NGO Jobs / UN Jobs Vacancy

Country: Panama
Organization: International Federation of Red Cross And Red Crescent Societies
Closing date: 9 Nov 2020

Disasters, Climate and Crises Prevention, Response and Recovery unit (Disasters Climate & Crises) focuses on all components of disaster risk management, climate change, migration, protection, gender and inclusion, institutional preparedness, international disaster law, and humanitarian diplomacy efforts, as well as all phases of disaster and crisis response recognizing that these often operate in a simultaneously and overlapping manner. The Disasters, Climate, and Crises unit ensure quality, relevant and effective support to the National Societies of Red Cross (NS) to improve the services they provide to communities and people affected by disasters and crises and in support of resilience-building processes of disadvantaged groups.

The Head of Disasters, Climate and Crises leads the provision of quality technical and management support to regional and country offices in the coordination, implementation, risk mapping, analysis, and review, (as well as National Society capacity development and representation), of the work of National Societies across all areas of focus outlined in the IFRC 2016-2020 Plan.

Job Duties & Responsibilities

The Head of Disasters, Climate and Crises updates and implements the Disasters, Climate, and Crises strategy and plan for the Americas region, aligned to the global Federation-wide strategy, and regional strategies, including follow up on the Houston Commitment and considering further updates agreed in the Inter American Conference in Buenos Aires. The specific duties and responsibilities include:

Provide substantive strategic direction and leadership:

  • Provide regional leadership on issues related to Disaster Risk Management, Climate action, Migration and displacement, and Resilience, and oversee coordination and partnerships with relevant stakeholders within and outside the RC/RC Movement.
  • Promote the development of IFRC policy and positions regarding the Strategic priorities and enablers of the IFRC Secretariat Agenda for Renewal, as well as other comprehensive risk management issues, with a view to expanding technical advice and the advocacy agenda.
  • Support in defining institutional policy and positions with regard to Red Cross areas of expertise in comprehensive disaster risk management, and establishing a strategic direction that is aligned with the National Societies.

Crisis and emergency operations system

  • Ensure the IFRC operations system provides adequate support to National Societies in managing emergency operations.
  • Validate EPoAs and budgets for DREF and/or appeals presented to Headquarters to meet the quality criteria and required guidance.
  • Ensure disaster and crisis response operations are appropriate and aligned with International Federation guidelines and policies (SPHERE, Code of Conduct, Principles and Rules, Seville agreement, etc.). Present a ready to sign DREF or appeal request to senior management.
  • When activated lead the Americas EOC and coordination with the EOC in Geneva HQ.
  • Identify, and mobilize requests for deployment of relevant International Federation disaster response tools, in support of National Society disaster management structures when agreed with the National Society and when the disaster exceeds their capacity.
  • Monitor to ensure that regular, timely, and accurate narrative and financial reports for the Federation and other donors are produced.
  • Follow up and support continental efforts to develop and implement regional contingency plans according to the most disaster-prone scenarios, such as those provided by hurricane season and El Niño/La Niña.
  • Promote coordination of emergency management actions with Red Cross partners, UN, and other agencies in order to ensure adequate preparedness and appropriate, efficient, and timely emergency response and early recovery.
  • Lead the Joint Task Force meetings on behalf of the Americas Regional Office and ensure implementation of the IFRC Secretariat Emergency Response Framework.

Migration, Climate Change and Community Resilience.

  • To ensure that the unit scales up investment in strengthening community resilience through ambitious and integrated longer-term plans, in cooperation with NSs and other key partners, in line with S2023 and The Implementation Framework for Community Resilience in the Americas.

Programmes and operations quality assurance and support

  • Ensure that the Disasters, Climate, and Crises unit works with regional/country representatives/coordinators, Geneva-based staff, and other ARO units to provide leadership in orienting National Societies on strategies for adopting an integrated approach to programme delivery including training and advise on changes to organizational structures.
  • Ensure that early recovery actions are linked to longer-term recovery while respecting and promoting environmental standards and local contexts as well as the integration of protection, gender, and inclusion into both thematic and emergency programming. **

Institutional Preparedness and readiness

  • Ensure the National Society disaster and contingency plans and the National Intervention Teams are well linked to regional tools as part of the overall regional response system and integrated into the preparedness for an effective response program (PER).
  • Promote that Disasters, Climate, and Crises unit facilitates training access, tools and opportunities, in close collaboration with Reference Centres, to strengthen NS Institutional preparedness both at the national and regional levels.

Advocacy, international disaster law, and humanitarian diplomacy

  • Ensure the focus of IFRC advocacy efforts on strengthening the positioning of NSs in America and ensure that support is provided to CCSTS and Country Offices who support NSs to enable them to assist their respective authorities in advocacy around policy and laws.

Lateral Relations

  • Ensure a good working relationship with the ICRC and participating national societies delegations in the various countries in the Americas in conjunction with the Regional/country clusters.

Effective matrix management

**Contribute to the overall strategic vision and planning for the IFRC in the Americas Region in collaboration with other departments and programs– with a focus on strengthening NS capacities for developing and implementing effective programmes and operations – through the support of IFRC cluster and country offices.

  • Support the Deputy Director to ensure strategic coherence and alignment, as well as programmatic and operational coordination between Disasters, Climate and Crises, Finance, HR, Logistics, communications, PSK, PRD, PMER and, Health.


  • Select, lead, and manage the team members under his/her direct responsibility.
  • Ensure that the technical team under his/her responsibility has well-defined results based priority plans.


  • University degree in management and/or social sciences or related fields/or relevant experience.
  • Basic Training Course: successful completion and selection Relevant post-graduate degree
  • Advanced training or extensive professional experience in disaster management/relief/logistics.


  • 10 years’ experience of working for a humanitarian organization in a developing country in the area of disaster management and development in which at least 5 years have been spent in the Americas.
  • 10 years’ experience analyzing, planning, and managing development programmes and resources.
  • 5 years of experience in managing and supporting staff.
  • Experience of working with Red Cross/Red Crescent.

Knowledge, Skills and Language

  • Thorough knowledge of technical, managerial, logistical, and other aspects of preparedness, relief, and recovery programming for people affected by disasters and other emergencies.
  • Demonstrated experience in disaster preparedness, relief, and recovery, including in sectors relevant to the IFRC.
  • Self-supported in computing systems.
  • Demonstrated success in project/programme planning, budgeting, management, reporting, and evaluation.
  • Demonstrated track record in innovating, contributing to a learning culture, sharing knowledge, and new approaches to engaging partners.
  • Proven good judgment and ability to work with complete integrity and confidentiality
  • Ability to work in a cross-functional environment.
  • Available to travel to other countries.
  • Valid international driving license (manual gears.)
  • Political and cultural sensitivity.
  • Knowledge of key donor agencies' priorities and practices.


  • Fluently spoken and written English (Mandatory)**.
  • Good command of Spanish.
  • Other languages: French.

Competencies and Values

VALUES: Respect for diversity; Integrity; Professionalism; Accountability**

CORE COMPETENCIES: Communication; Collaboration and Teamwork; Judgement and Decision Making; National Societies and Customer Relations; Creativity and Innovation; Building trust.**

MANAGERIAL COMPETENCIES: Managing Staff Performance; Managing Staff Development; Strategic Orientation

FUNCTIONAL COMPETENCIES: Building Alliances; Leadership; Empowering Others**

How to apply:

Interested candidates must visit the link:https://www.ifrc.org/en/who-we-are/working-with-us/current-vacancies/job-description/?id=64175

Applicants will need to send their applications together with a letter of motivation no later than the closing date. In order for us to assure a proper comparative evaluation of your application for this vacancy and to enable us to consider your profile against other similar current and future vacancies, we ask that you submit your application taking into account the following:

Important Note:

  • Please note that the selected candidate will be hired through an international contract;
  • The incumbent is responsible to abide by Federation policies, procedures, plans, and applicable international labor law;
  • The closing date is midnight Geneva time.
  • Only those candidates shortlisted for interviews will be notified.

The position will be based in Panama, the Republic of Panama - the regional office.

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