National Program Director – Resilience and Access (Re-Advertised)

Job Description

HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation is an independent development organization based in Switzerland and it has been operating for the last 65 years worldwide. HELVETAS is registered in Ethiopia as foreign organization with the Agency for Civil Society Organization to operate in the areas of Rural Infrastructure, Natural Resource Management, Support to CSO and Local Governments, Skill Development & Education and Emergency Response.

Main Objectives: 

The Program Director is a member of the Ethiopia Management Team. He/she supports the Country Director and the Management Team on matters related to the development and management of the program and project portfolio. He/she supports thematic team leaders to strengthen learning and knowledge management in their working area. Contributes to timely budget execution of the overall country program. Represents, in coordination with the Country Director, the organization towards external partners and supports the positioning of HELVETAS Ethiopia through information exchange, coordination and strategic alliances.
The Program Director supports a portfolio of projects in the areas of resilience and climate adaptation and rural access & infrastructure and ensures sound Project Cycle Management principles are adhered to. He/she supports the respective Project Managers to further develop strategic and thematic competences in line with the Helvetas Ethiopia Country Strategy. He/she supports innovation and renewal in these working areas.
The Program Director supports the Country Director in consolidating and where necessary further developing the resilience and access project portfolio through seizing opportunities approved by HQ and maintain/strengthen networks and relationships with strategic technical partners (knowledge centers), financial partners (bilateral and multilateral donors, foundations and institutional donors) and non-governmental development partners.

Main Tasks:


Provides input in the Management Team on strategic, operational, and contextual issues
Participates in thematic discussions organized by the Country Director and co-facilitates, workshops on reflection, continuous training for teams, change processes and team building
Proposes new topics of local, regional, or international interest and contribute to the development of new expertise and innovative ideas in the assigned thematic areas
Contributes to timely budget execution and financial reporting of the assigned project portfolio.
Supports program management in preparing, implementing, evaluating, and reorienting the country strategy as necessary.
Participates in events representing the organization (in coordination and where needed replacing the country director.

Project Management:

Coaches the Project Managers in the working areas resilience & climate adaptation as well as rural access & infrastructure in the management of the project throughout the project cycle.
Supports the Project Managers and their respective teams in the development of the annual operation plan and related budget in accordance with the contractual documents and changes in the context.
Coaches the project teams in the development of approaches and use of methodological tools and guidelines promoted by Helvetas.

Resource Mobilization:

Carries out a first analysis of acquisition opportunities in the respective working areas and prepares concept notes and proposals for services after approval by the Country Director.
Acts, upon indication of the Country Director, as team leader in acquisition processes or starts the process before handing over to a designated acquisition team leader
Supports the Country Director in the management of relations with key financial partners according to the development needs of the country program.
Interacts with the Regional Coordinator on fund raising.

Other Responsibilities:

The Country Director and the Management Team are supported in effective and efficient management of the Helvetas Ethiopia program. Successes and challenges are discussed and addressed in a timely manner. The performance and quality of the thematic portfolio adds to strategic positioning of the organization and increased performance of the projects.
Project implementation is to the satisfaction of technical and financial partners and reflect the added value of HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation. Project Managers receive systematic feedback on the planning, monitoring and evaluation of projects.  All expected reports and other inputs required by head office and donors are delivered on time and of the required quality.   The leadership of the Project Managers is strengthened and the skills, know-how and attitude of all project and partner staff is translated into effective teamwork
Program portfolio is maintained and consolidated at current financial volume (about 8-9 mill. CHF per year) and an even development of the thematic portfolio is ensured.  New financial partners are identified, and lasting relations are developed.  Project managers maintain conducive relationships with respective donors.

Job Requirements



Master’s degree in related field of study from a recognized University.


Specialization in development cooperation.



10 years of experience in a management position in international development cooperation
Thematic competences in the working area Water, Food & Climate (food security, national resource management, climate change/resilience).
Proven leadership experience: Motivation, coaching and individual capacity building; management facilitation and knowledge sharing
Excellent writing skills
Experience in acquiring project finance
Experience in project planning and monitoring and evaluation
Experience in dealing with technical and financial partners and networking


Thematic competence on rural infrastructure
Conflict Sensitive Program Management
Advocacy and policy dialogue

Skill and Competencies:


Able to motivate and coach
Excellent analytical, conceptual and programmatic skills
Excellent intercultural skills
Perfect command of outcome monitoring
Understands the concept of governance and the principles of good governance
Training in sustainable development tools and methodological approaches
Know-how acquired through practical experience in Ethiopia
Adheres to the value system and development concepts of HELVETAS Swiss Intercooperation
Motivating, active and enthusiastic, showing common sense in identifying problems and setting priorities
Engaging personality, able to work in a supportive manner
Excellent communication and facilitation skills
Excellent team player
Mastery of the most common computer software
Perfect command of written and spoken English


Training in project cycle management and logical framework
Training in human resources management
Gender budgeting
Climate adaptation and resilience building
Training in monitoring and evaluation, particularly at the level of project outcomes and impact
Geographic Information System (GIS)
Information and knowledge management system software/webinar.

Interested and qualified candidates are encouraged to apply by sending their application and updated CV through
Female applicates are highly encouraged to apply.
Please make sure you write the position title in the subject line.
Kindly note that only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.

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