World Food Programme (WFP) – Senior Programme Associate (County Innovation Centres Manager).

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WFP celebrates and embraces diversity. It is committed to the principle of equal employment opportunity for all its employees and encourages qualified candidates to apply irrespective of race, colour, national origin, ethnic or social background, genetic information, gender, gender identity and/or expression, sexual orientation, religion or belief, HIV status or disability.


The United Nations World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide.  The mission of WFP is to help the world achieve Zero Hunger in our lifetimes.  Every day, WFP works worldwide to ensure that no child goes to bed hungry and that the poorest and most vulnerable, particularly women and children, can access the nutritious food they need.


The World Food Programme (WFP) is the United Nations frontline agency fighting hunger by delivering food assistance in emergencies and working with smallholder farmers, communities, and governments to improve nutrition and build resilience. In the Eastern African region, the Kenya Country Office and its operational context offers optimal potential for using innovative solutions to improve food assistance programmes and support capacity strengthening. Designing, piloting, implementing, and scaling new ideas lies at the heart of WFP Kenya.

As Innovation in WFP Kenya becomes increasingly important and widely spread, there exists an opportunity to decentralize WFP’s efforts on innovation to impact macro-level food security and foster innovation ecosystems at County level through the establishment of county innovation centers. In response to these needs and opportunities, WFP Kenya is opening a position for a Senior Programme Associate – County Innovation Centers Manager, with the key objectives of supporting the establishment of innovation centers within the counties, leveraging WFPs ongoing government initiative of strengthening counties by engaging and building long-lasting partnerships and empowering local communities to identify challenges and develop home grown solutions.

KEY ACCOUNTABILITIES (not all-inclusive)

Under the direct supervision of the Head of Innovation, the Senior Programme Associate (County Innovation Centers Manager) will manage the design, set up and establishment of county innovation centers and work with county governments and relevant stakeholders to accelerate the adoption and scaling of innovations and innovative methodologies aimed at strengthening the resilience of vulnerable population in the ASAL regions. The main tasks will be as follows:

  • Leverage successful partnership between the Government and WFP to support the design, set up and running of innovation centers within the counties
  • Pilot and test the innovation centers in select counties within the ASAL regions of Kenya
  • Strengthen the capacity of communities to become innovators through the application of human centered design approaches
  • Create partnerships with already existing local innovation centers in the counties or support the establishment of collaborative partnerships with various actors within the innovation ecosystem
  • Support training of communities, innovators and county government counterparts on innovation methodologies that seek to help them identify, frame challenges and develop solutions to problems faced at field level, in the counties and beyond
  • In partnership with the Government and other external partners, support the adoption of innovative projects at field level –
  • Support fundraising and resource mobilization efforts through the development of strategies and proposals; identify funding opportunities for start ups that can be incubated
  • Promote the use of innovation centers to academia, private sector, investors and other innovators as a space and avenue to collaborate, co-create and innovate for social good
  • Manage engagements with different players within the innovation ecosystem with the aim of identifying strategic partnerships and collaborations that contribute to the work in the innovation centers


Education: Completion of secondary education. University degree in business administration, project management or related field. Master’s degree a plus.

Experience: At least five years of progressively responsible experience in the humanitarian or international development sector.

Language: In addition to a high proficiency in written and spoken English, knowledge of a second UN language is a plus. Knowledge of Kiswahili is of value.

Knowledge & Skills:

  • Experience working in a large scale-organization or with a client/in partnership with a large-scale organization;
  • Proven track record of driving projects – effectively delivering impactful elements of projects in a fast-moving environment, ideally for new businesses, new business models, start-ups etc.;
  • Able to generate new and original solutions to complex problems and to design new products ideas; – Strong conceptual thinking to develop new strategies & innovative projects;
  • Able to interact with a broad range of stakeholders and external audience with maturity and tact;
  • Excellent communication/presentation skills, with the ability to write strategy documents, to develop business plans and to write and deliver presentations;
  • Collaborative spirit, able to partner with a wide range of people at all levels and across different cultures and to act with credibility and diplomacy; – Self-motivated and able to work with a high degree of autonomy;
  • Sets high-level of ambition for the project and own work to achieve impact for the communities we serve


  • Successful design, set up and roll out of innovation centers within the ASAL counties
  • Strengthened engagement with government and partners both at national and county level instrumental to growth of innovation centers – Leverage local partnerships to develop and expand the concept of innovation centers
  • Identify and accelerate adoption of highly scalable projects within the ASAL counties
  • Strong linkages established within the Kenyan innovation ecosystem
  • Well maintained relationships with current and identified potential partners
  • New funding streams identified in support of the work at the innovation centers


  • A self-starter. You are full of initiative and great ideas. You need little guidance, are comfortable working independently but are also a great team player.
  • Strategic Thinkers. You demonstrate big picture thinking and resourcefulness in engaging in the right partnerships – Ability to multitask. You like variety in your work and are willing to tackle different challenges when the opportunity arises. 
  • An organizer with great attention to detail. You are a meticulous planner but are flexible enough to change course when the situation requires you to do so.
  • Driven by impact. Achieving impact through your job is important to you, and you are passionate about working towards achieving zero hunger.


  • Only shortlisted candidates will be contacted and advance to the next stage of the selection process.
  • WFP embraces diversity and equal opportunity. We are committed to building a team that celebrates diversity and inclusivity in all ways. All employment is decided on the basis of qualifications and merit.
  • Applications for this position will close at 11:59 p.m. (East African Time) on 23 June 2022.


All employment decisions are made on the basis of organizational needs, job requirements, merit, and individual qualifications. WFP is committed to providing an inclusive work environment free of sexual exploitation and abuse, all forms of discrimination, any kind of harassment, sexual harassment, and abuse of authority. Therefore, all selected candidates will undergo rigorous reference and background checks.




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