Youth Engagement Advisor at Mercy Corps

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.

Youth Engagement Advisor

Location: Yola, Nigeria

Position: Status Full-time, Regular

Reference Number: ABV/PRO/2019/0044

Program / Department Summary

Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa, and its influence spreads across the continent. Yet, inequality and insecurity have consistently undermined Nigeria’s development. Mercy Corps Nigeria was established in 2012 to respond to these challenges. The Nigeria team is headquartered in Abuja, in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), with offices throughout Nigeria. With a strong and growing team of over 200 staff, Mercy Corps is currently serving over 600,000 beneficiaries across the country with programming in Lagos in the South; Kaduna, Benue, Nasarawa and Plateau in the Middle Belt; Kano, Yobe and Borno in the North. Programs include girls’ education and financial inclusion, community peacebuilding, market-based livelihoods and a multi-sector humanitarian response that has a strong emphasis on WASH, Shelter, Cash and Protection. With the vision of a Nigeria in which all people are empowered, engaged, resilient and secure, Mercy Corps Nigeria focuses on the root causes of conflict, governance, humanitarian response, and market systems development.

Working with a diverse funding base that includes the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), UK Department for International Development (DFID), United Nations (UN), European Commission (EC), European Humanitarian Aid and Civil Protection (ECHO), Global Affairs Canada (FKA DFATD), and several foundations, Mercy Corps empowers people to recover from crisis, build better lives and transform their communities for good. Mercy Corps is starting a five-year, $30 million USAID-funded Rural Resilience Activity in Nigeria’s northeast. The purpose of the Rural Resilience Activity (RRA) is to sustainably move people out of chronic vulnerability and poverty. The Rural Resilience Activity will enable individuals and communities to engage in strong and sustainable market systems rather than continuing to rely on humanitarian assistance and faltering with each new shock.

General Position Summary

The Youth Engagement Advisor will be responsible for the technical leadership in the implementation of youth integration and engagement strategies aimed at ensuring that interventions result in positive outcomes for male and female participants of different target age groups. S/he will have overall responsibility for building team members’ and partners’ capacity to think through and use USAID’s PYD Framework and promising practices to youth in programming and impacted meaningfully.

The Advisor will ensure youth involvement in implementation and provide technical advice on youth engagement across all elements of the RRA. S/he will work closely with the MEL and research teams of the project to provide technical design and implementation strategies to link youth to informal and formal life skills training, access to services and products, and markets. The Advisor will work closely with project leadership and technical teams to ensure meaningful youth engagement and benefits from the markets and sectors that the RRA is promoting. The advisor will be the lead in building the capacity of the project team and partners through training. S/he will be a key member of the technical leadership team working closely on the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of interventions so that needs of youth are addressed in a meaningful way.

Essential Job Responsibilities

Strategy & Vision

  • Organize and conduct a youth analysis during the inception phases of RRA and serve as the lead for any RRA related youth assessments; including the analysis and interpretation of sex- and age-disaggregated data.
  • Develop youth integration and engagement/empowerment strategies, oversee the implementation of these strategies and adapt and improve them as needed.
  • Work closely with the relevant technical teams, partners and stakeholders to develop strategies for youth participation in sectors and investments that RRA is promoting.
  • Work closely with the M&E team on youth integration and analysis tools. Explore opportunities for youth to engage in data collection and interpretation to inform activity design and adaptation. Also, work with the M&E team to ensure sex- and age-disaggregated data is collected and analyzed. Make recommendations based on assessment findings and regular monitoring to inform program strategies to better meet the needs of young male and female.

Program Management

  • Ensure meaningful youth involvement and provide technical advice on youth engagement across the Rural Resilience Activity
  • Work with RRA technical teams to ensure mechanisms and platforms are in place to effectively reach and impact youth though business and life skills training and mentorship, capacity building and increased participation in markets.
  • Undertake youth-led market research to inform program design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation.
  • Work with technical teams including financial services and market systems development to identify the private sector actors to promote, advocate and build capacity on the benefits of engaging youth as clients, suppliers and employees, and effective methods of doing this.
  • Work closely with markets and financial services teams to identify and promote sectors, services and products that have a high potential for growth and youth engagement.
  • Support the RRA research and MEL components to add to the body of knowledge on viable models that support resilient features for youth and secure employment and self-employment.

Team Management

  • Assist team members with information, tools and resources to improve performance & reach objectives. Provide direct and ongoing supervision and managerial support to Youth Officers
  • Promote accountability, communicate expectations and provide constructive feedback informally and formally via regular one on ones and performance reviews.
  • Create and sustain a work environment of mutual respect where team members strive to achieve excellence.
  • Build the capacity of the RRA team and partner organizations’ in youth-friendly market systems development approach.

Influence & Representation

  • Represent Mercy Corps at government, donor, NGO and other relevant events, in close coordination with the Chief of Party and country leadership.
  • Coordinate activities with consortium partners, sub-grantees, private sector partners, local government and other implementers, as well as with other Mercy Corps programs.
  • Represent Mercy Corps externally at relevant conferences, workshops and other convenings

Security

  • Work closely with the country team’s security focal point to develop and maintain systems that promote the safety and security of all team members.
  • Ensure that programs are designed and implemented with a clear analysis and understanding of security.

Organizational Learning

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.

Team members are expected to conduct themselves professionally and respect local laws, customs and MC’s policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.

Supervisory Responsibility

Supervises: Youth Officers (3)

Accountability

Reports Directly To: Deputy Chief of Party

Works Directly With: Chief of Party, Program technical specialists, MEL Manager, Country Program Development and Quality Director, and Country MEL Manager

Knowledge and Experience

  • BA required and Master’s Degree preferred in a related field.
  • 5+ years working in designing and delivering youth engagement activities in markets systems, agribusiness and enterprise development
  • Ability to foster commitment and build capacity among project team and partners around gender and youth development.
  • A clear understanding of contemporary development issues particularly those related to economic opportunities for youth
  • Sound knowledge of personal development issues related to youth
  • Excellent organizational, written and verbal communication skills
  • Experience of working in consortium multiple organizational partnerships
  • Experience with Monitoring and Evaluation systems and research
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills.
  • Spoken and written proficiency in English;
  • Ability to facilitate meetings, effective presenter and open collaborator.

Success Factors

The ideal candidate will be results orientated, self-motivated and have demonstrated analytical skills. The ideal candidate will be familiar with market-based agricultural programs targeting youth and will demonstrate cultural knowledge and sensitivity, while also demonstrating skills and ability to provide incentives and capacities for market actors working with youth and offer technical assistance on youth engagement across project partners. The advisor must take a lead role in building and maintaining external relationships as well as demonstrating the drive and initiative to contribute to internal team efforts.

Method of Application

Applicants should their CVs and Cover Letters in one document, addressing the position requirements, reference number and location to: [email protected]

Note

All applications must include the position title and reference number in the subject line
Please note that only short-listed candidates will be contacted for interview
We are an equal employment opportunity organization so women are strongly encouraged to apply for this position

How to apply

Use the email(s) below to apply.

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