Area Manager

Danish Refugee Council

Bujumbura, Burundi

he Area Manager is responsible for the overall management and strategic direction of DRC’s response in Burundi under the direct supervision of the Country Director (CD) Tanzania-Burundi who is based in Tanzania. The Area Manager oversees programme and support implementation, fosters positive stakeholder relationships (government, donors, UN agencies, I/NGOs and CSOs), ensures compliance with DRC and donor regulations and promotes a culture of accountability and transparency.


Management, Coordination and Representation:

  • Overall responsibility for the recruitment and daily management of the Burundi-based program and support teams, with an emphasis on promoting positive and collaborative working relationships in line with DRC's Code of Conduct
  • Manage the Burundi office, ensuring compliant financial operations, administration, human resources, logistics, procurement, and security in line with DRC and donor regulations and in coordination with HoSS and CD.  
  • As required represent DRC externally including in coordination fora with other agencies, donors, and funders, and for providing the direct link in communications between DRC's Burundi and Tanzania offices.
  • Strengthen DRC’s position nationally and enhance cross-border programming with DRC country offices including Tanzania, DRCongo and Uganda.
  • As a general guideline, the Area Manager will represent DRC with Burundi-based stakeholders, while the Country Director will manage relationships with stakeholders who are based outside of Burundi, though this function may be delegated to the Head of Programme.

Programming and Technical Support:

  • Provide oversight of all programming in Burundi in compliance with core protection principles and best practices, and DRC and donor regulations, while upholding rigorous project cycle management standards in coordination with HoP and Grants.
  • Provide oversight to Project Team Leaders on project implementation and reporting responsibilities.
  • Together with HoP, Grants and CD, develop project proposals and budgets in line with country strategy with a focus around cross-border and reintegration.
  • Identify initiatives to respond to needs of conflict-affected communities as well as specific strategies which build upon existing assets within the population. 
  • Contribute to the strategic direction of programming through active and ongoing participation in and contribution to strategic planning meetings and development of strategic documents.
  • Implement the vision developed for the Burundi program, identify opportunities, and liaise with donors and partners. 
  • Ensure timely delivery of high-quality program and project reports to donors and relevant stakeholders.
  • Ensure humanitarian accountability to DRC's beneficiary populations through effective project monitoring and community engagement. 
  • Ensure mainstreaming of protection and migration concerns and awareness into other sectors as relevant.
  • Support REDSS project implementation in the Great Lakes Region.

Finance and Administration:

  • Together with HoSS, provide support in the daily management of the Country finance staff.
  • Together with HoSS, oversee and regularly update a comprehensive master budget of all of DRC’s operations in Burundi.
  • Assume responsibility as primary budget holder of all projects and lead in the development of new budgets and spending plans.
  • Collaborate regularly with the Country finance team, Project Team Leaders and HoSS to monitor spending and ensure the timely utilization of all grants, including ensuring regular monthly budget and proposal follow-up is conducted in Burundi and feedback shared with the Country office.
  • Support HoSS in ensuring that all finance staff are fully compliant with operating in DRC’s cloud-based ERP accounting and project management software by conducting regular spot checks of the financial postings. 

Human Resources:

  • Manage the Burundi programme team and dotted line management to support staff to ensure respectful and positive working relationships which allow for the effective implementation of all activities.
  • Lead in-country recruitment processes and ensure that relevant staffing structures are in place and are reflective of appropriate gender balance in coordination with HR.
  • Promote professional development by identifying training and capacity building opportunities and ensure staff are well versed in core protection and livelihoods concepts, DRC's code of conduct, accountability, respectful dialogue with the refugee population, and prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse.
  • Oversee staff evaluations, HR records management and adherence to DRC standards (Code of Conduct and accountability).
  • Ensure staff evaluations are conducted on a regular basis and are uploaded onto DRC’s cloud-based ERP HR software. 
  • Provide leadership support to staff and promote best practices in HR management.

Logistics and Procurement:

  • Collaborate with the HoSS, the Supply Chain and programme teams to develop and implement procurement plans for all projects.
  • Support with ensuring that supply chain processes are in place and fully compliant with DRC and donor policies and standards.
  • Collaborate with HoSS Burundi/Tanzania to ensure field-based records are well managed, fulfil DRC and donor requirements, and are always uploaded into DRC’s cloud-based ERP system and available for use in donor reports.
  • Ensure all procurement requests are submitted using DRC’s ERP supply chain system and approvals are done in accordance with DRC’s budget holder policy, with relevant follow-up and adjustments.
  • Enforce DRC’s East Africa and Great Lakes procurement lead times and DRC’s warehousing/distribution policies accordingly. 

Safety and Security:

  • Assume responsibility for staff safety, collaborating with SFP and Regional Safety Coordinator.
  • Collect, update, and share relevant safety and security information in a timely manner and updating SoPs/tools accordingly.
  • In coordination with CD, provide recommendations and solutions to security incidents.

About you 

  • To be successful in this role, we expect you to be a positive, mature leader with a proven track record of developing effective initiatives, programmes, and impact. 

Essential qualifications:

  • Master’s degree in law, social sciences, international development, or other relevant field.
  • Minimum of 6 to 8 years of work experience within the field of protection, particularly within the field of humanitarian response and refugee protection, with experience working for an international NGO
  • Minimum of 5 years of experience in a senior project management position.
  • Excellent analytical and writing skills.
  • Fluency in written and spoken French and English (both are mandatory)
  • Knowledge of Kirundi an added advantage.
  • Strong initiative and self-motivated, with a strong commitment to teamwork and humanitarian principles.
  • Ability to work independently, multi-task and cope with competing demands under tight deadlines.
  • Identify priority activities and assignments, adjust priorities as required.
  • Ability to operate and think strategically, coupled with proven analytical skills and the use of these to problem solve and make firm decisions.
  • Prior experience in fundraising for Humanitarian and Development focussed activities with EU, US, and British donors.