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Localization and Civil Society Specialist at Save the Children Nigeria

Posted on Thu 23rd Sep, 2021 - --- (0 comments)

Save the Children is the leading independent organization for children in need, with programs in over 120 countries. We save children’s lives. We fight for their rights. We help them fulfil their potential. Save the Children is working in Nigeria because one in five children in Nigeria dies before their fifth birthday. About 40% of children miss out on school and have to work to survive while nearly 2 million children have lost one or both parents to an AIDS-related disease.

We are recruiting to fill the position of:

Job Title: Localization and Civil Society Specialist

Location: Abuja, with frequent travels across Nigeria
Employee Status: Permanent
Team / Programme: Programme Operations  
Grade: 3
Contract Length: 1 year with the possibility of extension

Child Safeguarding

  • Level 2: Either the post holder will have access to personal data about children and/or young people as part of their work; or the post holder will be working in a ‘regulated’ position (accountant, barrister, solicitor, legal executive); therefore, a police check will be required (at ‘standard’ level in the UK or equivalent in other countries).

Role Purpose

  • The Localisation and Civil Society Specialist will use their in-depth contextual understanding, technical expertise, and relationship building skills to define and deliver our partnership strategy, aligned with the Country Strategic Plan and Global Localisation Policy.  
  • The Localisation and Civil Society Specialist will work to develop, review and strengthen our partnerships with civil society organisations, institutional partners, the private sector, research institutions as well as our collaboration with different levels of government.
  • S/he will also lead strategic and project initiatives that strengthen the organisational capacity, ownership and agency of partners and civil society organisations to increase their effectiveness in contributing to the realisation of children’s rights in Nigeria.
  • The role will support the design and implementation of monitoring and evaluation systems to demonstrate impact in line with our partnership principles, while sharing learning across our programmes, teams and partners.  
  • The role will work closely with colleagues across functions, building partnership brokering and strengthening skills and coordinating approaches to partner capacity strengthening.  
  • This role is responsible for monitoring trends that affect civil society in Nigeria and it includes a focus on external representation on priority issues including on civil society strengthening, civic space, responsible partnering and localisation.
  • In the event of a major humanitarian emergency, the role holder will be expected to work outside the normal role profile and be able to vary working hours accordingly.

Scope Of Role

  • Reports to: Director of Programme Operations
  • Staff reporting to this post: no direct reports but expected to provide coaching and mentoring support to operational and other technical colleagues and local partners
  • Budget Responsibilities: None

Role Dimensions:

  • The role is expected to foster relationships with a wide range of internal and external stakeholders including Save the Children members, the Country Office Programme Development & Quality team, Operations, Awards and advocacy colleagues, Regional Advisors, technical counterparts in other organisations, donors etc. The role is also expected to engage with internal technical working groups and communities of practice.
  • Context: Humanitarian / Humanitarian and development
  • Scope: Nigeria
  • Primary Technical area: Localisation and Civil Society Strengthening

Key Areas Of Accountability
Technical Leadership:

  • Provide technical leadership on localisation and civil society strengthening for the Country Office, and set the strategic approach in relation to the wider country strategy.  Ensure the participation of partners and civil society actors in the development or revision of Country Strategic Plans
  • Support the partner scoping processes, with focus on the diversification of partnerships and strategic partnerships, in line with the Country Strategic Plan
  • Provide technical guidance and build capacity of Country Office staff on localisation (e.g. Partnerships Framework, partnership brokering) and civil society strengthening
  • Lead organisational development activities and approaches for partner organisations
  • Support the piloting of innovative approaches to partnerships, localisation and civil society strengthening
  • Identify and analyse contextual trends in relation to civic space (with CRG colleagues) to inform advocacy strategies
  • Champion diverse partnerships across the Country Office: work with colleagues across functions to raise the voice and uplift the profile of partners within the Country Office, across SCI/A and externally

Ensuring Programme Quality (Design & Implementation):

  • Work closely with new business development colleagues to identify and pursue funding opportunities; engage with technical partners, donors and colleagues across Save the Children
  • Lead the technical scoping, planning, and design and proposal writing during new programme development, and ensure that we design and deliver high quality partner-led programmes for children, building on global best practice. Ensure that gender, disability and resilience considerations are reflected in our programme design and implementation.
  • Work with technical and implementation colleagues to ensure that the country strategy and related processes, and individual programmes, are designed jointly with partners
  • Provide oversight and guidance to the programme implementation teams to ensure that civil society strengthening programme or localisation components are technically sound, implementation methods are consistent with national and global strategies, acknowledged good practice; and are likely to achieve scale, as well as equitable and sustainable results.
  • Promote and monitor integrated programming in a way that increases overall impact of partnership, localisation and civil society strengthening programmes at the community level.
  • Work with Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability & Learning (MEAL) teams to conduct quality monitoring through participatory methodologies (including child-friendly methodologies), for example on civil society strengthening activities and on the quality of partner relationships;
  • Contribute towards the creation of an organisational learning culture that promotes the use of data, evidence and analysis and understands its link to quality and accountable programming;
  • Undertake field visits to partner offices project sites; work with partners and implementation teams to understand impacts, risk, operational challenges, and continuously identify opportunities for learning and improvement.
  • Contribute to organisational learning on partnerships, civic space, civil society strengthening and localisation, ensuring that learning from our programmes and from our actors is shared across the Country Office and our partners, as well as with colleagues in the wider regional and Partnerships community in Save the Children.
  • Support Humanitarian colleagues to develop emergency preparedness plans, ensuring the participation of local actors in EPP processes and the strengthening of local actors on EPP.  Ensure that partnership and localisation approaches are embedded into emergency response stragies.  Conduct partner assessments (using SC assessment processes and tools) and design and deliver emergency response and recovery programmes. Ensure synergies between humanitarian partnership teams, data and programme design.   FOR HUMANITARIAN CONTEXTS INCLUDE: Monitor trends in order to ensure early action; and lead technical design and implementation and technical coordination of humanitarian responses

Networking & External Engagement:

  • In alignment with Country Office strategy and leadership, engage in strategic positioning with donors, partners and government in-country, and ensure that Save the Children is a partner of choice
  • Engage in partnership brokering, supporting colleagues in this area where requested
  • Ensure that Save the Children is influencing and learning from others through national technical coordination and networking bodies such as clusters and working groups where relevant.
  • Strengthen civil society engagement in national dialogues and policy processes through working closely with advocacy and child rights governance colleagues. Ensure that the voices of children are represented in our partnerships and localisation work.
  • Represent the program to National and Local government representatives, donors, partner agencies, etc. as required.
  • Ensure the quality, clarity and consistency of technical components of internal and external reports (e.g. programme reports, sit-reps, internal updates), working closely with awards, programme implementation and communications colleagues as needed.
  • Leverage and liaise with technical colleagues from across Save the Children, including technical working groups and centres of excellence, ensuring that learning from the Country Office is shared with others and global lessons brought back.

Behaviours (Values in Practice)

  • Holds self-accountable for making decisions, managing resources efficiently, achieving and role modelling Save the Children values
  • Holds the team and partners accountable to deliver on their responsibilities - giving them the freedom to deliver in the best way they see fit, providing the necessary development to improve performance and applying appropriate consequences when results are not achieved.


  • Sets ambitious and challenging goals for themselves and their team, takes responsibility for their own personal development and encourages their team to do the same
  • Widely shares their personal vision for Save the Children, engages and motivates others

Future orientated, thinks strategically and on a global scale.


  • Builds and maintains effective relationships, with their team, colleagues, Members and external partners and supporters
  • Values diversity, sees it as a source of competitive strength
  • Approachable, good listener, easy to talk to.


  • Develops and encourages new and innovative solutions
  • Willing to take disciplined risks.


  • Honest, encourages openness and transparency; demonstrates highest levels of integrity

Additional Job Responsibilities:

  • The duties and responsibilities as set out above are not exhaustive and the role holder may be required to carry out additional duties within reasonableness of their level of skills and experience.

The post holder must commit to work in an international agency that respects racial diversity and fights racism in all forms; and to model positive behaviours and respect to all colleagues, partners and communities.


  • Master's Degree in Social Sciences, Development, Organisational Leadership, International Relations, or relevant field.
  • Extensive and substantive relevant practical experience may be considered in lieu of a Master's Degree.

Experience and Skills:

  • At least 5 years’ experience in the design and implementation of humanitarian and/or development programmes, with at least 2 years’ experience in partnership based programming or community based programming
  • Track record of engaging civil society networks, NGOs and government agencies in INSERT COUNTRY
  • Familiar with partnership principles, participatory approaches, organisational capacity development methodologies and the localisation agenda
  • Demonstrated experience in developing and leveraging partnerships for strategic achievement of organizational goals and mutually beneficial relationships
  • Experience in organizational capacity development and significant training, facilitation and capacity building skills
  • Track record in successful business development/fundraising
  • Demonstrated program design, monitoring and evaluation skills, including co-design with partners
  • Experience of strategy development and planning
  • Experience of context, capacity and policy analysis, and influencing and advocacy at regional/international level in order to hold duty bearers to account to realise children’s rights
  • Able to generate and use data and evidence to innovate, deliver, learn and share what works and what doesn’t work for children
  • Experience of promoting quality and impact through at least one cross-cutting area: gender equality and inclusion, adaptive and safer programming; child rights; disability; migration and displacement.
  • Skilled at networking and representation in order to promote learning, strengthen civil society and mobilise and coordinate resources
  • Experience of supporting humanitarian preparedness, response and recovery
  • Fluent in English and high level of English writing skills.

Key Competencies:
Technical competencies:

  • Inspires others to embrace the values and principles that underpin partnerships and the localisation agenda (Leading edge)
  • Leads formal and informal engagement with diverse, strategic partners based on shared, long-term visions (Leading edge)
  • Promotes the unique role of Save the Children in partnerships to promote the rights of children (Accomplished)

Generic Competencies:

  • Being the Voice of Children: Promotes evidence-based policy and public engagement that includes the voices of children and their communities
  • Advancing Equality & Inclusion: Displays a commitment to ensuring everything we do considers the most deprived and marginalised children
  • Building & Strengthening Partnerships: Promotes working with diverse partners as critical to delivery.

Equal Opportunities

  • The role holder is required to carry out the duties in accordance with the SCI Equal Opportunities and Diversity policies and procedures.

Child Safeguarding:

  • We need to keep children safe so our selection process, which includes rigorous background checks, reflects our commitment to the protection of children from abuse.

Safeguarding our Staff:

  • The post holder is required to carry out the duties in accordance with the SCI anti-harassment policy

Health and Safety:

  • The role holder is required to carry out the duties in accordance with SCI Health and Safety policies and procedures.

Application Closing Date
6th October, 2021.

How to Apply
Interested and qualified candidates should:
Click here to apply online


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