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Requisition ID: req3257

Job Title: Technical Advisor, Reproductive Health

Sector: Health

Employment Category: Fixed Term

Employment Type: Full-Time

Location: USA-New York, NY - HQ

Job Description

Background/IRC Summary:  

The International Rescue Committee (IRC) 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, the IRC offers lifesaving care and life-changing assistance to refugees forced to flee from war or disaster. At work today in over 40 countries and 22 U.S. cities, we restore safety, dignity and hope to millions who are uprooted and struggling to endure. The IRC leads the way from harm to home.

The IRC’s vision is to lead the humanitarian field by implementing high-impact, cost-effective programs for people affected by crisis and by using our learning and experience to shape policy and practice. To achieve that vision, the IRC’s Program Quality Unit (PQU) provides technical assistance to IRC’s country program staff and shares what we learn to influence policy and practice.

PQU has three central objectives that we work towards:

1) Guide program design to achieve outcomes by incorporating the best available evidence

2) Build technical capacity of country program staff to implement, measure and continuously improve programs

3) Influence the IRC, peer agencies and donors to use proven interventions and generate new evidence to achieve change in peoples’ lives

PQU is comprised of seven Technical Units, all of which have deep expertise in their respective sectors: Education, Economic Wellbeing, Gender Equality, Governance, Health, Violence Prevention and Response, and Research Evaluation and Learning (REL).

This position provides technical support in the design, development and implementation of Reproductive Health programs in countries in conflict, crisis, post-conflict and post-crisis settings.  The Technical Advisor, Reproductive Health will support country health programs to strengthen the availability, quality and use of health services that improve outcomes for women and girls by: (1) reduction of unintended pregnancy, (2) prevention and treatment of pregnancy and childbirth complications; (1) managing sexually transmitted infections; and (4) prevention and treatment of consequences of gender-based violence. To help countries achieve those outcomes, the Technical Advisor will assist country programs to scale up and improve quality of family planning services, skilled attendance during labor/delivery, abortion care, STI prevention and treatment, and clinical care for sexual assault survivors. The RH team is situated institutionally within the Health Unit of IRC alongside environmental health, child survival, primary health care and nutrition. 

Specific Responsibilities:

The Reproductive Health Technical Advisor (TA) will spend at least 80% of their time delivering technical assistance in-person and remotely to country program colleagues in Africa, Asia and/or the Middle East.  This is a primarily field facing position with the central responsibility focused on program quality. The remaining 0-20% of their time is spent on influence, advocacy, research and internal initiatives at the discretion of their supervisors. Technical Advisors’ specific responsibilities are as follows:

Guiding program design:

  • Support country program staff to design programs and projects, ensuring that they are:
  • Help define approach to teaming / partnering with other organizations
  • Support selection of indicators for country programs

Engaging in business development:

  • Review technical quality of proposals, including review of  technical activities and ensuring alignment to IRC’s outcomes
  • Input into go / no go decisions on proposals
  •  When necessary, write technical narratives of proposals
  • Provide input on budgets required for project delivery
  • Engage with donors and do outreach in support of country programs

Building technical capacity of country program staff to ensure ongoing program quality and innovation:

  • Work with country program colleagues to help analyze data that inform periodic review and course correction as-needed
  • Share cross-context learning with country program staff across the region
  • Conduct technical training and ongoing technical coaching for country program staff, including on IRC outcomes, theories of change, evidence and indicators
  • Review and share program-specific tools / resources / curricula and work with Technical Unit specialists to contextualize and adapt global and country-specific materials
  • Support senior country program staff recruitment and onboarding

Influence the IRC, peer agencies and donors to use proven interventions and generate new evidence:

  • Present IRC research and programmatic findings across contexts and relevant conferences

Participate in and advise special initiatives and participate in thought leadership activities

  • Work with counterparts in other units to strengthen essential linkages (education, economic well-being, violence prevention, women’s empowerment) that drive improved access to reproductive health care
  • Lead or contribute to multi-country or multi-sector new business opportunities
  • Represent the IRC and its reproductive health programs in conversations with donors and technical partners

Key Working Relationships:

Position Reports to:  Senior Technical Advisor, Reproductive Health

Position directly supervises:  This position could potentially supervise or mentor one specialist team member and on occasion consultants and/or interns.

Other Internal and/or external contacts:

Internal:   Regular communication with education, violence prevention and response, health, economic recovery & development, governance, research, evaluation and learning, and gender equality technical unit teams. Close relationships with regional and country program teams.  Interacts with IRC internal departments, including business development, external relations and advocacy departments, to keep them informed of program activities.

External:  Serve as IRC program representative in outside regional meetings and global meetings and academic forums with donors, other non-governmental organizations, inter-agency groups and foundations.

Job Qualifications:

Education: Master’s/post-graduate degree in public health or relevant field or equivalent combination of education and experience is required.  Clinical degree (Midwife, RN, MD) preferred. Participate in ongoing training courses and share knowledge and skill sets within the unit. 

Work Experience: A minimum of five years implementing and/or managing reproductive health programs is required, preferably also within a humanitarian, international development setting.   Experience in clinical supervision and oversight preferred. Experience in technical tools and materials development, monitoring and evaluation, and research in relation to education is highly desired.  Experience in strategy development and working across sectors or disciplines is highly desired.

Demonstrated Skills and Competencies: Demonstrated expertise in program design, monitoring and evaluation, with the ability to turn concepts and strategy into measurable action.  Strong verbal and written communication skills.  Demonstrated commitment to renewing and maintaining currency with best practices.


Language Skills: Fluency in English required; French and/or Arabic skills strongly preferred. 

Working Environment: Up to 40% travel may be required.