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Country Director/Humanitarian Program Manager Nigeria

Crisis Response – Maiduguri, Borno State
Department Crisis Response
Employment Type Consultancy
Minimum Experience Experienced

Country Director/Humanitarian Program Manager Nigeria

Translators without Borders is a unique non-profit organization that helps humanitarian organizations communicate more effectively with vulnerable populations in the right languages. TWB created the first translation and language program specifically for crisis response and is now deploying that program in north-east Nigeria.

Contract length: 12 months starting April 2018, with the possibility of extension
Hours: Full-time
Location: Maiduguri, Nigeria
Travel: Abuja, and affected areas of the north-east

Application deadline: 22nd March 2018 9am Nigeria time

Apply here: link

About Translators without Borders

Translators without Borders (TWB) envisions a world where knowledge knows no language barriers. The US-based non-profit provides people access to vital knowledge in their language by connecting non-profit organizations with a professional community of translators, building local language translation capacity, and raising awareness of language barriers. Originally founded in 1993 in France (as Traducteurs sans Frontières), TWB translates millions of words of life-saving and life-changing information a year.


Access to information in a language a person understands is a human right. Yet in north-east Nigeria, over 300,000 conflict-affected people are unable to read or understand the  humanitarian information provided to them. Only 16% of a sample of displaced women over 45 years old and without a formal education could understand written information in Hausa, the main language of humanitarian communication. That figure increased to 97% when information was provided in audio format.

The effectiveness and accountability of humanitarian action is fundamentally tied to communicating with communities (CwC), which requires particular support where affected people speak a range of languages. TWB’s initial assessment found serious gaps in communications. Organizations lack basic information about the languages spoken and understood by affected people, and struggle to find either staff or volunteers with the right language skills.

TWB will fill the gap with language services across the humanitarian response, under grants expected to start in April 2018. This new director will lead on developing a program of language support that helps people affected by the emergency access the assistance and protection they need. We are seeking a proven leader to mobilize a team, plan and oversee implementation of grant-funded CwC activities, find innovative ways to increase our reach and impact, and continue to develop the program to meet evolving needs.

The Role

TWB seeks a proven leader and manager with an interest in language and communication and the impact it can make in improving humanitarian response. This senior role will lead the TWB Nigeria program, with overall responsibility for timely and effective identification, planning and delivery of activities, efficient and transparent financial management, coordination and learning.

NB: This recruitment aims to attract talent with experience and a background in senior humanitarian program management. Depending on applicants’ profiles, an appointment will be made to the post of either Country Director (CD) or Humanitarian Program Manager. In the role description below, the extent to which the post-holder is fully responsible or will be supported by the wider organization will depend on the level of the appointment.


Humanitarian liaison and coordination:  Advocate within the humanitarian community in Nigeria for language as an important tool in the humanitarian toolbox, and a key component of communication. This includes generating and using evidence to ensure that issues around language are taken on board in humanitarian planning, leading efforts to expand the use of language services and open access to multilingual resources across the response.

Program implementation and development:  Establish and lead the program team for an innovative grant-funded intervention to improve CwC through language support. Build relationships with language institutions and translators to produce high-quality language services. Lead the delivery of a cutting-edge language support program, including building local translation and interpreting capacity to meet the needs of minority language speakers. Fund-raise to sustain the programme and attract resources for innovative new approaches to communication.

Evidence and research:  Oversee needs assessments and research on language and communication challenges for affected people, providing simple, visual, and easily understood information on language in north-east Nigeria.

Monitoring, accountability and learning: Work closely with the TWB MEL Manager on executing the M&E plan for the Nigeria program, ensuring flexibility and innovation are incorporated and embraced, and that the program learns and evolves with need.

Financial management: Hold overall management responsibility for grant monies allocated to Nigeria (CD only), monitor the budget and ensure appropriate local controls. Work on securing future funding through maintaining good donor compliance and relationships in current grants, and contributing to developing future budgets.

Security management: Hold overall responsibility for security management, keeping abreast of the changing security climate, and best practice in security management (CD only), and supporting organizational decision-making and management of in-country security processes.


The right candidate is an energetic team player and leader who is ready to run an innovative program that could shift how the overall response communicates with communities in north-east Nigeria.

He or she should be an organized self-starter and excellent representative, with an understanding of the humanitarian sector and strong management credentials, and enthusiastic about the importance of increasing access to knowledge through language. This candidate agrees with TWB´s basic beliefs and values and can work virtually with team members based throughout the world.


  • 5+ years of project management experience in the humanitarian or development sector for the Program Manager,  10+ years for the CD

  • International humanitarian aid experience and demonstrated understanding of the aid sector

  • 5+ years experience of external representation for Program Manager, 10+ years for CD

  • Strong writing skills in English

  • Proven experience in security management

  • Proven experience in financial management

  • A background in managing CwC programming a significant plus

  • Knowledge of one or more of the languages of north-east Nigeria a plus

  • Training skills and experience a plus

  • Interpreting or translation experience a plus

  • With a nationality which has a right to work in Nigeria or facilitates a possible work visa, with willingness and capacity for regular travel in the country

Core Values

Translators without Borders employees and volunteers are made of people who believe passionately about the value of this work and take personal responsibility for achieving the mission. Translators without Borders’ mission and organizational spirit embody the core values established in its strategic framework:

Excellence: As the leading voice for communicating humanitarian information in the right language, Translators without Borders is a leader in the translation industry and in the non-profit sector.

Integrity: Translators without Borders believes that every person, whether it is the people who we serve, our volunteers or our staff, has value, deserves respect and has inherent dignity.

Empowerment: Translators without Borders believes in using language to empower people around the world to control their own development and destiny.

Innovation: Translators without Borders recognizes and celebrates the power of innovation to address humanitarian and crisis issues around the world.

Sustainability: Translators without Borders recognizes that meeting our mission necessitates establishment and maintenance of a solid financial and organizational infrastructure.

Tolerance: Our staff and volunteers are highly knowledgeable and skilled; value each other, our partner and our recipients; create a supportive work environment; and, conduct themselves professionally at all times.

Translators without Borders is an equal-opportunity employer, committed to diversity and inclusion, and encourages qualified candidates of all genders and from all national, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of our organization.

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  • Location
    Maiduguri, Borno State
  • Department
    Crisis Response
  • Employment Type
  • Minimum Experience
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