Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Communications Officer

Job title: Communications Officer

Starting date: 1 April 2014

Duty station: Nairobi, Kenya, with sporadic travel to the field

Reporting to: Regional Director for Eastern and Central Africa

Interpeace, a Swiss non-profit organization, works in close partnership with national partner organizations and the UN, with the aim of building lasting peace. 

Interpeace has a two-fold mandate: 

(i) to strengthen the capacities of societies to manage conflict in non-violent, non-coercive ways by assisting national actors in their efforts to develop social and political cohesion; and 

(ii) to assist the international community (and in particular the United Nations) to play a more effective role in supporting peacebuilding efforts around the world through better understanding and response to the challenges of creating local capacities that enhance social and political cohesion.

Chaired by former President John Kufuor and headquartered in Geneva, Interpeace is supported by bilateral and multilateral donors as well as private funding. 

The organization is currently active in Africa, Central America, Europe, the Middle East and Asia.

The Regional Office for Eastern and Central Africa (ECA) is based in Nairobi and supports the work of ongoing programmes in Burundi, Rwanda, Somalia and the Great Lakes region.

Background: Interpeace’s peacebuilding programmes use participatory approaches to peacebuilding that are developed and designed jointly with its partner teams and stakeholders from the countries where the programmes are implemented. 

Communications are an essential element and tool of each programme. Communications are most effective when they are an integral part of peacebuilding programmes and when they linked to the overall communications strategy.

Supporting the partner’s communications capacity is a powerful way to increase the outcome and the impact of the programme and to strengthen the effectiveness of Interpeace’s overall communications. 

Apart from supporting Interpeace’s peacebuilding work at the programmatic level, the Communications Officer will also strengthen capacity within Interpeace to provide content for properly targeted communications while respecting Interpeace’s values and ways of communicating. 

The added capacity will also strengthen the dissemination of results among various actors, such as donors and international partners.

The Communications Officer will support current and new programmes that are managed from the ECA office including the Great Lakes Regional Peacebuilding Programme that covers Rwanda, Burundi and the DR Congo (focus on North and South Kivu provinces). 

The Communications Officer will also work on the Somali programme which is the largest and longest running programme that is being supported from the ECA office. 

The Somali programme is currently experiencing an intensive phase of peace and statebuilding which also requires an effective communications strategy.

The Interpeace Communications Officer through regular interactions with the partner teams will strengthen communications on both programmatic and on ECA level. 

S/he will also be the ECA focal point for Interpeace’s overall communication efforts and as a member of the Interpeace’s Global Communications Team support the implementation of Interpeace’s global communications strategy.

General Position Summary

The Communication Officer (CO) is a member of the Regional Office for Eastern and Central Africa team. 

The CO will collaborate directly with the different Programme Officers and Directors, the ECA Learning and Policy focal point and the ECA Regional Director. Overall, the ECA office has a collaborative and horizontal approach to programme delivery and reporting.

Under the general supervision of the Regional Director for Eastern and Central Africa, the Communications Officer will be responsible for implementing and coordinating a communications strategy for the ECA programmes, in particular for the Great Lakes Regional Peacebuilding Programme and the Somali Programme. 

S/he will work with local partner organizations in the programme countries as well as at the ECA level. 

The CO will also contribute to the development of an Interpeace communications strategy, lead its operationalization and implementation at the ECA level and ensure that programme communication strategies are aligned with Interpeace’s overall strategy. 

More broadly, the CO will serve as ECA focal point regarding communication matters. 

Being a member of the ECA team, the CO will collaborate with all ECA programme teams and partners, (particularly with the Great Lakes and Somali programmes) the Regional Director for Eastern and Central Africa, and the Global Communications Team.

Specific duties include:
  • Lead the development and implementation of media, dissemination and outreach strategies for the Great Lakes Regional Peacebuilding Programme and the Somali Programme together with the communication focal points of the respective programme partners and under the guidance and close collaboration with the Interpeace respective programme teams;
  • Provide day-to-day support and guidance to the communication focal points of the partners and support them to develop and implement programme specific communications strategies;
  • Capture and disseminate on a regular basis success stories to promote the programmes and highlight outcomes and impacts vis-à-vis external actors;
  • Be the interlocutor between the partner organizations’ communications focal points and the Interpeace Global Communication Team;
  • Closely collaborate with the ECA programme teams and management to ensure the production and dissemination of media outputs that publicize the work (activities, results achieved and impact) of the peacebuilding programmes;
  • Contribute to the development and implementation of the Interpeace communications strategy and ensure its operationalization and implementation in the ECA office and to support ECA media relations; 
  • Initiate and support the development of production of communication tools for the ECA office and the Global Communications Team, including the public Interpeace annual report, website, brochures, newsletters, social media and other documents;
  • Initiate and lead dissemination, outreach and networking initiatives relevant to the ECA programmes;
  • Initiate activities that reach out to key actors in the ECA region and develop and apply appropriate tools such as mailing lists, social media and others;
  • Conduct media monitoring for the programmes in the region, in particular the Great Lakes and Somali region and the respective partner organizations, and on issues relevant for Interpeace’s peacebuilding work in the ECA region; develop a system capturing the results of the media monitoring and the media mentions;
  • Assist the ECA programme teams in the drafting and production of reports and other communications outputs with regards to content and layout; in particular feed in communications aspects from the programmatic as well as dissemination / outreach level;
  • Contribute to the review of strategies and action plans of the programmes to ensure that communications are appropriately captured and contribute to the overall programme outcomes and impact;
  • Contribute to communications capacity of ECA office staff and partner organizations;
  • Assist programme partners and their audio-visual teams on how to best utilize the audio-visual productions to communicate about the peacebuilding work and achievements to selected audiences;
  • Stay up to date with latest communications trends and practice in the field of peacebuilding and participatory interventions; inform the Regional Director of new findings relevant for the ECA and its programmes;
  • Stay abreast of the political, economic and social developments in the programme areas;
  • Provide relevant additional support to the Regional Director for Eastern and Central Africa and the ECA programme teams as called upon.
  • Fluency in English; French skills are highly desired;
  • Master’s Degree in communications, journalism, international relations or related fields;
  • At least three years of experience working in communications and / or journalism;
  • Experience in working with an international organization and peacebuilding field is highly desired; proven ability to contribute to the development of organizational communications strategies;
  • Ability to write short, understandable and accurate summaries of complex information while respecting context specific sensitivities;
  • Ability to handle sensitive materials confidentially; Respect for deadlines
  • Field experience in a conflict-affected or post-conflict country highly desirable;
  • Knowledge of and commitment to the field of peacebuilding highly desirable;
  • Experience in the production of audio and video materials would be an advantage;
  • Ability to work in a multicultural team environment as well as independently;
  • Flexibility, especially regarding working hours and short-notice availability;
  • Evidence of strategic and analytical thinking and proven ability to organize, plan and prioritize work;
Success Factors:
  • Commitment to inclusiveness and consensus building;
  • Ability to problem solve, prioritize and follow up;
  • Excellent interpersonal communication skills;
  • A good sense of humor.
How to Apply:

Interested and qualified candidates are invited to submit their application, including a letter of interest and curriculum vitae at: "ECA Communications Officer" MUST BE included in the subject line of the application email to be considered.

Interpeace is an equal opportunity employer.

Please note that due to high volume of applications, ONLY short-listed for interviews candidates will be notified.

This recruitment will remain open until the post is filled.

For more information about Interpeace, its values and working principles, please visit the Interpeace website (