Program Officer, Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC)

Summary: HAl’s Program Officer will support the successful development, implementation, and management of HAl’s current programs in the LAC region. He/she will be responsible for backstopping the regional based team in the HAI HQ office in Chicago including liaising with HQ based teams and donors in the US. He / she will be expected to travel to the LAC region and must be a fluent Spanish speaker.

In Latin America and the Caribbean, HAI currently has programming in Mexico, Colombia and the Dominican Republic. Over the next five years, HAI will deepen and expand its programming in Latin America and the Caribbean to protect and empower women, Afro-descendant communities, LGBT individuals, and youth who are at the highest risk of human rights violations and violence.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

Program Management, Quality Assurance and Program Oversight:

  • Monitors program objectives and goals and assess their compliance with HAl and donor regulations and quality standards; and consults / liaises with relevant stakeholders to create a corrective action plan if expectations are not being met.
  • Facilitate the submission and processing of all program administrative requirements, such as travel advances, leave requests, scheduling, monthly draw downs, etc.;
  • Coordinate and liaise between HQ M&E staff and country staff to design M&E plans for new projects
  • Undertake field-based program monitoring and technical assistance visits, as assigned;
  • Prepare, monitor, and analyze program budgets in collaboration with Financial & Accounting Services;
  • Together with the Regional Director, serve as liaison between the country offices and Chicago office;
  • Coordinate with relevant departments to provide accurate information to the field and to ensure adherence to financial and administrative policies and procedures;

Grant Management and Donors’ Relations:

  • Tracks deadlines and proactively gathers supporting documents, as well as edits and/or reviews monthly/quarterly progress reports to donors;
  • Provide reports and critical analysis of field reports to the LAC Regional Director and other senior staff;
  • Update and manage information relevant for grant management and donor compliance
  • Ensure compliance with donor reporting guidelines and deadlines
  • Provide ongoing support to Regional Director and Country directors to respond to donors’ requests

Program Development:

  • Research and analyze funding opportunities for the LAC region to identify and prioritize program development opportunities;
  • Collaborate with country teams to proactively research and identify partnership opportunities in the LAC region
  • Serve as a key member of proposal teams throughout the year;
  • Review and provide significant input in proposal writing and budget development for new proposals
  • Support proposal development including technical research, best-practices research, content analysis and interpretation, technical writing, editing and proposal submission;
  • Support development and implementation of strategic plans and resource mobilization efforts;
  • Promote innovation throughout the portfolio including expansion to new countries;
  • Other duties, as assigned.

Qualifications: To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Education and/or Experience:

  • Minimum: Bachelor’s degree, social sciences preferred (such as Political Science, Sociology, International Relations, Economics, Psychology)
  • Minimum (3) years working with social service, policy or community-based organizations in the United States or LAC, with demonstrated commitment to social justice and human rights
  • Preferred, but not essential: Work experience in international development or work/study outside of the United States.

Language Skills:

  • Superb oral and written communication skills in English;
  • Advanced/fluent spoken and written Spanish.

Other Skills and Qualifications (required):

  • Knowledge of and interest in HAI thematic priorities (Access to Justice and Trauma Informed Mental Health care ) for key affected populations, gender and sexuality, and global LGBTI rights;
  • Knowledge of and interest in grassroots community mobilization, capacity building and training;

Computer Skills: Proficiency in Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer, Outlook/Exchange; Windows operating systems; and other software routinely used by Heartland Alliance.

Strongly Preferred:

  • Program development/proposal development experience;
  • Experience in humanitarian relief, poverty alleviation and/or international human rights experience a plus;
  • Experience with ensuring donor compliance, including U.S. government and European Donors

Competencies required for the job:

Communication skills:

  • Demonstrates cross-cultural communication skills including, gestures and other non-verbal communication that tend to vary from culture to culture, to effectively work with staff and donors from the US, LAC region, and Third Country Nationals. Effectively communicates with remote supervisor and team;
  • Effectively communicate utilizing a variety of technologies such as phone or video phone (i.e. Skype); Effectively communicate with non-native English speakers;
  • Writes clearly and informatively; Edits work for spelling and grammar; Appropriately adjusts communication style for the audience

Planning and Organization:

  • Follows policies and procedures; Prioritizes and plans work activities; Able to plan for and meet competing deadlines; Completes administrative tasks correctly and on time;
  • Supports organization’s goals and values;

Problem Solving:

  • Works well in group problem solving situations; approach problems with a sense that people want to help solve them; Identifies and resolves problems in a timely manner;

Professionalism:

  • Strong interpersonal skills; Approaches others in a tactful manner; Treats others with respect and consideration regardless of their status or position;
  • Reacts well under pressure; able to remain composed and professional in difficult circumstances;
  • Accepts responsibility for own actions; and Follows through on commitments, completes tasks on time or notifies appropriate person with an alternate plan.

Cultural Humility :

  • Respects the cultural environments in which the incumbent is working; Understands cultures evolve, and demonstrates a curiosity and openness to learning about those cultures; and Recognizes personal biases in favor of one’s own culture and welcomes opportunities to learn from other cultures. .

Initiative taking and independence:

  • Seeks increased responsibilities; Takes independent actions and calculated risks;
  • Looks for and takes advantage of opportunities; Asks for and offers help when needed;
  • Ability to work independently with minimal supervision.

Teamwork:

  • Contributes effectively to team’s goals and objectives and building a positive team spirit, exhibits objectivity and openness to others’ views; gives and welcomes feedback; supports everyone’s efforts to succeed; and
  • Demonstrates leadership by building and maintaining trust with colleagues in order to meet deadlines and objectives without having positional authority;

Excellence and Quality:

  • Monitors own work to ensure quality, looks for ways to improve and promote quality; Demonstrates accuracy and thoroughness.

Physical Demands: The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Must be able and willing to travel to the LAC region for up to two weeks at a time, up to 20% time annually;
  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is regularly required to talk or hear.
  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is frequently required to sit; use hands to handle or feel and reach with hands and arms.
  • While performing the duties of this job, the employee is occasionally required to stand; walk; climb or balance and stoop, kneel, crouch, or crawl.
  • The employee must occasionally lift and/or move up to 10 pounds.

Work Environment: The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this job. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

  • Must be able to work full-time (8 hours a day) as well as extended hours when needed (nights, weekends);
  • Must be able to travel independently to carry out field assessments, to identify potential partner organizations, to determine beneficiary needs and to develop program proposals and budgets for funding;

Heartland Alliance makes all hiring and employment decisions, and operates all programs, services, and functions without regard to race, receipt of an order of protection, creed, color, age, gender, gender identity, marital or parental status, religion, ancestry, national origin, amnesty, physical or mental disability, protected veterans status, genetic information, sexual orientation, immigrant status, political affiliation or belief, use of FMLA, VESSA, military, and family military rights, ex-offender status (depending on the offense and position to be filled), unfavorable military discharge, membership in an organization whose primary purpose is the protection of civil rights or improvement of living conditions and human relations, height, weight, or HIV infection, in accord with the organization’s AIDS Policy Statement of September 1987.


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