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International Civil Society Centre

Senior Accountability Advisor, Global Standard for CSO Accountability

About WaterAid

WaterAid is an international development non-governmental organisation whose vision is of a world where everyone has access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene.  WaterAid began operations in Zambia in 1994 in Monze district as part of the response to the drought situation that ravaged the country in the early 1990s, resulting into among other problems, increased incidences of water and sanitation related diseases. A Country Programme Office was established in Monze district in 1994 and moved to Lusaka in 2001. The organization has a field office in Mansa, Luapula province and is currently developing the next 5 year strategy, with increasing focus on policy advocacy and influencing role, working across sectors, sustaining interventions and bringing about hygiene behavioural change.

Purpose of Role

Reports to:

Head of Southern Africa Region

Reporting to position:

Senior Management Team – Zambia Country Programme

Budget responsibility: 

Responsible for a budget of around £2 million

Size of team:


The primary purpose of the Country Representative (CR) is to provide strategic leadership to the Country Programme (CP) and to contribute to the global leadership of WaterAid. The CR achieves this by steering the direction of the CP through leading the developing and implementation of five year strategies that focus on bringing about the transformation changes needed to achieve universal and sustainable access to water, sanitation and hygiene by 2030.  The CR empowers and develops staff and partners to influence and support public and private institutions to improve policies, processes, financing and practice to deliver on this focusing particularly on empowering the poorest and most excluded – therefore contributing to wider poverty reduction and human development.

Candidate Profile

A successful candidate will be an influencer, and strategic systems thinker with a clear vision on what needs to change, on what drives change and how change can be supported.  You will be proven, highly experienced and capable leader that is able to rally a highly capable team behind a common vision and purpose.  You will have a sound knowledge of the key relevant development sectors, preferably the WASH sector or health, education and environment.


  • Develop and deliver the Country Strategy in line with WaterAid’s Global Strategy.
  • Lead and ensure the successful, on time, delivery of all multi year plans and budgets with a constant focus on the transformational outcomes and accountability.
  • Lead, manage and motivate a team, creating an environment that enables staff to maximise their potential and facilitates high performing teams; ensure that the Senior Management Team is effective in promoting effective internal collaboration and joined-up working.
  • Represent WaterAid externally; ensuring that WaterAid’s vision, mission, values and aims are communicated in a positive and compelling way. Facilitate the building of relationships between partners, staff and other stakeholders.
  • Be an active influencer from WaterAid at national level in the country through regular strategic networking and assessing the political environment for key opportunistic moments. Actively facilitate relationships between sector stakeholders (actors) to support the development of the sector. Build alliances and collaborations that help to deliver on their strategic aims.
  • Collaborate with colleagues from across WaterAid to enhance relationships and ensure effective organisational working.
  • Contribute as a member of the Global and Regional leadership teams of WaterAid to support organisational effectiveness and development.
  • Lead the approach to ensuring that the CP has integrated Equity and Inclusion into its work as well as being a diverse and inclusive place to work.
  • Remain abreast of the latest organisational thinking and learning on other principles and thematic approaches and lead on ensuring the appropriate incorporation in the CPs work.  Encourage and ensure that the CP systematically capture, incorporate and share positive and negative learning.
  • Manage income and expenditure to ensure that the country programme is fully funded and stay aware of local funding context to identify appropriate opportunities to increase income, in conjunction with the Head of Southern Africa Region and the Programme Strategic Funding Unit.
  • Develop thorough understanding of the external environment WaterAid is operating in, identify and manage risk including ensuring appropriate health and safety and security procedures are in place.
  • Ensure that WA’s global policies are adapted to the country context (as appropriate) and adhered to; represent WA’s stated global positions on key development issues effectively, adapting it to the country context as appropriate.

Person Specification

Education (essential):

  • Degree or professional qualification in a relevant subject.
  • Post graduate qualification in a related subject.

Experience (essential):

  • Proven experience of heading a Country Programme/Office.
  • Strategic leadership and management of a multi-disciplinary team of professionals, preferably in water and sanitation sector.
  • Experience in strategic planning development in a senior management capacity.
  • Experience of developing key strategic and operational partnerships with national level NGOs for programme, policy and advocacy interventions.
  • Experience of raising funds from government and/or international agencies (bilateral/multilateral), managing large budgets with diverse international donor base.
  • Leading on engagement with national governments, bilateral and multi-lateral agencies on policy influencing.
  • Proven leadership skills and strategic management skills.

Experience (desirable):

  • Senior management experience in an international development organisation, preferably across more than one country context.
  • Proven experience in managing organisational growth and change.
  • Experience of leading on participative monitoring and impact assessment missions.
  • Experience of working in Zambia.
  • Experience of developing strategic relationships with government ministries, multi and bi-lateral agencies at national level.
  • Significant experience of community-based water supply, sanitation and hygiene promotion projects.

Knowledge and skills (essential):

  • A clear and sound understanding of international development (policy and programme), especially in water and sanitation in developing countries.
  • Ability to think clearly and analytically.
  • Ability to develop long term strategic plans at an organisational level within a country and further developing operational short and medium term plans.
  • Ability to plan own work, setting priorities and completing it under pressure or when faced with competing demands.
  • Ability to lead financial and budget management processes and ensure high level of accountability to internal and external stakeholders.
  • Ability to use computers both for word-processing and spreadsheet packages.
  • Ability to communicate clearly in English.

Knowledge and skills (desirable):

  • A good understanding of participative hygiene promotion approaches and methodologies.
  • Ability to develop innovative approaches to development problems.

Personal qualities (essential):

  • A strong commitment to gender sensitive, inclusive and pro-poor development work.
  • A commitment to WaterAid’s values and approach.
  • Consultative and empowering management style and willingness to learn from others.
  • Willingness to work within an organisational framework in the spirit of mutual trust and respect.