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5 Aug 2017

Program Officer – Somalia

Position: Program Officer – Somalia

Location: Somalia (70%); Nairobi, Kenya (30%)

Reports To: Country Director – Somalia

About RI:

Relief International (RI) is a leading global humanitarian and development organization and home to teams of humanitarian activist-professionals committed to transforming adversity into renewal for the world’s most vulnerable populations living in fragile settings. By partnering with beneficiaries and communities on the front-lines, RI innovatively bridges the gap between immediate relief and long-term community development.

Position Summary:

In East Africa, RI is working to improve health, nutrition, food security, WASH, education, and general economic conditions through relief and development programming.

Under supervision of the Country Director, the Program Officer will engage with field teams, headquarters, partners and donors, in order to monitor, manage and grow the RI-Somalia portfolio. With a focus on day-to-day monitoring and striving for quality in both programming and human capacity, the Program Officer will work with the Country Director to constantly improve all RI-Somalia programming.


The Program Officer is expected to show initiative and possess strong program management skills in order to manage Somalia programs. He/she must have good communication skills and engage on a regular basis with humanitarian actors at all levels, including field staff, partners and donors, in order to monitor, manage and grow the RI-Somalia portfolio.

Program Support

  • Provide day-to-day support to all Somalia programs;
  • Manage Program Communications and Reporting Associate and/or Program Interns to support them in their essential duties and learning;
  • Review and ensure that all donor and Cluster reports are of high quality and submitted on time;
  • Liaise with field teams to get updates on current activities, achievements and bottlenecks related to active projects;
  • Act as liaison between Somalia Country Office and Global Support Office to ensure timely coordination and information sharing as needed;
  • Review grant agreements and share with other RI focal points for inputs and approval prior to signing;
  • Engage directly with M&E Team to develop tools and to monitor program and project-specific indicators for donor and Cluster reporting as well as overall program improvement;
  • Support M&E Team with design and implementation of data collection tools for baseline and endline assessments, including supervising logistics;
  • Support M&E Team in the collection and verification of data from the field in preparation and submission to donors and Clusters;
  • Meet regularly with Program Managers to review project progress and financials, troubleshoot issues and discuss ways to improve overall programming;
  • Support Program Managers in the monitoring of work plans and spending plans for each Somalia project;
  • Review and reconcile expense reports, project spending, and budget versus actuals (BVAs) in direct coordination with Finance Manager and Program Managers;
  • Support Operations and Logistics Teams with program-related procurements, as needed;
  • Write strategic plans in coordination with technical field teams;
  • Attend meetings relevant to Somalia programs to network with other partners and donors, to represent RI-Somalia and to give presentations on programming successes and challenges;
  • Participate in internal organizational meetings to report on lessons learned from Somalia programming;
  • Facilitate and create partnerships with stakeholders to improve coordination, fill needed gaps and to expand programming to new locations or sectors;
  • Provide additional program support to the team, as needs arise.

Program Development

  • Lead on gathering information from the ground to inform project proposals;
  • Take the lead for the Somalia Team on researching, writing, editing, reviewing and finalizing proposal sections and supporting documentation in preparation for all submissions to donors;
  • Work closely with Regional Program Development Manager on all Somalia Country Office proposal opportunities;
  • Coordinate with partners and consortiums on data collection for needs assessments in addition to written sections of joint proposals;
  • Attend meetings with partners and donors to gather information and generate ideas for program expansion;
  • Represent RI to external stakeholders and effectively demonstrate knowledge of the company’s history, values, and standards, in addition to RI-Somalia’s programming goals.

Human Resources Support and Staff Capacity Building

  • Lead Somalia team meetings on a regular basis, facilitating discussion and team-building;
  • Write terms of reference (ToRs) and support the recruitment of short-term consultants and new staff;
  • Supervise Communications and Reporting Associate and ensure that all tasks under this position are completed timely and of high quality;
  • Manage short-term consultants, ensuring assignment timelines are on track, deliverables are submitted and all payments are completed in a timely manner;
  • Work directly with the Somalia Management Team (SMT) to determine needs for building the capacity of field teams;
  • Seek out training opportunities for staff on the ground to build skills and capacity of the Somalia Team.


  • This position demands a dynamic individual with demonstrated ability to achieve results in a demanding and fast-paced environment;
  • General knowledge of world affairs and international/intergovernmental institutions, and an intellectual curiosity to expand upon that knowledge;
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills;
  • Excellent organizational skills and attention-to-detail is a must;
  • Strong interpersonal skills and ability to work independently, as well as part of a team;
  • Previous proposal writing experience and experience working with donors (OFDA, OCHA, EU, UNHCR, DFID, etc.);
  • Previous experience writing work plans and supporting project management;
  • Experience with report writing and M&E in relation to humanitarian or development programming;
  • BA required; Master’s in International Development, Public Health or similar degree desired yet not required;
  • Experience working in Africa, preferably Somalia, is highly desired;
  • Excellent command of English, both written and oral;
  • Somali language ability desired, but not required.

RI Values:
We uphold the Humanitarian Principles: humanity, neutrality, impartiality, and operational independence. We affirmatively engage the most vulnerable communities.*

We value:

  • Inclusiveness
  • Transparency and Accountability
  • Agility and Innovation
  • Collaboration
  • Sustainability

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