Education Technical Adviser, West Africa
This position can be based in other locations.
Founded in 1933 at the behest of Albert Einstein, the International Rescue Committee (IRC) has developed unparalleled expertise in responding to emergencies and helping communities rebuild. The IRC is committed to a culture of bold leadership, innovation, creative partnerships, and, most crucially, accountability to those we serve. At work today in over 40 countries and 28 U.S. cities, IRC restores safety, dignity, and hope to millions who are uprooted. The IRC’s vision is to lead the humanitarian sector through implementing high-impact, cost-effective programs for people affected by crisis and by using our learning and experience to shape policy and practice. To achieve that vision, the IRC’s Technical Excellence (TE) provides technical assistance to IRC’s country program staff and share learnings to influence policy and practice. TE is comprised of five technical units: Economic Recovery and Development; Education; Governance; Health; and Violence Prevention and Response.
In 2022, the IRC reached over 800,000 children and youth in 20 countries with education programs. We ensure that even the hardest to reach children in the most challenging places are able to go to school and thrive. In the midst of conflict and disaster, education is one of the first things parents and children say they need. Education is a human right. It also helps keep children safe and gives them the skills needed to be resilient, do well now, and later in life. Education offers a glimmer of hope. The IRC defines success with education outcomes from infancy to young adulthood, ensuring results for all girls and boys, regardless of age. These outcomes are: early childhood learning and nurturing care; primary school-aged learning; and youth learning; as well as the complementary safety in school outcome.
As the Education Technical Advisor for West Africa, you are responsible for ensuring high quality technical assistance to all countries and teams in the region – including collaboration with counterparts from other sectors to ensure holistic support to clients. You will promote and collaborate with relevant stakeholders to achieve high quality, high impact interventions that are informed by evidence and best practice, contextually appropriate, driven by client and partner voices, and widely inclusive.
Program Design & Business Development: You will support country programs to design winning submissions and generally position IRC for continued success in our technical domains:
• Support designated country programs’ proposal technical lead through participation in and/or facilitation of program design meetings
• Promote and support design collaboration with partners and clients
• Advise on program modalities, and strategic partnership development based on how we can best support, complement, and reinforce local systems
• Advising and/or providing hands-on support on assessments, including application and contextualization of technical standards
• Reviewing technical design quality, including alignment of narratives, log-frames, and budgets to IRC standards and outcomes
Implementation Support: You will support country program staff and other key stakeholders in implementing technical interventions:
• Support country programs and other stakeholders with the recruitment and training of technical coordinators
• Assess program quality and inform improvements, providing follow up support to country programs as needed
• Collaborate with country program colleagues to monitor and analyze key indicators to inform periodic review, program adaptation, and course-correction as needed
• Provide technical capacity strengthening through ongoing mentoring, coaching, and trainings with country program focal points
Knowledge & Learning: You will support continuous sectoral learning and IRC technical leadership:
• Document learnings from program activities and sharing takeaways and opportunities
• Share cross-contextual learnings with country program staff across the region
• Refresh the sectoral evidence-base in collaboration with global and regional staff to influence approaches
• Collaborate with other technical advisors within the region to promote integrated programming leadership
• Contribute to the delivery of education strategic priorities
• Maintain currency with sectoral best practices through continual learning and development
Success in this position requires an individual with expertise in designing and delivering technical assistance to education programs, and with a deep understanding of the cultural, societal, and political contexts in West Africa.
• 6-8 years of relevant experience in implementing and/or managing education programs, with on the ground programmatic experience in a service delivery organization, NGO or comparable international agency required.
• Experience and familiarity with related donors, peer agencies and national contexts required, preferably in humanitarian and transitional, post-crisis contexts.
• Demonstrated expertise in technical program design, monitoring and evaluation, with the ability to turn concepts and strategy into measurable action.
Demonstrated Skills and Competencies:
• Excellent verbal and written communications skills
• Strong organizational and time-management skills; proven ability to prioritize and deliver projects on time and independently.
• Demonstrated ability to navigate a dynamic, cross-functional, global team structure in a large multi-national organization.
• Demonstrated ability to work effectively with internal and external stakeholders at all levels.
• Strong analytic problem-solving skills.
• Highly proficient in Microsoft Office suite.
• Ability to manage and work through change in a proactive and positive manner.
Education: Bachelor’s Degree in Education or a relevant field required, Master’s Degree preferred.
Language Skills: Excellent spoken and written English and French is essential. Proficiency in an additional IRC language (Arabic, Spanish, etc.) strongly preferred.
Key Working Relationships: This position reports to the Senior Education Technical Advisor, based in the US. This position may potentially supervise occasional consultants and/or interns. Regular communication with other education staff, regional and country program teams, awards management and grants management staff, and other internal stakeholders.
Working Environment: Standard office working environment. This role may have some international travel up to 40% of the time. This role can be based in the UK, Cote d’Ivoire, or Senegal. Other IRC locations may be possible. For staff based in IRC’s New York or London offices: This role may require working remotely full or part-time and part-time remote employees may be required to share workspaces.
Commitment to Diversity and Inclusivity:
IRC is committed to building a diverse organization and a climate of inclusivity. We strongly encourage applications from candidates who can demonstrate that they can contribute to this goal.
IRC is committed to narrowing the gender gap in leadership positions. We offer benefits that provide an enabling environment for women to participate in our workforce including parental leave, gender-sensitive security protocols and other supportive benefits and allowances.
The IRC and IRC staff must adhere to the values and principles outlined in IRC Way – Global Standards for Professional Conduct. These are Integrity, Service, Equality 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.
Equal Opportunity Employer:
We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, sex, gender, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status. We will ensure that individuals with disabilities are provided reasonable accommodation to participate in the job application or interview process, to perform essential job functions, and to receive other benefits and privileges of employment. Please contact us to request accommodation.