Chief of Party (AMASHIGA Project)

  • Senior-level, Full-time staff position
  • Posted on 30 November 2018

Job Description

Job Title: Chief of Party, AMASHIGA Project

Location: Bujumbura, Burundi with at least 50% travel to field (Muyinga)

Department: Central Africa Region

Reports To: Country Representative

Country/Location: Burundi

*Contingent on donor approval

**Qualified candidates will be contacted on a rolling basis

About CRS:

Catholic Relief Services is the official international humanitarian agency of the Catholic community in the United States. CRS works to save, protect, and transform lives in need in more than 100 countries, without regard to race, religion or nationality. CRS’ relief and development work is accomplished through programs of emergency response, HIV, health, agriculture, education, microfinance and peacebuilding.


CRS has been present in Burundi since 1961, and currently implements projects in nutrition, agriculture, savings-led microfinance, peacebuilding and emergency preparedness/response. The country program’s main office is in Bujumbura with a large sub-office in Muyinga. The country program has more than 175 staff, including 6 expatriates, and implements its projects through local and international partners, with strong coordination/collaboration with Government of Burundi structures. The FY19 program value is approximately $9.9 million, inclusive of commodities. In 2014, CRS/Burundi was awarded a Title II Development Food Assistance Program (total program value $50m), entitled AMASHIGA, which is approved through september 2019. CRS is currently discussing with USAID/FFP, the possibility of a cost extension through September 2020.

Burundi’s population is approximately 10.4 million, 90% of whom are engaged in agriculture (mainly subsistence). Tea, coffee and minerals are Burundi’s primary foreign exchange earner. Given its high population density and continued population growth, chronic malnutrition is one of the country’s key development challenges. Stunting in children under five averages 50% across the country, with certain areas exceeding 65%.

Job Summary:

As the Amashiga Chief of Party II you will provide vision, leadership and overall management to serve the poor and vulnerable in Burundi through Amashiga programming. Your strategic leadership, management and technical knowledge will ensure the delivery of high-quality programming and advance the position of CRS as a leading agency in food security and nutrition. As a senior leader you will proactively manage security and mitigate security risks.

Job Responsibilities:

  • Lead all aspects of the development, implementation and consolidation of the Amashiga Program, including ensuring that the project contributes to thought leadership within relevant sectors; Serve as the primary point of contact to USAID/FFP as well as public, private and non-government stakeholders.
  • Ensure the project is designed and implemented to meet donor expectations in terms of timely and quality results and budget, including strategies for phase out and sustainability; Ensure coordination between program and operations leads; Ensure the CRS program quality standards are adhered to per MEAL policy and procedures.
  • Effectively manage senior programming and operations talent; Manage team dynamics and staff well-being; Provide coaching and mentoring; Strategically tailor individual development plans and complete performance assessments for direct reports; Oversee the development of staffing plans and the recruitment process of senior staff.
  • Manage and mitigate risk through monitoring national and regional issues that may impact staff and programming; Ensure all staff understand and adhere to CRS staff safety and security policies and plans, and ensure the updating of such plans.
  • Promote, uphold and model a commitment to the efficient use of agency and donor resources; Ensure compliance with USAID/FFP grants, including financial tracking and oversight of partner budgets, finance, administration and reporting to donor; Approve program expenditures, budget adjustments, and cost modification requests to donors.
  • Represent CRS programming (particularly Amashiga) in relevant development circles (NGO, UN, and donor), highlighting innovative work; Publish program results and deliver presentations; Oversee the development of communication strategies and materials, complying with donor and CRS’ branding and marketing requirements and procedures.
  • Manage relationships with consortium partner organizations, including organization of review/planning workshops; Coordinate the roles and activities of staff from other consortium member organizations in implementation in line with CRS partnership principles.
  • Create and maintain proper conditions for learning; Establish a safe environment for sharing of ideas, solutions, and difficulties and the capacity to detect, analyze and respond quickly to deficiencies; Identify performance gaps and training opportunities for CRS and partner staff and ensure the design and delivery of high quality training and technical assistance.
  • Ensure processes for AERs, pipeline, call forwards, warehousing of commodities, and distribution of commodities are compliant with USG regulations and agreed targets.
  • Support commodity managers to identify and address bottlenecks in commodity call forwards, inland transport and commodity distribution; Ensure timely, accurate and appropriate documentation of processes and timely reporting of commodities inventories/distributions on line with CRS policies and USG regulations.
  • Ensure effective risk management and internal controls of commodities; Enforce zero tolerance for fraud and development and monitoring of beneficiary/staff feedback systems to identify potential incidents.
  • Facilitate appropriate linkages with CRS’ Regional Office and CRS’ Headquarters to resolve commodity management issues.
  • Ensure losses are well documented and reported in a timely manner in compliance with Reg 211 requirements.
  • In conjunction with program Sector Leads and the country program Finance Manager, develops, reviews and monitors multi-sectoral and annual budgets for core cost centers, in compliance with grant award provisions, audit principles and CRS’ financial management guidelines.
  • Provides overall leadership to implementing partners on budget development and reporting.
  • Ensure accurate and timely financial, planning and reporting to donors and CRS senior management. Review actual financial performance against the budget and identify/address variances on a regular basis.

Typical Background, Experience & Requirements:

Education and Experience

  • Master’s degree in International Development, International Relations or a relevant technical area. PhD preferred.
  • At least 10 years of progressively increasing management responsibility in developing countries; previous experience as a Chief of Party and/or management of Title II programming a plus.
  • At least 7 years of experience managing food security projects.
  • 7 years experience managing donor funds, including multi country grants. Excellent knowledge and experience in budget management.
  • Prior management of significant USAID funding required; knowledge of USG regulations governing food aid.
  • Proven leadership and inter-personal skills and ability to build and motivate diverse and talented teams.
  • Proven experience in managing complex consortium or partnership relationships required.
  • Understanding of and experience with faith-based organizations, local church structures, and accompaniment and capacity-building principles in local partnerships highly desired.
  • 5 years of staff management experience and abilities that are conducive to a learning environment; experience coaching and mentoring senior program staff.
  • Experience engaging partners and strengthening partnerships; knowledge of CRS partnership strategy a plus.
  • Ability to represent and present at high levels.
  • Experience in MS Office package (Excel, Word, PowerPoint, Visio), Web Conferencing Applications, and information and budget management systems.

Personal Skills

  • Excellent strategic, analytical, systems thinking, and problem-solving skills, with capacity to see the big picture and ability to make sound judgment and decisions.
  • Excellent relations management abilities; Ability to relate to people at all levels internally and externally; Strategic in how you approach each relationship.
  • Team leadership abilities with diverse/multi-disciplinary teams; Coaching/mentoring skills.
  • Strong communications and presentation skills; able to develop tailored and persuasive messaging for varied audiences.
  • Proactive, resourceful, solutions-oriented and results-oriented.

Foreign Language

  • Excellent English and French language oral and written communication skills required.

Travel Required

  • This position requires at least 50% of time in the field.

Direct Supervisory Responsibilities:

Deputy Chief of Party, MEAL Advisor, Field Commodity Manager and Program Assistant

Key Working Relationships:

Internal- CRS/Burundi:Country Representative, Head of Operations, Head of Programs, Operations Manager, Technical Advisors and Strategic Objective Coordinators, Program Staff;

CRS/HQ/Region: CARO Regional Staff (RTAs and DRD) and CRS/HQ departments.

External: Catholic Bishops and the Episcopal Conference, Government Officials, USAID, UN Agencies, Consortium Member and Implementing Partner Staff, etc.

Agency-wide Competencies (for all CRS Staff):

These are rooted in the mission, values, and guiding principles of CRS and used by each staff member to fulfill his or her responsibilities and achieve the desired results.

  • Integrity
  • Continuous Improvement & Innovation
  • Builds Relationships
  • Develops Talent
  • Strategic Mindset
  • Accountability & Stewardship

Disclaimer: This job description is not an exhaustive list of the skill, effort, duties, and responsibilities associated with the position.

NOTE: Applications will be accepted until this position is filled.

About the Organization

Catholic Relief Services was founded in 1943 by the Catholic Bishops of the United States. Our mission is to assist the poor and disadvantaged, leveraging the teachings of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to alleviate human suffering, promote development of all people, and to foster charity and justice throughout the world. Working through local offices and an extensive network of partners, CRS operates on five continents and in 98 countries. We aid the poor by first providing direct assistance where needed, then encouraging people to help with their own development. Together, these approaches foster secure, productive, just communities that enable people to realize their potential. As the official international relief and development agency of the U.S. Catholic community, CRS is also committed to educating the people of the United States to fulfill their moral responsibilities toward our global brothers and sisters by helping the poor, working to remove the causes of poverty, and promoting social justice.

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