Program / Department Summary
As an organization, Mercy Corps is committed to accountability to all of our stakeholders, including the people we serve, and to the resources that are entrusted to us.
Mercy Corps takes a participatory approach in engaging with local communities throughout the program design and implementation.
A community Accountability Reporting Mechanism (CARM) is an essential part of Mercy Corps’ commitment to excellence and integrity, by providing individuals, organizations, local groups, and other stakeholders a means of raising concerns about potential staff misconduct or sharing feedback or programmatic activities (positive and negative) with Mercy Corps, independently from program operations.
In the context of Nigeria, rolling out and implementing CARM will ensure that the Nigeria team will continue to uphold Mercy Corps’ high standards of accountability.
General Position Summary
Accountability Under the umbrella of the Program Performance and Quality (PaQ) Unit, the CARM Officer will support CARM implementation within the portfolio, dividing his/her time between the continued establishment, maintenance, management, and adaption of CARM implementation in existing programs and the rollout of CARM into additional programs.
While working with teams and MEL teams s/he would manage and support the adaptation of CARM workplans, focusing on CARM rollout and maintenance.
The priorities will include supporting program-specific and country-level standard operation procedures (SOP), defined processes and mechanisms, production of monthly analysis reports and program-level reports on CARM, and the production and development of training plans and awareness materials for staff from both programs and departments on administering Mercy Corps accountability framework in communities.
This includes Mercy Corps’ own expectations of their staff and program activities. S/he will deal with day-to-day feedback that includes handling complaints, questions, reports and requests for support as received from beneficiaries and non-beneficiaries in the communities MC works directly.
Essential Job Responsibilities
Implementation & Program Quality:
Support the implementation and adaptation of the Nigeria CARM strategy/operational manual.
Provide strong support to CARM channels covering the portfolio including phone line, WhatsApp business and email which document and receive community feedback.
Support the creation and circulation of monthly/bi-annual CARM reports for relevant stakeholders, that present CARM findings, successes, trends and tweaks to implementation processes, and adaptation as a result of feedback received.
Support in the preparation of a weekly and/or as necessary status update on CARM for the PaQ Manager/Director.
Support in the development of work plans at the programmatic and portfolio levels for the roll-out and implementation of CARM.
Help to develop feedback and data-flow mapping.
Together with MEL colleagues, support in the development of a system for analyzing trends in feedback received.
Produce internal reports on CARM itself, in response to feedback received via training and awareness session evaluation forms.
Support the communications team and/or local partners in designing and disseminating appropriate communication materials that promote the use of feedback mechanisms or transparency (hotline business cards, distribution signs, community signs and banners, etc.);
Conduct field visits, engage CARM spot checks, training.
Liaise with Sub-Award and Compliance unit to support programs in encouraging community participation in needs assessments and project design.
Support in the maintenance and organization of the CARM database, in coordination with the PaQ team.
Support with orientation sessions for staff and field partners/CBOs and other CARM stakeholders.
Training of staff on receiving complaints and feedback and on community sensitization, particularly on informing communities and handling feedback on sensitive subjects of potential staff misconduct.
Collaborate with other actors to develop referral maps and mechanisms for communities where MC implements programs.
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.
Accountability to Beneficiaries:
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.
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.
Report on any problems encountered in the field such as project participant complaints, local authority interference, and security threats to MC staff and activities. Coordinate with MC Security Officer and State Manager on any threats to MC staff and activities; follow up on incidents/security threats in areas of operation.
Reports Directly To: Senior CARM Officer
Works Directly With: PaQ team members including MEL and Communications Teams, Ethics and Assurances Director, Safeguarding Focal Point, CARM programmatic focal points, and all project/programs, including Mercy Corps beneficiaries.
Knowledge and Experience
Bachelor's Degree or equivalent in relevant field. Proven (at least intermediate) report writing skills are required.
2-4 years of related work experience, preferably with an international or local Non- Governmental Organization (NGO).
Excellent writing skills in English, languages such as Hausa and Kanuri is a plus. The ability to write reports at a native English level.
Proven experience in data collection, data-entry, data/information management and analysis.
Proven experience in developing or contributing to accountability frameworks, and standard operating procedures (SOPs) for feedback mechanisms.
Experience and/or training in handling sensitive information - Core Humanitarian Standards (CHS) training is an advantage, including Gender-Based Violence (GBV), Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (PSEA) and Child Protection knowledge and capacities.
The ability to work closely in a team, be patient, adaptable, flexible, able to improvise and work in an environment that is often stressful and potentially volatile.
Good interpersonal skills with the ability to communicate and negotiate clearly and effectively at all levels, taking into account cultural and language challenges. Tact and diplomacy are essential.
Understanding of preventing sexual exploitation and abuse, child safeguarding and how other types of code of conduct issues may arise in CARM mechanisms and best practices for raising awareness of and responding to those concerns.
Critical problem-solving skills and the ability to work out methods of delivery in very different operating contexts.
S/he will be highly motivated, and capable to work without direct supervision.
S/he will demonstrate attention to details, will be committed to working long hours, be able to work closely with a diverse team of individuals in a highly intense and fluid work and security environment and be willing to travel regularly to Mercy Corps field offices and project sites.
Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions:
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.
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 perspectivesand authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best workof 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 a 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, colour, 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 encounter 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 the 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 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.