Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within. Now, and for the future.
We are recruiting to fill the position below:
Job Title: Protection Program Officer
Location: Bama, Borno
Employment Type: Full-time, Regular
Reports Directly To: Protection Coordinator
Works Directly With: Finance, Program, MEL, and Operation Teams.
Program / Department Summary
Mercy Corps Nigeria’s humanitarian program aims to provide assistance to populations affected by the crisis in Northeast Nigeria. With funding from the Bureau of Humanitarian Affairs (BHA), Mercy Corps will continue its engagement in several interventions including but not limited to food assistance, non-food items, protection, livelihoods, WASH and capacity building of humanitarian response actors.
Mercy Corps is scaling up and expanding its humanitarian response in Northeast Nigeria to reach more beneficiaries with additional assistance in a wider geographic area under the project titled Addressing Diverse and Acute Primary Threats (ADAPT) to Human Security in North-Eastern Nigeria.
General Position Summary
The Gender and Protection Program Officer is responsible for the implementation of protection sector activities including the mobilization of women’s groups, adolescent programming, training on topics such as psychological first aid, sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) prevention and response, and the validation of referral pathways in Borno state, Northeast Nigeria.
With the support of the Protection Coordinator, s/he will also advise and build the capacity of other sector teams on gender and protection mainstreaming and best practices. S/he will report directly to the Protection Coordinator and will work closely with other sectors.
Essential Job Responsibilities
Strategy & Vision:
Oversee the implementation of protection activities and ensure adequate gender mainstreaming across program field locations;
Develop activity work plans and manage day-to-day activity implementation related to protection;
Ensure that program implementation mainstreams gender and protection in coordination with other sectors in line with best practices;
Ensure that beneficiaries are effectively targeted according to vulnerability criteria;
Lead where necessary community meetings to identify protection concerns.
Establish and maintain effective program reporting, and monitoring and evaluation systems (to track, analyze and report on results) for both internal and external use;
Integrate community approaches, protection mainstreaming, gender sensitivity and capacity building into all activities as appropriate;
Ensure program filing system is in place, adheres to internal and donor regulations and filing is regularly maintained;
Adhere to all MC policies related to security, operations and transport/ logistics information related to programming.
Support orientation for all new staff on MC guidelines on gender and protection mainstreaming. If necessary, organize capacity-building sessions for other sector staff on gender and protection.
Provide weekly field reports, capturing activities progress, lessons learned, success stories on the project as well as the general situation and community updates and needs.
Report on any problems encountered in the field such as project participant complaints, local authority interference, and security threats to MC staff and activities. Coordinate with MC Security Officer and Protection Coordinator on any threats to MC staff and activities.
Conduct himself/herself both professionally and personally in such a manner as to bring credit to Mercy Corps and to not jeopardize its humanitarian mission.
Other duties as assigned.
Oversee program startup and ongoing program management and administration of teams across various field locations.
Ensure that program implementation is responsive to communities and partners and consistent with Mercy Corps’ relevant program guidelines, principles, values, quality standards and strategic plan.
Ensure that beneficiaries are effectively targeted according to established vulnerability criteria.
Develop program implementation strategies, including partnership frameworks, beneficiary targeting and distribution process as well as psychosocial and capacity building of partners.
Integrate community approaches, gender sensitivity and capacity building into all activities as appropriate.
Ensure program implementation is on time, target and budget, using effective M&E systems to reach desired impacts.
Create and maintain systems ensuring effective and transparent use of financial resources for timely and informative reporting in line with donor and Mercy Corps policies and procedures.
Fulfil Mercy Corps’ Program Management Minimum Standards based on the organization-wide guide.
Ensure all interventions adhere to Mercy Corps’ Gender Policy, Do No Harm principles, and beneficiary accountability standards.
Ensure teams are able to apply the “I’m Here Approach” and safe space programming to identify, engage, and empower adolescent girls and boys including the use of tools like the Girl Roster, Boys Matrix and Inclusion Now.
Monitor progress and ensure that sex and age disaggregated data and analysis are used in assessments, implementation documents, monitoring, and evaluations to adapt and meet the unique needs of adolescent girls and boys (10-14 yrs, 15-19 yrs, 20-24 yrs).
Ensure mentors receive support and training to engage adolescents, their care providers and stakeholder, promote psychosocial well-being, and enable safe programming.
Promote a holistic approach that encourages the participation of young people that strives for girl and boy-led initiatives as well as promote enabling environments that involve care providers and community stakeholders.
Develop the capacity of the team, deepen understanding of their roles and assist with career development.
Assist team members with information, tools and resources to improve performance & reach objectives.
Promote accountability, communicate expectations and provide constructive feedback informally and formally via regular one on ones and performance reviews.
Create and sustain a work environment of mutual respect where team members strive to achieve excellence.
Hire, orient and lead team members as necessary.
Finance & Compliance Management:
Ensure compliance with donor and Mercy Corps regulations related to emergency programming.
Draft and/or review scope of work to hire and manage any technical consultants, including review for technical efficacy and contract budget.
Influence & Representation:
Identify, build and manage collaborative partnerships with consortium partners, sub-grantees, donors, local governments and other stakeholders.
Communicate effectively to ensure overall project targets and donor obligations are met.
Ensure compliance with security procedures and policies as determined by country leadership.
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.
Team 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.
S/he will supervise Gender and protection Program Assistants
Knowledge and Experience
BA / B.Sc. in relevant field required;
3 years of experience working on the development, implementation, administration and compliance of a field-based international development or humanitarian program; general gender and protection mainstreaming experience & knowledge required.
Experience with conducting gender analysis, protection assessments, monitoring and evaluation and other learning efforts required.
Demonstrated strengths in analytical skills, monitoring and evaluation, and report writing
Strong interpersonal, intercultural and communication skills
Excellent oral and written skills and computer skills
Fluency in English and Hausa is required.
The successful candidate will have a can-do attitude. Ideally, s/he will be very committed and willing to learn and work in remote locations.
S/he is a problem solver and an effective community mobilizer who is adept in successfully dealing with issues of complexity.
S/he is an active listener and contributor, working to create a strong team that shares ideas and learn.
Mercy Corps team members represent the agency both during and outside work hours. Team 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.
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion:
Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges.
We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives. We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.
Equal Employment Opportunity
Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have a sustained global impact.
We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, colour, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.
Safeguarding & Ethics
Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we come into contact with through our work, whether team members, community members, program participants or others, are treated with respect and dignity. We are committed to the core principles regarding the prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary-General and IASC. We will not tolerate child abuse, sexual exploitation, abuse, or harassment by or of our team members.
As part of our commitment to a safe and inclusive work environment, team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, respect local laws and customs, and adhere to the Mercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and values at all times. Team members are required to complete mandatory Code of Conduct eLearning courses upon hire and on an annual basis.