Country Manager - Burundi

Bujumbura | Bujumbura

Position Title: Country Manager, Burundi

Location: Bujumbura, Burundi

Band: D

FLSA: Exempt

Reports To: Country Representative – Burundi & Rwanda

About CRS:

Catholic Relief Services carries out the commitment of the Bishops of the United States to assist the poor and vulnerable overseas. Our Catholic identity is at the heart of our mission and operations. We welcome as a part of our staff and as partners people of all faiths and secular traditions who share our values and our commitment to serving those in need.


CRS has been present in Burundi since 1961, and currently implements projects in nutrition, agriculture, savings-led microfinance, peacebuilding and emergency preparedness/response. The country program’s main office is in Bujumbura with a large sub-office in Muyinga. The country program has more than 100 staff, including three expatriates, and implements its projects through local and international partners, with strong coordination/collaboration with Government of Burundi structures. The FY17 program value is approximately $10.3 million, inclusive of commodities. In 2014, CRS/Burundi was awarded a Title II Development Food Assistance Program (total program value $50m), entitled AMASHIGA, which will run through 2019. Program value is expected to increase over the next two years as AMASHIGA activities scale-up to serve more than 575,000 direct beneficiaries over the life of the program.

Burundi’s population is approximately 10.4 million, 90% of whom are engaged in (mainly subsistence) agriculture. Tea, coffee and minerals are Burundi’s primary foreign exchange earner. Given its high population density and continued population growth, chronic malnutrition is one of the country’s key development challenges. Stunting in children under five averages 50% across the country, with certain areas exceeding 65%.

Since independence in 1960, Burundi has struggled with issues related to conflict that have negatively impacted socio-economic growth. With the end of the civil war in the early 2000’s, the country embarked on a process of infrastructure rehabilitation, political reconciliation and agriculture-driven economic development. However, a controversial third term in 2015 for the president has resulted in increasing social division and insecurity, putting the developmental gains of the past 10 years in jeopardy.

Primary Function:

In collaboration with the Country Representative (CR) – Burundi & Rwanda, based in Kigali, Rwanda, the Country Manager will be responsible for overall representation, leadership and management of the CRS/Burundi office, including management of programming, personnel, financial and material resources. The Country Manager will provide strategic representation for the country program with key stakeholders from the Government of Burundi, the UN system, international donors and Church partners. The Country Manager will also provide programmatic and management quality assurance and leadership in coordination with the CR, Operations Manager and Head of Programs (HoP) – Burundi & Rwanda (based in Rwanda) and will ensure adherence to CRS programmatic and operational/management standards and systems. The Country Manager is responsible for strengthening existing and developing new relationships with government stakeholders, donors and other INGOs. This includes assuring strong communication, collaboration and joint planning with Caritas Burundi at the national level and other Caritas Internationalis partners. Finally, the Country Manager serves as the primary security officer for CRS in Burundi and will collaborate with the CR in the early identification of risks and the development of effective mitigation strategies.

Specific Responsibilities:

Program Quality

· Ensure high level of monitoring and support for all project activities (including regular field visits) in coordination with programming staff.

· Ensure quality program development in line with Agency Strategy through timely communication and planning in consultation with CR, HoP and regional Program Quality (PQ) staff.

· Closely monitor situation in Burundi to identify opportunities for program expansion and potential new partners for CRS in country.

· Assist programming staff to use appropriate project management tools to plan, review and track progress on project implementation, as well as the utilization of project resources.

· Coordinate with CR and HoP to ensure adherence to CARO proposal development and review processes.

· Collaborate with programming staff to support research, documentation and sharing of lessons learned/best practices for projects.

· Ensure all programs are implemented in line with CRS Program Quality Standards, donor regulations and sectoral best practices.

Management Quality/Operations

· Promote operational efficiencies and good stewardship of resources through alignment of country program’s operations policies, procedures and practices with CRS’ global Operations Excellence policies and standards and relevant laws/regulations of the Government of Burundi.

· Develop and track adherence to an approved office operational budget; lead regular cost analytics exercises; and ensure timely resolution of identified issues.

· Ensure the timely completion, review and submission of all financial documents.

· Ensure timely assistance via TDYs from Rwanda or Region in response to identified capacity building needs in administrative and/or financial management for both staff and partners.

· Ensure proper stewardship of all CRS resources, including adherence to donor, Agency and country program guidelines for management of both fixed assets and mobile property.

· Ensure adherence to CRS/Burundi human resources policies and procedures, as well as Agency-wide performance management system, with special emphasis on professional development of CRS staff.

· Ensure open communications and promote principles of a just workplace; maintain a healthy and empowering office environment that encourages honest communication between CRS staff and partners.

· Ensure timely completion of assessments and monitoring visits of sub-partners in line with the Sub-Recipient Financial Monitoring Policy.


· Coordinate with Operations Manager to ensure effective safety and security standards and procedures are in place and are regularly reviewed/revised in line with evolution of security context in country.

· Ensure CRS’ regular participation in relevant security meetings/platforms, including UNDSS and OSAC.

· Support Operations Manager in the regular updating and development of new security documentation and guidance, as appropriate.

· Maintain high awareness of the security situation in Burundi and immediately report risks/security incidents to CR, regional leadership and headquarters security team.

· Complete regular security updates and situation reports, as needed.

· In coordination with the CR, regional office had headquarters security team, ensure staff are adequately trained in CRS safety and security policies/procedures.

Representation and Partnership

· Maintain and strengthen CRS’ relationships with key donors, partners and government, and stakeholders.

· Ensure CRS representation and active participation in key INGO and governmental coordination platforms, including the RESO (INGO platform), the National Disaster Management Platform, sectoral working groups and the SUN Civil Society platform.

· Collaborate and maintain good relationships with governmental and non-governmental agencies for effective program implementation and resource use, as well as general information-sharing.

· In coordination with the CR, maintain strong relationship with the local Church at the national and diocesan level through regulation communication, meetings and participation in Church activities/fora.

Agency-wide Competencies (for all CRS staff):

These are rooted in the mission, values, and guiding principles of CRS and used by each staff member to fulfill his or her responsibilities and achieve the desired results.

· Serves with Integrity

· Models Stewardship

· Cultivates Constructive Relationships

· Promotes Learning

Supervisory Responsibilities:

Directly supervises Chief of Party - AMASHIGA, Operations Manager, two Program Managers and Internal Auditor.

Key Working Relationships:

Internal – Country Program: Country Representative -Burundi & Rwanda; Head of Programs, Burundi & Rwanda; Finance Manager, Burundi & Rwanda; Programming, Operations and Finance staff.

Internal – Regional: CARO Regional Director, DRD/PQ, DRD/MQ, CARO RFO, and CARO Regional Technical Advisors.

External: Local Church and Caritas partners; Caritas Internationalis (CI) and CI partners; AMASHIGA consortium members and other local partners; other INGOs; UN Agencies; Government of Burundi.


· Masters degree in international development, business management, or related field.

· At least 7 years experience in managing high value overseas programming. Africa experience and experience in complex emergency settings preferred.

· Demonstrated experience implementing emergency preparedness and response programming required.

· Demonstrated effectiveness with short and long-term planning and with financial, human resources and program management.

· Understanding of and experience with faith-based organizations, local church structures, and accompaniment and capacity-building principles in local partnerships highly desired.

· Proven ability to be an effective supervisor of staff of varying levels of capacity.

· Ability to function effectively as part of a multi-cultural team.

· Ability to represent the Agency in high-level meetings with donors, local Church and local government.

· Excellent oral and written communication and interpersonal and networking skills.

· Fluency in spoken and written English and French required.

· Strong knowledge of US Government and other donor funding regulations and policies.

· Excellent interpersonal, oral and written communication skills with a demonstrated ability to lead and work effectively in team situations.

Physical Requirements/Environment:

· Normal office environment.

· Willingness to travel nationally/internationally, up to 30% time, sometimes under insecure conditions and in remote areas.

This job description is not an exhaustive list of the skills, efforts, duties, and responsibilities associated with the position. CRS’ talent acquisition procedures reflect our commitment to protecting children and vulnerable adults from abuse and exploitation.


Apply online:

Before applying, please make sure that you have read the requirements for the position and that you qualify.
Applications from non-qualifying applicants will most likely be discarded by the recruiting manager.
  • Organization: CRS - Catholic Relief Services
  • Location: Bujumbura | Bujumbura
  • Grade: Mid/Senior
  • Occupational Groups:
    • Management, Administration and Finance
    • Management, Administration and Finance
  • Closing Date: 2016-05-05

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