Director of Communications, Monitoring, and Learning

DAI


Background

The Feed the Future Democratic Republic of the Congo Strengthening Livelihoods and Resilience Activity is a program funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) that contributes to the U.S. government’s Feed the Future initiative. The Resilience activity is based in Bunia and carries out its activities throughout the province of Ituri. Its goal is to reduce humanitarian, developmental, and economic costs due to recurrent crises caused by factors such as land conflicts, disputes over natural resources, natural disasters, climate stress, poverty, armed conflict, and food insecurity. Its objective is to improve the resilience of vulnerable households and communities, to help individuals, households, and communities overcome poverty and chronic vulnerability.

The Resilience Activity is a program whose investments in local activities must lead to adaptations and iterations in order to achieve innovations in the socio-economic system of Ituri, and therefore communication and learning are paramount. The lessons learned during the implementation of activities must both motivate adaptations of the Activity and changes in mentalities among partners, and they must be communicated in a way that will catalyze long-term systemic transformations through changes in mentalities and habits. Its approach to engagement and communication to partners and other system actors must be strategic and message-oriented that will drive change without creating conflict or alienating potential partners. At the same time, it will be necessary to collect and report the data to USAID according to all the requirements of Feed the Future. The Resilience activity must therefore use a monitoring, evaluation, and learning system that both shows what the program and its partners are doing and provide feedback information to management and partners in real time to allow rapid adaptations. The strategy developed by the Activity during its first year of carrying out activities depends on a decentralized and flexible network but accountable to the program to be able to quickly mobilize field studies through local partners, receive daily data from partners and observers in the field, validate them with frequent visits from program staff, and deliver and organize lessons learned to management, USAID, and especially institutional, private sector, government, and community partners, in language that everyone can understand.

Job Description

In order to contribute to the achievement of the objectives of the Resilience activity, the Director of Communication, Monitoring and Learning will be responsible for refining and implementing the communication and monitoring and evaluation strategy, always emphasizing the importance of learning. This person will coordinate and produce any reporting to USAID according to contractual deliverables, and will ensure that USAID’s marking requirements are met, as well as the reporting of Feed the Future indicators. Their responsibility will also include the proper management of any relevant information that arrives at the Resilience activity of these staff and partners, especially by ensuring a system that transmits this information to the learning forums for the staff. The Director of Communication, Monitoring, and Learning will also work closely with the team leader to ensure the successful completion of the Monitoring, Evaluation, and Learning Plan, as well as the Project Communication and Engagement Strategy.

Responsibilities and Key Tasks:

Specifically, the Director of Communications, Monitoring and Learning will be responsible for:

Communications

  • Work as the primary coordinator for the preparation, drafting, and correction of periodic products required by the contract with USAID (such as quarterly and annual reports, newsletters and success stories, weekly updates, and other ad hoc reports as required), always in coordination and with the support of the Deputy Chief of Party (DCOP) and Chief of Party (COP);

  • Conceptualize and supervise the production of promotional materials such as success stories, interviews, brochures, manuals, SMS, video segments, etc.; ensure proper translation, identify distribution chains of materials; and develop and manage other communication tools as needed to increase the visibility of the program;

  • Write and/or correct any material intended for externals with attention to accuracy, spelling, grammar, and syntax;

  • Ensure that the strategy and activities of monitoring, evaluation, learning, and communication of the Resilience activity are linked to the overall objectives, in particular:

  • With the support of the Director of Partnerships, Finance and Operations (DPFO), develop and implement communication strategies to amplify systemic change at the community and private sector levels;

  • Support communication campaigns for the change of mentalities and practices (behavior-change campaigns) in coordination with those responsible for sustainable agriculture and gender and social inclusion and STTA;

  • In coordination with the technical staff, develop and implement messaging strategies to communities to understand the approach of the Resilience activity and how and why it acts in its own way in each area;

  • Support the technical team to anticipate and solve communication and “public relations” challenges in the communities, especially in case of misunderstandings that could harm the program;

  • Ensure that cross-cutting elements such as social inclusion, conflict mitigation, data-driven decision-making, and environmental compliance are integrated into all monitoring, evaluation, and learning activities;

  • Serve as a voice in the team for the production of high quality documents and in compliance with DAI and USAID standards, including strengthening the staff’s ability to understand reporting requirements and formats and developing and conducting training;

Monitoring and Evaluation

  • Implement the approved MEL Plan of the program, including the Theory of Change, monitoring and verification of performance indicators, activities such as field studies, explanation of how the activities of the Resilience Activity are aligned with other USAID programs, and supervision of any resources necessary for the implementation of the MEL Plan;

  • Consult with technical leads and the COP and DCOP to develop and socialize any data collection efforts and tools, including baseline studies, mid-term studies, final studies, additional studies, and daily monitoring of activities;

  • Ensure “pause and reflect” brainstorming sessions (at least quarterly) with the team and relevant partners to draw lessons and adaptations to be undertaken;

  • Effectively coordinate with the external expert(s) on the design and implementation of “sentinel” indicators (anticipatory indicators of a desired change) in order to measure systemic change and resilience capacities, following the Market Systems Resilience Assessment (MSRA) and other tools;

  • Set up a network of staff and partners to allow the collection and close follow-up: activities planned and implemented by local partners at the field level; field partners and ensure that they accurately report the expected results of the deliverables in the reports; good practices and lessons learned for the planning of LRT and partner activities; responses to complaints and feedback from beneficiaries (customers) and local partners; coaching of partner staff who are dedicated to collection, processing, management, analysis and reporting activities;

  • Develop and manage a network of community-level contact points that can contribute to LRT’s local information sources as well as advise and contribute to community engagement efforts;

  • Ensure that the Resilience activity database is controlled for good quality;

  • Collaborate with technical and partnership teams to periodically review and improve the MEL system so that it meets the needs of these teams for monitoring and adaptation (“improve”);

  • Collect, manage, and disseminate technical information, field data, and lessons learned, ensuring that information is available to program staff;

  • Advise the COP, DCOP and DFPO on ways to improve communication and learning ;

  • Participate in the co-creation of activities with communities and the Resilience activity team, analyzing and improving the ways in which the Activity operates and how it carries out its technical activities, including participation in “pause and reflect” sessions and feedback to the Programme Director, Deputy Director, and Partnerships Director to support improvements to the Activity; and

  • Learn and appropriate the principles of the Resilience activity with respect to the design and implementation of technical and operational activities, especially by supporting the project leadership to implement the program in accordance with the principles of resilience programs and the policies and procedures of USAID and DAI;

Reporting to

The Chief of Party will be the supervisor of this position. The Director of Communications, Monitoring, and Learning may supervise a team or network of staff and partners that he/she will define with the other members of the project management.

Qualifications

The following qualifications are required for all candidates for this position:

  • Bachelor’s degree in communications, management informatics, economics, agronomy, demography, statistics, communications or any other discipline related to the position;

  • Total professional experience of at least ten years, including at least 5 years of experience in supervising monitoring and evaluation activities and the same level of experience in a position where the production of high-quality documents was a regular task ;

  • Experience with monitoring and evaluation of USAID programs and especially Feed the Future;

  • Good command of computer tools (e.g. KoBo, ODK, Ms – Excel, PHP MySQL, C, C Sharp, Ms Access)

  • The ability to produce high quality USAID reports as well as other communication products, incorporate feedback from senior staff, and write and correct independently;

  • Proof of having done marketing, communication, articles, and other written products of excellent quality;

  • Experience with networking, especially network development and management, as well as planning and facilitating discussions and events;

  • Ability to make decisions quickly and support teams in fluid situations, even in response to complex challenges that require knowledge of multiple possibilities based on versatile experience and in-depth knowledge;

  • Good customer service mentality , especially in environments where expectations change frequently;

  • Ability to facilitate problem solving in an independent but judicious and collaborative manner;

  • Extreme attention to quality and detail and proven ability to manage multiple deadlines on time;

  • Sensitivity to the issues of youth, women, and marginalized populations in the activities of the program, as well as in the engagement of rural communities;

  • Spoken and written fluency in English and proficient in French;

The following qualifications are preferred and may strengthen an application for this position:

  • Master’s degree in a highly preferred relevant discipline;

  • Experience with monitoring and evaluation of development programs in an agricultural environment;

  • Experience in programs that work in agriculture;

  • Knowledge of Market Systems Development approaches or other development modalities that use facilitation approaches;

  • Experience with formal co-creation ;

  • Proficiency (verbally) of the Indigenous languages of Ituri, such as: Alur, Bandaka, Bombo, Hema, Kebu-tuu, Lendu, Ndo-tuki, or Nyali; or Maïtrise of Swahili, Lingala, or other Congolese national languages spoken in Ituri;

  • Experience working directly with community groups in marginalized geographies of Ituri.

The Feed the Future DRC Strengthening Livelihoods and Resilience Activity offers equal employment opportunities to any staff, consultant, and applicant and prohibits any kind of discrimination or harassment against race, color, religion, ethnicity, age, sex, national origin, infirmity, genetic status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or other characteristic protected by U.S. or Congolese laws.

This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruitment, hiring, promotion, termination, internal job changes, leave, compensation, and training.

How to apply

Link to job posting and application: https://phf.tbe.taleo.net/phf04/ats/careers/requisition.jsp?org=DAINC&cws=1&rid=6936

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