Thursday, June 16, 2011


Open Society Foundations NGO Vacancy for
Country Coordinator (Abuja)

The Open Society Foundations work to build vibrant and tolerant democracies whose governments are accountable to their citizens. To achieve this mission, the Foundations seek to shape public policies that assure greater fairness in political, legal, and economic systems and safeguard fundamental rights. On a local level, the Open Society Foundations implement a range of initiatives to advance justice, education, public health, and independent media. At the same time, we build alliances across borders and continents on issues such as corruption and freedom of information. The Foundations place a high priority on protecting and improving the lives of people in marginalized communities.

Investor and philanthropist George Soros established the Open Society Foundations, starting in 1984, to help countries make the transition from communism. Our activities have grown to encompass the United States and more than 70 countries in Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America. Each foundation relies on the expertise of boards composed of eminent citizens who determine individual agendas based on local priorities.

The Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) is an advocacy and grant making foundation that is part of the global Open Society Foundations. OSIWA is based in Dakar, Senegal, and works to support the creation of open societies in West Africa marked by functioning democracy, good governance, the rule of law, basic freedoms, and widespread civic participation. It has offices in Abuja, Monrovia, Freetown and Conakry.

OSIWA seeks a dynamic individual as a country coordinator for its Nigeria (Abuja) office to provide a variety of strategic programme implementation services and administrative oversight, supported technically by the OSIWA regional office under the direction of the OSIWA executive director.


» Serve as official representative for OSIWA in Nigeria and where possible, identify opportunities for new partnerships and strategic initiatives;
» Coordinate and liaise with other OSF Network entities, donors, relevant government agencies and NGOs in Nigeria;
» Ensure that all strategic obligations are properly carried out and programmatic documents and reports are prepared and submitted to OSIWA regional office;
» Facilitate field visits from OSI New York, DC, OSIWA regional office, consultants etc to Nigeria;
» Organise and/or facilitate external and internal missions with regards to reviews, evaluations, project preparations etc;
» Carry out other activities and assignments as identified by OSIWA’s regional office.

Strategic Program Development and Management
» Plan and lead OSIWA program initiatives in Nigeria including development of OSIWA Nigeria strategies and policies for support and ensure they are adhered to;
» Identify emerging opportunities for OSIWA to advance strategic programming goals and objectives;
» Assess applications for support and prepare materials, including recommendations for project funding to OSIWA Board;
» Ensure that the overall program and projects are implemented in accordance with approved program documents, annual plans and budgets;
» Share information on programs and events in Nigeria to assist other program staff to develop projects and programs within OSIWA and OSF in general;
» Prepare program strategic materials on Nigeria for OSIWA and OSF publications;
» Provide up to date information on the current situation and needs of the country for the development of program strategy within OSIWA for Nigeria;
» Provide strategic leadership and overall supervision of program activities;
» Visit program areas regularly as well as participate in semi annual and annual reviews.

Financial Management
» Manage the use of program administration and grant budgets and facilitate annual auditing;
» Supervise periodic budgeting, accounting and disbursement of funds for the different budgets managed by the Nigeria Office (the general administration and program budget) as well as the budgets of the Open Society Justice Initiative and the Revenue Watch Institute for its Bayelsa Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative Coordinator;
» Responsible for overseeing the financial flow of the programs and projects and ensure all funds are used and accounted for in accordance with approved budgets and provisions outlined in the program and project documents;

Program and Projects Monitoring and Evaluation
» Design criteria for evaluating projects supported by OSIWA and ensure timely evaluations; Evaluate the program overall work regularly and use this information to inform future direction of OSIWA;
» Provide technical quality assurance and in cooperation with OSIWA regional office, develop a context-appropriate streamlined monitoring and reporting system;
» Consistently monitor projects supported by OSIWA for their effectiveness and ensure timely submission of narrative and financial progress reports as required by OSIWA.

Advocacy, Convening, Networking and Liaising with Stakeholders/Donors and Partners
» Keep up to date with developments in Nigeria and provide technical guidance and institutional support to OSF Network entities engaging in Nigeria;
» Identify niche opportunities to support advocacy based on development approaches and collaborate with relevant stakeholders including government and donors in advocating for relevant reforms based on experiences, lessons learned and appropriate methodologies;
» Build and strengthen partnerships with like like-minded organisations in line with OSIWA Nigeria priorities and plans and convene partners, where necessary to address advocacy challenges;
» Identify and develop ways to address the technical and organisational needs of partners to develop greater strategy coherence, organisational capacity development;
» Attend meetings of relevant organizations to keep informed of issues, concerns and needs;
» Represent OSIWA on donor/development partner coordinating groups;
» Source for additional funding for programs and activities from relevant agencies.

Grants Administration
» Maintain proper records on grants such as correspondence and reports on grant usage;
» Maintain regular contact with projects and address problematic issues with grantees;
» Work with other colleagues to develop/support projects in Nigeria;
» Encourage coordination amongst OSIWA grantees;
» Process new grant application which included obtaining adequate information about these applications to enable informed recommendations to be made to the Board;
» Ensure timely and accurate financial and narrative reporting from grantees;
» Review reports from Program Officers.

Management of the OSIWA Program Office
» Supervision and management of the Nigeria Office staff;
» Ensure that all OSIWA guidelines and policies are adhered to and implement relevant administrative procedures for the management of the Nigeria Program Office;
» In compliance OSIWA procedures and cooperation of OSIWA Management, employ local support staff and consultants as required and be responsible for the elaboration of job descriptions, contracts, salaries etc;
» Draft Terms of Reference for consultants.

Other duties as assigned by the OSIWA Executive Director and Management.

» University/graduate degree in relevant field such as legal studies, political science and development studies;
» Fluency in English and knowledge of French an added advantage;
» International/regional work experience.
» At least 10 years of experience in the NGO community in West Africa, public policy advocacy and Nigeria related work experience will be considered an added advantage;
» Experience in the management, evaluation and monitoring of programs and projects;
» Experience in planning and managing budgets and producing narrative and financial reports;
» Proven organizational capabilities and close attention to detail. Prior office work experience preferred;
» Ability to effectively manage multiple projects simultaneously in a fast-paced environment and staff management;
» Pleasant, diplomatic manner and disposition in interacting with senior management, colleagues, government officials and the general public;
» Integrity, professional discretion and ability to handle confidential matters;
» Willingness to work overtime when required.
» Extensive computer skills and high comfort level with computer research, database management;
» Excellent oral and written communication and analytic skills;
» Excellent coordination, networking and facilitation skills;
» High level of self-motivation and ability to work both independently and with others;
» Ability to operate in a difficult working environment;
» Sensitivity to diversity.


Commensurate with experience with full benefits.

To Apply

Send resume (in English), cover letter, brief writing sample and salary requirements, by close of business June 20, 2011, to:

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