Since 1979, Afghanistan has experienced continuous armed conflict. The IRC began work in Afghanistan in 1988, launching relief programs for persons displaced by the invasion of the Soviet Union. The IRC continued to provide aid under Taliban rule and expanded community development projects. The organization now works with thousands of villages across nine provinces, with Afghans making up more than 99% of IRC staff in the country. As Afghanistan works to recover from ongoing conflict and natural disasters, the IRC supports by: working with local communities to identify, plan and manage their own development projects; provide safe learning spaces in rural areas; provide uprooted families with tents, clean water, sanitation and other basic necessities; and helps community members access employment. Integrated Protection in Afghanistan covers Protection and Rule of Law (PRoL), Women’s Protection and Empowerment (WPE), and Child Protection (CP) with a strong focus on ensuring gender equality in both programming and organizational practice.
Job Overview/Summary: The Senior Integrated Protection Coordinator provides overall strategic direction for the integrated protection program while supporting the strong integration of protection principles and approaches across IRC’s other sector programs, and maximizing the potential of IRC’s evidence generation and advocacy on protection trends in Afghanistan. The Senior Integrated Protection Coordinator will work closely with sector leads and the DDP and CD to develop and implement a comprehensive integrated protection strategy (inclusive of WPE, CP and PRoL programming), in line with the country program Strategic Action plan, that ensures IRC’s integrated protection programming is coherently delivering needs-based protection services to IDPs and host communities and other at-risk populations in Afghanistan. Lastly, the Senior Integrated Protection Coordinator will contribute to the development of a harmonized approach to protection monitoring, and enhanced sharing of protection tools and approaches across IRC’s programs.
• Provide strategic direction, leadership and overall technical and management support to integrated protection programming in Afghanistan, ensuring it is based on evidence, context-appropriate and conflict-sensitive, responsive, coherent, collaborative, and operationally feasible.
• Design and lead assessments and context-appropriate research aimed at generating a strong evidence base for IRC protection programming, as well as informing IRC advocacy.
• Support the greater sharing and use of research and learning within IRC’s program sectors, including by contributing to program development and design, to ensure interventions are responsive to needs and informed by a sound understanding of the environment(s).
• Proactively continue to grow the Afghanistan protection portfolio through development of concept notes and proposals to existing and new donors.
Program Management & Reporting
• Ensure projects deliverables and activities are of high quality, meet humanitarian standards, mainstream protection, align with IRC’s Outcomes and Evidence Framework, and respond to community and monitoring feedback
• Liaise with PRoL, CP, and WPE Technical Unit advisors to ensure relevant support, tools and resources are being provided and integrated into programming.
• Lead on the implementation and review of the Integrated Protection strategy to ensure programming reflects standards for best practice and quality and modalities of integration and joint work remain context and need-appropriate.
• Proactively identify, assess, monitor and implement measures to reduce or control risks that may impact program delivery, quality or compliance
• Work closely with the Technical Advisers to promote joint work across all protection teams (CP, WPE and PRoL) and to enhance the quality of each programming and a holistic approach to addressing safety risks.
• Develop, update and ensure quality implementation of internal Standard Operating Procedures for protection programming, in strong consultation with Deputy Coordinators, Technical Advisers, and field teams.
• In collaboration with program, finance, HR and Supply Chain departments, ensure smooth design, management, implementation, integration and compliance of project work plans and budgets (budget forecasting, spending plans, procurement plans and expenditure), with best use of resources across activities and delivering on time, to scope and within budget.
• Through direct liaison with the Supply Chain Coordinator, oversee timely procurement of supplies and materials in compliance with donor and IRC rules and regulations through timely planning, specifications development and collaborative relations with Supply Chain colleagues. This will be led by Deputy CP, PRoL and WPE Coordinators.
• Ensure that all internal and external reporting requirements are met, that reports are of a high quality and are submitted on time
• Ensure grants are implemented with strong coordination and ongoing feedback from the community throughout the project cycle, including women and girls, older persons, persons living with disabilities and children.
Staff Management & Development
• Recruit, supervise and develop the team and individuals needed to achieve program goals and maximize national ownership and leadership.
• Ensure that capacity development plans are in place for all protection teams.
• Coach, train, and mentor staff with the aim of strengthening their technical capacity, exchanging knowledge within the team and providing professional development guidance
• Supervise and mentor direct-report staff, including communicating clear expectations, setting performance objectives, providing regular and timely performance feedback, and providing documented annual and mid-year performance reviews.
• Provide constructive feedback and effective management to direct reports, and empower them to manage the national teams by ensuring HR policies are rolled out and enforced.
• Promote and monitor staff care and well-being; approve and manage leave requests to ensure adequate coverage.
• Offer leadership support for successful adherence by staff to IRC’s Global HR Operating Policies and Procedures.
• Ensure gender parity at every level within the integrated protection department. Champion a feminist informed approach to leadership, and recruitment, and ensure all staff advocate for the voices of women within their team.
Coordination and Representation
• Attend relevant coordination forums inside Afghanistan, including but not limited to Protection Cluster, ICCT and HCT as requested.
• Build working relationships with counterparts including INGO, Local NGO, governmental and other non-governmental stakeholders.
• Collaborate closely with other program departments in order to ensure that linkages between programs are made and programs gain from training best practice.
• Identify, monitor and report unmet needs. Explore the potential of the IRC to address those needs within the parameters of the Strategic Action Plan and sector priorities.
Monitoring and Evaluation
• Work with M&E team and Dep. Cos. to design robust monitoring and reporting tools
• Ensure all monitoring activities are fully documented, including systematic and timely data collection and reporting as required by the donor and for IRC M&E purposes
• Conduct quarterly lessons learned meetings with Dep. Cos. and Managers using M&E data to realign/adapt programming to needs, changes in the context, new innovations, etc.
• Work with M&E team to ensure lessons learned during and after grant implementation period, including maximizing client responsiveness and gender sensitive M&E processes in Integrated Protection programming.
KEY WORKING RELATIONSHIPS
Position Reports to: Deputy Director of Programs
Position directly supervises: WPE Deputy Coordinator, CP Deputy Coordinator, PRoL Deputy Coordinator, Protection IM Manager.
Other internal contacts: CD, Grants, MEAL, Finance, HR, Supply chain, Grants Coordinator, M&E Coordinator, HR Coordinator, Supply Chain Coordinator, Finance Controller, Senior ERD Coordinator, Senior Program Quality Coordinator, Field Management Deputy Director, Gender, Compliance and Accountability Deputy Director
External: Protection Working Group, peer and partner agencies, donors
• BA/BS Degree in international development, law, human rights, or a related field; MA/MS a plus
• Minimum of 5 years professional experience in humanitarian response, with specific experience in protection programming in emergency or post conflict settings, with strict security rules.
• Demonstrated experience using international human rights standards in protection programming
• Strong program/technical and budget management skills, planning, reporting, monitoring and evaluation skills
• Strong written and oral communication skills, effective in representation and liaison with external parties.
• INGO experience required; experience working with the interagency coordination mechanisms desirable.
• Must be capable of applying their skills and knowledge in a range of capacities, including direct implementation, advisory functions, training and the transfer of technical knowledge and management skills to others.
• Personal qualities: Works well in and promotes teamwork, comfortable in a multi-cultural environment, flexible and able to handle pressure well.
• Fluency in English required
• Dari or Pashto language – written and spoken
• Post-graduate degree in humanitarian and/or development studies, social sciences, political sciences or similar field is desirable – additional experience in lieu of postgraduate degree is possible.
Position is based in Kabul with regular travels to field locations, with strict security protocols and monitored movement.
The IRC and IRC workers must adhere to the values and principles outlined in the IRC Way - Standards for Professional Conduct. These are Integrity, Service, and Accountability. In accordance with these values, the IRC operates and enforces policies on Beneficiary Protection from Exploitation and Abuse, Child Safeguarding, Anti Workplace Harassment, Fiscal Integrity, and Anti-Retaliation.