Technical Advisor - Emergency MEAL

United States
Apply by 9 August 2018
Mid-level , Full-time staff position
Posted on 10 July 2018

Job Description

Primary Responsibilities

CRS is seeking a Technical Advisor I (TAI) for Emergency Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability and Learning (MEAL) to provide technical and field level support for partner led emergency response and recovery programming in the Caribbean and South America Zones of the LACRO region.Guided by the MEAL focused strategic objectives and initiatives within the Agency Strategy, and working closely with MEAL, programming and sectoral technical advisors within the Humanitarian Response Department (HRD), the Emergency MEAL TA I will strengthen the capacity of partners in the Caribbean and South America zones to use MEAL tools critical to ensuring that program design and implementation strategies are informed by quality data collection and use, beneficiary feedback and learning. The TAI - MEAL will also be expected to support overall response management.

Specific Responsibilities:

The duties for the TAI - MEAL include but are not limited to the following:

Partner Capacity Strengthening:

  • Ensure a quality partnership between CRS and targeted partners, in line with CRS and CI partnership principles. Work closely with EC3S project team members to ensure coordinated, consistent partner strengthening efforts and support timely resolution of partnership challenges via dialogue and support from others, as appropriate.
    • Identify partner capacity strengthening needs in MEAL and information management and develop comprehensive partner-specific action plans, in conjunction with the partners and other CASAZ EC3S team members. These should support adherence to CRS and CI guiding principles and program quality standards, as per CRS Program Quality tools and manuals, including the Project Management Standards (PMS), Protection Mainstreaming Guidelines, and Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability, and Learning (MEAL) in Emergencies, as well as SPHERE standards and CI and Red Cross Code of Conduct principles across all activities.
    • Design and implement appropriate efforts to strengthen partner MEAL and information management capacity, as per the action plans, both before and during emergency responses. This will include a combination of methods, such as formal trainings, exchange visits among partners, TA accompaniment, write shops to develop policies/SOPs, on the job learning, etc.
    • Assess and regularly monitor partners’ ability to develop MEAL and information management systems to ensure data-driven decisions making during emergencies; work closely with partners to adapt their improvement action plan as needed for continuous improvement.
      • Build partner capacity to document lessons learned and best practices as it relates to MEAL in emergencies.
      • Build partner capacity in ICT4E for carrying out quality monitoring, data collection and analysis in ERR programs and facilitating development and implementation of context specific systems for beneficiary accountability, including on the job training for ICT4E.
      • Promote a work culture in line with CRS and Caritas values: promotion of international and national talents, collaboration, and uniform adherence to programming principles

Emergency Surge Support

  • Provide field and/or distance support for MEAL during partner-led emergency response activities, working closely with other deployed CRS team members and local partner staff. This may include taking the lead in developing systems for MEAL (including systems for beneficiary accountability), designing and leading the implementation of real time evaluations (RTEs), etc.
  • Provide inputs to, feedback and advice on MEAL focused components of ERR proposals.
  • Contribute to the field level implementation of MEAL procedures, ensuring that the emergency program context and partner capacity is taken into consideration.
  • Facilitate the development of new tools (as needed) and/or roll out of existing tools for use in ERR programming.
  • Assume a direct support, management or leadership role during emergency responses via secondment to local partner(s), as needed/requested.

Technical Assistance

  • Lead the documentation of lessons learned, best practices and evidence base for the CASAZ EC3S project.
  • Keep up to date with any new programming/MEAL/Info Management policies, procedures, SOPs, and guidance; work with relevant HRD TAs to support their adaptation to partner-led emergency responses and specific country conditions.
  • Maintain strong coordination with other HRD MEAL/Information Management staff and serve as the emergency response/recovery focal point for MEAL within the regional MEAL team, maintaining strong coordination and collaboration with MEAL staff at the regional level and participating in regional/global MEAL meetings.
  • Ensure that systems for MEAL in emergencies allow us to monitor our programs for gender responsiveness and the mainstreaming of protection and conflict sensitivity, and adjust as needed based on evidence and learning generated through MEAL.


1. Master’s degree or equivalent experience in a field relevant to a MEAL with an international NGO.

2. Three to five years of progressive responsibility in relief or development programs, including significant time in a MEAL capacity.

3. Thorough familiarity with the principles of, and field experience in, current approaches to MEAL for emergency relief programs, including both qualitative and quantitative methods.

4. Experience in planning and facilitating training/workshops in MEAL, design and implementation of evaluations.

5. Experience in developing successful proposals for external donor funding opportunities.

6. Willingness and ability to work as a member of a partner capacity building team and provide additional support in program management and operations as needed.

7. Strong analytical skills and the ability to quickly adapt technical guidance to any given operating environment.

8. Demonstrated ability to transfer knowledge to diverse audiences through training, mentoring, and other formal and non-formal methods.

9. Familiarity with adult learning principles/techniques and demonstrated ability to design and facilitate learning opportunities for adults.

10. Excellent interpersonal communication skills, including cross-cultural skills.

11. Strong written and verbal communication skills in English and Spanish. Additional Portuguese, French or Kreyol language skills a plus.

12. Strong, demonstrated information management skills in general

13. Knowledge of Power BI, Comm-care and/or CAT; knowledge of GIS preferred.

14. Proficiency with MS-Office software, including MS-Access; SPSS, STATA and/or other statistical software is a plus.

15. Experience in the use of technology for monitoring and accountability.

16. Willingness and ability to travel internationally 50% of time.

17. Willingness and ability to deploy as soon as possible when disasters strike, primarily within Latin American and the Caribbean; may include deployments to other regions, as needed.

18. Candidates from/presently based in the Latin American/Caribbean region would be preferred

19. Ability to engage and motivate partner staff in a challenging program area.

20. Ability to work effectively under pressure and to organize and prioritize competing activities.

21. Flexibility, patience, dedication and creativity.

Agency-Wide Competencies:

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.

  • Serves with Integrity
  • Models Stewardship
  • Cultivates Constructive Relationships
  • Promotes Learning
    • Focuses on Improving M&E Practice: Supports M&E staff involvement to strengthen all phases of project design, planning and implementation and in responding to business development opportunities.
    • Actively Promotes Evidence-based Programming: Ensures colleagues value and apply M&E and other sources of information to improve strategic and programmatic decision-making.
    • Strengthens the Capacity of Others to Implement Quality Systems: Guides others to develop attitudes, approaches and activities that lead to better M&E in CRS.

Key Working Relationships:

Internal: CASAZ HRD team members, HRD TA PQM LACRO Focal Point, Global MEAL Team, other HRD (S)TAs including HRD MEAL TA, LACRO MEAL RTA, GKIM focal point for ERR SPA

External: All relevant partner staff (including but not limited to MEAL staff, Emergency Coordinator, Operations staff, Caritas or diocesan directors), MEAL staff from other INGOs in the target zones, UN Agencies, Public Donors, Technical Forums and Foundations

Physical Requirements/Environment: Requires overseas travel to sometimes difficult and challenging regions/countries.

Disclaimer Clause:

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

Internal applicants are encouraged to apply within the first 10 days.

CRS’ talent acquisition procedures reflect our commitment to protecting children and vulnerable adults from abuse and exploitation.

CRS is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

About the Organization

Catholic Relief Services carries out the commitment of the Bishops of the United States to assist the poor and vulnerable overseas. Our Catholic identity is at the heart of our mission and operations. We welcome as a part of our staff and as partners people of all faiths and secular traditions who share our values and our commitment to serving those in need.

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