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Chief of Party I, USDA/Food for Education

CRS - Catholic Relief Services

Antananarivo, Madagascar

 

Primary Responsibilities:

The FFE COP will be responsible for the management of all aspects of the project.

The Chief of Party will provide the vision and overall leadership to the program team. S/he will be responsible for overseeing the overall management of the project including the quality of programmatic implementation (including monitoring, evaluation and learning) and administrative elements of the project, including management of food and non-food commodities, and monitoring the budget. He/she is responsible for ensuring compliance in USDA/McGovern-Dole grants including oversight of partner budgets, finance and administration, and reporting to USDA. The COP is responsible for ensuring that project results are achieved on time and on budget, including strategies for phase out and sustainability; and that the budget is consumed as planned. The successful candidate will also be responsible for representing the project to major stakeholders, especially USDA, USAID and the Ministry of Education and other relevant ministries within the country.

PROGRAM OVERSIGHT:

  • Lead planning, implementation, monitoring, evaluation, and reporting for all FFE program activities;
  • Lead the development and revision of key program documents such as evaluation plan, performance monitoring plan, program amendments, annual action plans, etc.;
  • Lead development of the program’s MEAL manual, including thorough review of all data collection tools, SOW, and planning for all data-collection activities to ensure that each program indicator is accurately reported as per the agreement terms;
  • Oversee the implementation of rigorous baseline, midterm and final evaluations, as well as approved special studies;
  • Work with partners to develop annual implementation plans, track progress on a regular basis, and find solutions to challenges as they arise;
  • Establish team priorities; ensure deadlines are met;
  • Work closely with the logistics team and Min. of Education to ensure appropriate reception, transportation, warehousing, distribution and monitoring of food commodities; work proactively with staff and partners to trouble-shoot any issues that arise; ensure accurate reporting on commodity use, misuse and loss;
  • Make sound decisions using appropriate consultation, attention to CRS policies and USG regulations, and linking to CRS and USDA strategies;
  • Organize visibility events, donor visits, etc.

Reporting and Compliance:

  • Prepare all progress reports and updates on program activities for USDA and U.S. Embassy/USAID, and document lessons learned for CRS and partners to increase institutional learning;
  • Ensure proper management of all cash and commodity resources by developing detailed budget-tracking system, authorizing all cash expenditures, and carefully analyzing and monitoring spending and commitments, as well as progress toward program goals and budget burn rates;
  • Work with sub-recipients and local partners to ensure proper use of program resources and adherence to CRS’ sub-recipient financial-monitoring policy by providing timely support and capacity building (including thorough reviews of financial reports, supporting documentation, all contracts and sub-award agreements, etc.);
  • Proactively identify and address potential compliance issues and concerns in concert with CRS staff and partners; maintain transparent systems and records;
  • Apply CRS agency standards and procedures, as well as donor requirements and USG regulations appropriately and consistently.

Human Resource Management and Partnerships

  • Recruit, orient, and support the professional development of supervisees, providing timely, respectful feedback as per CRS’ performance management system;
  • Proactively assess the work load of all team members (direct and indirect reports), reassign tasks and/or make changes to team organization as needed;
  • Oversee the management of the relationships with partner organizations, ensure regular communication, and facilitate review/planning workshops.

Management of complementary funding, if any

  • Review and edit all progress reports for submission to donors;
  • Authorize all expenses, monitor spending rates on cash budgets, and develop transparent systems for tracking, reporting and accounting for in-kind contributions.

Supervisory Responsibilities:

Direct reports: Education Program Manager, Commodity Manager, Grant Manager, MEAL Manager, Project Finance Manager.

Program Manager Competencies: These are rooted in the mission, values, and principles of CRS and used by each program manager to fulfill his or her responsibilities and to achieve the desired results:

  • Sets clear goals and manages toward them;
  • Collaborates effectively with staff and stakeholders;
  • Manages financial resources with integrity;
  • Applies program quality standards to program design and organizational learning.

Agency-wide Competencies: These are rooted in the mission, values, and principles of CRS and used by each staff member to fulfill his or her responsibilities and to achieve the desired results.

  • Serves with Integrity;
  • Models Stewardship;
  • Develops Constructive Relationships;
  • Promotes Learning.

MEAL Competencies: These are rooted in the mission, values, and principles of CRS and used by each program manager to fulfill his or her responsibilities and to achieve the desired results:

  • Monitoring;
  • Evaluation;
  • Learning;
  • Critical thinking.

Key Working Relationships:

Internal: Country Representative, Head of Programming, Head of Operations, CoP DFAP, Finance Manager, Head of Administration, Head of Human Resources, FFE program staff, CRS Regional staff, CRS/HQ/PIQA.

External: Local partners, Ministry of Education and its decentralized structures, Ministry of Agricultre and its decentralized structures, other government officials, USDA, project consultants, other international NGOs.

Personal/Professional Skills:

  • Strong organizational and planning skills;
  • Ability to think critically, effectively manage change and problem solve;
  • Excellent English report-writing skills for USG donors;
  • Excellent knowledge and experience in budget management;
  • Excellent knowledge and experience in program evaluation a plus;
  • Excellent communication and inter-personal skills, with demonstrated strength in relationship management;
  • Ability to be flexible, persistent, and diplomatic and to gain respect among staff, local community leaders, church and secular partners, as well as local government ministries and donor organizations;
  • Ability to function effectively as part of a multi-cultural team.

Qualifications:

  • Masters Degree in Health, Education, Nutrition, Water and Sanitation, International Development, or related field;
  • At least 8 years of program management experience in a developing country, with a focus on education and/or nutrition preferred, and prior experience managing complex projects;
  • Proven track record of successful USG-funded program management, including management of multi-activity projects, complicated logistics and large budgets, as well as commodities and school feeding;
  • 5 years of supervisory experience, including performance evaluation, coaching and mentoring;
  • Excellent writing skills in English for reporting and communication with donors;
  • Strong cross-cultural skills and experience working with national staff in overseas offices;
  • Demonstrated ability to work as part of a team, but self-motivated and accountable for program implementation;
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office Word, PowerPoint, Excel and Outlook.

Physical Requirements/Environment:

The position is based in Antananarivo, Madagascar. It requires willingness and ability to travel approximately 50% of time to supervise field staff and activities.

Language Required:

Fluency in written and spoken English and French.

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