Program Manager II (Shelter/WASH)

, , IQ


Catholic Relief Services (CRS) is the international relief and development agency of the U.S. Catholic community.  CRS works in over 100 countries around the world helping people in need regardless of race, religion, or ethnicity.  In Iraq, CRS is currently supporting internally displaced persons (IDPs) to live in dignity through the provision of immediate food and non-food items, upgrades to shelter conditions and improved access to water and sanitation facilities, and educational and psychosocial support for children.  CRS is a leading actor in Iraq in the upgrades of unfinished buildings, is currently piloting transitional shelter and WASH programming in Iraq, and is preparing for a robust response to new displacement anticipated from Mosul.

In its programs in Iraq, CRS collaborates with Caritas Iraq, and works to strengthen the capacity of Caritas as an integral part of its work in Iraq. CRS has offices in Erbil, Duhok, Kirkuk, and Baghdad, and receives funding from diverse sources, including the US Government and other international, multilateral, and private donors. CRS, in partnerships with Caritas Iraq, is engaging in emergency preparedness and response activities at both the national and community-based level to ensure that staff, partners, outreach workers, churches, community leaders, and individuals respond effectively  to new waves of displacement in addition to responding to the needs of protracted displaced population, particularly in Northern Iraq.

Summary Responsibility

The Shelter/WASH Program Manager (PM), based in Erbil, will manage the technical aspects of the construction of the CRS shelter and WASH program throughout the Iraq Country Program. The PM will supervise CRS shelter and WASH engineers and oversee the technical design and implementation of shelter and WASH projects in Iraq. Also, the PM will manage existing projects and contribute to the development and writing of new project proposals. S/he will work closely with Caritas Iraq and support its capacity building. S/He will work under the supervision of CRS’ Head of Programs to ensure the projects s/he manages meet CRS and donor requirements and advance CRS’ country program strategy, including responsiveness to urgent shelter and WASH needs from new displacement, as well as continuing to address the shelter and WASH needs of the 2014 and subsequent displacement.

Specific Job Responsibilities


  • Establish a high functioning team through leading the process of hiring and managing the performance of staff, including CRS staff, staff seconded to CRS, and any international staff on temporary duty assignments (TDY) to Iraq
  • Supervise 4-5 CRS Shelter and WASH Project Managers, training, coaching and mentoring staff to promote teamwork and develop staff technical competencies
  • Use CRS Performance Management system to manage the performance of staff
  • Directly liaise with Caritas Iraq shelter and WASH staff and seek opportunities to build the capacity of Caritas Iraq.

Program Management and Program Quality

  • Lead the development and writing of concept papers, project documents, and/or new proposals using CRS and donors format and planning tools.
  • Oversee technical assessments undertaken for shelter and WASH needs throughout Iraq, develop response strategies based on these needs, and ensure program design that reflects CRS best practices and industry standard.
  • Work with CRS/Iraq Finance Manager to review project budget and expenditure reports on a monthly basis. Lead teams in regular review and planning activities, to ensure alignment of activities with available budgets.
  • Lead effective and timely projects start up, including the development of DIP for all projects under his/her supervision.
  • Create a culture of learning and continual improvement among the program team.
  • Monitor progress against program plans using CRS and donor guidelines; ensure CRS achieves results on time, effectively and efficiently.
  • Ensure strong coordination with CRS’ global technical advisors for shelter and WASH and related sectors
  • Ensure compliance with technical quality, safety, and environmental standards for all projects, in keeping with internationally agreed best practices or as otherwise outlined in agency guidelines.
  • Serve as the technical lead for the design and execution of shelter and WASH programs with assistance from RTAs and STAs or consultants as needed.

Partnership and External Coordination:

  • Represent CRS and actively participate in shelter and WASH clusters and other coordination forums
  • Submit regular program updates to UN, government and other donor’s information gathering systems; e.g. the UN 4Ws, in collaboration with other CRS staff
  • Attend regular meetings with government, other INGOs and UN agencies in order to discuss new approaches, program progress and advocate for CRS programs
  • Establish and maintain strong working relationships with Caritas Iraq, manage relationships, negotiations and communication in all phases of project implementation, including knowledge management, learning and capacity building for partner staff
  • Proactively seek opportunities to broaden CRS’ collaboration and cooperation with other national and international NGOs, local government and communities, UN agencies and other humanitarian stakeholders.

Program Reporting and Compliance:

·         Ultimately responsible for the timely preparation and submission of high quality financial and narrative donor reports, quarterly performance indicator progress tracking tables (IPTTs), baseline and final evaluation reports, as well as other reports needed/required by the local government, donors, the region or headquarters as per reporting schedule.  

·         Ensure program implementation and reporting is in full compliance with donor regulations

·         Ensure the review and timely submission of financial reports by partners working in close coordination with the finance team and other resource management staff in the Country Program.

·         Advise senior management about issues affecting project implementation, or key local issues affecting future grants/projects developments.

Internal Coordination and Communications:

·         Actively contribute to team and staff meetings

·         Be candid in conversations with program staff, and personal areas for growth so as to engage in continuous learning within sector.

·         Support cross-team learning through regular meetings with members of other sector teams

Agency-wide Competencies (for all CRS Staff):

These are rooted in the mission, values, and guiding principles of CRS and used by each staff member to fulfill his or her responsibilities and achieve the desired results.

•        Serves with Integrity

•        Models Stewardship

•        Cultivates Constructive Relationships

•        Promotes Learning

CRS Emergency Competencies:

Each CRS staff member working in emergencies is expected to have the following competencies to fulfill his or her responsibilities and to achieve the desired results:

•        Communicates strategically under pressure

•        Manages stress and complexity

•        Actively promotes safety and security

•        Manages and implements high-quality emergency programs

 PM-MQ Competencies

•        Promotes Stewardship of Resources

•        Ensures Principled compliance

•        Proactively Manages Risk

•        Leads Operational Improvements

Supervisory Responsibilities: 4-5 senior national staff

Key Working Relationships:


The Country Representative, Head of Programming, Department Managers, Project Managers, Regional Office (particularly the DRD-PQ, Growth and MEAL TA), and Shelter/WASH Technical Advisors.


Caritas-Iraq, Heads of Caritas Internationalis representatives; Church partners; CRS implementing partners; operational partners and colleague organizations; Local Government; UN agencies and sector leads in the area.


  • Extensive experience in project management, preferably in humanitarian contexts; Minimum four (4) years practical experience in implementing humanitarian or development projects, preferably with an NGO in equivalent position.
  • A Masters degree in engineering, architecture or other related fields;
  • Proven leadership and staff supervision skills.
  • Familiarity with current standards and guidelines for shelter and WASH in humanitarian emergency response, including the Sphere Handbook criteria.
  • A proven track record in managing a large team of professional personnel.
  • Able to travel extensively in remote areas.
  • Excellent communication and negotiation skills.
  • Ability to read, analyze and interpret administrative reports, technical procedures, or government regulations.
  • Must be proficient in MS Office applications (Word, Excel, Outlook Access– and ideally MS Project).
  • Extremely high capacity to write reports and proposals, presenting information clearly and concisely.
  • Fluency in English (both oral and written skills); fluency in Arabic desired.
  • Self-reliance and an ability to work in a challenging, demanding and fast paced environment.
  • Awareness, sensitivity and understanding of cross-cultural issues particularly in representing a US-based, Catholic agency.

Required Travel: The position is based in Erbil, Kurdistan with 50% travel to different project sites in Iraq in addition to one-day trips to Kirkuk and regionally for training.

Work Environment: The PMII will be based in Erbil/KRI, with frequent travel to other governorates/provinces in and around Iraq as security permits.


This job description is not an exhaustive list of the skill, effort, duties, and responsibilities associated with the position.

CRS’ talent acquisition procedures reflect our commitment to protecting children and vulnerable adults from abuse and exploitation.