Safeguarding Senior Advisor Job in Kenya

Job Title: Safeguarding Senior Advisor

Sector: Violence Prevention and Response

Employment Category: Fixed Term

Employment Type: Full-Time

Open to Expatriates: Yes

Job Description

Background/IRC Summary:

The International Rescue Committee (IRC) responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises and helps people to survive and rebuild their lives. Founded in 1933 at the request of Albert Einstein, the IRC offers lifesaving care and life-changing assistance to refugees forced to flee from war or disaster. At work today in over 40 countries and 22 U.S. cities, we restore safety, dignity and hope to millions who are uprooted and struggling to endure. The IRC leads the way from harm to home.

Safeguarding is at the core of IRC’s mission – to do no harm and ensure that the IRC’s clients and staff are protected from sexual violence, exploitation, and abuse. Safeguarding covers both staff and client-facing protection from exploitation and abuse. It sets out deliberate action taken to ensure the safety, dignity and protection of clients receiving aid and workers delivering it. Safeguarding covers sexual harrassment and other forms of sexual violence that may be experienced by staff, regardless of who perpetrates it, and the exploitation and abuse, including physical, verbal, emotional, mental, economic and sexual, of adult and child clients by persons working for or associated with the IRC.

The IRC’s Violence Prevention and Response Unit (VPRU) has specific protection expertise and experience that is relevant to the organizational work around client and workplace safeguarding – prevention of and response to sexual harassment, exploitation and abuse, and child abuse, exploitation and neglect. While Safeguarding is a separate function of protection and is an organizational and HR function, we recognize that the response to safeguarding concerns for clients and staff will benefit from support from VPRU and our protection teams, who are often the ones offering response services on the ground.  Therefore, for an initial period of one year, the Safeguarding Technical Adviser will be situated in the VPRU to align the organizational work on Safeguarding with the protection programming expertise.

The VPRU works to reduce people’s vulnerability to and support their recovery from violence and promote transformative work for a future free from violence. The unit houses expertise in the fields of Child Protection (CP), Protection and Rule of Law (PROL), and Women’s Protection and Empowerment (WPE) to support women, children and other vulnerable groups through violence prevention programs that help stop violence before it happens and violence response programs that ensures lifesaving services for people affected by violence. VPRU has programs across 39 countries across Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Middle East.

Specific Responsibilities:

The Safeguarding Senior Advisor will be responsible for supporting global, regional and country level safeguarding efforts on prevention and response in line with protection programming and building on protection networks. The Safeguarding Senior Advisor will work in close collaboration with colleagues across SGU, HR, Duty of Care, GEDI and VPRU. The Safeguarding Senior Advisors’ specific responsibilities are as follows:

Risk Mitigation: Technical guidance and support for safeguarding best practice in program design/implementation across sectors 

·       Lead the development of best practices for mitigating safeguarding risks related to different types of programming.  (In close collaboration with VPRU STAs for Child Protection and Women’s Protection and Empowerment, focal points from other sectors and SGU)

  • Ensure basic understanding of general Safeguarding risk mitigation, reporting, and response principles and actions across Technical Units so that these principles can be used in program design and implementation across sectors
  • Ensure basic understanding of general Safeguarding risk mitigation, reporting and response principles and actions across business process owners so that these principles can be incorporated into business processes related to programs, e.g. PCM, DDP 1:1s with TCs, or SAP design/revision
  • With SGU, develop and make available audit tools to be used by CPs to assess alignment between policy/program design and practices at site level, to include both assessment of risk and risk mitigation as well as response, including service mapping and referral pathways.

Safeguarding Response: Technical guidance and support for safeguarding response to client and staff survivors

  • In partnership with SGU, DOC, S&S, maintain and update on the IRC’s global minimum standards and SOPs for survivor-centered safeguarding response to clients and staff survivors.
  • Provide training and coaching support for relevant stakeholders to understand and utilize the standards when leading a response to a safeguarding violation and when putting in place the SoPs.
  • Support RVPs, Country Directors, and other relevant country office staff in establishing and maintaining  site level response capacity
  • Provide leadership in creating and supporting regional communities of practice for all locally identified staff safeguarding responders to build community and provide support. This includes supporting country programs and regions to identify country leads and support them to facilitate regional CoPs, maintaining a database of appointed site level responders and onboarding newly appointed responders.
  • In collaboration with SGU and DOC, hold quarterly check in meetings for all those identified to lead a regional staff safeguarding response COP to facilitate training, coordination, discussion, support requests and data collection/analysis.
  • Collaborate with SGU, ECU, and HR to define clear division of responsibility and accountability between actors and coordination
  • Provide technical advisory support on client and staff safeguarding case response as terminal point of escalation for highly complex cases

Key Working Relationships:

Position Reports to:  Director of Country Support, VPRU

Position directly supervises:  N/A

Other Internal and/or external contacts:

Internal:  Regular communication and collaboration with Regional Safeguarding Advisors and Director of Safeguarding in SGU, HR, Duty of Care and Regional Directors in GEDI. Close collaboration with VPRU STAs for WPE and CP. Close relationships with regional and country program safeguarding focal points. 

External:  Participate in external interagency Safeguarding coordination and learning networks, as appropriate, in coordination with SGU advisors.

Job Requirements:

Education: Master’s/post-graduate degree in public health , social work, humanities or other relevant field or equivalent combination of education and experience is required.

Work Experience: A minimum of 8-10 years of experience in safeguarding (or another relevant sector) and response services for survivors, ideally within a humanitarian or international development organization. Experience in technical tools and materials development, monitoring and evaluation is highly desired.  Experience in strategy development and working across sectors or disciplines is highly desired.

Demonstrated Skills and Competencies: Demonstrated ability to turn concepts and strategy into measurable action, and experience leading on program design, monitoring and evaluation. Must have proven experience of working directly with survivors of violence. Must have strong and effective communications skills, and the ability to present a broad array of information to inform and influence diverse audiences in multi-cultural environments. Demonstrate commitment and capacity to renew and maintain standards with best practices in the field.

Language Skills:  Fluency in English required; proficiency in another language (Spanish, French, Arabic or Swahili) is highly desired.

Working Environment:  Up to 40% travel may be required. This position will be based depending on candidate preference and IRC eligible location.


All staff are required to adhere to THE IRC Way Standards for Professional Conduct and the IRC country employment policies.