential risks and challenges to the transition and identify potential mitigation strategies.
- Conduct regular review meetings with key IRC stakeholders to provide updates on progress and provide/receive support, as needed.
- Collaborate with Syria-based staff to support a participatory process that incorporates front line staff’s perspectives, concerns, and ideas into management needs and transition plans.
- Present recommended structure with detailed roles and responsibilities matrix to IRC Syria senior management and relevant regional management for final approval.
- Develop JDs for relevant positions and support recruitment processes, as required.
- Prepare staffing training and onboarding plans in collaboration with Health Coordinators and HR department; support the delivery of staff training/onboarding, as necessary.
- With the support of the IRC Syria management, troubleshoot and resolve challenges faced in preparing and taking action on transition plans, as required.
Duration of Assignment: 6 weeks
Key Working Relationships:
Position Reports to: Deputy Director of Programs
Indirect Reporting: n/a
Key Internal Contacts:
- Country Program: Deputy Director Field Operations, Health Coordinators and Managers, MEAL Coordinators and Managers, other Program and Operational staff.
- Region/Global: Health Technical Advisor, MEAL Advisor, Deputy Directors XB, Deputy Regional Director
Key External Contacts: IRC health partner staff, donors
- Master’s degree in public health, medicine, international development, international relations, or related field of study.
- At least five years of experience in leading health programming in humanitarian and/or development settings.
- Previous experience in Syria region a plus.
Demonstrated Technical Skills:
- Strong grasp of health project management needs and skills, particularly in complex operating environments and multi-dimensional health programs inclusive of direct and partner-led interventions.
- A creative and analytical thinker, with strong management and organizational development experience who has a proven ability to lead in capacity and organizational planning.
Demonstrated Managerial/Leadership Competencies:
- Demonstrated ability to self-motivate, use initiative, be flexible, and actively contribute to program’s success and development.
- Ability to work well both within a team and independently;
- Excellent communication, facilitation, problem-solving, cross-cultural and interpersonal skills.
- Fluency in English language required.
- Arabic language skills a plus.
Computer/Other Tech Requirements:
- Full professional competency in Microsoft Office Suite, especially Word, Excel, Outlook, and PowerPoint.
Ability to Travel: 50% travel in the region
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, 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: IRC is committed to narrowing the gender gap in leadership positions. We offer 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.
The overall security situation in Jordan is relatively calm, especially in Amman. The Jordanian government is stable, and civil unrest is largely peaceful. However, Jordan’s generosity in hosting refugees from Palestine, Iraq and now Syria have created huge strains on the country’s economy and infrastructure. The IRC office is in a modern professional building.