Catholic Relief Services (CRS) is an international non-governmental organization supporting relief and development work in over 99 countries around the world. CRS programs assist persons on the basis of need, regardless of creed, ethnicity or nationality. CRS works through local church and non-church partners to implement its programs. Therefore, strengthening and building the capacity of these partner organizations is fundamental to our approach in every country in which CRS operates. CRS re-established its presence in Nigeria in 2000 and currently focuses on agriculture, governance, peace-building and Health/HIV programming.
Livelihoods and agriculture programming, with a focus on increasing community resiliency and linking smallholder farmers to markets, is an area of potential growth for CRS/Nigeria. CRS/Nigeria’s agricultural program started in Nigeria in 2009 with the implementation of the USAID-funded Emergency Rice Initiative (ERI) - a two-year multi-country project aimed at boosting rice production in four countries in West Africa. The ERI project has resulted in two follow-on projects piloting the use of Savings and Internal Lending Communities to support economic strengthening of farmers and a web-based site-specific nutrient manager program to maximize fertilizer utilization. CRS/Nigeria will soon begin implementing the Sustainable Cassava Seed System project funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The project focus is the establishment of a commercial cassava seed system in Benue and Oyo states. CRS/Nigeria’s agriculture interventions focus on improving access to and storage of improved seed varieties, farmer mobilization and empowerment, and the development of market-based value chains through linkages with research institutions, government agencies, the private sector and other development partners.
Job Title: Head of Unit- Agriculture and Economic Growth
CRS/Nigeria is seeking a Head of Unit for Agriculture and Economic Growth (HoU) to build the programming through strategic linkages with government and donor initiatives and CRS local partners. The HoU will be responsible for leading the strategic development and management of programs that economically empower vulnerable populations. The HoU will design and manage programs that address constraints to small-scale agriculture productivity and provide technical assistance to very poor farmers and their households to improve production and increase income. Interventions may also include strengthening of producer and processing groups, household support in savings and lending as well as nutrition, and supporting improved systems for public and private provision of inputs. The HoU will work in partnership with local civil society organizations and state agriculture development programs throughout the country.
The HoU will be responsible for overall management of agriculture and economic growth programs; will provide strategic and operational leadership to develop and implement successful programs; and will represent CRS/Nigeria to multiple donors and the Government of Nigeria. The HoU will report to the Head of Programs and will maintain close liaison with relevant Regional Technical Advisors and the CRS All Africa Agriculture Team. The HoU will ensure adherence to CRS technical and program quality standards in implementation and the timely submission of all required deliverables to all donors.
With key program staff and stakeholders, ensure each of the unit’s programs’ strategic objectives and results are fully accomplished and meet expected technical quality standards.
Ensure that vision and plans for the programs are innovative and are in line with CRS agency and country program strategies as well as Ministry of Agriculture food security strategies.
In collaboration with program staff, provide guidance and technical oversight to partners and other collaborating agencies to ensure that lessons of sound practice are documented and disseminated.
Oversee program’s monitoring and evaluation system, using data analysis as the basis for measuring performance. Ensure that M&E learning is incorporated into evolving program plans.
Collaborate with Regional and Headquarters technical staff to identify and implement appropriate ICT4D solutions to improve timeliness and quality of M&E and project implementation.
Ensure programs incorporate leading interventions in developing business skills and strengthening entrepreneurship.
Ensure integration of program interventions with other CRS programs or through linkages with other service providers.
Ensure effective gender-mainstreaming in both programming and management aspects of implementation.
With program staff, ensure the delivery of quality training, technical assistance and administrative and financial support to all partner agencies, including the selection and coordination of consultants.
Collaborate with the All Africa Agricultural Team, the Food Security Unit and relevant Regional Technical Advisors to promote sharing of learning and identify relevant innovations.
Coordinate the development of new proposals for agriculture and economic strengthening.
Lead the development of and implementation of strategy with CRS/NG staff and partners.
Develop innovations and scalable models for program expansion.
Develop relationships with key donors and understand the priorities and opportunities of each.
Manage program budgets, including tracking of financial and material resources.
Ensure accurate and timely reporting of program finances and progress status; review actual financial performance against the budget, and explain variances on a regular basis.
Ensure staff compliance with all CRS administrative and operational procedures and policies, as well as applicable donor regulations.
Approve program expenditures, budget adjustments, and cost modification requests to donors.
In collaboration with CRS/Nigeria Country Representative (CR), act as primary program contact to donor and other local and international stakeholders, responsible for addressing all program matters.
In collaboration with CR and Head of Programs, strengthen linkages with existing and potential partner agencies, such as National Agricultural Research Services, State Agriculture Development Program offices, the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture, and other implementing partners.
In collaboration with Head of Programs, oversee program communication strategies, including compliance with donor’s branding and marketing requirements, as well as CRS marketing and communication procedures.
Lead, manage and supervise a team of CRS/NG agriculture and economic growth staff to meet program objectives.
Conduct periodic reviews of staff performance in keeping with CRS’ performance management system and mentor staff to ensure high levels of motivation, commitment, capacity, and teamwork.
Manage recruitment portfolio for the unit, in collaboration with Human Resources and CRS country program management, to ensure optimum service delivery through recruitment of competent and qualified staff.
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 fulfil his or her responsibilities and achieve the desired results.
Serves with Integrity.
Cultivates Constructive Relationships.
Minimum Masters Degree in Agriculture. PhD highly preferred.
Minimum 10 years of international development experience with light to moderately complex projects.
Minimum 5 years managing significant USG-funded programs required.
Knowledge of key USG regulations including, but not limited to USAID 22 CF Part 226 Administration of Assistance Awards to U.S. Non-Governmental Organizations, 22 CFR Part 145 Grants and Agreements with Non-Profits, OMB Circulars A-122, Cost principles for non-profit organizations and A-133 Audit of states, local governments, and non-profits preferred.
Proven leadership and inter-personal skills and ability to build and motivate diverse and talented teams.
Proven experience in small and medium enterprise development, marketing and creating market linkages.
Proven experience in building and maintaining institutional linkages required.
Demonstrated commitment to improving gender equality and gender responsiveness in programming and operations.
Experience with participatory methods and partnerships required. Demonstrated capacity and experience with institutional strengthening of local civil society and government agencies.
Public relations skills required.
Proven ability to think strategically.
Flexibility to work both in a team and independently.
Cultural sensitivity, patience and flexibility.
Demonstrated personal accountability and driven to serve others.
Understanding of and experience with 419 Scam-based organizations, local church structures, and accompaniment and capacity-building principles in local partnerships highly desired.
Ability to travel nationally and internationally as required.
Excellent English language oral and written communication skills required.
Proficiency in Microsoft Office suite, including Word, Excel and Outlook required.
Nigerian nationals only.
How to Apply:
Interested candidates, please send a resume/CV to: