Requisition ID:  15541
Region:  Europe (HQ)
Contract type:  Max term contract
Reports to (role)

Deputy Head of Health

What we do

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) works worldwide to provide humanitarian assistance to people affected by conflict and armed violence. We take action in response to emergencies and at the same time promote respect for international humanitarian law. We are an independent and neutral organization, and our mandate stems essentially from the Geneva Conventions of 1949. We work closely with National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and with their International Federation in order to ensure a concerted, rational and rapid humanitarian response to the needs of the victims of armed conflict or any other situation of internal violence. We direct and coordinate the international activities conducted in these situations.Purpose of the position

Mental Health and Psychosocial Support (MHPSS) Programme Coordinator is responsible for effective implementation of the programme and the achievement of field, regional and global objectives. S/he ensures the provision of best possible quality curative and preventive care based on a public health approach. S/he is the organization’s technical reference point for the programme. S/he leads the development of strategies, guidelines, standards and programmes in the areas of responsibility, and monitors the implementation of activities in MHPSS. S/he contributes to defining and promoting the general vision of the Health Unit, in relation to institutional and health strategies and responses, based on international standards and within an integrated approach. S/he ensures worldwide coherent, cross-cutting and contextualized approaches.Main duties & responsibilities Part 1

During the first 6 months in the position, the successful candidate will first be working as an HQ Psychologist before transitioning into the MHPSS Programme Coordinator. The HQ Psychologist is responsible to provide operational support for the effective implementation of MHPSS programmes in the field and their achievements at regional and global levels. She/he ensures the HQ and Regional specialists are technically supported for the provision of best possible qualitative, curative and preventive care, based on a public health care approach. She/he supports the MHPSS Programme Coordinator in achieving the MHPSS programmatic and diplomatic objectives and acts as Programme Coordinator during the absence of the MHPSS Programme Coordinator. Her/his tasks will be as follows:

  • Supports the MHPSS Programme Coordinator to develop and implement MHPSS strategies, policies, standards, guidelines and innovative approaches to support the field health operations, in line with institutional directions and guided by best practice and international recommendations;
  • Supports the MHPSS Programme Coordinator in the allocation of resources to meet operational requirements, contributes to sourcing, recruitment and planning of competent staff and validates the MHPSS technical skills of staff (regional and field positions). Contributes to managing the pool of mobile and key resident staff positions (actively recruit mobile MHPSS delegates; revise and validate applications, conduct technical interviews and oversees the field deployment planning of MHPSS delegates);
  • Guides the MHPSS HQ and Regional team in achieving the successful implementation of MHPSS programmes in the field, monitor activities, assesses programmes performance and evolution, ensure alignment with health/institutional strategies and objectives, and reports on results;
  • Identifies training needs, design tailored training and conducts regular teaching, mentoring activities. When required by the Programme Coordinator, she/he participates in external conferences and training, representing the ICRC, and shares ICRC MHPSS technical expertise;
  • In collaboration with the MHPSS HQ and Regional team, conducts briefing and debriefing of MHPSS delegates and others involved;
  • Develop capacities to mainstream MHPSS in health (First Aid, Primary Health Care, Hospitals, Physical Rehabilitation and Health in Detention) and in other ICRC activities. 

Red Cross/Red Crescent Movement Specific Activities

  • She/he supports the Programme Coordinator to implement the roadmap agreed with the Movement for the implementation of the MHPSS Movement Policy and Resolution (both adopted by consensus in the International Conference 2019);
  • She/he maintains close professional relations with the IFRC PSS center, the IFRC and National Societies to strengthen collaboration in MHPSS;
  • She/he participates actively in the reporting needed for the next council of delegates (end of 2021) and for the next international conference (end of 2023).

Main duties & responsibilities Part 2

After the first 6 months, the successful candidate will transition into the role of MHPSS Programme Coordinator. Her/his tasks will be as follows:

  • Contributes to developing and implementing strategies, policies, standards, guidelines and innovative approaches to support field health operations in line with institutional directions and guided by best practice and international recommendations;
  • Guarantees coherent and cross-cutting approaches through cooperation with all relevant stakeholders, and provides technical support to field staff to enhance targeted populations’ access to health care and the quality of that care;
  • Oversees the allocation of resources to meet operational requirements; contributes to sourcing, recruitment and planning of competent staff and validates the technical skills of staff working under her/his responsibility (headquarters team and regional positions). Also contributes to managing the pool of mobile and key resident staff positions;
  • Identifies training needs, designs tailored training and contributes to teaching/mentoring activities. Provides technical support to relevant internal and external audiences;
  • Manages headquarters team members of the programme under her/his responsibility and related regional positions;
  • Conveys the Health Unit’s strategic approach to relevant internal and external stakeholders and provides them with the necessary technical information for/on programme implementation and follow-up;
  • Supports implementation of the programme in the field, monitors activities, assesses programme performance and evolution, ensures alignment with health/institutional strategies and objectives, and reports on results;
  • Influences institutional policy decision-making based on best practices by promoting health perspectives in relevant internal fora. Represents the ICRC in external fora and academic programmes.

People management responsibilities

YesScope & Impact

  • Is responsible for achieving the programme’s field, regional and global objectives, including monitoring and strengthening of quality service delivery as per institutional and/or internationally recognized humanitarian standards;
  • Contributes to the Health Unit’s vision and strategies and to positioning the ICRC in relevant technical and non-technical global and regional fora;
  • Plans the programme budget at headquarters level;
  • Manages the programme team based at headquarters and regionally (more than 4 staff members, including the Health Programme Coordinator).


  • Internally: On programmatic issues, interacts with other Programme Coordinators and management within the Health Unit; other units within the Assistance Division; and other stakeholders, such as the Protection Division and ICRC management, at headquarters, regional and field levels;
  • Externally: Plays a key role in representing the ICRC in its engagement with the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, with different governmental and non-governmental humanitarian players, and with any other relevant stakeholders, such as governments, academic circles, professional associations and the corporate sector.

Education and experience required

  • University degree in medicine, nursing or clinical field relevant to the programme (e.g. psychology, physiotherapy, orthotics);
  • 15+ years of professional experience;
  • Minimum 7 years’ humanitarian experience with at least 1 year ICRC experience in field coordination and/or programme management;
  • Strong clinical experience in her/his area of expertise in particular in conflict settings;
  • Comprehensive previous MHPSS experience in humanitarian/development work;
  • Familiar with health information tools (epidemiology and statistics);
  • Proven ability to analyse complex health needs and identify priorities.

Desired profile and skills

  • Strongly motivated by humanitarian work;
  • Ability to work in a team as well as independently;
  • Communication and organisational skills;
  • Proactive communications across the organization;
  • Proven representational abilities (speaking and presentation skills);
  • Excellent people skills and proven ability to lead a team;
  • Fluent command of English and French. Notion of Spanish, Arabic, and/or Russian is/are an asset;
  • Computer literacy;
  • Familiarity with Results-Based Management / Logical Framework tools;
  • Red Cross/Red Crescent experience an asset.

Additional information

  • Location: Geneva
  • Type of contract: Maximum-term contract 
  • Length of assignment: 54 months
  • Activity rate: 100%
  • Estimated start date: June 2021
  • Application Deadline: Sunday, the 11th of October 2020

The ICRC values diversity and is committed to creating an inclusive working environment. We welcome applications from all qualified candidates.

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