Program Manager - Bamako, Mali - Building Resilience in Kayes & Sikasso (BRIKS)

Programs Bamako, Mali






About Mercy Corps

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

Mercy Corps has been working in Mali since 2012, supporting vulnerable communities and at-risk Malian women, men and youth to cope with food security and conflict-induced shocks and stresses, restore peace and stability, and address humanitarian, development and stabilization structural challenges. With a growing portfolio, Mercy Corps Mali is increasing striving to integrate its humanitarian, development and conflict-prevention programming to create a sustainable and impactful improvement in the stability and development of some of Mali’s worst conflict-affected areas.

Program / Department Summary

Mercy Corps is currently expanding its portfolio of programs across Mali to support communities in preventing the further spread of violent conflict through addressing root causes of conflict in communities situated in the buffer zones between the relatively stable South and the more volatile CentreThe current political situation in Mali remains fragile and the political transition offers a unique opportunity to reaffirm the social contract between the state and Malian citizens and between different communities by engaging in multi layered dialogues involving relevant stakeholders to address pinch points experienced by Malians.

Mercy Corps is engaging in an 18-month Building Resilience in Kayes and Sikasso (BRiKS) project to strengthen community resilience to conflict in increasingly at-risk areas of southern and western Mali 

In light of this, Mercy Corps Mali is seeking a BRiKS Program Manager to lead the day-to-day administration and implementation and ensure for the overall achievement of objectives of the project

General Position Summary

The BRiKS Program Manager will have responsibility for the overall achievement of objectives, and the day-to-day administration and implementation of an 18-months UE-funded peacebuilding and stability program that will be implemented in Kayes and Sikasso regionsThe Program Manager will be responsible for ensuring that the program runs smoothly by providing overall leadership, management, supervision, and strategic vision for the implementation of the program, while managing staff and resources to ensure that the program meets its targets and deliverables on-time, within budget, and at a high level of quality. This will include strengthening the capacity of local partners in the areas of peacebuilding and conflict management, Resilience and governance, training and curriculum development, reviewing the design and implementation of peacebuilding and stability projects, facilitating clear communication between diverse groups, and ensuring rigorous measurement of program impact and timely reporting.

He/she must have work experience in conflict prevention, social cohesion, and governance in developing countries, especially those undergoing conflict and political transitions. This is a technical program management position and as such, the suitable candidate will have extensive experience in supporting similar initiatives, aimed at promoting inclusiveness and building of resilience by enhancing social cohesion, good governance, stability and related capacities at the local level.

Essential Job Responsibilities


        Develop a clear vision for the program, as well as a clear and effective strategy for program implementation and evaluation.

        Ensure that the program strategy is clear and communicated to team members, local beneficiaries and partners.

        Ensure that program implementation is responsive to communities and partners and aligned with Mercy Corps’ principles and values.

        Collaborate with other related Mercy Corps programs to create synergies wherever possible

        In coordination with the Peacebuilding & Governance Senior Team Lead, lead and document strategy development and vision for peace and conflict work within the country programming;

        Engage with the country level Program Performance and Quality (PaQ) team & the Peacebuilding & Governance Senior Team Lead to document best practice aimed and enhancing the knowledge and quality of Mercy Corps global community of practice in Peace, Conflict & stability.



        Manage and oversee the BRiKS program implementation in cooperation with key project stakeholders, including local non-governmental organizations, local government officials, community-based organizations, other international agencies on the ground, and key donors;

        Provide leadership and oversight in all aspects of program implementation, management and evaluation. This includes responsibility over partnership and any sub-grantees;

        Provide technical leadership to the program in the areas of the following three outcomes:

  1. Improved local and commune level capacities for conflict prevention, mitigation and resolution
  2. Increased local leadership in equitable and inclusive land and natural resource management
  3. Improved relations between fragile communities and the state, increased State knowledge of local conflict dynamics, and the promotion of national and regional peace initiatives

        Collaborate with program, finance and administrative staff to ensure systems are in compliance with donor and Mercy Corps policies and procedures;

        Ensure program implementation is on time, target and budget, using effective MEL and CARM systems and in accordance with all Mercy Corps and donor rules & regulations

        In partnership with the grants and finance departments, implement effective budget management, including budgeting, forecasting, BvA/revisions and modifications, sub-awarding, appropriate compliance reviews, checks and auditing;

        Maintain systems ensuring effective and transparent use of financial resources for timely and informative reporting in line with donor and Mercy Corps policies and procedures;

        Increase staff capacity by designing and leading technical training sessions on conflict management for Mercy Corps staff and local partners and providing ongoing coaching and mentoring;

        Oversee program staff and partner performance and quality of program implementation and if security context allows, conduct frequent field visits to all program sites.

        Promote learning and knowledge management through documentation and knowledge sharing around best practices and lessons learned;



        Create and sustain a work environment of mutual respect where team members strive to achieve excellence;

        Promote accountability, communicate expectations and provide constructive feedback via performance reviews;

        Establish performance expectations and regularly provide constructive feedback to staff (senior program officers).

        Develop the capacity of the team, deepen understanding of their roles, and assist with career development;

        Contribute to country team-building efforts, help team members identify problem solving options and ensure the integration of all team members into relevant decision-making processes;

        Provide team members with information, tools and other resources to improve performance & reach objectives;

        Supervise and regularly coordinate with project staff and support departments to ensure smooth planning, preparation, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation of program activities.



        In partnership with the PaQ and MEAL team, establish and oversee effective program monitoring, evaluation, and reporting systems for both internal and external use and ensure high quality input is obtained from team members;

        Establish and oversee effective program monitoring, evaluation, and reporting systems for both internal and external use and ensure high quality input is obtained from team members.

        Use reporting results to monitor program success, measure impact, and calibrate program strategy accordingly.

        Assess gaps and coordinate with field program staff, local partners, and other relevant stakeholders on project design in pursuit of high-impact and cost-effective program strategies and activities.

        Ensure documentation of achievements and lessons learned to ensure best practices are captured and disseminated in quarterly and final program reports.

        Monitor adherence to the donor grant agreement as well as Mercy Corps’ and donor’s policies and procedures for procurement and compliance;



        Coordinate with the PaQ team, Country Office and HQ to build systems that promote beneficiary accountability by ensuring that communities participate in initial assessments and program design;

        Ensure the program is sensitive and adaptive to the changing context while in line with best practice;

        Support staff and partners to ensure that communities are informed about our programs and what we do, are aware of their entitlements, are comfortable to give feedback and that feedback is used to improve the quality of our programs;

        Promote a culture of learning between programs through consistent sharing of M&E processes and systems.



          Liaise with local government officials including the government ministries, local NGOs, project partners, local religious leaders, and other community members to ensure support for and acceptance of Mercy Corps projects in relevant geographic areas.

          Alongside the Deputy Country Director, Peacebuilding & governance Senior Team Lead  and the Country Director Identify, build and manage collaborative partnerships with consortium partners, sub-grantees, donors, local governments and other stakeholders

          Communicate effectively to ensure overall project targets and donor obligations are met;

          Maintain good working relationships with the donor, the host country government and local leaders, partner agencies, and other key stakeholders



        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.



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: Project team including Senior Infrastructure Officer, Senior Program Officer, Peacebuilding & Governance Officer, Natural Resource Management & Livelihoods Officer 



        Reports Directly To: Peacebuilding & Governance Senior Team Lead

        Works Directly With: Mercy Corps peacebuilding /Social Cohesion, CVE and governance Programs staff, PAQ Team, MEL Manager and teams, Grants & Program Support Manager, Support departments and teams (Operations, Finance, Human Resources), field offices, and relevant Mercy Corps headquarters units as necessary, including Mercy Corps’ relevant Technical Support Unit teams


Knowledge & Experience

        MA/S or equivalent in social science, management, business, peace/conflict or international development, humanitarian response.

        At least five years’ experience conflict and/or social cohesion programming in a development and/or humanitarian setting

        Experience in highly volatile security situations or transitional environments and a commitment to team safety.

        Commitment to the principles of participatory team management and participatory, community-oriented development.

        Fluency in written and spoken French and English required.

        Strong facilitation and consensus-building skills.

        Familiarity and experience with EU regulations preferred.

        Familiarity with the Mali, Sahel, the Liptako area (Mali, Niger, and Burkina Faso) context valued.

        Demonstrated ability to work respectfully and constructively with local partners and stakeholders to help build capacity and ensure quality programming.


Success Factors

The successful BRiKS Program Manager will have the ability to multi-task, set priorities, and work under tight deadlines within a complex team. S/he will demonstrate strong interpersonal and cross-cultural communication skills and be committed to the values and mission of Mercy Corps. S/he will take initiative and contribute to team efforts, as well as demonstrate an ability to communicate, assume leadership, and make solid decisions while working remotely from country leadership.

Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions

The BRiKS Program Manager will be based in Bamako, Mali with regular field travel. The location is accompanied and secure. Individual housing is available with freedom of movement beyond the house and office. There are international schools in Mali. Staff have good access to essential services, such as medical care, electricity, water, etc. This position requires up to 30% of travel by road to field locations in relatively secure environments but climatically harsh conditions. This position is not eligible for hardship benefits but is an R&R post.

Mercy Corps team members represent the agency both during and outside work hours when deployed in a field posting or on a visit/TDY to a field posting. Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and MC's policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world's most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives.

We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.

Equal Employment Opportunity

Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impactWe are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.

Safeguarding & Ethics

Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we come into contact with through our work, whether team members, community members, program participants or others, are treated with respect and dignity. We are committed to the core principles regarding prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary General and IASC. We will not tolerate child abuse, sexual exploitation, abuse, or harassment by or of our team members. As part of our commitment to a safe and inclusive work environment, team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, respect local laws and customs, and to adhere to Mercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and values at all times. Team members are required to complete mandatory Code of Conduct eLearning courses upon hire and on an annual basis.