Program Development & Partnerships Lead, Violence Prevention and Response

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IRC - The International Rescue Committee

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London, UK: GBP 71,094,00 - 82,943.00 Annually
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Work Arrangement: Open to Remote

Job Description

We aim to make our programs a model for the highest global standards and to cultivate power and lasting change not just for our clients but for all people affected by humanitarian crises. To achieve that vision, the IRC’s Technical Excellence (TE) group, located within the Crisis Response, Recovery and Development (CRRD) Department, provides technical assistance to IRC’s country program staff and shares what we learn to influence policy and practice.

IRC’s Technical Excellence team is comprised of five teams or sector “Units” which have deep expertise in their respective fields: Education, Economic Wellbeing, Governance, Health, and Violence Prevention and Response, as well as teams which provide measurement and finance/grant management support. Technical teams are also matrixed with a team that focuses on the quality and content of cross-sectoral programming in emergency responses.

IRC’s Technical Excellence teams offer five core services to IRC country programs and the wider organization:

1. Program Design: We support country and regional teams to design state of the art programming, incorporating the best available evidence, cost data, and expertise of what has worked elsewhere, together with the knowledge that country teams, partner organizations and our clients bring to the table.

2. Quality Assurance: We partner with our measurement teams to design and drive the use of indicators to measure progress towards outcomes. We partner with regional and country teams to review program delivery progress and help address implementation challenges and adapt interventions to changed circumstances.

3. Business Development: We partner within and outside the IRC to design winning bids and identify winning consortia; we deploy technical expertise in public events and private meetings to position IRC as a partner of choice.

4. Research & Learning: We partner with our research lab to design cutting edge research to fill evidence gaps, and with country teams to learn from implementation such that we continuously improve our future design and delivery.

5. External Influence: We showcase the IRC’s programs, technical insights and learning in order to influence and improve the humanitarian sector’s policy and practice.

The Violence Prevention and Response Unit at the IRC

The Violence Prevention and Response Unit (VPRU) is one of IRC’s five Technical Units alongside Health, Education, Economy Recovery and Development and Governance. Technical Units provide support to our country programs in the design, delivery, quality assurance and continuous learning for programs advancing the outcomes areas the IRC supports and driving thought leadership around those areas of work.

Programming addressing violence, abuse and exclusion in crisis situations represents the organisation’s second largest programmatic portfolio.

The VPRU brings together the disciplines of Child Protection, Women’s Protection and Empowerment, and Protection- Rule of Law. We seek to reduce people’s vulnerability to violence and support them to recover from the consequences of violence through programs tailored to individual needs and contexts, as well as strategies addressing systemic gaps which contribute to the perpetuation and exacerbation of violence in crisis and conflict environments. Our prevention work focuses on programs that shift power dynamics, promote human rights, and empower people affected by violence and inequality to transform their future. Our response work focuses on ensuring lifesaving and survivor-centered services for people affected by violence and inequality in all their diversity. We work with the people most at risk and seek to address the needs of populations of all ages and backgrounds through a context-relevant, client-centered, intersectional approach.

We also know from evidence and experience that in most contexts women and children are disproportionally impacted by unequal power, and therefore those at greatest risk of violence. For this reason, we are committed to specialized approaches for these populations.

To advance IRC's delivery of Violence Prevention and Response programming across over 45 countries in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Europe, and Latin America, we rely on team of more than 70 professionals committed to provide best-of-class expertise, evidence-based insights based on continued attention to sectoral developments and learning from cross-regional programming insights in order to realize our ambitions for safer, more inclusive lives for our clients. They are supported in this by an intentional and strategic use of research and evidence, a commitment to the highest quality standards and continued engagement in industry-wide development including coordination mechanism, policy to promote innovation and high-impact, cost-efficient interventions. We partner with IRC country program teams and local actors to create and capture innovations in protection programming which can be used by humanitarian actors to improve the protection and empowerment of women and girls, children and adolescents, people with disabilities, with diverse Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity, Gender Expression and Sex Characteristics (SOGIESC) and other people at risk.

Job Overview

The Program Development & Partnerships Lead, Violence Prevention and Response will provide leadership to drive the VPRU’s strategic planning, partnerships, and business development (BD) priorities, as set by VPRU leadership and in the Safety Strategy. The Program Development & Partnerships Lead will work in close collaboration with TU Global Practice Leads, TU Regional Leads, and the Grant Operations & Analytics Team (GOAT) to develop and drive a global funding strategy for VPRU. They will provide business development and program design support on Technical Unit-led or strategic proposals with a focus on public and institutional donors and cultivate strategic partnerships. As is strategically important, they may flex to support significant single-country or regional bids as well. Overall, the Program Development & Partnerships Lead should be responsible for setting the BD strategy, assembling inputs to create compelling bids, gap filling in the BD process as needed/relevant, and driving ultimate bid success through correct donor intel and positioning, strong bid submission, and effective cross-functional collaboration.

Major Responsibilities

Strategy and Capture

• Develop and drive a global funding strategy for VPRU in collaboration with Global Practice Leads and Regional Leads.

• Adapt, strengthen, and roll out new and existing tools and processes, such as the Business Development Manual, for the VPRU to pre-position and respond to new funding opportunities in line with the Safety Strategy

• Partner with and coordinate knowledge and information sharing with the Awards Management Unit (AMU) for public fundraising and GPPS/IPP for private fundraising, capturing priority needs across the portfolio, and providing accurate guidance to technical leaders and executive leaders for bid development

• Track a pipeline of upcoming opportunities and circulate to key staff

• Work closely with GOAT BD and AMU BD to plan for staff needs and BD capacity requirements to successfully write and budget for winning bids

• Coordinate internal competition processes for unsolicited submissions (e.g., BHA) by working closely with GOAT BD, including but not limited to facilitation of expressions of interest from VPRU’s Global Practice Leads and strengthening ideas for internal competitions

Business Development and Program Design

• Play the role of Proposal Design Lead or Proposal Lead for TU-led opportunities, as needed. This includes:

o Ensuring that the Project Design Meetings (PDM) take place on time, adapting PDM agendas to the specific opportunity, providing (or arranging) PDM facilitation

o Ensuring overall quality, coherence and logic in project design, promoting integration with other sectors as needed, partners' meaningful participation, adherence to IRC’s IMPACT quality standards and scale considerations

o Escalating key decisions to management group as relevant

o Being mindful of competitiveness aspects throughout the design process

o Ater the PDM, sharing core decisions and ensuring their validation by technical leadership and partners

• Provide advice and support on budget development to TU staff; review budgets to ensure consistency with the proposal design

• Write non-technical sections and edit all sections for TU-led proposals

• Coordinate with the Grants, Operations and Analytics (GOAT) team, Awards Management Unit (AMU) or Global Partnerships & Philanthropic Services (GPPS) on the review and signature process of agreements and contracts to closely follow IRC processes for award

• Coordinate technical input during negotiations with donors on any requested changes to the proposal

• Upon request, organize re-design meetings at inception phase or during pre-established learning moments

• Gather technical insights across the Technical Unit and consolidate for proposals in which multiple Global Practice Areas are represented

Partnerships Strategy

• Lead VPRU’s approach to partnership, including both global and local partnerships, working closely with the GOAT Partnerships team to ensure successful pre- and post-award partnership operations

• Lead coordination to drive all aspects of the partnerships strategy and management for TU, with a strong focus on building effective partnerships with local actors and organizations, and evolving tools, processes and ways-of-working to be fit-for-purpose for TU-led projects and strategic priorities

• Identify and evaluate opportunities for partnership development with local civil society, women-led organizations, and other local actors organizations both as part of but also outside specific BD opportunities

• Identify and evaluate opportunities for partnerships with academic or research centers, with Research & Innovation colleagues as appropriate, with a goal of identifying more research partnership opportunities from the global South

Key Working Relationships

• Position Reports to: Senior Director, VPRU, CRRD Technical Excellence

• Direct Reports: None at time of hiring

Key Internal Relationships:

• VPRU Deputy Director

• VPR Regional Leads across 6 regions, and regional Technical Advisors

• Global Practice Leads for Child Protection, Women Protection and Empowerment, and Protection – Rule of Law

• Global Leads for Policy & Advocacy and MEAL

• Prevention and Inclusion Advisers

• Grant Operations and Analytics Team (GOAT) Business Development Sr Coordinator and team

• Program Development and Partnership Leads in other Technical Units (Health, Education, Economic Recovery and Development)

• Policy & Solutions, Advocacy & Influence, and Systems Change global teams

• CRRD Senior Management Team and Leadership Group; Regional Leadership Teams

• Global HQ and AMU focal points

Key External Relationships:

• Counterparts at other INGOs and international Coalitions

• Civil society actors across geographies with a focus on civil society platforms and across in the ‘Global South’

• Counterparts at Red Cross/Crescent Movement with a focus on IFRC and ICRC and with national societies as relevant to partnership , thought partnership opportunities

• Donors and policy makers including humanitarian and protection policy spaces

• Counterparts in relevant multilateral agencies including but not limited to UNICEF, UNHCR, IOM, WFP, UNWomen, UNFPA, UNDP, OCHA, World Bank Bank

Desired Experience and Skills

• 8+ years of progressive experience providing technical and/or bid leadership to multi-year, multi-million-dollar business development opportunities in Child Protection, Gender Based Violence (GBV), and/or Humanitarian protection, IHL, and human rights

• Outstanding capacity to understand the humanitarian system and operating context and coordinate the relevant technical inputs from within and outside VPRU

• Familiarity with managing large-scale, complex portfolio and experience using strategic insights and data from varied sources to support portfolio management, pivoting and alignment to organizational and sectoral goals

• Excellent attention to detail and problem-solving skills and ability to analyses trends based on a diverse set of data and insights

• Demonstrating experience leading the development, review and implementation of systems, policies and processes in collaboration with other functional areas including Finance, Awards, Advocacy, MEAL

• Experience in building partnerships for development and humanitarian funding as well as negotiation of programmatic and financial contractual arrangements with donors and partners

• Demonstrated expertise in working with both public and private donors and knowledge of the funding landscape for Child Protection, GBV, and/or Humanitarian protection, IHL, and human rights

• Experience with some of the following donors programmatic and advocacy priorities, funding instruments and cycles: USAID, BHA, PRM, Irish Aid, FCDO, AFD, Global Affairs Canada, Swiss Cooperation, GFFO

• Experience and comfort interrogating partnership practices and familiarity with emerging developments including growing attention to power-shifting, localization and technical assistance models for INGOs

• Knowledge of public and private fundraising - Appetite and curiosity about building collaborative pathways with philanthropy and private sector

• Experience in developing and managing project concepts and funding proposals for humanitarian / development work with the ability to turn concepts and strategy into measurable action

• Demonstrated ability to work with stakeholders at multiple levels

• Highly collaborative and proven ability to work independently and work with remote, multi-cultural, and multi-disciplinary teams

• Flexibility and ability to work well under pressure, taking care of competing priorities, in a fast-paced team environment

• Experience in successfully influencing change in teams you don’t directly supervise

• Fluency in English required; Arabic, French and/or Spanish also valued

• Ability to travel globally up to 20% of the time, occasionally on short notice

Education: Degree in business development, international development, international relations, or relevant field or equivalent combination of education and work experience background is required. Sound training on the use of data and research evidence and rigorous analytic skills are an advantage.


Posted pay ranges apply to US and UK-based candidates. Ranges are based on various factors including the labor market, job type, internal equity, and budget. Exact offers are calibrated by work location, individual candidate experience and skills relative to the defined job requirements.

US Benefits:

The IRC offers a comprehensive and highly competitive set of benefits. All US employees are eligible for sick time, a 403b retirement savings plans: up to 4.5% immediately vested matching contribution, plus an 3-7% additional IRC contribution, and an Employee Assistance Program which is available to our staff and their families to support in times of crisis and mental health struggles.

In addition, full-time employees are eligible for 10 US paid holidays, 20-25 paid time off days, disability & life insurance, medical, dental, and vision insurance (employee contribution starting at $135, $7, and $5 per month respectively) and FSA for healthcare, childcare, and commuter costs. Part-time employees are eligible for a proportionate amount of paid time off. These additional benefits apply to employees who work at least 6 months within a 12 month time period.




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