NGO IRRI Jobs – Executive Director at International Refugee Rights Initiative

Job Title: Executive Director
Organization:  International Refugee Rights Initiative
Duty Station: Kampala,
Reports to: Board of
About IRC:
The International Refugee Rights Initiative (IRRI enhances the rights
of those excluded from state protection as a result of forced displacement, conflict,
discriminatory violence, and statelessness. IRRI works across three program
areas: (Preventing mass atrocity; Protecting rights in exile and Restoring
citizenship. In each pillar, IRRI strives to better understand the human rights
challenges facing excluded communities and the political, social and legal
context in which those responsible for their protection can be held to account.
Based on these insights, IRRI conducts policy development and litigation and
engages in compelling advocacy and campaigns at national, regional and
international level to bring about lasting change on the ground. IRRI’s
programs have global reach with a particular focus on Africa. IRRI’s
headquarters are in Uganda with staff also in Senegal, the United Kingdom, and
the United States.
Job Summary:, The Executive
Director is responsible for the strategic and operational activities of IRRI.
S/he will be responsible for overall day to day operations and management,
program development and implementation and the public and donor relations of
IRRI. The Executive Director will be in charge of developing strategic
orientations, ensuring the effective and sound financial management of the
organisation, and promoting staff development. S/he will ensure that IRRI
continuously adapts to its social, economic and political context and that its
endeavours are consistent with its mission and vision. The Executive Director
will also act as spokesperson for IRRI, keeping abreast of developments in
refugee rights and the rights of excluded communities and working closely with
local and international partners.The ideal candidate will be a creative, visionary and courageous human
rights activist with experience in the areas of refugee rights and forced
migration, in addition to conflict analysis, citizenship, or preventing and
responding to mass violence who has held senior positions, including
leadership/management positions. S/he will have a strong grasp of international
refugee rights, human rights and humanitarian law, with a deep practical
experience of human rights analysis and advocacy including from the grassroots,
and preferably within Africa. S/he will understand network and coalition
building, including with excluded communities, and have an appreciation of how
action-oriented research and new technologies can enhance capacity building for
effective advocacy.
Key Duties and Responsibilities:
The Executive Director is responsible for the following core areas:
1. Strategic and Programmatic Leadership:
  • Monitor and analyse legal and political
    developments, relating to human rights and the rule of law internationally
    in IRRI’s areas of focus and suggest goals, strategies, and objectives to
    the Board that ensure both appropriate institutional response and the long
    term sustainability and success of IRRI.
  • Oversee development and implementation of
    the evolving program plan to foster local regional and international
    strategies to change abusive laws, policies and practices.
  • Analyse and articulate IRRI’s message and
    role in the broader political, social and economic context.
  • Determine funding priorities in
    consultation with the Board and the Senior Management Team.
  • Coordinate project development and oversee
    execution of program activities in collaboration with the Head of
  • Review and report regularly to the Board
    on overall progress and results against operating and financial objectives
    and address areas for improvement.
  • Keep the Board fully informed of all
    significant operational, physical, financial, and other matters relevant
    to IRRI, including legal, regulatory, and governmental policy
  • Develop strategic partnerships.
2. Public Leadership:
  • Ensure that effective communications and
    appropriate relationships are maintained with stakeholders such as donors,
    and business, public and civil society partners.
  • Develop/strengthen relationships with
    existing and new donors.
  • Represent IRRI externally, conducting
    advocacy with governments and inter-governmental organisations.
  • Coordinate the preparation of press
    releases, op-eds and other public outreach pieces, deliver public speeches
    and otherwise raise the public profile of IRRI.
3. Financial Oversight:
  • Develop and monitor the annual operational
    budget, and ensure timely financial reporting to the Board, donors and
    relevant government authorities.
  • Ensure appropriate fiscal controls are
    carried out as required by donors and accepted standards and practices for
  • Anticipate potential funding gaps, develop
    contingency plans, and closely monitor costs to ensure adequate cash flow
    and prevent uncovered program cost.
  • Supervise finance staff and the selection
    of auditors and audit implementation process.
4. Administrative Leadership:
  • Arrange the meetings of the Board in
    consultation with the Chair and prepare the agenda and necessary reporting
    documentation for those meetings.
  • Take reasonable steps to ensure the safe,
    efficient operation of projects to ensure compliance with IRRI’s and
    donors’ policies, procedures, and practices.
  • Ensure that all operations and activities
    of IRRI are conducted in accordance with local laws, regulations, IRRI’s
    Code of Conduct, sound management practices, and the other policies and
    practices that may be applicable.
5. Personnel Management:
  • Recruit, hire, orient and mentor
    professional and productive staff.
  • Ensure staff are properly trained and
    performance expectations are clear.
  • Review and adjust the organisational
    structure and job descriptions as needed to provide clear work
    expectations and adequate resources for achieving program goals.
  • Promote knowledge management and a
    learning environment in IRRI through leadership and personal example.
  • Conduct annual performance reviews and
    support staff in their ongoing professional development.
  • Ensure operating policies, procedures, and
    communication protocols are clear and consistent.
    Ensure security protocols and procedures are followed and updated as
6. Other Duties:
  • Travel throughout Africa and
    internationally as required.
  • Other appropriate responsibilities as
    requested by the Chair of the Board.
Qualifications, Skills and
  • The candidate should possess an advanced
    degree in law, human rights, international relations/politics, conflict
    studies or a related field. A qualification in NGO management would be an
  • At least 10 years’ experience working in
    refugee/human rights , ideally in the areas of forced migration and
    conflict analysis, citizenship, and preventing and responding to mass
    violence, development and/or humanitarian response.
  • Minimum eight years of responsible staff,
    programme and financial management experience in a non-governmental
  • Applied knowledge of international
    refugee, human rights and humanitarian law
  • An understanding of campaigning and social
    justice movements, and of the functioning and relationships of key players
    in social change.
  • Excellent participatory leadership and
    management skills and a collaborative, result-oriented management style.
  • Excellent strategic thinking, process
    management and problem solving skills.
  • Strong analytical and organisational skills
    including strategy formation, process improvement and team building.
  • Proven communication, capacity building,
    advocacy and policy experience.
  • Proven experience of successful
    fundraising and financing strategies.
  • Knowledge of project planning and of log
    frame analysis and/or other project planning and monitoring tools.
  • Experience in dealing with a diverse
  • Sound ethical and moral sense, great
    sensitivity towards and affinity with IRRI’s mission and values.
  • Broad and diverse professional network of
    contacts, ability to act as spokesperson and to communicate effectively
    with all levels of the organisation, including internal and external
    stakeholders, and to develop local, national and international
  • Sound judgment with proven experience of
    dealing with hostile and complex security environment.
  • Creativity, natural curiosity and drive.
  • Adaptability to change, capacity to work
    under pressure and to take on several projects at once.
  • Ability to manage a diverse team
    effectively, balance the interests of different stakeholders, and provide
    excellent leadership by maintaining a constructive work environment and
    setting a positive example.
  • Personal and professional integrity.
How to Apply:
If interested in working with this prestigious NGO, IRC, please send an
updated CV and covering letter describing your suitability for each of the core
competencies outlined in the job profile together with salary history and
desired salary requirements and three professional references (including
current/last employer).
Submit via email to
IRRI provides equal opportunity and fair and equitable treatment in
employment to all people without regard to race, colour, religion, sex,
national origin, age, disability, political affiliation, marital status, or
sexual orientation.
NB: Only candidates who
have been selected for an interview will be contacted.
Deadline: 1st
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