WASH Sector Manager

Mercy Corps

Beirut, , LB


About Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps is a leading global organization powered by the belief that a better world is possible. In disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within. Now, and for the future.

Program / Department Summary

Mercy Corps has been present in Lebanon since 1993, focusing its interventions on livelihoods, governance and conflict, water, sanitation and hygiene and protection. With funding from USAID, UK AID, GAC, EC, UNICEF, Gates Foundation and others, Mercy Corps has been able to work together with communities across Lebanon to respond to the needs of both Lebanese host community members as well as refugees from the Syria crisis.

General Position Summary

The WASH Sector Manager is based in Beirut and responsible for the overall leadership, strategic direction, and technical and operational management of the integrated WASH Program portfolio as well as new business development initiatives. S/he will be accountable for the formulation, design, planning, implementation, coordination, monitoring and evaluation of Mercy Corps WASH work in Mount Lebanon, South Lebanon, Tripoli +5 and the Bekaa regions. S/he will also provide leadership and direction to ensure that protection issues are integrated into WASH programming, as well as developed in a gender sensitive manner. S/he will ensure the quality of rigorous data collection and analysis to inform evidence-based integrated programming. The WASH Sector Manager will play a key role in establishing and maintaining strong relationships with relevant donors, government actors and other relevant stakeholders.

Essential Job Responsibilities

Strategic Direction, Portfolio Quality and Growth

  • Provide overall strategic direction and vision, leadership, technical and operational management of the WASH portfolio; 
  • Carry out effective oversight of an estimated $6m portfolio comprised of a range of multi-faceted, donor-funded programs;
  • Improve short-term WASH interventions and scale-up to longer-term responses focused wastewater collection and solid waste management, operation and maintenance for WASH projects.
  • Establish appropriate sectoral coordination mechanism with the Ministry of Energy and Water, Water Establishment and national working groups. 
  • Supervise the implementation of the behavioral change and awareness raising strategies in relation to WASH related issues. 
  • Ensure that all interventions are in compliance with international norms and standards, national laws and policies, technical standards and organizational policies; 
  • Strengthen existing management and information systems to document achievement of measurable milestones and to ensure timely compliance with donor requirements;
  • Develop rigorous M&E, accountability and learning systems for optimal program quality and local partner organization capacity strengthening; 
  • Contribute to organizational strategic planning and new program development for appropriate expansion and growth of Mercy Corps’ WASH portfolio;

Team Management

  • Ensure that teams fully adhere to international, technical and organizational minimum standards, including adopting gender, conflict sensitive, and participatory approaches to ensure that Do No Harm and other principles are fully respected;
  • Supervise and mentor Program Managers to effectively manage programs, including workplan monitoring, budget forecasting and monitoring, accurate and timely reporting, and efficient use of resources; communicate clear expectations, set performance objectives, provide regular and timely performance feedback, and conduct annual performance reviews;
  • Cultivate cross-sectoral synergies and linkages in relation to WASH, as well as linking to other aspects of the Lebanon portfolio, namely protection, livelihood (i.e. Cash for Work), conflict/ governance, and youth;
  • Maintain a healthy and empowering office environment that encourages open, honest and productive communication among Mercy Corps staff and with local partners;

Technical and Operational Management

  • Drive operational excellence to achieve optimal efficiency and cost-effectiveness of all functions and activities of the WASH portfolio;  
  • Coordinate closely with Mercy Corps’ Operations team to facilitate procurement planning and execution to facilitate timely implementation, including informing contractor and vendor selection and contract development;
  • Ensure staff compliance with financial and operational policies, procedures, and systems to deliver compliance with Mercy Corps and donor requirements;
  • Ensure staff comply with coordinated budget monitoring processes for all programs; 
  • Identify opportunities to introduce efficiencies and eliminate redundancies in existing processes for streamlined sector operations;

Representation and Advocacy

  • Cultivate strategic partnerships and maintain effective working relationships with key Government, International Governmental Organizations/International NGO, civil society and private sector stakeholders to advance organizational sector strategies;
  • Liaise with key stakeholders to coordinate responses and identify strategies to provide additional support to vulnerable communities with programmatic synergies;
  • Liaise with global WASH Advisor to identify strategies to strengthen programming and to promote Mercy Corps’ thought leadership role on WASH in Lebanon and across the region;
  • Ensure regular attendance in technical working group and task force meetings;


  • Ensure compliance with security procedures and policies as determined by country leadership.
  • Proactively ensure that team members operate in a secure environment and are aware of policies.

Organizational Learning 

  • As part of our commitment to organizational learning and in support of our understanding that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities they serve, we expect all team members to commit 5% of their time to learning activities that benefit Mercy Corps as well as themselves.

Accountability to Beneficiaries

  • Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward accountability, specifically to our beneficiaries and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging beneficiary communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.

Supervisory Responsibility

Program Managers; Project Managers; Engineer; WASH Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning Coordinator 


Reports Directly To: Lebanon Director of Programs

Works Directly With:  Program, Operations, Finance, and Monitoring & Evaluation Teams


Knowledge and Experience

  • BA/S or equivalent in engineering or social science, management, international development, or other relevant field; 
  • Minimum seven years of progressive experience and proven record of achievements in designing and implementing WASH-related programs;
  • Strong strategic thinker with demonstrable capacity to translate concepts into action; Experience in WASH programming required; specialized background in small-scale infrastructure rehabilitation, water and sanitation systems, etc. preferred;
  • Excellent budget management skills required;
  • Strong organizational and management skills, including previous experience managing international teams to successfully plan and implement quality programming;
  • Demonstrated ability to implement programs with rigorous deliverables and timelines in accordance with timeframes and donor regulations; 
  • Knowledge of Lebanon, in particular issues facing refugee and Lebanese youth; preference given to candidates with background in the Middle East North Africa (MENA) region;
  • Proven track record in staff and stakeholder training and capacity building, as well as mentoring and training;
  • Ability and interest to work with a multi-ethnic team in a culturally appropriate manner;
  • Proficiency in English essential and Arabic preferred

Success Factors

The WASH Sector Manager will have extensive experience in leading teams, in both management and technical fields, with a proven track record of strategic planning, programmatic achievements, management competence, diplomacy and interpersonal skills.  S/he will be a decisive leader, exercise sound judgment, possess excellent communication, interpersonal and analytical skills and have a high level of integrity and flexibility to adapt to conditions of ongoing change. S/he is able to prioritize among competing tasks while also filling in gaps as needed to ensure success of the overall WASH portfolio. The WASH Program Lead is a strategic and solutions-driven thinker with the ability to articulate and translate innovative ideas into solid programming and to build positive relationships with his or her team, and with key stakeholders at various levels.   

Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions

The WASH Sector Manager is based in Beirut, Lebanon. This location is accompanied and secure. Housing is individual accommodation with unlimited freedom of movement beyond the house/office. There are International schools in Lebanon. Staff will have full access to services – medical, electricity, water, etc). This position requires 0% of time of travel by car to field offices in safe environments.