Alive & Thrive (A&T) is a global nutrition initiative to save lives, prevent illness, and ensure healthy growth of mothers and children. From 2009–2014, A&T demonstrated that rapid improvements in infant and young child feeding (IYCF) are possible in settings as diverse as Ethiopia, Bangladesh, and Viet Nam. In 2014, A&T began working in Burkina Faso, India, Nigeria, and throughout the Southeast Asia region, expanding its scope to include maternal and adolescent nutrition, and using agriculture and social protection programs as delivery mechanisms for maternal, infant, and young child nutrition (MIYCN). Currently, A&T is leveraging its robust network and knowledge base to strengthen systems and build capacity in these and other countries across Africa and Asia, and disseminate innovations, tools, and lessons worldwide. The Alive & Thrive initiative, managed by FHI 360, is currently funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Irish Aid, the Tanoto Foundation, and UNICEF.
The overarching goal of A&T is to accelerate effective coverage at scale of key nutrition interventions in priority geographies. In Bangladesh, A&T contributes to this goal through strengthening systems for MIYCN interventions by providing technical assistance to government, development partners, and other stakeholders to accelerate delivery.
- System strengthening. As part of a Technical Assistance (TA) Matrix agreement to the Institute of Public Health Nutrition, and in support of Bangladesh’s disbursement-linked indicators for nutrition, A&T is collaborating with UNICEF, the World Bank and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to assist the Health Sector Support Project in improving the quality and coverage of MIYCN interventions delivered through the government health system. In the two divisions of Sylhet and Chattogram, A&T has created learning labs in six upazilas. The Upazila Learning Lab is a testing ground for data-driven performance management and supportive supervision approaches that engage frontline workers, supervisors, and health authorities overseeing the management of service delivery. Lessons from collaborating with government and partners in the upazilas will inform and promote replication, scale, and sustainability within the two divisions and nationally via the NNS-OP.
- Technical assistance for SBCC. A&T is a technical partner in the IYCF Alliance and participates in the national nutrition and SBCC working groups to harmonize approaches across government and partner initiatives. Building on proven SBCC practices from the first decade of implementation, A&T is disseminating knowledge and strengthening capacity by supporting the development of SBCC strategies and content and sharing relevant MIYCN SBCC tools. A&T is also providing technical assistance on SBCC to the United Nations Development Program/ National Urban Poverty Reduction Program (UNDP/NUPRP), the World Food Program/Maternal Allowance and Lactating Mother Allowance Program (WFP/MALMA) and several other projects.
- Policy and program advocacy. Grounded in global MIYCN evidence, including new research in Bangladesh, A&T is supporting key partners to develop national policies, guidelines, and strategies that enhance the coverage and quality of MIYCN service delivery. A&T’s policy and program advocacy priorities are to: increase awareness and commitment to MIYCN, ensure country readiness for the World Health Assembly’s nutrition targets, promote the adoption of MIYCN SBCC guidelines, supportive supervision protocols, and performance management practices in health facilities, strengthen the implementation of the national Breastmilk Substitutes (BMS) Act, and promote an improved model for MIYCN counseling in urban health programming.
- Knowledge and learning. Understanding how an intervention performs in a new context is critical for scalability and sustainability. By conducting both formative and implementation research, A&T is generating new knowledge to inform evidence-based policies, programs, and implementation strategies. In the coming years, A&T’s main implementation research priority in Bangladesh will be to assess the effectiveness, feasibility and scalability of strengthening MIYCN counseling in urban health centers in Dhaka. A&T will also continue research on violations of the BMS Act in health facilities, and initiate new research to support improvements in adolescent nutrition in Bangladesh.
The Director Programs, Bangladesh, Alive & Thrive will lead the program and be responsible for providing technical leadership and overall management direction to achieve the project’s objectives. The Director Programs, Bangladesh, Alive & Thrive will have overall programmatic and fiscal responsibility for the program, including achieving results, executing annual work plans, submitting financial reports and ensuring compliance for donor and the organization’s regulations. Additionally, s/he will ensure technical excellence in the design and implementation of the A&T-supported technical assistance activities related to MIYCN and systems strengthening. S/he will facilitate policy dialogue and stakeholder partnerships with relevant sectors to promote replication of successful approaches tested by A&T to be mainstreamed within existing systems.
The Director Programs, Bangladesh, Alive & Thrive will provide management excellence to a dynamic team of technical and operational experts based in Dhaka, Chattogram and Sylhet.
Essential Job Functions
- Oversees and directs the development and execution of the overall program strategy and annual work plans, and tracks the achievement of project results
- Facilitates establishment of work streams with clear goals, scopes, leaders, teams and work plans, that are documented in clear concept notes or implementation guidelines
- Grows high performing teams with high levels of autonomy in the delivery of individual work streams
- Supervises, mentors, and motivates team members, including technical and operational staff from multiple disciplines, to foster individual growth and team building
- Prioritizes project activities to balance taking advantage of external opportunities, maximizing team utilization, optimizing relationships with partners and ensuring quality
- Ensures activities are implemented to the highest possible professional standard, on time and on budget
- Ensures the timely and complete submission of all work plans, progress reports, performance reports, deliverables and responses to donor requests
- Serves as an active participant in A&T team meetings to provide updates, reports and feedback; and acts as a key link between the Bangladesh and the A&T/HQ teams
- Provides oversight for the program’s financial and contracts management and reporting systems and ensures that they are in line with the FHI 360, FHI Solutions policies and Non-Government Organization Affairs Bureau’s procedures, rules and regulations
- Identifies potential risks to portfolio execution and recommends corrective actions
- Provides technical input, leadership and coordination for the design and implementation of all program components, with a specific focus on systems strengthening for MIYCN
- Ensures technical activities are evidence-based, aligned with global best practices and consistent with A&T’s priorities and areas of expertise
- Supports national- and sub-national nutrition-specific and nutrition-sensitive programs of government and implementing partners with high-level MIYCN technical assistance to accelerate coverage of evidence-based MIYCN interventions
- Ensures effective management of strategic partnerships with government and development partners along with senior advisor Strategic Partnership and knowledge management leadership
- Ensures close coordination and dialogue with key stakeholders along with senior advisor Strategic Partnership and knowledge management leadership in the government, NGOs, UN, bilaterals and institutions involved in MIYCN and related programs and policy development.
- Develops and/or contributes written technical expertise to thought leadership pieces, concept notes, program plans, tools, materials, advocacy, monitoring and evaluation, and SBC approaches, messages, materials, and tools
- Identifies and arranges for short term technical assistance from A&T/HQ and other institutions to strengthen existing activities related to MIYCN interventions in Bangladesh
- Other duties as assigned
- Health related or social sciences advanced degree (masters or post-graduate level or higher is essential) in, public health, nutrition, medical/nursing sciences, sociology, management, rural development or related studies.
- A minimum of 12 years of experience in design, implementation, management, capacity building related to developing programs and leading teams in testing and scaling up nutrition intervention packages, improving health/nutrition/behavior change indicators, scaling up service delivery programs, and providing technical assistance.
- Fluency in written and oral English, and preferably also in Bengali.
- Excellent reputation in teamwork and facilitating dialogue and communications among diverse institutions and program participants.
- Skilled in both technical and program management tasks, and motivated to understand and perform tasks such as fulfilling A&T project planning and reporting requirements in a timely manner.
- Demonstrated experience and/or motivated towards working with government, NGOs and donors in Bangladesh.
- Proficiency in the use of MS Office (Word, PowerPoint, Excel, etc.) and the Internet.
Typical Physical Demands:
- Typical office environment.
- Ability to sit and stand for extended periods of time.
- Ability to lift 5-50 lbs
Technology to be Used:
- Personal Computer, Microsoft Office (i.e. Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc.), e-mail, telephone, printer, calculator, copier, cell phones, PDAs and other hand held devices.
This job description summarizes the main duties of the job. It neither prescribes nor restricts the exact tasks that may be assigned to carry out these duties. This document should not be construed in any way to represent a contract of employment. Management reserves the right to review and revise this document at any time.
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FHI 360 is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. FHI 360 is an equal employment and affirmative action employer whereby we do not engage in practices that discriminate against any person employed or seeking employment based on race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national or ethnic origin, age, marital status, disability, veteran status, genetic information or any other status or characteristic protected under applicable law.
About the Organization
About FHI 360: FHI 360 is a nonprofit human development organization dedicated to improving lives in lasting ways by advancing integrated, locally driven solutions. Our staff includes experts in health, education, nutrition, environment, economic development, civil society, gender, youth, research and technology — creating a unique mix of capabilities to address today's interrelated development challenges. FHI 360 serves more than 70 countries and all U.S. states and territories. We are currently seeking qualified candidates for the position of: Director Programs