The primary focus of the Program Assistant will be to respond to the needs of communities through the integrated set of activities under Apolou. The Program Assistant will focus on mobilizing the different groups/platforms within their community and determine the capacity-building needs of the group leaders. The Program Assistant will also mobilize the surrounding Government and Private Sector systemic structures and similarly identify capacity building needs of these structures. The Program Assistant will adopt an “adaptive” management approach to understand the needs of the groups within the community and the external support structures, and working with the District Implementation Team, connect with the Technical Team to determine appropriate capacity-building measures to sustainably strengthen the capacity and commitment of community leaders and extension agents. The Program Assistant will work closely with the Technical Team to best determine the layering of activities within a community, based on need and availability of resources. This will provide an opportunity for staff growth in various technical areas but also benefit the participants in that they receive a cross-sector of interventions/services delivered at the same time through community dialogues. The role of Program Assistant will be to identify community needs for capacity building, seek technical support through Program Officer and the Technical Team, to train, oversee, support, and work with other Governance structures both formal (VHTs, WUCs, ALCs, etc.) and informal (Traditional Authorities i.e. elders, kraal leaders, etc.) in community engagement meetings/dialogue processes. The Program Assistant will collaborate with the wider Implementation team to ensure that activities are sequenced, layered, and integrated for comprehensive service delivery. The Program Assistant will closely work with staff from local partners in the APOLOU Activity to strengthen integration. The Program Assistant will be supported by the Program Officer and District Implementation Team Lead (DITL), the broader implementation team, and the Technical Team. Program Assistants will work closely with MEL teams to ensure that data capture into CommCare takes place.
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE
• Advanced Training Certificate or Diploma
• 1-2 years experience in conducting community mobilization, training, and networking
• Experience in capacity building with communities in Karamoja
• Experience and skills in working with other NGOs, government partners, and local community-based organizations.
• Fluency in local languages prevalent within the operational district where assigned (highly desired)
• Computer literacy
• Sensitize community leadership on different Apolou thematic areas i.e. Governance, MCHN, WASH, Gender, SBCC, Adolescents, and Livelihoods.
• Conduct participant identification exercises for the different activities in the community.
• Mobilize participants for planned activities in respective locations for technical teams to work with.
• Organize and supervise community training in line with the approved work plan and budget based on the Multi-Sectoral approach.
• Lead and/or support community respective community members to lead community dialogues based on the different technical areas.
• Coordinate with all sectors in Apolou to ensure complementary approaches, monitor implementation of project activities, and document learnings and success stories.
• Collaborate with fellow facilitation Assistants to ensure team success, including but not limited to logistics coordination, temporary support during leave, etc., as advised by facilitation Officers.
• Other duties as assigned.
Monitoring and Evaluation
• Responsible for data gathering, data validation, quality control and timely data submission including gender and age disaggregated data.
• Support and mentor community structures i.e.VHTs and PDCs on data collection and use.
• Troubleshoot monitoring and evaluation challenges for proactive problem solving with the support of team leader and M&E team.
• Utilize qualitative and quantitative data to inform program implementation.
• Actively documenting best practices and lessons learned to share with the team during routine monitoring, coordination meetings, and other learning opportunities.
• Regularly update Activity Tracker.
Influence and Representation
• Promote Apolou Activity visibility at both Community and Sub County levels.
• Ensure establishment and maintenance of relationships with communities, village councils, and local government in Apolou target areas.
• Coordination of field activities with other NGO and local government partners to avoid duplication of services and support an enabling environment for health promotion.
• When needed, support visits from district and sub-county government, regional and HQ based staff and external visitors, such as donors and media, in collaboration with facilitation officers, District HoO on Manager and Director.
• Support Apolou activities with key stakeholders, ensuring collaboration with counterparts in partner organizations in relevant meetings, internal and external.
• Establish partnerships to leverage resources.
Ethics and Integrity
• All Mercy Corps staff are expected to behave ethically and demonstrate the highest integrity in their professional and personal life. Mercy Corps has zero tolerance for any form of fraud, corruption, abuse, harassment, or exploitation. Any breach of our policies or misconduct will lead to disciplinary action or may lead to termination.
• Ensure data protection policies are adhered to, establishing security controls for software, hardware, and archive beneficiary databases.
• 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.
• There is no staff supervision assigned to this role.