Mercy Corps – Resilience Advisor – Nawiri.

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About Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within. Now, and for the future.

 Program / Department Summary 

With funding from USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA), Mercy Corps’ Nawiri Program is leading a consortium of Kenyan and international partners on a five year journey to sustainably reduce persistent acute malnutrition in Turkana and Samburu Counties of Kenya. Through a phased approach that emphasizes evidence gap analysis, as well as partnership, learning, and co-creation, the program takes a robust county-centered design with government leadership, active engagement from communities, the private sector, and civil society. Mercy Corps’ consortium brings together the global leadership, research capacity, technical expertise, and implementation experience necessary to partner with local institutions to test, adapt, and scale evidence-based solutions. Together we will sustainably reduce persistent acute malnutrition for vulnerable populations in Turkana and Samburu counties.

General Position Summary

The Nawiri Resilience Advisor will provide strategic leadership and support that cross-cuts all areas of the program. During the first phase of Nawiri, s/he will ensure the program’s research and learning agenda is designed and routinely iterated to build a robust evidence base for informing strategic investments for driving resilience outcomes. Working across all program areas, and in close collaboration with the Learning and Research Teams, s/he will support the Nawiri team to routinely analyze emergent findings of research and learning activities through a systems lens with focus on implications for risks and opportunities. The Resilience Advisor is responsible for leading resilience learning and acting on evidence that emerges. The Advisor will adapt or develop program tools to better incorporate a resilience approach, drawing from and improving upon Mercy Corps’ resilience framework and best practices.

Essential Job Responsibilities

strategy and program management

  • Support existing and emerging resilience learning and programming.
  • Deliver technical support and mentoring to program managers and technical resource personnel/teams, in conducting resilience assessments, incorporating adaptive management practices in their work, and incorporating resilience measurement.
  • Provide strategic technical support and capacity building to learning areas.
  • Work closely with the program teams in Samburu and Turkana during inception/start up and implementation to design, adapt, monitor and document program strategies to reinforce resilience-building objectives.
  • Review selected programs’ technical approaches and implementation strategies and develop customized recommendations to integrate and refine resilience capacities.
  • Provide ongoing technical guidance and targeted implementation support to Nawiri program teams on opportunities to adapt and improve resilience-building approaches to address evolving conditions, through participating, coordinating and collaborating extensively with all Nawiri Stakeholders.

Program Quality Learning and Communication

  • In collaboration with the M&E Team, develop a monitoring, evaluation and learning framework to track progress and results on resilience application in selected programs, including drafting quarterly learning briefs based on activities carried out and program learning/results.
  • Develop an institutional resilience knowledge management and communications plan, sharing out findings and updates through appropriate internal channels.
  • Work with Strategic Learning Lead to organize program reflections to review learning and discuss new information and implications for programming in the field of resilience.
  • Develop the capacity of key team members to lead resilience integration across Mercy Corps Nawiri.
  • Create and share strategic reports highlighting findings, lessons learned and next frontiers for research and learning, including making recommendations for minimum standards/tenets/principles for what is possible in operationalizing and building resilience capacities within humanitarian and early recovery programming, in coordination with technical advisors.
  • Conduct himself/herself both professionally and personally in such a manner as to bring credit to Mercy Corps and to not jeopardize its humanitarian mission.
  • Develop and maintain strong relationships with resilience stakeholders and identify strategic implementation, research and private sector partners that can contribute to Nawiri influence and impact.
  • Participate in relevant strategic external working groups and fora to share Mercy Corps’ experience and promote thought-leadership in resilience.
  • Maintain partnerships with key resilience stakeholders, including local civil society organizations.
  • Ensure compliance with security procedures and policies as determined by country leadership.
  • Proactively ensure that team members operate in a secure environment and are aware of policies.

Organizational learning

  • As part of our commitment to organizational learning and in support of our understanding that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities they serve, we expect all team members to commit 5% of their time to learning activities that benefit Mercy Corps as well as themselves.
  • Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our beneficiaries and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging beneficiary communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.

 Supervisory Responsibility:

No direct supervisory responsibility. Technical oversight of field based activities is undertaken by Nawiri staff and partners.


Reports Directly To: Deputy Chief of Party

Works Directly WithStrategic Learning Lead, Research Design Lead, Institutional Strengthening Lead, M&E team, partner agencies, local government, USAID and support departments (Finance, HR and Operations). Coordinates with HQ Program Performance team and the Technical Support Unit (TSU)

Knowledge and Experience

  • BA/BS or equivalent in international studies or other relevant field; MA/S preferred.
  • At least 5 years of program management experience in humanitarian and early recovery programming involving livelihoods, food security, protection, shelter, WASH or other sector
  • Previous experience working in the ASALs of Kenya strongly preferred.
  • Previous experience working on resilience-focused programming strongly preferred but not mandatory. Experience with resilience theory and practice, systems thinking and adaptive management a plus.
  • Experience with participatory assessment methodologies a plus.
  • Proven experience successfully coordinating teams, negotiating and influencing others to get results without formal supervisory authority
  • Demonstrated ability to transfer knowledge to diverse audiences through training, mentoring, and other formal and non-formal capacity building methods necessary.
  • Demonstrated flexibility and creativity in planning and problem solving.
  • Essential computer literacy and capacity to work with MS Office applications highly desirable.

Success Factors

The successful Resilience Advisor will be an intrepid relationship manager skilled at working across teams to achieve results. S/he will be conscientious, with an excellent sense of judgment and commitment to integrity. S/he will demonstrate effective verbal and written communication, multi-tasking, organizational, and prioritization skills. Demonstrated attention to detail, ability to follow procedures, meet deadlines, and work independently and cooperatively with team members is required. The successful Advisor will have a sincere interest to see big picture trends through various systems lenses, and roll up his/her sleeves to put theory into practice in field work.  S/he will have interest and ability to travel and work in remote environments and awareness of and sensitivity to multicultural international development/humanitarian work. Finally, s/he will have an ability to train and facilitate dialogue among a diverse group of individuals with various skill sets and working styles through innovative capacity building and facilitative techniques.

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

Mercy corps does not charge any fees at any stage of the recruitment process.



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