The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) is a regional group of fifteen West African countries. Founded on 28 May 1975, with the signing of the Treaty of Lagos, its mission is to promote economic integration across the region.
We are recruiting to fill the position below:
Job Title: Country Coordinator (ECOWAS Volunteer Programme)
Location: Freetown, Sierra Leone
Category: ECOWAS International Volunteer Programme
Type of Contract: ECOWAS Volunteer Programme. Non-family Position.
Expected Starting Date: 1st February 2022
Duration: One (01) year, with possibility for extension (depending on budget availability and satisfactory performance)
- The ECOWAS Youth and Sports Development Centre (EYSDC), was created by the Decision A/DEC.13/01/05 of 19th January 2005 at Accra, Ghana as a specialized Agency of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS).
- At the 32nd session of the ECOWAS Summit held in June 2007, the Heads of States and Government adopted a new approach to regional integration by approving a new global vision called the ECOWAS Vision 2020. The principal objective of this vision is to move the Community from an «ECOWAS of States» to an «ECOWAS of Peoples» by the year 2020.
- Consequently, the EYSDC implements her policies, activities and strategic action plans, as well as the ECOWAS vision in the areas of youth and sports, including the ECOWAS Volunteers Programme. The EYSDC’s objective is to initiate, develop, coordinate and implement youth and sports programmes within the Community. To this end, it works to:
- Mobilise the different segments of the population to ensure their integration and effective participation in the social development of the region, as well as the promotion of youth organisations and professional associations to ensure maximum participation in the activities of the Community;
- Provide a permanent institutional framework within ECOWAS through which issues related to Youth and Sports activities in the sub-region can be developed and promoted.
Organizational Framework of the Centre
- The Youth and Sports Development Centre (EYSDC) is one of the Directorates under the Social Affairs and Gender Department of the ECOWAS Commission. It is based in Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso) under the headquarters agreement signed between the Burkina Faso authorities and the ECOWAS Commission.
- Decision N° A/DEC 13/01/2005 of 19th January 2005 had adopted the organizational structure comprising of four Divisions (Youth, Sports, Administration and Finance, and TIC). However, since 2008, the Centre has undergone some structural modifications following the transfer of the ECOWAS Volunteers Programme (EVP) from the Political Affairs, Peace and Security Department of the Commission (CPAPS) to the EYSDC, under the Social Affairs and Gender Department.
- The EVP is centralized in organisation, but decentralized in its application to allow for flexibility and adaptation to the current realities of each country. The strategic directions, including the formulation of the overall vision, goals and objectives of the Programme, is the responsibility of the Regional Coordination Council (RCC), whose role, among others, is to ensure that the EVP becomes a genuine voluntary arm of ECOWAS.
- Being a cross-cutting programme, the ECOWAS Volunteers Regional Coordination Council (RCC) includes representatives of relevant departments of the ECOWAS Commission. The RCC is chaired by the Commissioner for Social Affairs and Gender of the ECOWAS Commission. She is assisted by the Director of the ECOWAS Youth and Sports Development Centre (EYSDC), as Alternate Chairman of the RCC.
- The executive arm of the RCC is the Regional Office, provided by the EYSDC in Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso). The programme’s regional coordination activities are coordinated by a Regional Coordinator under the supervision of the EYSDC Director. Although the EVP is under the Youth Division of the EYSDC, it is directly supervised by the EYSDC Director for effectiveness.
- At the National level, the National Coordination Council (NCC) serves as the national body through which national policy guidelines for the Programme are given. This Council works towards the understanding and entrenchment of the Volunteer Programme in the national environment. It also serves as advisor to the country office, which is responsible for the coordination of the Programme at national level.
- The NCC is chaired by the Head of the ECOWAS Country Office in the country. It is made up of Focal Points/Representatives of the various ministries, Civil Society Organisations, United Nations Agencies and local youth associations involved in the implementation of the Programme at the National level.
Duties and Responsibilities
- The Country Coordinator is at the heart of implementation of the ECOWAS Volunteer Programme at the National level. S/He will work closely with the Head of ECOWAS Country Office (Chairman of the NCC) in the country of deployment and will report to the ECOWAS Volunteer Programme Officer (Coordination) at the ECOWAS Youth and Sports Development Centre in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso.
- Under the overall guidance and supervision of the ECOWAS Volunteer Programme’s Programme Officer at the EYSDC, Ouagadougou and in collaboration with the Head of ECOWAS Country Office (Chairman of the NCC) in Sierra Leone, s/he will perform the following duties:
Programme Development and Management:
- Be knowledgeable about the country’s information evolvement, which is necessary for ECOWAS to make relevant contributions, based on current, relevant and systematic national and sectoral socio-economic information that is available at the local level, and working in partnership with government counterparts, the UNV, other United Nations Agencies, the private sector, NGOs and OSC ;
- Get acquainted with peace-related activities of government, the United Nations system and other partners in the country of deployment, which offer opportunities for ECOWAS Volunteer services.
- Develop connections, initiate and maintain networks with the government, NGOs, OSC, United Nations Agencies, the private sector and other partners ;
- Undertake field monitoring visits, ensure technical guidance of ECOWAS Volunteers placed under different agencies ;
- Analyse the performance of ECOWAS Volunteers and be able to solve problems that could hinder progress ;
- Prepare analytic reports on field visits and make recommendations for appropriate actions.
- In collaboration with the Regional Coordinator, prepare annual reports and organise evaluation meetings.
Management of Operational Issues:
- Manage the day to day activities of the Programme’s Country Office;
- Carefully review all correspondences received and prepare appropriate responses ;
- Supervise and evaluate the junior staff of the Programme’s Country Office
- Assist the NCC to review applications for ECOWAS volunteers positions and participate in the recruitment processes of successful applicants. Compile reports on relevant interview and recruitment recommendations and submit them to the Regional Office of the Programme for finalization.
- Provide support and personal guidance to ECOWAS volunteers through sharing of concerns and advice and build a network of mutual support for the Volunteers in the country.
- Receive and provide information, guidance, supervision and administrative support to all newly recruited ECOWAS Volunteers;
- Monitor performances of volunteers in service through routine field visits to their duty station, discussions with their supervisors and counterparts and follow up on their periodic reports.
- Prepare analytical biannual reports on the Programme for the ECOWAS Country Office and copy the Programme’s Regional Office.
- Ensure adequate preparation for the deployment of each volunteer, particularly by providing administrative support, budgets, training facilities, equipment, office space, etc., before sending the Volunteers out to the field.
- Keep comprehensive and updated records on the contractual status of the incumbent Volunteers and initiate timely action on decisions for replacements.
- As the Administrative and Finance Manager of the Country Office, manage finances and report regularly to the Regional Office in accordance with the rules and procedures governing the financial management of the Programme.
Promotion of the Volunteer Programme:
- The Country Coordinator of ECOWAS Volunteers will study ways to connect with local expressions of volunteerism and volunteer organisation/ civil society organizations. S/He shall ensure the advocacy and promotion of volunteerism in the country of assignment. Specific efforts will be geared towards:
- Advocating for the promotion of volunteerism in institutions hosting ECOWAS volunteers.
- Contribute to the promotion of voluntary actions, particularly in the areas of social cohesion, conflict resolution, peace consolidation and poverty reduction.
- Support and encourage local and national organizations in promoting volunteerism for sustainable human development
- Promote and work with local practices of volunteerism and with people working together for the development of social capital, social integration, cohesion and solidarity.
- Take action on ECOWAS recommendations in the area of peace building.
S/He will in particular:
- Promote other volunteering initiatives
- Contribute to the activities commemorating the annual ECOWAS Volunteers day (26 March), ECOWAS day (28 May) and the International Volunteers Day (5 December)
- Work closely with the media to give wide publicity and create good awareness of the Programme in particular and ECOWAS in general.
- Encourage serving Volunteers to embrace the ideals of volunteerism and to be the best defenders of voluntary service through training exercises and the provision of promotional materials.
- Ensure the integration of volunteerism for peace in the country’s main development instruments, especially in the national human development reports (NHDR) and others.
Safety and Security Support:
- Maintain constant dialogue with host agencies and ensure a continuous flow of current information on security issues among ECOWAS Volunteers ;
- During field visits, evaluate the security situation at the duty station and make recommendations to the ECOWAS Country Office and the regional office, if necessary ;
- Keep the regional office regularly informed of the security situation of the Volunteers.
Public relations, Partnerships and Networking:
- Prepare, coordinate and disseminate informational material related to ECOWAS Volunteer Programme and the specific activities of the Volunteers to local and international media, the United Nations Volunteers Programme information service and the ECOWAS information services
- Establish, build and maintain working relationships with all the organizations that use the services of the ECOWAS volunteers, particularly government institutions, NGOs and CBOs
- Continually share information on the work of the Volunteers with partners to stimulate an interest in the ECOWAS Volunteers Programme.
Required Qualifications and Experiences
- A Bachelor’s Degree or its equivalent in the Arts, Social Sciences, Law, International Relations, Development Studies or any other appropriate discipline. Possession of a post-graduate degree is an advantage.
- A minimum of 5 years’ experience in the field of development or capacity-building, organizational development, and/or management of volunteers ;
- Proven knowledge of the socio-economic situation, cultural dimensions and political structure of ECOWAS countries ;
- Knowledge of ECOWAS and the EVP system is an asset ;
- Professional experience in a conflict/post conflict context is an asset;
- Prior engagement as an ECOWAS Volunteer would be considered an advantage;
- Prior service in an international institution or volunteering in a position of responsibility will be an additional asset.
- Ability to coordinate multiple activities and to work under pressure.
- Excellent knowledge of English is a must
- A good working knowledge of one of the two official languages of ECOWAS (French and Portuguese) will be an asset
- Knowledge of the other above-mentioned languages will be an advantage
- Computer knowledge (MS-Office/ Internet) ;
- Excellent interpersonal skills;
- Excellent communication skills
- High level of advocacy, negotiation and presentation skills, development of team spirit and human resources management
- High degree of personal initiative
- Ability to work effectively in a multicultural team.
Conditions of Service
- An initial contract for 12 months will be offered with a basic Monthly Living Allowance of $1571.88 or its equivalent in local currency.
- At the beginning of the assignment, a settling-in grant will be paid, and a resettlement grant will be provided at the end of the assignment. Air transport from home country to the duty station and return at end of mission is also provided.
- A life and health insurance cover for the incumbent of the position will be provided.
- Other allowances and conditions of service as stipulated in the EVP management and Administration Manual and handbook of Conditions of service shall apply.
- The position is open to nationals of all ECOWAS Member States (except Sierra Leone), aged not more than 38 years by the date of recruitment.
- This position is considered a non-family ECOWAS International Volunteer position.
- International ECOWAS Volunteers cannot serve in their own country of origin.
- ECOWAS is committed to promoting gender equality and equity. To this end, female candidates are strongly encouraged.
Application Closing Date
1st December, 2021.
Method of Application
Interested and qualified candidates should send their Applications to: evp.recruitment2021.SL1@ecowasvolunteers.com using “Application for the Post of Country Coordinator, ECOWAS Volunteer Programme, Sierra Leone” as the subject of the email.
Composition of Application
- A signed letter of application/motivation addressed to the Director of ECOWAS /YSDC
- A detailed Curriculum Vitae highlighting candidate’s experiences and skills
- Certified copies of diplomas and certificates/work certificates