Country Director Afghanistan

Country Director Afghanistan

This job offer is not active.

Contract Duration: 12 months with the possibility of extension
Starting date: ASAP/November 2023
Line Manager: Regional Director for MENA
Location: Kabul, with regular travel to PIN’s operational areas based on security clearance

PIN in Afghanistan
People in Need (PIN) is a Czech NGO that provides relief and development assistance in over 20 countries around the world. Formed in 1992, PIN has evolved into the biggest organization of its kind in post-communist Europe, providing relief and development aid where it is needed, and empowering civil society at home and abroad. In Afghanistan, PIN has been active since 2001, responding to humanitarian needs where they arise, and through targeted development programmes. Currently, PIN focuses primarily on Emergency Response, Food Security & Livelihoods, Education and Shelter, with support from a variety of donors. By working closely with the communities, PIN has managed to maintain a significant field presence in Afghanistan.

About the role
The Country Director (CD), a main representative of PIN at the country level, is responsible for strategic leadership. The CD ensures compliance with PIN values, policies and the strategy of the Relief and Development Department (RDD) and the country programme (CP). The CD manages risks, ensures compliance with environmental and social standards, and supervises the quality of programmes and all support functions. The CD oversees management of human resources (HR) and staff development. The CD’s line manager is the Regional Director (RD), and the CD in Afghanistan currently supervises the Deputy Country Director – DCD, the Head of Programmes – HoP, the Head of Systems and Operations – HoSO, and the Communication Officer. The CD is the chair of the Core Management Team (CMT) and Senior Management Team (SMT).

Duties & Responsibilities

Strategic Leadership
  • Is responsible for fulfilling the strategy, vision and mission of the RDD in compliance with PIN’s core values; and contributes to the organisational development and achievement of strategic objectives/organizational changes (localization, greening, etc.);
  • Gives strategic direction related to PIN’s presence in the country, and is responsible for the formulation and implementation of the country’s strategy in line with the RDD strategy;
  • Bears overall responsibility for maintaining and expanding PIN’s programme portfolio in Afghanistan, in line with the CP strategy;
  • Follows in-country developments, and trends within the donor environment; and ensures relevance of PIN programmes to the local and global context, ensuring, in particular, that the programmes are built on local capacities and these continue to be further strengthened;
  • With support from the HQ, ensures that the required human, financial and other necessary resources are available and used for their intended purpose;
  • Supervises the CP economy, and strives for the diversification of financial resources and financial stability of the CP;
  • Ensures compliance with local rules and regulations;
  • Is responsible for contingency planning and emergency preparedness;
  • Reports on the CP performance to HQ and ensures the implementation of agreed plans.
Human Resources & Capacity Development
  • Promotes team spirit, a culture of respect, personal responsibility, transparency and openness; and strives for balanced and diverse teams in terms of gender, ethnicity, age, etc.;
  • Ensures all staff are aware, understand and comply with PIN’s mission, values and relevant policies, the Code of Conduct and key policies, including the PSEA and Safeguarding Policy;
  • Makes sure that there is no place for any form of discrimination, and any suspicions of breaches of PIN policies are properly investigated and reported;
  • Together with the RD, ensures adequate staffing of the CP, including identification and budgeting of HR needs;
  • Together with HR, ensures main HR procedures are in place and well-documented; and monitors staff satisfaction, employee retention and turnover, and suggests corrective measures to that end;
  • Is responsible for the recruitment of key positions at the national level, and participates in the recruitment done at the HQ level (for CP international staff); and ensures that key staff have relevant technical experience and capacities, and these are further built;
  • Ensures that the capacity development of national staff is properly managed and financed, including efficient usage of PIN internal resources (e-learning, webinars, exposure visits, etc.) to that end;
  • Provides the senior staff under her/his direct supervision with regular feedback and support.
Representation & External Relations
  • Is the legal representative of the organisation in the country;
  • Builds strategic relationships and formally represents PIN towards local authorities, partners, coordination fora/networks, donors and other relevant stakeholders (especially on more strategic matters, new funding opportunities, etc.); delegates representation to other DCD/HoP as relevant;
  • Maintains a good partnership with Alliance2015 partners in country, and contributes to the joint cooperation/coordination at the country and global level (as relevant);
  • Is responsible for the PIN brand at the country level, visibility and external communication, including towards media;
  • Is formally as well as informally networking and developing relations/partnerships with all relevant organizations/entities in country, and strives for synergy, joint programming and advocacy efforts.
Quality & Risk Management
  • Ensures compliance with and roll-out of all applicable policies and standards, and protects PIN from any reputational risks;
  • Ensures that all support departments and functions are in place;
  • Sets up effective internal communication and coordination; and ensures effective information flow and coordination between departments at the CP level, and between the CP and HQ;
  • Together with the HoP, ensures: 1) all programmes are designed and managed in line with PIN/donor/cluster guidelines, quality standards and relevant SOPs, and utilize existing know-how and PIN technical expertise/resources; 2) regular programmatic reviews are conducted and recommendations for improvements are followed; 3) high-quality reports/proposals are submitted; 4) MEAL (Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability and Learning) related procedures and functions are in place; and 5) protection, accountability and gender are mainstreamed throughout all programmes;
  • Promotes participation and accountability towards beneficiaries, local authorities, local partners and donors;
  • Approves project proposals, contracts and payments according to given thresholds;
  • Manages the most important risks and coordinates risk mitigation measures.
Safety & Security
  • Together with the DCD, ensures that the PIN Safety and Security Policy and country-relevant procedures are applied;
  • Strives for the maximum safety and security of PIN’s staff and assets, and ensures an awareness of risks and mitigation strategies;
  • Ensures a balance between the accepted level of risk and the urgency of programmes (as per the Risk Management Policy);
  • Ensures that the Do-no-harm approach and maximum protection of PIN’s beneficiaries is applied;
  • Executes crisis management; leads the Incident Management Team (IMT).
  • And fulfils any other tasks as required.
Suitable candidates for this position should possess:
  • Degree in a relevant field (humanitarian action, social sciences, etc.);
  • Minimum of 6 years of experience in senior management roles (programme/operations);
  • Experience in managing a country programme or large emergency response and/or development programmes, and conversant with budgeting and economic management of a CP or a large-scale programme;
  • Knowledge of institutional donor environment (UN, ECHO, EU, BHA, etc.), and extensive experience with donor liaison, external communication, and strategic programme planning;
  • Strong leadership skills and extensive experience with management, supervision and capacity building of diverse and large teams;
  • Strategic thinking, analytical skills and sound judgement;
  • Ability to organize and plan effectively, follow procedures, meet deadlines, and work in difficult conditions and under pressure;
  • Outstanding communication skills (written and spoken);
  • Fluency in English - written and spoken;
  • Experience of working in complex and volatile context(s);
  • Previous experience from Afghanistan and understanding of the Afghan context is an asset;
  • Understanding of project cycle and principles of humanitarian and development work;
  • High ethical standards; gender and cultural sensitivity; and demonstrated patience and overall outstanding interpersonal skills;
  • Commitment to and understanding of PIN’s goals, values and principles.
PIN offers:
  • Flexible and challenging working environment with room for personal growth;
  • Possibility of remote work;
  • Robust and thorough induction training (2 weeks);
  • HEAT training (unless the candidate participated in one recently);
  • Starting salary, as per PIN salary scale, between 4,750 – 5,000 EUR gross depending on previous experience (subsistence and hardship allowance already included);
  • Reimbursement of flight tickets to the country of residence once every 6 months of work, PIN also provides 1200 USD allowance per flight for R&R trips (total of max two R&R flights per year, as the R&R is intended to be taken between the 6-month flights to the country of residence);
  • Reimbursement of costs of visas and vaccinations; assistance with visa application procedure;
  • Comprehensive travel insurance;
  • Medical helpdesk and psychological consultation available online;
  • 24 days of paid leave annually and 10 additional days of R&R leave per year;
  • Accommodation in PIN compound.

How to apply:

If you are interested in this position, send us your CV and short cover letter via our application form.

Please note only the shortlisted candidates will be contacted. Interviews will be conducted on rolling basis and the vacancy will be closed when filled.

People in Need staff are expected to perform job duties and responsibilities in accordance with People in Need Code of conduct and key policies (available at:

People in Need is committed to preventing any type of unwanted behaviour at work including sexual harassment, exploitation and abuse, lack of integrity and financial misconduct and committed to promoting the welfare of children and adults with whom People in Need involves. People in Need expects all staff to perform job duties and responsibilities in accordance with People in Need code of conduct and key policies (available at: People in Need Staff will undertake the appropriate level of training.

All offers of employment will be subject to satisfactory references and appropriate screening checks, which can include criminal records and terrorism finance checks.

We are committed to ensuring diversity and gender equality within our organisation and encourage applicants from diverse backgrounds to apply.