ICCO is seeking a talented Programme Manager to lead the STARS programme, which covers four countries in East and West Africa. The Programme Manager will bring knowledge of microfinance in the agricultural sector and value chain development. Experience of working with large donors, building and strengthening relationships, along with disciplined reporting and effective grant management will be critical to success.
ICCO is a cooperative with a non-profit and commercial entity under one umbrella and with shared purposes. ICCO Cooperation seeks to empower small-scale farmers and agribusiness and link them to markets, with the objective of securing sustainable livelihoods. ICCO has been working for over 50 years, developing cooperation and increasing its presence with six regional offices and twenty country offices.
About the STARS programme
The Strengthening African Smallholders (STARS) is a 5-year programme running from 2016 to 2020, which aims to increase food security and the income of smallholder farmers in Rwanda, Ethiopia, Senegal and Burkina Faso by facilitating access to financial markets and agricultural services. The programme strives for market-based systemic change by developing and piloting business models in value chains and value chain finance that can be replicated by independent market actors. ICCO Cooperation implements the programme in collaboration with ICCO Terrafina and in partnership with The MasterCard Foundation.
The STARS model is based on three core activities: (1) To develop and implement innovative, sector specific agriculture financial products with MFIs for smallholder farmers; (2) To strengthen value chains and link smallholder farmers into these chains as well as linking them to financial and extension services (3) To broaden the evidence base in rural agricultural finance, value chain development and share lessons learned.
About the Role
The Programme Manager is someone who has a good mix of MicroFinance experience and Value Chain Development experience. This will be beneficial to the small-scale farmers that the STARS programme seeks to empower by providing ways to finance their farming and also adding value to their products.
The Programme Manager will be responsible for maintaining excellent relations with the MasterCard Foundation and ensuring disciplined reporting, as well as keeping track of the financial management of the MasterCard Foundation grant over the remaining three years of the programme.
We will expect you to demonstrate that you have capabilities in the following areas:
- Competent in microfinance: able to find financial markets and partners, with a particular focus on agrifinance
- Value-chain development: understands the agricultural value chain and able to drive and support its development
- Programme management: strong and disciplined programme manager with good attention to detail who is able to provide comprehensive reports
- Remote leadership: capable of managing and inspiring teams across four countries, sensitive to local cultures and practices
- Communication: able to communicate with internal and external stakeholders, including funders, partners and other bodies
Purpose of the Role
The Programme Manager is responsible for the implementation of the ICCO-MasterCard Foundation programme in 4 countries (Burkina Faso, Senegal, Rwanda and Ethiopia).
Duties and Responsibilities
- Provide oversight and manage the performance of the programme in all four countries;
- Supervise all staff hired under this programme
- Undertake field visits and international travel (around 40% of the time);
- Manage Human Resources, Finance, Administration, Logistics and Security implementation regarding the programme in liaison with the respective regional managers;
- Maintain regular communication with the donor;
- Represent and promote the programme in appropriate fora.
- Take all necessary actions to implement the programme with the following deliverables:
- To improve financial inclusion for smallholder farmers by December 2020
- To support staff and consultants enhance MFI participate in agriculture financial products
- To support the development of strong producer organizations linked to value chains by December 2020.
- To assist in monitoring, evaluation and learning of the STARS programme
- To participate in reaching 210,000 clients in the four programme countries
Skills and Experience
- An experienced international manager in the non-profit sector in Africa, with a background in economic development and experience with producer organizations and/or micro-finance organizations. S/he will also have experience in grants management including reporting, compliance and other duties
- Track record of effective project/programme management, particularly related to project start-up.
- Experience in working and coordinating with international and national partners, government and donor agencies.
- Excellent project management, organizational, interpersonal and communication skills.
- Ability to communicate, take direction, assume leadership and make rational decisions while working remotely from country leadership.
- High motivation, initiative and adaptability in a challenging working environment
- Strong skills in managing a team with different backgrounds, abilities and technical knowledge.
- Fluent in English and capable of working in French.