Program Officer (French-Speaking)

Closing date:

Title: Program Officer (French-Speaking)

Reports to: Program Manager

Location: Syracuse NY; London, England

Travel: Up to 20% of time

About the Near East Foundation:

For over 100 years, NEF has worked to build more sustainable, prosperous, and inclusive communities in the Middle East and Africa through education, governance, and economic development initiatives. Working through a network of country offices and local partners, NEF currently operates in nine countries: Armenia, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Mali, Morocco, Palestine, Senegal, South Sudan, Syria and Sudan. Its programs are organized around three themes: Inclusive Economic Development, Sustainable Agriculture and Natural Resource Management, and Peacebuilding.

Position Description

The Program Officer works directly with local teams to support the effective delivery and programmatic excellence of NEF projects. NEF leads innovative programs in the Humanitarian-Development-Peace Nexus in partnership with institutional donors that include governments, multi-lateral agencies and trusts. The Program Officer will serve as the primary headquarters (HQ) point of contact for a portfolio of projects and will actively participate (with the country team) in developing and maintaining key donor relationships for selected countries. The Program Officer will work under the supervision of the Program Manager and in close collaboration with NEF Headquarters and field teams.


The Program Officer will work directly with field office program managers, country teams and HQ teams to support the conceptualisation, design, and effective implementation of projects. Specific responsibilities include:

Contract Management, Coordination and Capacity Building (75%)

  • Manage the development and submission of progress reports and serve as internal and external focal point for designated grants;
  • Track project progress and mobilize management and technical support to ensure high-quality and timely implementation and monitoring of project activities, and facilitate adaptive management;
  • Coordinate on a regular basis with field project managers; convene monthly check-in calls with field and HQ teams;
  • Ensure compliance with agreements, regulations and requirements attached to NEF programs (including donor compliance requirements) and internal quality standards;
  • Conduct periodic visits to project sites to monitor and support project implementation;
  • Identify and advocate for professional development and capacity building needs and opportunities for local teams;
  • Provide timely inputs for fundraising and communication needs;
  • Identify, track and manage operational, economic and environments risks for NEF projects;
  • Design and manage project-specific consultancies, such as evaluations and learning studies; assist in ToR development, recruitment and management of consultants;
  • Contribute to MEL processes and coordinate with MEL staff to ensure excellence across project cycles;
  • Coordinate with Program staff to mobilize technical support for project design, implementation and learning;
  • Coordinate budget management processes on assigned projects.

Program Development (20%)

  • Contribute to the conceptualisation and preparation of funding proposals for institutional donors, serving as Proposal Manager on specific opportunities;
  • Liaise with the Program Development team to ensure the development and maintenance of coherent donor engagement strategies.

External Representation (5%)

  • Represent NEF in external meetings and other fora;
  • Assess quality of partnerships; ensuring effective communication and management.

Ad Hoc Support

  • Other project management and representational needs as needed.

Qualifications and Experience

The successful candidate will have the following qualification and experience:

  • Undergraduate university degree in a relevant subject;
  • 3 years of experience in development and/or humanitarian organisations, including significant experience of working with partners and consortia;
  • Demonstrated experience and effectiveness in project management and knowledge of project management tools and systems, including MEL policies, processes, tools and capacities;
  • Extensive experience in MEL requirements and report writing, compliance and risk management; particularly for institutional donors such as USAID, DoS, EU, UK, and UN Agencies;
  • Thematic experience in one or more of NEF’s key thematic areas (Enterprise Development, Agriculture and Natural Resource Management, and Peace Building through Economic Cooperation and Development)
  • Previous field experience in one or more countries in an NEF region of interest; understanding of context and operating environment;
  • Demonstrated experience and success with bid management and proposal development for DFID, EU, ECHO and other European donors;
  • Experience in (or understanding of) effective management of risk related to consortia;
  • Fluency in English and French; fluency in Arabic is desirable;
  • All interested applicants must be authorized to work in the UK or US at the time of application.

Position Criteria

  • Strong communication skills, with excellent written and spoken English;
  • Ability to swiftly process large amounts of information, identifying action items and priorities for support and escalation;
  • Ability and willingness to travel to field sites;
  • Ability to cultivate strong working relationships with colleagues and stakeholders across a wide variety of cultural contexts;
  • Ability to communicate with colleagues and partners remotely;
  • Understanding of effective and values-based partnership work;
  • Ability to think creatively and maintain a positive solution-oriented approach in high-pressure contexts.

How to apply

NEF will accept a rolling application until the position is filled. Interested candidates are encouraged to apply as soon as possible. A first review of applications will begin on March 28, 2022.

To apply:

Please apply by submitting the following documents to the Near East Foundation Careers page at

  1. Cover letter outlining relevant experience and skills based on the requirements outlined above.
  2. Curriculum Vitae;
  3. List of three references (including one from current, or most recent, employer).

Applicants are strongly encouraged to familiarize themselves with the Near East Foundation by visiting the NEF website at

The Near East Foundation promotes Equal Opportunities for all applicants seeking employment and NEF employees.

Please note only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.


NEF offers a comprehensive benefits package including medical, dental, vision, life insurance, generous retirement savings plan, paid family leave, and more!

Covid-19 Vaccine Policy for Employees

The Near East Foundation has determined that, in an effort to protect the health, safety, and well-being of all Near East Foundation, all employees must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19, included boosters as recommended by the CDC, regardless of prior COVID-19 infection status. This policy is necessary to ensure not only the safety of our workforce, but the ongoing functionality of the organization.

This policy will be revised as needed to comply with federal, state, and local requirements, and to respond to changing guidance from public health authorities.

Team members that travel are expected to comply with host-country requirements, including vaccinations. Failure to comply may impact your employment. Proof of vaccination or exemption must be provided.

Pre-employment Checks

Any Employment with the Near East Foundation will be subject to the following checks prior to start date:

  • A satisfactory police record check to include Restricted Party Screening and/or Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check;
  • Receipt of satisfactory references;
  • Proof of eligibility to work in the national location for this role.

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