Partnerships and New Initiatives Manager - Sudan

Programs Nairobi, Kenya


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

Mercy Corps began our work in Sudan in 2004, and since that time has worked to support hundreds of thousands of Sudanese, displaced households, and refugees from neighboring countries. In 2022, Mercy Corps directly reached over 381,400 people through emergency response, water, sanitation, and hygiene, peacebuilding, agriculture, and climate adaptation programming.

Mercy Corps currently leads humanitarian and development assistance efforts in conflict-affected South and Central Darfur and South Kordofan states. We are also engaged in the South Sudanese refugee response in refugee camps and vulnerable host communities in White Nile state, and recently expanded into Kassala and Gedaref states in Eastern Sudan.

Our work covers a range of issues facing the people of Sudan. We are enhancing self-reliance through community management and funded WASH services for conflict affected communities, including long-displaced populations. We are responding to the emergency nutrition and protection needs of populations. We are increasing disaster preparedness by developing emergency response plans with local government officials. We are increasing the resilience of conflict-affected families to economic and social shocks by increasing their access to market-driven livelihood.

The Partnerships and New Initiatives Manager will be the main support role of the Country office, leading the development of new initiatives, managing partnerships and providing oversight and support to ensure donor compliance and quality reporting and filing for all active and future programs in Mercy Corps Sudan. The role will work closely with the PaQ team to ensure quality standards are in place and quality donor reporting systems. The Partnerships and New Initiatives Manager will assist in securing new programs by coordinating or leading proposal development processes, including the expansion of the portfolio across core objectives including humanitarian response, durable solutions, and resilience. The Partnerships and New Initiatives Manager will be expected to advise program teams on donor rules and regulation to ensure all programs are compliant with our internal and donor regulations and timely submission of quality donor reports across the country portfolios.


● Map existing implementing partners and other donor projects across a variety of technical sectors including market systems development, livelihoods, natural resource management, social cohesion
● In partnership with the Director of Programs (DOP), Senior Leadership Team (SLT) and Program Leads help build strategic relationships with key stakeholders, peer agencies and donors that lead towards funding opportunities.
● In partnership with The DoP and SLT help build relationships with potential partners, including international and national NGOs for sustainable programming
● In partnership with the Director of Programs, work with teams to develop a comprehensive and functional mission-level stakeholder engagement strategy aligned with the Country Strategy to determine opportunities, and support donor engagement and partnerships management.
● Participate in key donor meetings and consultations, support donor contacts, when necessary, to foster long-term collaboration, engagement, and strategic prepositioning.
● In close collaboration with HQ, ensure key contacts, required formats and donor strategies are kept up to date at the country office level.
● In partnership with DoP and Regional Program Team (RPT) update and maintaina tracking system for potential and current donors and new business opportunities.
● Interface with Mercy Corps headquarters and the regional office to keep abreast of donor strategic priorities, specific requirements, and deadlines.

● Lead proposal development processes, including drafting and producing high quality concept notes and proposals that support Mercy Corps Sudan’s strategic programming goals. 
● Develop systems and ensure all program development/new business development opportunities are systematically managed and ensure regular updates and engagement of the senior management team and Country Director.
● Identify and act on capacity building and inclusion strategies to increase the voice of national staff in the new initiatives process, with an eye for leveraging internal talent and know how appropriately into new initiative processes, including but not limited to, supporting trainings, facilitating participatory design workshops, capacity building trainings, etc.
● Coordinate with programming teams to identify key public stakeholder relationships and wherever possible, strengthen the voice of external stakeholders in the design process, ensuring necessary co-design components, alignment and support with the Government of Nigeria in new initiatives.
● Ensure new initiatives processes comply with PM@MC standards and are in alignment with Mercy Corps Country Strategy, GEDSI, GDI, and do no harm approaches through the involvement of relevant MEL, gender, youth, and conflict advisors in the design process.
● Ensure full internal and HQ review and sign off as per the proposal development process.
● Support communications and coordination with the HQ-based Regional Program team and Regional communications advisor, support internal communications between teams.
● Conduct and document after action review processes for new initiatives and partnerships, maximizing learning and internal organizational documentation.
● Following new initiative awards, facilitate teams through a handover process, supporting the onboarding of new staff to the program design and development process, ensuring full understanding of program scope. Provide inputs to Start Up processes, particularly as it relates to key concerns and priorities raised during the design process and relevant partnership strategies.
● Liaise with the Programs, Finance and Operations Teams in the development of budgets of funding proposals.

● Oversee reporting workflows and processes between Program Teams, senior leadership, and HQ to ensure the timely and quality development, review and submission of reports and other communication products.
● Maintain a reporting tracker and share regularly with Program and MEL Teams.
● Collaborate with the DOP and PAQ Director on the development of strategies, position papers, thought leadership pieces, and other related initiatives leveraging evidence from programs.
● Provide timely, thorough responses to information requests from internal and 
external sources.
● Develop strategic communication materials, such as sector profiles, impact reports, program briefings, leadership and positioning pieces, key messages, talking points, and other relevant pieces.
● Ensure high-quality information sharing among internal and external audiences.
● Represent Mercy Corps in external coordination forums, as requested.

● Support the adherence of teams to PM@MC minimum standards in partnership with the DoP and PaQ Director and teams.
● Support program kick-off, regular portfolio review and close-out meetings to ensure that all program information, including deadlines, donor priorities and requirements, are communicated and understood by the team, and programs are closed in compliance with donor regulations.
● Maintain effective communications with headquarters staff, providing timely updates on programs and flagging potential issues promptly.
● Coordinate with PAQ to develop an evidence base and learning pieces to improve program quality.

● 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.

Will have one direct report – the Sudan Grants and Business Development Coordinator role. 


Reports Directly To: Director of Programs

Works Directly With: Program Performance and Quality Director, SLT, Program 
Leadership Team, HQ desk team, Finance, Operations and HQ/Region Technical Support Unit (TSU) team members

Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our program participants, community partners, other stakeholders, and to international standards guiding international relief and development work. We are committed to actively engaging communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.

● BA degree in relevant field and MA preferred.
● 3 to 5 years of progressive work experience, with demonstrated strengths in 
program or portfolio management, proposal development, and donor reporting.
● Familiarity with US, EU and other donor regulations related to reporting requirements and ability to understand and adjust to the donor contractual requirements preferred.
● Excellent planning, management, and coordination skills, with the ability to organize a workload comprised of varying and changing tasks and responsibilities.
● Experience in staff management, supervision, and capacity building.
● Demonstrated experience in working in a multi-cultural and high-stress environment.
● Excellent writing and editing skills in English required.
● Excellent representation skills required.
● Previous work experience in Sudan, preferred.

The successful candidate will be eager to learn through doing and will not shy away from tough challenges. As such this person will be very closely working with the different departments. The successful candidate is passionate about humanitarian and development work and is committed to the delivery of high-quality products while respecting deadlines. They will be patient and flexible and are able to improvise and remain responsive and communicate clearly and effectively under pressure. They will master the art of prioritizing and organizing processes and are detail oriented. They will be able to develop and utilize strong relationships with staff, partners and donors. They will collaborate with diverse team members in the country, in the region and at headquarters to ensure that lessons are effectively applied to the design and implementation of activities and to our ways of working. They will be a skilled writer and synthesizer of diverse and complex information, helping teams generate new insights into their work,

The Partnerships and New Initiatives Manager is based in Nairobi, the capital of Kenya. 
Housing is individual accommodation with unlimited freedom of movement beyond the house/office. Staff have a relatively high degree of access to health and utility services (hospitals, schools, clinics, electricity, water, etc). There are a number of restaurants, parks, and other places for entertainment around Nairobi. The location of the office is located near Westlands and as such as good transportation, dining, and other amenities. This is primarily an office job that will require external engagements with the various bilateral and multilateral donor bodies operational in Sudan but based in Nairobi, including USAID, FCDO, ECHO, and the UN. 

In support of our belief that learning organizations are more effective, efficient, and 
relevant to the communities we serve, we empower all team members to dedicate 5% of 
their time to learning activities that further their personal and/or professional growth and 

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.

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 collectivelystronger and have sustained global impact. We 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 based on 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.

Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we meet 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 and have signed on to the Interagency Misconduct Disclosure Scheme. 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.