Country Program Manager

Search for Common Ground
  • Location
    Bangui, Central African Republic
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Apply by
  • Posted
    May 22

Position description

Search for Common Ground  is the world’s largest dedicated peacebuilding organization with offices in over 30 countries, 600+ staff, and hundreds more volunteers working to transform how societies deal with conflict – away from adversarial approaches toward collaborative problem-solving.  For more than 35 years, we have been working to prevent and end violent conflict before, during, and after crises.  Our work fosters the transition of communities and countries toward peace and stability, so all other aspects of human development can thrive.    We envision a world in which conflict serves as a source for cooperation and creative problem-solving rather than a source for polarization and violence.  We tackle myriad issues that drive violent conflict, including Refugee and Internal Displacement Issues, Sexual and Gender-based Violence, and Violent Extremism. We also work with key stakeholders on the ground to influence factors that reduce tension such as Interfaith Cooperation, Fair and Responsible Media, and Governance, Democracy and Elections.

Position Summary

The Country Program Manager will oversee Search for Common Ground’s program in Central African Republic (CAR), serving as the head of office and leading on fundraising, financial management, operations, grant management, program implementation and monitoring and evaluation. S/he reports to the Central and Southern Africa Regional Director and supervises the Finance Manager, M&E Manager and all project managers. S/he collaborates closely with various regional support roles, particularly the Regional Program Manager and the Regional Program Development Manager, as well as HQ services such as the Institutional Learning Team, Communications, Human Resources, Finance and Operations. 

Key Responsibilities

Program Implementation

  • Ensure projects are implemented according to agreed work plans, within budget and to highest program standards;
  • Ensure excellent coordination between all teams at country level and between country team and regional/HQ departments;
  • Work with project managers to develop annual, quarterly and monthly work plans and budget projections;
  • Monitor project delivery to ensure that the Common Ground approach and principles are integrated in all activities;
  • Oversee project start-up and close out, ensuring that the team is following organizational procedures;
  • Ensure excellent coordination with all project partners and stakeholders;
  • Oversee all project budgets, monitor budgets against spending monthly and ensure necessary actions are agreed and followed through;
  • Ensure that the M&E team maintains a robust monitoring and evaluation system for all projects;
  • Ensure that results systematically feed into program implementation and design;
  • Review and approve donor reports and other deliverables and ensure timely submission;
  • Maintain regular communication with current donors, update on program progress, country context and any event or situation that impacts program delivery.

Program Development

  • Identify program priorities in accordance with the country and global strategies, in close collaboration with the Regional Director; 
  • Actively create and pursue funding opportunities at country level and coordinate with the program development team to develop and submit high quality proposals; 
  • Strengthen existing funding relationships and identify and pursue new potential donors in collaboration with headquarters in Washington, DC and Brussels, Belgium

Financial and Operational Management

  • Ensure the necessary internal controls are in place and adhered to, to protect the organization from financial mismanagement, asset loss and audit disallowances;
  • Ensure that operational costs reflect the available resources, and respond to gaps with fundraising and/or operational adjustments as needed;
  • In partnership with the Finance Manager, oversee the financial operation of the office, ensuring financial and operational compliance with donor requirements and SFCG policies and procedures;
  • Ensure that all spending is accurately recorded and allowable by donor rules and organization policy;
  • Ensure that country HR policies, contracts, and disciplinary procedures and processes conform to local labor laws and Global HR policy;
  • Ensure an updated security and evacuation plans are in place and that staff are adequately trained and equipped to respond to security threats. 
  • Actively monitor staff well-being and create an open and productive team spirit.

Organizational Representation

  • Serve as SFCG’s representative in country and externally as required;
  • Develop and maintain proactive, positive and professional relationships with partner organizations, other NGOS, donors, clients, key government officials, civil society groups, etc.;
  • Ensure visibility of the program and participation in relevant coordination and cluster meetings;
  • Maintain regular written and oral reporting to the Regional Director on key country, program, security and staff issues.

As job descriptions cannot be exhaustive, the position holder may be required to undertake other duties that are broadly in line with the above key responsibilities.

Desired Outcomes

  • Rapid and effective start up new DRL and UNDEF projects;  
  • Closeout of current DRL project;
  • Prepositioning for upcoming Bekou calls; 
  • Donor liaison on currently pursued funding opportunities.



  • Degree in relevant field (eg. conflict transformation, international development, security studies, media and communications, sociology, political science, or related fields);


  • Knowledge of the conflict dynamics in CAR;


  • Dynamic leader who enjoys working in challenging environments;
  • At least 5 years’ experience in successfully managing large peacebuilding projects and teams, with multiple grants and donors in a fragile state;
  • Track record in successful fundraising;
  • Experience with donor regulations, particularly the UN and the US Government
  • Experience in capturing results and overseeing reporting, monitoring and evaluation systems;
  • Exceptional communication and interpersonal skills;
  • A problem-solving approach to challenging situations;
  • Ability to multitask while leading a complex team.

Application instructions

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