Mercy Corps works in places of transition, where conflict, disaster, political upheaval, or economic collapse present opportunities to build more secure, productive, and just communities. Providing emergency relief in times of crisis, we move quickly to help communities recover and build resilience to future shocks, and promote sustainable change by supporting community-led and market-driven initiatives. Recognizing both the great potential and the complex challenges faced by the Middle East, since 1989 Mercy Corps has been implementing a range of humanitarian assistance and development programs tailored to the specific needs of the region and of those communities where we work.
Specific to the Syria Response, Mercy Corps has been exceptionally committed to the formal and informal humanitarian coordination structures. In response to the increased scale of the humanitarian INGO response in northeastern Syria, Mercy Corps aims to enhance the capacity of the North East Syria NGO Coordination structure with an INGO forum Coordinator who will work closely with the INGO forum director, as well as the INGO forum Senior Liaison Officer, Liaison officer and Information Management Officer. . Ensuring a continuum of proper coordination, collaboration, coherency and harmonization is advantageous for the responders to the crisis. The role will focus on field level coordination as well as maintaining linkages to the United Nations and the Whole of Syria coordination structure.
The successful candidate will serve as the NGO forum Coordinator, focused on inter-sector response, fostering and maintaining relationships with relevant operational counterparts at the UN and liaison with authorities on response related matters. The position reports to NES NGO Forum Director for North East Syria and includes oversight of the Senior Information Management Officer, as well Analyst. S/he will act in the interest of coordination stakeholders in sharing information and advocating for populations needs. The position will support day-to-day coordination between NES sector focal points from the NGOs and United nations, including: 1) Multi sectoral Needs assessments and response 2) Chairing the Inter-sector working group 3) Establishing and fortifying information sharing between the INGO community at the inter-sector level as well as UN counterparts 4) identify gaps and needs together with the sectors to improve the response 5) fill sector gaps in coordination as required or provide support to specific sectors 6) creating linkages between national and local NGOs, as well as INGO forum members
The NGO forum Coordinator will work with the NES NGO Forum Director and NES NGO Coordinator on ensuring the coordination structure for North-East Syria continues to be fit for purpose, taking into consideration the operational complexities. The successful candidate will work impartially with all partners active in North-East Syria inclusive of the United Nations. S/he will work closely with Sector leads and, when required, Whole of Syria, Co-leads.
Essential Job Responsibilities
- Ensure partners and sectors work collectively, towards complementarity, coherence and harmonization of assistance delivery.
- Convene and facilitate regular inter-sector coordination meetings and ensure they are well-managed, action and results-oriented and documented.
- Lead on collective identification of needs, gaps and response in collaboration with NES Sector Focal Points, the United Nations and the WoS sector architecture as well as in support of the Humanitarian programme cycle
- Work with the NES NGO Forum Director to maintain appropriate relationships and communication with North East Syria coordination stakeholders (Team Leaders and Country Directors), United Nations, Donors and Whole of Syria coordination forums
Reporting and Representation
- In coordination with the NES NGO Forum Director rmaintain a healthy relationship with local governance structures as required – supporting with technical meetings and enhancing knowledge of INGO response with the view to maintain access and space to operate
- In coordination with NES NGO Forum Director, maintain a healthy relationship with the donors
- Attend regional level cluster/ sector coordination meetings to advocate for North East Syria as required. Network and conduct outreach to regional coordination structure representative
- Together with NES NGO Forum Director act as entry/focal point for any new NGOs planning expansion for the area.
- Provide regular reporting at the inter-sectoral level, including situation reports and emergency updates, as agreed with NES Forum members, and in coordination with the NES Senior Information Management officer and Analyst.
Preparedness and Capacity Building
- Coordinate emergency preparedness and contingency planning among NGOs, with sector Focal points.
- Support inter-sector efforts to strengthen inclusion of national/local partners into sector coordination and response planning.
- Ensure compliance with security procedures and policies as determined by country
- Proactively ensure that team members operate in a secure environment and are aware of policies.
- 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.
- The NES Forum Coordinator (inter-sector) will supervise the Senior Information Management Officer and Analyst
Reports Directly To: NES NGO Forum Director
Works Directly With: North East Syria Team Leaders; North East Syria Country Directors; NES Sector Focal Points; Whole of Syria Coordination Forums; United Nations.
Knowledge and Experience
- BA/S or equivalent in relevant field required; MA desired
- 3-5 years of field experience in international relief and development, including demonstrable Syria experience.
- Demonstrated success working effectively and respectfully with host country government, private sector, INGO, NGO partners and other stakeholders in complex environments.
- Proven understanding of the international humanitarian response architecture, including coordination mechanisms, humanitarian reform and action, and funding mechanisms (e.g. Consolidated Appeals Process, Central Emergency Response Fund and Flash Appeals).
- Knowledge of and adherence to humanitarian principles.
- Demonstrated experience in coordination roles, preferably within formal coordination structures.
- Successful and proven negotiation, communication and organization skills.
- Excellent oral and written English skills required; proficiency in Arabic is a plus.
- Ability to work effectively with an ethnically diverse stakeholder base in a sensitive environment.
The successful candidate will have the ability to network effectively and influence and inspire others. S/he will have excellent communication and interpersonal skills, will be highly motivated and possess ability to work independently. Will have the ability to undertake strategic analysis and translate thinking into practice. S/He will work with sensitive issues in a multi-cultural environment and with virtual or/and dispersed teams and will have the ability to build confidence and to find creative and constructive solutions to difficult issues. The successful candidate will be build trust and alliances and will empower others. S/he should like traveling, possess a good dose of humor, must be fond of coordination and understand its critical role for the more efficient humanitarian response.
Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions
The position is based in Haseekh city, Syria and it requires up to 70% travel to other locations. This position is unaccompanied and is eligible for hardship allowance and R&R breaks. Living conditions are in group housing: water, electricity and internet are present with some cuts.
Mercy Corps Team members represent the agency both during and outside of work hours when deployed in a field posting or on a visit to a field posting. Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and Mercy Corps’ policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.