Programme Officer, Americas – UK or NL

Mercy Corps

Position Description

Location: London, Edinburgh, UK; or The Hague, NL Position Status: Full-time, permanent (UK); 6 months fixed term then permanent (NL) Salary: Edinburgh: 26K – 34K; London: 30.4K – 39K; NL: 33.2K – 43K (circa ranges) Reports to: Regional Director Americas Travel: Around 40% travel is a requirement of the role

Candidates must have the right to work in the UK or NL at the time of appointment.

About Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps is a leading global organisation 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.

Mercy Corps Europe (MCE) has grown rapidly both in terms of the volume of activity and its complexity. With offices in Edinburgh, London, The Hague and Geneva, we now attract over £100m in income, and employ around 100 domestic and expatriate field team members. The breadth and impact of our programmes makes Mercy Corps a unique and truly rewarding place to work. Our teams are proud of what we achieve in the field and we are always looking for talented individuals who share our passion and commitment.

Position Summary

Mercy Corps’ operations in The Americas are focused on the countries of Haiti, Guatemala, Colombia, as well on the Venezuela regional humanitarian crisis, and supporting resilient communities across Caribbean states and territories. These are a disparate collection of contexts with many different challenges and opportunities that are all undergoing dramatic transitions that have the potential to create significant opportunity for development and change. Mercy Corps is well-placed to play a meaningful role in supporting forces for positive change in these places, by supporting vulnerable communities experiencing food and water insecurity, violence, the impacts of climate change and natural disasters, and violence and conflict.

The Programme Officer (PO) supports strategic, impactful, high-quality programming in the Americas region. The PO supports the Regional Director (RD) and the corresponding Country Directors in many aspects of their country programme and grant administration. The PO plays a key role in connecting the field to HQ resources and represents the country/regional interests internally with various HQ teams as well as with external stakeholders. The PO provides grant management checks and supports the field (ultimate point of responsibility) in adhering to internal and external policies and regulations. The role will also manage information and data that comes in from the country teams to facilitate its use and access for other HQ departments and for the retention of institutional knowledge. The PO will work closely with MC Europe colleagues, MC Global members and field teams, which includes travel to support programmes as necessary. The role will require a high business level in Spanish for Colombia, Guatemala and Venezuela. Business level French would be desirable but not essential, to assist Haiti.

Candidates should have a track record in international relief and development, with experience of programmes in the above regions, along with proven experience of managing the development, implementation, administration and compliance of European-funded grants. Technical expertise in Mercy Corps’ global priority outcomes (food security, water security, economic opportunities, peace and good governance) would be welcomed to strengthen programming in the Americas . The successful candidate will possess excellent planning, communication and organisational skills, have a keen eye for detail, be proactive and flexible in their work, and possess the ability to develop strong relationships with colleagues across the agency, both at HQ level and at the country level.

Essential Responsibilities


● Undertakes donor research and identify appropriate funding opportunities from donors, reviewing donor guidelines and carrying out eligibility checks for newly identified funding opportunities

● Ensures that proposals and concept notes are developed in adherence to the defined processes, (such as coordination of global calls for proposal, obtaining clearance from finance and programme senior managers); as well as drafting and sharing a proposal development timeline; all of which include input from a wide range of stakeholders across the global agency.

● Provides administrative support for proposal development such as drafting Past Performance Reports, Capacity Statements or other required documents

● Inputs on initial drafts of logframes and narratives, in line with donor requirements and MC guidance on design, indicators, M&E procedures, and in liaison with MC technical support units to ensure the logic, relevance and feasibility of the programme design

● Provides input into ensuring that lessons learnt in previous projects are addressed in new proposals

● Reviews final drafts for coherence and manages submission to the donor

● For EC-funded programmes, leads on coordinating PADOR partner registration in proposal development

● Works closely with the finance department to coordinate the development of a realistic and cost-effective budget that includes all appropriate support costs

● May be asked to take on lead proposal writing or proposal coordination responsibilities from time to time, including travel to the field to help in the design phase, needs assessment and partner coordination, especially for opportunities aligned with the candidate’s technical expertise. May also be asked to oversee consultants and other short-term assignment staff in larger proposal development efforts.


● Supports with the maintenance of programme documentation and ensures the system for tracking grants (GAIT) is updated

● Assists in programme monitoring and ensuring compliance with donor regulations and Mercy Corps policies and procedures – especially ‘PM@MC’ (Program Management at Mercy Corps)

● Advises country teams on formats for donor reporting and defines timelines to review, edit and input to donor reports submitted in accordance with the agency’s Reporting Standard Operating Procedures and in adherence to deadlines set out in the grant agreement/contract

● Initiates, coordinates and disseminates New Award Initiation Summary and Programme Close-Out emails

● Acts as a focal point for proposals submitted to secure co-financing and liaises with Fundraising and Finance Departments as required

● Provides up to date information on donor visibility requirements and commitments in liaison with the Media & Communications Department

● Conducts field visits to ensure compliance with the proposal description, quality of programming, and compliance with donor regulations. Trips will include meetings with country office and partner staff, donors, external stakeholders, and beneficiaries


● With guidance, the PO coordinates partnership negotiation and development and ensures the necessary teams are engaged, to help further programme, country and regional interests.


● With guidance, the PO represents regional interests and programmes with external stakeholders, in concert with the field teams.


● Supports country teams with strategy development and planning

● Facilitates learning across country portfolios and the region and shares lessons learned

● Ensures country teams have access to and utilise agency resources/tools/best practices/etc.

● Participates in annual regional meetings that bring together key staff from all countries in each region in order to facilitate cohesion and learning across portfolios


● Recruitment: As needed, the PO participates in interview processes and selection for key positions as identified with the recruiting team

● Internal Communication: In coordination with the other POs and APOs (Assistant Programme Officers), the PO supports internal communications and ensures knowledge management systems are up to date and accurate to support communication with other teams.

● Knowledge Management: In coordination with APOs, the PO ensures management of agency systems and adherence to HQ-related Programme Management minimum standards, etc.

● Orientation: For new-hires visiting HQ, PO provides briefings on context, country strategy and programmes prior to their departure as an initial step in the on-boarding process. As requested, PO supports supervisors with on-boarding of new expatriate team members.

The PO role requires travel to the field to support any of the above and to fill-in during field staffing gaps.

Supervisory Responsibility



Reports Directly To: Regional Director Americas

Accountability to Participants and Stakeholders

Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our program participants, community partners, other stakeholders, and to international standards guiding international relief and development work. We are committed to actively engaging communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.

Minimum Qualifications and Transferable Skills

● Educated to Bachelor’s level, or equivalent experience. Masters in relevant field preferred.

● 2 – 4 years of field-based experience in international relief and development, ideally with experience in Americas region; demonstrated knowledge of relevant sectoral and/or operational areas.

● 2- 4 years of experience managing the development, implementation, administration and compliance of grants; general programme management experience preferred.

● Experience with proposal development with various donors, particularly European institutions (FCDO, Sida, AFD, ECHO and EC), private foundations and corporations.

● Experience with monitoring and evaluation, and other learning efforts.

● Experience representing an organisation and its interests to a diverse range of local and international government officials, local civil society organisations, other international organisations, the media and the public is preferred.

● Proficiency of Spanish is a requirement for the role, basic French skills strongly preferred.

Success Factors

● Excellent planning and organisational skills.

● Proactive and able to work on own initiative.

● A problem solver, adept in successfully dealing with issues of complexity.

● Demonstrates the ability to mentor colleagues.

● A skilled communicator, able to develop and utilise strong relationships with staff, partners and donors at all levels.

● Able to harness the expertise, experience and ideas of colleagues and effectively use this to improve their own work and support that of others.

● Strong research and analytical skills.

● A skilled writer and synthesiser of diverse and complex information.

● A robust sense of humour is greatly appreciated.

● A demonstrable passion for, and a clear empathy with, the organisation’s aims and values.

● Willingness and ability to travel internationally as required.

Mercy Corps team members represent the agency both during and outside work hours when deployed in a field posting or on a short term assignment to the field. 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 locations.

Ongoing Learning

In support of our belief that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities we serve, we empower all team members to dedicate 5% of their time to learning activities that further their personal and/or professional growth and development

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 perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of 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 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 on the basis of race, color, 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 come into contact with 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 prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary General and IASC and have signed on to the Interagency Misconduct Disclosure Scheme. 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 to 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.

As a safeguarding measure, Mercy Corps screens all potential US-Based employees. This is done following the conclusion of recruitment and prior to assuming full employment.

Our screening process is designed to be transparent and completed in partnership with new Team Members. You will have the opportunity to disclose any prior convictions at the conclusion of the recruitment process before the check is initiated. We ask that you do not disclose any prior convictions in your application materials or during the recruitment process.

How to apply

Please apply with CV and cover letter here:

Closing date: 16-Oct-22