Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within. Now, and for the future. Mercy Corps has been operating in Nepal since 2005, implementing programs in food security, agriculture, market development, financial services, girl’s education, climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction. We take a systems-based approach in our programming, with the aim of improving the lives and potential of vulnerable individuals and communities across Nepal.
Mercy Corps has launched a new program to enhance food and nutrition security, reduce future humanitarian caseload and improve the resilience of communities to recurrent shocks in the Karnali Province in Nepal. The program will be a Multi-Year Emergency Food Security Activity funded by USAID's Bureau for Humanitarian Affairs, and implemented in 6 districts (Mugu, Jumla, Kalikot, Surkhet, Achham, and Dailekh, with cluster hubs in Surkhet and Jumla) in the Karnali River Basin area. The new program, called “Building Hope Along the Karnali River Basin (Bhakari)”, builds upon many of the successes of the Nepal team’s previous Food for Peace program which ended in January 2020, the PAHAL program, but with some new districts and a much heavier emphasis on emergency response through cash transfer programming. Parallel to the emergency cash programming are emergency-prevention components of agriculture and market systems, disaster risk reduction, water for productive use, natural resources management, and a large emphasis on a gender and social inclusion approach, all with a highly integrated multi-sectoral approach.
The GESI Advisor is responsible for contributing in overall integration of Gender and Social Inclusion approach in Bhakari Program. They are responsible for facilitating a participatory process in order to develop a targeted gender strategy and framework in the program's detailed implementation plans (DIP), implementation, monitoring and evaluation in close coordination with partner organizations and technical leads of other thematic areas of the Bhakari program.
This position ensures appropriate systems and support mechanisms are in place to track, analyze and report on GESI data and results as well as engaging with senior management on the strategic direction of the overall GESI approach implementation in the district and support in adaptive management decisions based on analysis. Specifically, this role will provide daily on the job support to the Bhakari district teams, including implementing partners, on Mercy Corps’ “GESI First” approach. The GESI Advisor will work closely with the district management team, field technical managers, district coordinators and cluster officers, as well as local implementing partners, to implement the planned GESI interventions. They will mentor and supervise a district-based GESI Officer.
The specific duties and responsibilities of the GESI Advisor include, but are not limited to, the following:
Technical - Design & Implementation
- Conduct ongoing GESI review and assessments and suggest appropriate adaptations at district level
- Closely work with technical Managers and District Coordinators in integrating the findings from the GESI analysis into the program’s activity plans
- Conduct reflection sessions for program staff in Districts on a regular basis on the GESI First approach to raise awareness and enhance understanding
- Support HR teams in District in orientation and induction of new program staff on GESI commitments and approaches on a regular basis
- Develop new and adapt existing training materials
- Roll out training on GESI strategies and GESI First approach for program field staff and partners.
- Support other thematic areas team members in the district to incorporate a cross-cutting GESI lens in thematic training, i.e, food security, DRR and CfW.
- Coordinate closely with and support partners to promote GESI First approach in program activities and train partners’ staff to enhance their understanding and skill to implement GESI approach
Monitoring & Evaluation
- Support the technical Managers in incorporating GESI indicators in the Bhakari Program detailed implementation plan (DIP) and keep track of progress to feed into program reports
- Regularly conduct field visits to monitor GESI activities and provide on the job support to GESI officers
- Compile, produce and contribute to quarterly and semi-annual learning reports on GESI indicators and capture success stories
- Design and conduct semiannual gender and social inclusion technical reviews to take stock of GESI activities progress
- Thoroughly capture opinions, suggestions and reflections of communities on GESI activities during field visits and prepare briefs to feed into quarterly and annual reports
- Conduct regular community consultations to ensure programming remains gender sensitive, inclusive and on track
- Seek community recommendations on how to best overcome GESI challenges like engaging men, women, boys and girls in food security, Cash for work and DRR programming and to finding meaningful methods to include men, women, boys and girls in the project activities
External coordination & Representation
- Participate and present Bhakari program’s GESI First approach in district level coordination meeting with partners, external stakeholders and gender networks as appropriate
- Coordinate and collaborate with counterparts in GESI teams based in other districts.
- Mercy Corps as a humanitarian agency is expected to respond as and when crisis and humanitarian situation engulfs. As an MC employee all staff are expected to be part of humanitarian and emergency response in addition to their regular roles and responsibilities
- Create and sustain a work environment of mutual respect where team members strive to achieve excellence
- Conduct themselves both professionally and personally in such a manner as to bring credit to Mercy Corps and not to jeopardize its humanitarian mission
- Other duties as assigned by their supervisor and/or Chief of Party
- Work closely with relevant field management staff to develop and maintain systems that ensure the safety and security of operating teams when implementing UCT and CFW activities.
- Ensure compliance with security procedures and policies as determined by country leadership.
- Proactively ensure that team members and community operate in a secure environment and are aware of policies.
Accountability to Beneficiaries
- Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our beneficiaries and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging beneficiary communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.
- Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and MC's policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.
GESI Officer in respective district
Reports Directly to: Gender Equality & Social Inclusion (GESI) Director
Works Directly with: Technical program officers, Partnership Manager, MEL team at the district level
- At least Bachelor degree in social sciences, Gender/Women Studies/ Anthropology/ Social Work or any related discipline.
- In-depth understanding of cultural barriers to women and girls and socially excluded groups in Nepali communities
- At least 5 years of experience working with I/NGOs, and/or private sector organizations focused on Gender Equality and Social Inclusion, especially in food security, disaster risk management, agriculture & livelihood and humanitarian assistance
- Experiences working in partnerships, coordination among different stakeholders and organizations at district level is required. Prior experience working on USAID funded programs highly preferred.
- Demonstrated ability to work in complex environments under tight deadlines
- Substantial background in gender and development work, including experience developing and conducting training on GESI approaches and GESI integration
- Strong facilitation skills to conduct training for diverse audiences
- Fluency in English and Nepali languages required
- Willingness to travel domestically 40% of time, and internationally as required
- Good writing and computer skills, including preliminary research and information gathering from the secondary sources to prepare reports, compile analyses and make presentations
- Negotiation, networking, advocacy, coordination and representation skills with key local actors is preferred
- Ability to work effectively with an ethnically diverse team in a sensitive environment
- Proven ability to learn quickly, facilitate program implementation to achieve stated results and objectives.
- Proficiency in Microsoft office
The successful GESI Advisor will combine in-depth understanding of GESI approaches and strong technical skill to design, implement and monitor GESI activities, particularly in Food Security and DRR. They will have proven ability to learn quickly, take initiative, and be accountable for GESI results, with an ability and willingness to remain mobile for field support and activity monitoring based on programmatic needs. They will have an ability to think creatively about contributing directly and measurably to Bhakari’s GESI First approaches, and have experiences in both community mobilization, sensitization and influencing local government on GESI integration. They will have proven experience with diverse teams and capacity building. Multi-tasking, prioritizing, problem solving and simultaneous attention to detail as well as ability to influence and build relations internally and externally, are essential. The most successful staff members have a strong commitment to teamwork and accountability, thrive in evolving and changing environments and make effective written and verbal communication a priority in all situations.
In support of our belief that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities we serve, we empower all team members to dedicate 5% of their time to learning activities that further their personal and/or professional growth and development
Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives. We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.
Equal Employment Opportunity
Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impact. We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.
Safeguarding & Ethics
Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we come into contact with through our work, whether team members, community members, program participants or others, are treated with respect and dignity. We are committed to the core principles regarding prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary General and IASC. We will not tolerate child abuse, sexual exploitation, abuse, or harassment by or of our team members. As part of our commitment to a safe and inclusive work environment, team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, respect local laws and customs, and to adhere to Mercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and values at all times. Team members are required to complete mandatory Code of Conduct e-learning courses upon hire and on an annual basis.