Head of Mission at INTERSOS

INTERSOS is an independent humanitarian organization that assists the victims of natural disasters, armed conflicts and exclusion. Its activities are based on the principles of solidarity, justice, human dignity, equality of rights and opportunities, respect for diversity and coexistence, paying special attention to the most vulnerable people.

Terms of reference

Job Title: Head of Mission Central Sahel

Code: SR-54-1914

Starting date: 01/07/2021

Contract duration: 1 year

Reporting to: Head of Emergency Unit for at least the initial 6 months since mission’s opening

Supervision of: Mission’s team

Type of duty station: N/A

General context of the project

Niger, Burkina Faso and Mali make up the Central Sahel region. The Central Sahel’s Liptako Gourma region overlaps eastern Niger, some areas in central and northern Mali, and northern and eastern Burkina Faso, covering approximately 370,000km² where the three countries’ borders meet. More than 80% of the 17 million people residing in the region live in rural areas, and livelihoods are mainly concentrated around farming and herding. Since the beginning of 2018, this region has been one of the Sahel’s insecurity hotspots. Intercommunal conflict between farmers and herders and conflict between extre­mist armed groups and national forces has driven over 1.6 million people into displacement across the countries’ conflict regions and have led to human rights violations.

Irregular and intercommunal conflict and sudden-onset disasters have increased humanita­rian needs across the tri-border region between Mali, Niger, and Burkina Faso. Humanitarian operating spaces have also been restricted, driven by this same insecurity, government-en­forced operating restrictions, poor infrastructure, and other access constraints.

General purpose of the position

The Head of Mission represents the Organization in the country of assignment and has overall responsibility and leadership of the Country Office’s performance, guiding a relevant program strategy development and implementation consistent with INTERSOS’s global strategy, ensuring effective and timely humanitarian response capacity, leading strategy development, operational planning, and overseeing financial, operations and human resource management, including the safety and security of all staff.

Main responsibilities and tasks

The HoM manages and coordinates the operations and human resources in the country and is responsible to:

Communication and representation:

  • Liaise with relevant national-level stakeholders: government, civil society, multilateral organizations, the private sector, and academia; and work to identify and engage stakeholders
  • Follow up, guarantee and monitor government recognition procedures for the organization in compliance with the host country formalities
  • Monitor donor’s priorities and intervention strategies in the country as well as to map and approach new donors

Planning and implementation:

  • Define country priorities based on context and needs analyses; monitor donor intervention strategies in the country; design, promote and elaborate new intervention.
  • Assess, promote and submit new projects, following the procedures defined and promoting a spirit of participation among beneficiaries at all management stages, ensuring the transparency of the intervention
  • Supervise, monitor and evaluate the implementation of the country operations – and all related administrative, financial, human resources, logistics and security aspects – ensuring timely and quality assistance delivery, as well as cost efficiency and accountability, in compliance with INTERSOS and donors guidelines, regulations and procedures

Information and Reporting:

  • Continuously assess, analyze and evaluate the impact of the country operations, also through periodic visits to the areas of intervention


  • Define the mission financial plan, ensuring self-sufficiency and consistency of expenses, and assume responsibility for the mission funds management, including bank accounts

Human Resources:

  • Coordinate, guide and supervise the mission staff, and evaluate their performance.
  • To ensure the respect for the values, Code of Ethics and Organization Management and Control Model of INTERSOS within the mission
  • Ensure personnel compliance with procedures foreseen by INTERSOS’ Organization Management and Control Model
  • Proactively participate in relevant coordination meetings

Humanitarian Access and Risk Management:

  • Take primary responsibility for overall management of safety and security for the country program;
  • Ensures that a geopolitcal analysis of the situation is produced or at least collected and examinate by the Country Mission management team;
  • Develop and manage partnerships and networks to support humanitarian access for assigned situations in collaboration with field colleagues;
  • Facilitate and support the analysis, development and delivery of strategies and plans to advance humanitarian access in close collaboration with regional, country or emergency colleagues;
  • Promote, develop, strengthen and maintain relations and liaison with relevant counterparts (government authorities, diplomatic missions/donors, IOs and NGOs) with the aim of creating strategic partnerships, coordinating ongoing activities and promoting innovative ideas and initiatives in line with evolving emergency needs and with the evolving huamnitarian access;
  • Ensures the INTERSOS safety & security management procedures and formats are in place throughout the mission;
  • Ensures that safety & security plans (for each field office and for the mission) are up-to-date, known to and understood by everyone (expatriates and nationals);
  • Ensures that material and personnel resources are sufficient to ensure the optimal safety of the teams, the material and the beneficiaries;

Required profile and experience


  • Post-graduate or professional qualification, in development, humanitarian, management or related subjects;
  • Risk management training

Professional Experience

  • Minimum of seven (7) years of relevant working experience in Senior Management Position (CD/HoM), and in Humanitarian Emergency context.**

Professional Requirements

  • Extensive experience working at a senior management level in medium to large-scale programmes in the humanitarian sector; knowledge of and experience in the West Africa context highly desirable;
  • Proven record of solid programme management skills;
  • Demonstrated skills in people and financial management, as well as previous experience working in environments that require sensitivity and relationship-building skills;
  • Proven experience in humanitarian negotiation and humanitarian access management;
  • Proven abilities in decision-making and problem-solving including in emergency contexts;
  • Extensive experience in networking, representation and liaison capacity, as well as strategic vision and leadership;
  • Demonstrate commitment towards diversity, equality and inclusion



  • Fluent in French (speaking, reading and writing);


  • Fluent oral and written communication in English

Personal Requirements

  • Excellent team-working and team-building skills, as well as ability to work under high pressure and with flexibility;
  • Excellent interpersonal and communication skills and ability to work and integrate in a multicultural team;
  • Problem solver, dynamic, mature;
  • Confidently able to deal with authorities and donors;
  • Pro-active approach to work;
  • Able to work independently as well as being a strong team player;
  • Flexibility, capacity of managing stress, good diplomatic skills;
  • Available to share accommodation facilities when required;
  • European Driving license B “desirable

How to apply

Interested candidates are invited to apply following the link below:


Please note that our application process is made of 3 quick stepsregister (including your name, email, password, citizenship and Skype address), sign-up and apply attaching your CV and motivation letter in PDF format. Through the platform, candidates will be able to track their applications’ history with INTERSOS.

In case you encounter severe difficulties applying through the platform, you can send an email attaching your CV and motivation letter (both in PDF version) via email to recruitment@intersos.org, with subject line: “Platform issue  SR-54-1914  Head of Mission Central Sahel”.

Please also mention the name, position and contact details of at least three references, including the line manager during your last job. Family members are to be excluded.

Only short-listed candidates will be contacted for the first interview.

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