Cash Project Manager - Zahle

Zahlé, Beqaa Governorate, Lebanon | Full-time

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About 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.

Mercy Corps has been present in the Middle East since the 1980s and currently works in Yemen, Lebanon, Palestine, Jordan, Syria, and Iraq. Working in Lebanon since 1993, Mercy Corps is committed to generating positive opportunities for women, men, boys and girls from Lebanese, Syrian, and Palestinian communities, with a strong focus on engaging youth.  Mercy Corps exists to alleviate suffering, poverty and oppression by helping build secure, productive and just communities. Our programs focus on four sectors:  Economic Opportunities, Governance and Social Stability, Youth and Humanitarian interventions. The Mercy Corps Lebanon team consists of over 180 staff working across six offices throughout Mount Lebanon, South Lebanon, Tripoli and the Bekaa Valley.

Program / Department Summary

Under the ECHO-funded “Services and Assistance For Enabling Recovery (SAFER)” project, Mercy Corps will provide multi-purpose cash transfers to some of Lebanon’s most vulnerable households affected by the multiple crises in Lebanon, and that are not served by other cash actors to help them meet their basic needs. Building on analysis from our in-house Lebanon Crisis Analytics Team (LCAT) to identify targeted areas in Bekaa and Baalbek El-Hermel, Mercy Corps will employ vulnerability-based targeting to select households for assistance. In order to facilitate an exit strategy from cash assistance, Mercy Corps will also apply a referral mechanism with other key actors in targeted areas, particularly livelihoods programming for those eligible as well as social safety nets. (Result 1) In addition, Mercy Corps will pair the cash assistance and provide referrals with relevant analysis from LCAT to inform both the action and the broader humanitarian community (Result 2). Together this will achieve the principal objective of reducing economic suffering and protection risks.

General Position Summary

The Project Manager for the ECHO program will work under tight deadlines with a keen situational analysis, adapting to a rapidly changing context to identify the most vulnerable households. The Project Manager is responsible for the planning and day-to-day implementation of all project activities, including procurement, finance and Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL) and ensuring that project activities are being implemented on deadline and on target, providing regular updates on required adaptations and new opportunities for greatest long-term positive impact. S/he will ensure the coherence and quality of the project interventions, seeking out innovations and adaptations to ensure that they lead to the desired impact in the rapidly changing political, economic and political context of Lebanon. The Project Manager will actively seek out opportunities to engage community members and youth for volunteer engagement, community buy-in, support and ownership of the overall project arc.

Essential Job Responsibilities

Working under the direction of the Humanitarian Program Manager, the Project Manager is responsible for coordinating and implementing the delivery of the ECHO-funded SAFER project, including daily management of project activities and staff, and ensuring appropriate systems and support mechanisms are in place to track, analyze and report on results. The Project Manager is a strong team leader, able to develop and mentor team members and is an effective communicator, able to work with internal and external stakeholders to achieve common objectives. S/he is also responsible for managing relationships with local stakeholders and program participants and contributing to achievement of cash program goals through strong adherence to minimum standards and implementation of SOPs.

Strategy & Vision
  • Work closely with the Humanitarian Programs Manager, the project team,, and PaQ Team to fully understand the ‘bigger picture’ of the project and what it aims to achieve.
  • Contribute with the Humanitarian Program Manager, the Cash consultant, the LCAT team and other country team members to a better understanding of the cash actors in the Bekaa and of potential deduplication efforts.
  • Work with and support team members in the design, adaptation and implementation of project components to achieve measurable impact within an uncertain country context.
  • Support the Humanitarian Program Manager and PAQ Team in identifying gaps, lessons learned, and opportunities at the field level for promoting more effective cash interventions.
  • Recognize opportunities for innovative action and create a positive collaborative environment where alternative viewpoints are welcomed, recognized, and have the opportunity to create ownership by all team members.
Project Management
  • Ensure project implementation is on time, target and budget, that the project targets are well understood and achieved according to the implementation work-plan, and to adapt the work-plan when required. This includes being responsible for the quality of regular reports/updates and grants tracking systems by ensuring that any subgrant and grant records are kept up to date.
  • Ensure that the team has a good understanding of MCL Cash SOPs
  • Ensure that project implementation is responsive to communities’ needs and consistent with Mercy Corps’ relevant program guidelines, principles, values, quality standards and strategic plan.
  • Ensure that project participants are effectively targeted according to established vulnerability criteria.
  • Ensure close integration of the referral component with the project, including mapping of local livelihoods actor, integration of livelihoods questions in the assessment of beneficiaries, referral through the CARM officer and follow up on the referral
  • Ensure that the overall coordination with the Danish Refugee Council (DRC) and Humanity and Inclusion (HI) is going smoothly and as per the Memorandum of Understanding
  • Integrate inclusive community approaches and gender sensitivity into all activities as appropriate.
  • Collaborate with the MEL Team and PAQ Manager to monitor desired impacts.
  • Fulfill Mercy Corps’ Program Management Minimum Standards based on the organization-wide guidelines.
  • Ensure all interventions adhere to Mercy Corps’ Gender Policy, Do No Harm principles, Safeguarding, and beneficiary accountability standards.
  • Ensure proper implementation of referral mechanisms in Mercy Corps.
  • Supporting the MEL team on post distribution monitoring tools in addition to vulnerability assessments tools
Team Management
  • Supervise, hire and orient new team members as necessary. Contributes to drafting Job description, interview questionnaires and performance reviews.
  • Identify any gaps or capacity needs within the team and ensures training and capacity building is incorporated into program planning.
  • 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 and grow as individuals and as a team.
Finance & Compliance Management
  • Ensure compliance with donor (potentially multiple donors) and Mercy Corps regulations;
  • Oversee the program budgets, project cash flow and expenditures and keep track of expenditures and budget versus actuals planning and reporting;
  • Ensure BVA meetings with finance and other support teams are conducted on a monthly basis with reviews of projections based on accurate commitments tracking, procurement plans/cost work or activity plans.
  • Provide support and prepare all payments related to the cash distributions while adhering Program SOP
Reporting and Communication
  • Identify success stories and case studies showing the impact of the program, and in particular impact of the Cash + livelihoods referral aspect
  • Develop communication material for internal and external audiences in collaboration with the Senior Media and Communications coordinator;
  • Contribute to and review all internal and external reports to ensure coherence, accuracy, high professional standards, and timeliness.
Representation
  • Coordinate with local actors and other cash actors during the Program implementation to mitigate the risk of duplication of assistance
  • As required by the supervisor, represent Mercy Corps at donor meetings, and government and sectoral coordination forums/meetings especially at regional level.
  • Adhere to Mercy Corps’ Code of Conduct policy, understanding that all team members represent the organization both inside and outside the office and should act in ways that bring credit to the individual, the team, the project and the organization.
Security
  • Ensure compliance with security procedures and policies as determined by country leadership.
  • Proactively ensure that team members operate in a secure environment and are aware of and adhere to policies.
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 Program Participants
  • Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our project participants and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging participating communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.
  • 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 venues.

Supervisory Responsibility

Direct supervision of the project team Cash Coordinator, MEL Manager and Community Accountability and Referral Officer and potential volunteers.

Accountability

Reports Directly To: Humanitarian Program Manager

Works Directly With: Project Team, PaQ Team, Finance Team, Operations and Procurement Team, HR Team

Knowledge and Experience

  • Bachelor’s Degree or Higher in field relating to humanitarian and development work or Degree relevant to one or more of the following technical sectors (Economics, Business, Sociology, Development, International Relations, Political Science)
  • 3-4 years of experience working in Non-Governmental Organization, ideally focused on Humanitarian and Cash programs .
  • Demonstrated experience in emergency response, business development or market development in fragile contexts are particularly desired assets;
  • Excellent organizational and program management skills, able to keep an eye on the ‘bigger picture’, with great attention to details;
  • Good understanding of procurement, administration and finance procedures;
  • Commitment to local capacity development and past experience of engaging and working with local stakeholders in program design and implementation.
  • Demonstrated capacity to collaborate closely with local and national government offices, INGOs, national NGOs and Community Based Organizations.
  • Proven ability to work cooperatively with colleagues from other departments in a team environment, and to lead a diverse group of people.
  • Show great initiative and be able to work well in a team and independently.
  • Creativity and sense of humor to adapt to challenging circumstances;
  • Arabic and English written and spoken is essential. Excellent written English is strongly desired.

Success Factors

The successful candidate will have a keen interest in and an understanding of the complex socio-political and economic context of Lebanon, able to spot emerging trends and opportunities that may positively or negatively impact the project.They will have a good understanding of how markets function and have a keen curiosity in helping develop solutions for those in Lebanon suffering economically. A curious and open mind with a good sense of humor are important, as is the ability to stay calm and focused in times of high stress and multiple competing demands on their time.