The International Rescue Committee responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises and helps people to survive and rebuild their lives. Founded in 1933 at the request of Albert Einstein, IRC offers life-saving care and life-changing assistance to refugees forced to flee from war or disaster. At work today in more than 40 countries and in 22 U.S. cities, IRC restores safety, dignity and hope to millions who are uprooted by conflict or disaster. IRC leads the way from harm to home.
IRC’s work in the Middle East is among our most challenging, and innovative.
Years of war in Syria have pushed millions from their homes and into poverty, and millions more have become refugees in Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey, Iraq and further afield. Equally complex is the emergency in Iraq, where waves of fighting and displacement have overwhelmed infrastructure and services and pushed communities to the brink. The economic, social, and health effects of these dual crises have changed the entire region.
The IRC responds to people’s acute and longer-term needs with integrated programs that improve health and safety, prioritize children’s education, foster economic wellbeing, and empower communities to regain control over their lives. Our work gives rise to some of the most pressing issues facing contemporary humanitarian action, including questions of access, conflict sensitivity, coordination, and impact.
The Director of Policy, Advocacy and Communications is a key member of IRC’s regional senior management and global Policy and Practice teams, charged with developing and coordinating regional policy positions, strategically positioning IRC on key humanitarian policy debates and raising its profile locally and internationally. He/she oversees the development of appropriate, coherent and compelling policy analysis and messaging at local, national and international levels, with the aim of influencing the policies or practices of key actors, enhancing the impact and increasing the coverage of IRC’s work.
The Director of Policy, Advocacy and Communications works collaboratively with a number of stakeholders, including regional and country program staff, global public policy and advocacy staff, and global communications staff. The Director supervises the Middle East Communications Coordinator, the Middle East Content and Information Officer, and the Middle East Humanitarian Context Advisor. S/he provides technical oversight and support to advocacy staff in country programs across the region; and supports communications focal points in country programs across the region.
Reporting to the Regional Vice President, the Director of Policy, Advocacy and Communications works closely with global advocacy and communications colleagues. The Director is based in Amman with frequent travel in the region, and as needed to New York, Washington D.C., London, Brussels, Geneva and elsewhere.
Overall Strategy and Management:
· In close coordination with the Regional Vice President, lead the development and implementation of policy, advocacy and communications strategies for IRC in the region.
· Inform organizational strategy and operations in the region by providing robust context and analysis.
· Build and maintain relationships with diverse, like-minded, organizations and individuals to develop networks and increase collective impact. In particular, liaise with the Syrian International NGO Regional Forum (SIRF) Advocacy Working Group, Crisis Action, and other coordination bodies such as ICVA and InterAction.
· As the lead for strategic messaging for IRC in the Middle East, line manage the Communications Coordinator, Humanitarian Context Advisor, and Content and Information Officer.
· Conduct, assign, or commission research and analysis to support the implementation of policy, advocacy and communications strategies.
· Align IRC policy posture with agency programmatic efforts around Durable Solutions for refugees and displaced persons, through collaborative engagement of the regional Durable Solutions Coordinator and the Senior Director for Humanitarian Policy on IRC’s global policy and advocacy team.
Advocacy and Policy:
· Working in collaboration with advocacy colleagues in the United States and Europe, develop and drive policy and advocacy messages and products for in-country, regional and international stakeholders and policymakers, ensuring that field priorities and perspectives are integrated.
· In conjunction with country program staff, Regional Safety and Security Director, global policy and advocacy, and communications teams, closely monitor events on the ground, policy debates, and media pertaining to the Syria crisis, ensuring that relevant information is analyzed and disseminated in a timely and effective manner to IRC stakeholders at country, regional, European and HQ levels, inclusive of the global advocacy and communications teams.
· Alert the Regional Vice President and International Programs Department EVP to relevant policy developments.
· Provide analysis and produce content for executive and regional leadership.
· Write policy and advocacy material including talking points, briefing notes, position papers and advocacy reports.
· Provide policy review for IRC positions and materials related to key issues in the region.
· In coordination with the Regional Vice President, represent IRC in regional advocacy, policy and coordination forums, as well as at key lobbying meetings.
· Coordinate and support the policy work of country-level advocacy and policy staff, advocacy focal points and senior program staff providing training when necessary, and ensuring that country-focused information and materials are widely disseminated within the organization, as well as with relevant external stakeholders.
· Respond to external inquiries on policy issues, including briefing policymakers and media.
Communications and Media:
· Partner with Global Communications to develop an annual regional communications plan that delivers on IRC priorities, i.e., demonstrates how IRC is expanding its reach and increasing its impact in the region. Elements of the plan will include social media strategy, target regional speaking opportunities for IRC leaders, Communications-driven partnerships, identification and planning for major IRC milestones in the region, and measurable metrics related to IRC-driven features in already-identified priority/top-tier regional (including Arabic) and global news outlets.
· Lead rapid, real-time Communications response for emergency/crisis situations in the region.
· Partner with Global Communications to manage reactive messaging, ensure swift dissemination of news and updates from the field, and act as regional spokesperson as required.
· Work with the Regional Content and Information Officer to ensure that website and communications material is compelling, accurate, updated, and in line with IRC’s strategy in the region.
Supervisory Responsibilities: Direct supervision of Regional Communications Coordinator (Beirut); Regional Communications and Information Officer (Amman); Regional Humanitarian Context Advisor (Amman). Matrixed, technical supervision of country-level advocacy staff.
Key Working Relationships
Internal: Regional Vice President; Senior Director Policy and Advocacy; Global Communications Senior Officer; ME regional team; ME Country Directors; global policy staff; global communications staff; HQ staff as appropriate.
External: Host country government officials, public and private donor agencies, international and national NGOs, UN agencies including and in particular the Durable Solutions Platform, Syria Resilience Consortium and other close partners, Syrian NGO partners, foreign governments, media representatives.
IRC and IRC staff must adhere to the values and principles outlined in the IRC Way - Standards for Professional Conduct. These are Integrity, Service, and Accountability. In accordance with these values, the IRC operates and enforces policies on Beneficiary Protection from Exploitation and Abuse, Child Safeguarding, Anti Workplace Harassment, Fiscal Integrity, and Anti-Retaliation.
· Advanced degree in relevant field required
· At least ten years of increasingly responsible professional experience responding to complex humanitarian crises and/or post-conflict situations, with a track record of delivering change through highly impactful policy, advocacy and communications strategies
· Minimum five years of supervisory experience in a high-performance environment
· Solid communications and media relations experience required
· Fluency in English (written and spoken) is essential, with demonstrated outstanding writing skills
· Superb interpersonal, communication, relationship-building and negotiation skills
· Proven ability to persuade and influence diverse audiences
· Excellent analytical, presentation, communication and reporting skills
· Ability to respond to multiple priorities in a timely manner, producing high-quality outcomes
· Ability to navigate interpersonal and inter-departmental organizational dynamics to keep focus on goals and products
· Must be willing and able to travel regularly within the region and occasionally internationally
· Culturally sensitive, able and interested in working with a multi-ethnic team
· Strong commitment to the IRC’s mission, purpose and values
· Must be able to work independently with minimal supervision, while being a team player
· A keen understanding of political complexities in the Middle East region is required; previous experience working in the Middle East is strongly preferred
· Ambition and drive to ensure IRC is viewed as a leading NGO working on this crisis
Standards of Professional Conduct: The IRC and IRC workers must adhere to the values and principles outlined in IRC Way - Standards for Professional Conduct. These are Integrity, Service, and Accountability. In accordance with these values, the IRC operates and enforces policies on Beneficiary Protection from Exploitation and Abuse, Child Safeguarding, Anti Workplace Harassment, Fiscal Integrity Anti-Retaliation and Combating Trafficking in Persons.
Gender Equality: IRC is committed to narrowing the gender gap in leadership positions. We offer benefits that provide an enabling environment for women to participate in our workforce including parental leave, gender-sensitive security protocols and other supportive benefits and allowances.
Attention Returning National Candidates: IRC strives to attract, motivate and retain qualified national staff in our programs. We strongly encourage national or returning national candidates to apply for this position. If you are a national of the country in which this position is based and are currently located outside of your home country and possess over two years of international work experience, the Syria Response Region has introduced an attractive remuneration package. The package includes competitive compensation, return flight to post, shipping allowance, temporary housing and a relocation allowance. Certain restrictions may apply.
Other Information: Amman is currently not assessed as a high-risk environment and it remains a generally safe city as long as IRC security protocols are observed. The post is fully accompanied and housing will be provided by IRC according to the IRC Jordan housing policy. Travel at approximately 25% is anticipated.
IRC is an Equal Opportunity Employer. IRC considers all applicants on the basis of merit without regard to race, sex, color, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, disability or any other characteristic protected by applicable law.
Minimum Education Required