Country Director – Zambia

CARE International

CARE is an international NGO with local staff and community partners in 100 countries. We create local solutions to poverty and inequality and we seek dignity for everyone every day and during times of crisis.  These solutions have a broad range, from disaster response to food and nutrition to education and work for women and girls to healthy mothers and children. CARE puts women and girls at the center of everything we do because when they have equal access to resources, they lift their families and communities out of poverty. Our staff live where they work, which makes us effective at understanding the challenges they face. We’ve been doing this for 75 years, since World War II. It started with the world’s first CARE Package® of food for the post-war hungry in Europe. Our work today is as important as ever, we believe that poverty and inequality are historic injustices that we can end within a generation, for good. If you share our core beliefs: poverty is an injustice; poverty is solvable; and together, we have the power to end it, join us, and Fight with CARE.​

Work Location : Zambia – Lusaka                           

Type of Post : Accompanied – Family                  

Other Possible Location :                                       

Funding : APPROVED

Expected Travel : up to 30%                                              

Type of Contract : 

Language Requirement : ENGLISH                          

Application Deadline : 

Employee Duration : Active Full-Time


Job Summary

The Country Director has overall responsibility and leadership to ensure the relevance, impact and cost-effectiveness of CARE International in Zambia. S/he represents CI in the country, guiding a relevant program strategy development and implementation, ensuring effective humanitarian capacity and timely response, leading operational planning, and overseeing financial, operations and human resource management, including the safety and security of all CI staff and visitors in Zambia.

Country Office Highlights:

CARE has been registered in Zambia under the Societies Act since 1994, operating under a three-year renewable country agreement/memorandum of understanding between CARE International and the Government of Zambia and its Ministry of Finance. The Country office manages contracts and grants from a range of institutional and private donors in the areas of maternal/child health and nutrition; HIV/AIDS; Livelihoods; Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH); Gender-based violence and social enterprise formation.

CARE’s programming focuses on four core areas:
  • Vulnerable women and adolescent girls facing social injustice or exclusion, limited access to productive resources and education, burden of ill health, lack of voice and gender-based violence.
  • Children from poor households (under five) who are vulnerable to chronic morbidity and early mortality.
  • Poor households whose members are vulnerable to chronic food insecurity caused by natural and human induced factors and inequity (ex. Access to productive assets).
  • Populations most susceptible to life-threatening health issues such as HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, diarrhea, and malnutrition.


1.Representation and Relationships
  • The Country Director is the representative of CARE International in Zambia and represents CI to all parties including the Government of Zambia, donors, civil society and other organisations
  • Ensure that the CI has an appropriate legal basis for CI’s presence in Zambia consistent with CI standards and program related agreements with the relevant government authorities
  • Maintain productive relationships with all key stakeholders (civil society, government, donors, etc) so that they understand and respect the value of CI’s contribution to addressing poverty, gender inequality and injustice in Zambia and seek CI to contribute to development and humanitarian fora as a valuable source of experience and as a preferred partner
  • Ensure that the image of CARE International in the country is consistent with CI’s Mission, Vision and Focus and protects CI’s interests and assets
  • Encourage and facilitate the full engagement of all interested CI Members in all aspects of CI’s program and activities in Zambia including engagement in strategic, program and project planning processes, securing donor funding for CI programs, maintaining project management and supporting the promotion of CI Member media and communications
2. Program Development and Implementation
  • Guided by the CARE International program strategy, donor and host government priorities, ensure that CI has a coherent, documented and understood strategy which clearly sets out how CI will fulfil its mandate to address poverty and injustice amongst poor and marginalised women and their communities in Zambia
  • Ensure that CI’s programs and projects in Zambia meet the objectives of the strategy and the CI Country Office is able to demonstrate the impact of this work through regular reporting of robust evidence
  • Provide support and guidance to the CO program staff in the identification, development and design of programs and projects consistent with CI’s program strategy in Zambia
  • Develop value-adding partnerships that are complementary to CI’s activities and competencies, increase the effectiveness and impact of mutually agreed objectives and are consistent with CI’s approaches to partnership and global commitments, including humanitarian principles.
  • Identify and secure program and project funding consistent with CI’s program strategy in Zambia through CI Members, bilateral and multilateral donors and non-traditional sources;
  • Ensure excellence in programming through the application of best programming practices, sound technical approaches, and good practice monitoring, evaluation and learning and develop a robust evidence base to demonstrate impact and inform policy engagement
  • Ensure CI’s full compliance with donor contractual requirements
  • Ensure effective project implementation monitoring and evaluation that allows for accurate donor reporting, timely course correct
3. Emergency Preparedness & Response
  • Ensure that CI in Zambia maintains a high level of preparedness to respond to humanitarian emergencies and responds effectively to emergencies as required
  • Ensure that the Country Office emergency preparedness plan is current and reviewed regularly in collaboration with appropriate CI stakeholders and relevant in-country partners
  • Provide effective leadership and management for the response by CI in Zambia in the event of and humanitarian emergency
4. Safety and Security
  • The Country Director has primary responsibility for the safety and security of all CARE International staff in-country and to safeguard all organisational assets and operations. The Country Director will
  • Promote a safe and secure work environment, foster a safety and security culture and ensure consistent application of and compliance with CARE International safety and security policies and procedures
  • Consult with the line manager and CI stakeholders as required in the event of any major safety or security-related matter
  • Lead the Crisis Management Team in Zambia under the direction of the line manager and oversee the CO’s overall response in critical incident situations, liaising with Country Governments, CI Members, donors and media
5. CO Strategic and Operational Planning and Implementation
  • Undertake periodic assessment and review to ensure that the type of presence of CI in the country is appropriate for the program strategy including humanitarian mandate, the operating environment and the funding base and enables CI to achieve maximum impact at minimum cost
  • Establish and maintain an effective management structure in the country that is documented and identifies responsibilities and accountabilities, includes appropriate engagement of stakeholders in decision-making and has systems for internal communication
  • Maintain the operational planning cycle, such as Annual Operating Plans, consistent with CI Member standards
  • Maintain all reporting requirements to host government, development stakeholders, CI Members and line management
6.CO Financial, Budget and Administration Management
  • Ensure the development of the CO’s annual budget as per CI policies and procedures
  • Ensure the financial viability of the CO to ensure that project budgets are able to cover the running costs of the CO
  • Monitor and analyze the CO cost structure, particularly in anticipation of changes in the program portfolio
  • Ensure that the CO performance and audit results are satisfactory, recommendations from previous evaluations and audits are addressed and show an overall improving trend
  • Ensure that the risk register is maintained and issues acted upon in a timely manner
  • Ensure compliance with CI Member financial policies and procedures including internal controls and reporting requirements
  • Ensure compliance with all legal, contractual and statutory requirements

Additional responsibilities: HR, Communication, information and public relations

  1. Post graduate degree in a relevant discipline is an asset.
  2. Minimum of ten years of experience in international development and humanitarian assistance.
  3. At least five years of successful experience at the senior management level in international settings, in contexts similar to Zambia.
  4. Demonstrated experience of development and humanitarian programs relevant to the situation of Zambia.
  5. Solid understanding of financial and budget management, and of best practice programming.
  6. Proven abilities in decision-making and problem-solving including in dynamic contexts.

There are individuals who may use CARE’s name and trademark in emails and on websites in an attempt to solicit fees from interested job-seekers. Some examples of these fees are placement fees or immigration processing fees. CARE does not use recruiting or placement agencies that charge candidates an up-front fee of any kind. Occasionally, CARE does employ recruiting or placement agencies to help us identify candidates for specific employment within CARE. If you’re contacted by a legitimate recruiting or placement agency, there should be no charge to you. If you suspect that you have been a victim of fraud from someone purporting to be CARE, please contact us at

We provide equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and qualified applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, gender identity, ancestry, sexual orientation, national origin, age, handicap, disability, marital status, or status as a veteran. If you’d like more information about your EEO rights as an applicant under the law, please click here.

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