Regional Operations & Humanitarian Advisor – Middle East and Eastern Europe (MEEE)

Save the Children International


The Opportunity

In the MEEE Region, Save the Children currently operates a significant portfolio of programmes in 19 countries across Eastern Europe, the Caucuses and the Middle East. It has a workforce of over 2,000 staff and annual expenditure for 2022 is expected to be in excess of $ 300 million. A large portion of these programmes consist of responses to large humanitarian emergencies (Yemen, Ukraine and Syria). We also work in countries with chronic humanitarian situations (Lebanon, Palestine, Iraq) as well as regular, smaller emergencies (Bosnia Herzegovina, Greece, and the refugee and migration influx into Turkey and Europe).

The Regional Operations & Humanitarian Response team exists to support Country Offices (COs) and humanitarian responses in the Middle East and Eastern Europe (MEEE) region; working with CO Senior Management Teams and Response Leads to ensure our work for children is delivered on time, on budget with compliance and to a high level of quality. The team leads a variety of processes and procedures (many mandatory within Save the Children) such as emergency preparedness, response to shocks, spikes and major sudden-onset crises, risk management, and improving ongoing programme delivery.

Within the team, the Operations & Humanitarian Advisor exists to serve a designated portfolio of COs and humanitarian responses, with the support of an Operations & Humanitarian Affairs Officer. From an Operations perspective, the role is designed to ensure that countries are equipped to complete key processes (such as Risk Management Plans, internal audits) and implement resulting actions and mitigations alongside the demands of day-to-day implementation. From a Humanitarian Response perspective, the purpose of this role is to ensure emergency responses have a single lead ‘focal point’ in the Regional Office, to ensure countries have effective processes in place to monitor their contexts, and that preparedness steps are completed in a timely and meaningful manner.

Across all of this, the purpose of the Advisor is to enable the MEEE RO to actively capture learning and best-practice between countries and responses in the MEEE region and beyond and to share this with country offices. This requires engagement in regional and global fora, as well as external representation.



Provision of strategic input and advice to country offices as needed on humanitarian and operational issues, including support with Save the Children approaches, quality standards, tools and best practice.

Core operations processes for a set portfolio of countries

•           Supporting country offices in ensuring effective risk management procedures and the implementation of agreed mitigation measures

•           Acting as the primary Regional Office focal point for internal audits from the Global Assurance team (including scoping, preparatory work, review of initial findings and implementation of actions).

•           Reviewing and monitoring the implementation of steps to mitigate the risks of Aid Diversion in relevant Country Offices – engaging with the CO, RO and Legal teams

•           Supporting country offices in their strategic planning, such as the development of operational improvement plans, strengthening initiatives, reviews of structures/operating models, master budgets and financial forecasts

•           Monitoring and analysis of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and other management information, in order to provide advice on corrective actions

•           Support the induction of key leadership staff as required

•           Lead/support development and/or delivery of regional capacity building initiatives in line with identified gaps and in collaboration with the Humanitarian Leadership Academy (HLA)

•           Providing support and input to key organizational change initiatives, including for Source to Pay (S2P) and PRIME

Emergency preparedness and response for a set portfolio of countries

•           Accountable to the RO Senior Leadership team for ensuring designated COs have updated emergency preparedness plans (EPP’s), contingency plans and updated early warning systems in place, and that actions are completed accordingly

•           Monitoring context developments and trends in the region, coordinating closely with Regional Context Analysts and COs to ensure indicators and triggers are well-understood and acted upon as necessary

•           Ensuring appropriate categorization of humanitarian needs in the country office, with re-categorization on an annual basis or when the situation significantly changes.

•           Ensuring resources from the internal Humanitarian Fund are requested in a coherent fashion and utilised in an appropriate and timely manner, complemented by high-quality reports

•           Overseeing the submission of high-quality Annual Humanitarian Plans by relevant countries, and other response deliverables (strategies, budgets) for newly-emerging crises

•           Supporting country offices in conducting operational reviews, senior management reviews, assessment, Real Time Reviews and evaluations where needed

•           Deploying in leadership positions for assessment and response as required and in agreement with country offices;

•           Coordination of multi-country responses

•           Ensuring appropriate technical support/backstopping for responses and other programming, where necessary.

Applying learning best practice from across the organisation

•           Actively capturing and promoting best practices and lessons learnt from countries in MEEE and elsewhere in Save the Children globally, relating to programme operations, response and preparedness

•           Acting as a sounding board and problem-solving partner for addressing operational challenges in the region.


Representing the Regional Operations & Humanitarian Response team 

•           Act as a main focal point at the Regional Office for assigned country offices and focal point between Country Offices, Centre, RO, Members, and selected external stakeholders.

•           Representing the MEEE Regional Office in key Save the Children groups, as required (e.g. the Famine Prevention & Response Task Force, Regional Humanitarian Leads Group, Anticipatory Action Working Group etc.)


•           Demonstrate leadership in relation to Save the Children policies and practice with respect to child safeguarding, code of conduct, health and safety, equal opportunities and other relevant policies and procedures.


In order to be successful you will bring/have:


  • Substantial senior-level field experience in the humanitarian aid and development sector working in a senior humanitarian operations role in at least 2 different contexts
  •  A postgraduate degree in an appropriate technical field or relevant practical experience.
  • Strong understanding of humanitarian context and application of humanitarian principles
  • Thorough understating of emergency response sector and processes to achieve the result effectively
  • Strong interpersonal skills to develop and maintain collaborative relations at all levels of management / leadership, must be capable of summarising and communicating complex information and data
  • Effective leadership skills to support the Country and Regional senior management teams.
  • In depth understanding of how to operate safely and securely in humanitarian response
  • Skills to manage and operate in a pressured and changing environment
  • Excellent English language skills, and Arabic language highly desirable (but not essential)
  • Ability to be flexible and to travel around the region, as and when necessary (up to 50% travel)
  • Commitment to Save the Children’s vision, mission and values

The Organisation

We employ approximately 25,000 people across the globe and work on the ground in over 100 countries to help children affected by crises, or those that need better healthcare, education and child protection. We also campaign and advocate at the highest levels to realise the right of children and to ensure their voices are heard. 


We are working towards three breakthroughs in how the world treats children by 2030:

  • No child dies from preventable causes before their 5th birthday
  • All children learn from a quality basic education and that,
  • Violence against children is no longer tolerated


We know that great people make a great organization, and that our employees play a crucial role in helping us achieve our ambitions for children.  We value our people and offer a meaningful and rewarding career, along with a collaborative and inclusive environment where ambition, creativity, and integrity are highly valued.

Application Information:

Please attach a copy of your CV and cover letter with your application, and include details of your current remuneration and salary expectations.  A copy of the full role profile can be found at


We need to keep children safe so our selection process, which includes rigorous background checks, reflects our commitment to the protection of children from abuse.


All employees are expected to carry out their duties in accordance with our global anti-harassment policy.








Apply Now
To help us track our recruitment effort, please indicate in on the application form/in your cover letter where ( you saw this job posting.