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About Save the Children:

The Organization

We employ approximately 25,000 people across the globe and work on the ground in over 100 countries to help children affected by crises, or those that need better healthcare, education and child protection. We also campaign and advocate at the highest levels to realize the right of children and to ensure their voices are heard.

We are working towards three breakthroughs in how the world treats children by 2030:

•            No child dies from preventable causes before their 5th birthday

•            All children learn from a quality basic education and that,

•            Violence against children is no longer tolerated

We know that great people make a great organization and that our employees play a crucial role in helping us achieve our ambitions for children.  We value our people and offer a meaningful and rewarding career, along with a collaborative and inclusive workplace where ambition, creativity, and integrity are highly valued.

SCI – Afghanistan

Save the Children has worked in Afghanistan since 1976. Our way of working close to people and on their own terms has enabled us to deliver lasting change to tens of thousands of children in the country. The UN Convention of the Rights of the Child is the basis of our work.

We are helping children get a better education, we make it possible for more boys and girls to attend school, we help children protect themselves and influence their own conditions. We work with families, communities and health workers in homes, clinics and hospitals to promote basic health in order to save lives of children and mothers.

Job Description:

TITLE: Head of Partnerships
TEAM/PROGRAMME: Program Operations   LOCATION: Kabul CO, with frequent travel to the field
12 Months
CHILD SAFEGUARDING: (select only one)
Level 3:  the role holder will have contact with children and/or young people either frequently (e.g. once a week or more) or intensively (e.g. four days in one month or more or overnight) because they work in country programs; or are visiting country programs; or because they are responsible for implementing the police checking/vetting process staff.

The Head of Partnership will take the lead role as focal point for SCI engagement with local partners in country. The overall aim of the Head of Partnership will be to ensure partnerships with CO partners respect SC’s Partnership Principles of value driven and empowering relationships, transparency, accountability and mutual benefit, and ensuring quality programme implementation with partners through a systematic operational partnership approach guided by SC’s Partnership Framework and SC’s Humanitarian principles. The post holder is responsible for ensuring staff and partners’ capacities are developed to ensure quality programming to children.  The post holder will be expected, with limited support, to lead on overall partner coordination, facilitate standard partner assessments and agreements, facilitate partner capacity strengthening plans and development, staff capacity strengthening, operational system adaptation and programme design and budgeting.


Reports to: Deputy Country Director – Program Operations

Role Dimensions:
Partnership Unit will be functioning more strategic and becoming the axle of SC Afghanistan’s program operations, including the roll out of Safer Partnership with its 3 (three) pillars. The Partnership team will be the anchor in coordinating and providing support related to partnership management functions throughout the partnership cycle and Safer Partnership, orchestrating support required from different department functions. This encompasses all aspects of partnership development including articulate the partnership approach in CO Strategy, clarify partnership management process, tools, standards, assign partnership management roles (partner scoping, assessment, capacity strengthening, day-to-day coaching, technical backstopping, monitoring and external liaison and relationship building) and monitor CO performance and orient, train staff on the relevant partnership function.


In line with SC’s Partnership Functions Matrix, key functions are:

Managing the overall partnership function:
•   Ensure staff and resource coverage for partnership functions
•   Provide needed training/orientation to staffs
•   Ensure coordination and coherence between tools and operational approach in functions and programmes (e.g. response wide coordinated operational system for partnerships across projects, programmes and partnerships)

Develop and manage the partner relationships:
•   Stakeholder analysis and partnership scoping for programs
•   Ensure partnership and risk assessments are conduced (either directly or facilitate the processes)
•   Ensure partners are consulted in program design
•   Ensure financial and technical resources are included in proposals/master budgets
•   Ensure overall coordinated communication with partners

Capacity Strengthening:
•   Responsible for support program managers/themes and support functions (e.g. finance, HR) to:
o   Conduct or support Partnership Assessment
o   Facilitate Organisational Capacity Assessments
o   Support partners in developing capacity strengthening plans
o   Provide general training and targeted capacity strengthening support
o   Monitor implementation of partners’ capacity strengthening plans,
o   Document capacity strengthening results
o   Provide input to programme and donor reports on partnership coordination and capacity strengthening,
o   Support staff’s capacity to work with partners based on the Partnership Framework and adapted operational response wide system

Managing sub-awards:
•   In coordination with Head of Awards support award coordinators to:
o   Conduct or support Partnership Assessment
o   Coordinate with partners on budgeting and work plan development
o   Draw-up contract/agreement/MoU
o   Conduct or facilitate partner’s involvement in kick-off meetings.
o   Monitor risk and financial operational compliance of partners.
o   Verify partner’s reports through monitoring visits to partners in the field (directly or facilitated)
o   Conduct compliance investigations as needed.
o   Ensure capacity strengthening addresses risks and compliance issues.

Additional functions include:
•   Coordination with external agencies working with the same partners, ensuring a partner centred approach and minimizing risk of duplicating capacity strengthening efforts,
•   Coordination with relevant SC regional or global functions such as Regional Partnership Focal Points, SC Centre Partnership Focal point, Humanitarian Partnership Working Group or the global Partnership Working Group,
•   Working closely with the Accountability lead to put in place accountability activities for partners’ program implementation,
•   Working closely with the Head of Safeguarding to roll out Safer Partnership  for partners’ program implementation,
•   Ensure that relations with partners respect SC’s Partnership Principles and are aligned with SCs Approach to Humanitarian Action.
•   Take steps to document lessons learned for wider dissemination,
•   Identify opportunities and material to contribute to communications and media work, acting as a spokesperson when required.
•   Comply with Save the Children policies and practice with respect to child safeguarding, code of conduct, health and safety, equal opportunities and other relevant policies and procedures.

BEHAVIOURS (Values in Practice)
•   holds self accountable for making decisions, managing resources efficiently, achieving and role modelling Save the Children values
•   holds the team and partners accountable to deliver on their responsibilities – giving them the freedom to deliver in the best way they see fit, providing the necessary development to improve performance and applying appropriate consequences when results are not achieved.
•   sets ambitious and challenging goals for themselves and their team, takes responsibility for their own personal development and encourages their team to do the same
•   widely shares their personal vision for Save the Children, engages and motivates others
•   future orientated, thinks strategically and on a global scale.
•   builds and maintains effective relationships, with their team, colleagues, Members and external partners and supporters
•   values diversity, sees it as a source of competitive strength
•   approachable, good listener, easy to talk to.
•   develops and encourages new and innovative solutions
•   willing to take disciplined risks.
•   honest, encourages openness and transparency; demonstrates highest levels of integrity

Job Requirements:

•   Bachelor’s degree in development or other social sciences or equivalent field experience
•   Master’s degree in development or other social sciences or equivalent field experience is preferable


•   Commitment to Save the Children values,
•   5-year Experience in partnership-based programming,
•   Experience with working with local partners in humanitarian responses,
•   Knowledge about core elements of approaches to working in partnerships, including capacity strengthening,
•   Previous experience of project management or partnership management cycle,
•   Experience of representation and ability to represent SC effectively in external forums.
•   Ability to write clear and well-argued assessment and project reports
•   Politically and culturally sensitive with qualities of patience, tact and diplomacy
•   Training/facilitation, negotiation and networking skills,
•   Innovative and creative problem-solving skills,
•   Strong commitment to teamwork and understanding of how to contribute to this
•   Willingness to extensive travel,
•   English language fluency, both spoken and written
•   The capacity and willingness to be extremely flexible and accommodating in difficult and sometimes insecure working circumstances.
•   Commitment to and understanding of child rights, the aims and principles of SC, and humanitarian standards such as the Sphere Charter and the Code of Conduct. In particular, a good understanding of the SC mandate and child focus and an ability to ensure this continues to underpin our support.

Additional job responsibilities
The duties and responsibilities as set out above are not exhaustive and the role holder may be required to carry out additional duties within reasonableness of their level of skills and experience.
Equal Opportunities
The role holder is required to carry out the duties in accordance with the SCI Equal Opportunities and Diversity policies and procedures.
Child Safeguarding:
We need to keep children safe so our selection process, which includes rigorous background checks, reflects our commitment to the protection of children from abuse.
Safeguarding our Staff:
The post holder is required to carry out the duties in accordance with the SCI anti-harassment policy.
Health and Safety
The role holder is required to carry out the duties in accordance with SCI Health and Safety policies and procedures.

Submission Guideline:

Qualified applicants are highly encouraged to apply for the position by filling in the online application form. In addition to the online application form, they can also attach their CV and cover letter in the online system. Please note that only the applications received through the online portal will be considered for this position.

Applicants can login to the online application system by copying and pasting the following link intro their web browser. Returning users will need to enter their username and password, first time users will need to create a user account.


Head of Partnerships – SCI Career Site Careers (oraclecloud.com)


It is recommended that you save your username and password for future job applications through the online system.


Save the Children International provides an equal employment opportunity and does not ask for money at any stage of recruitment.

We need to keep children safe so our selection process reflects our commitment to the protection of children from abuse

“Save the Children strongly encourages applications from women. Minimum country requirements for potential female applicants will be followed.”


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