Director (WASH, TOPS Program)

Save the Children

Washington, DC, US


The Program Director/WASH Advisor will be a highly qualified WASH technical expert, with global program management experience. The Program Director/WASH Advisor will manage all staff, award finances, and implementation of program activities. S/he will be the primary Save the Children lead and liaison with the USAID Office of Food for Peace (USAID/FFP), FFP implementing partners, TOPS Bridge, and other Associate Awards. This position is grant funded, and is expected to last for 5 years, but is contingent upon successful funding and performance.

The Program Director/WASH Advisor will identify and support strategic and sustainable capacity strengthening, learning, and knowledge sharing activities, focused on WASH approaches, as funded by FFP food security activities. S/he will liaise with research institutions and experts to identify and initiate applied research activities; deliver technical training and support learning activities; ensure that an effective Program Monitoring Plan is designed and carried out throughout the program, incorporating findings into the adaptive management strategy; and coordinate activities with the donor, international or multi-lateral agencies, and other actors.  

What You’ll Be Doing (Essential Duties)

The Program Director will exercise independent judgment and discretion on significant matters and will implement objectives independently, after approval by their senior management and with management support, to determine accomplishment, key milestones and overall success. Functional based policy and practices exist, and the incumbent is provided with the “why” and often determines the “what”, but must always determine the “how.”

Technical Leadership and Support (60%)

  • Provide strategic leadership for the development and implementation of program workplan activities;
  • Collaborate with Food For Peace (FFP) and implementing partners to provide direct technical assistance to specific FFP WASH implementing partners;
  • Contribute to the development of relevant technical tools as identified by the program;
  • Serve as Chair of the TOPS WASH task force and the TOPS WASH Steering Committee;
  • Collaborate with FFP and implementing partners to identify opportunities for WASH-related research aimed at advancing WASH strategies and implementation of FFP-funded programs;
  • Coordinate with FFP and implementing partners to ensure the implementation of common approaches and facilitate knowledge sharing;
  • Solicit relevant qualified short-term technical assistance based on specific program needs.

 Management (40%)

  • Serve as the primary liaison with FFP, implementers, TOPS Bridge, and other Associate Awards;
  • Manage the program budget in accordance with Save the Children standards and protocols;
  • Manage all program staff and oversee their professional development;
  • Build partnerships with external agencies and organizations including multilaterals, NGOs, and contractors to share and promote WASH learning and innovation and pursue opportunities to disseminate developed tools;
  • Lead donor reporting as per donor requirements;
  • Contribute to Save the Children’s quarterly and annual reporting, strategic and operational planning, and other management and documentation mechanisms.
Required Qualifications
  • Minimum Bachelor’s degree in a WASH-related field, including, but not limited to, civil and/or environmental engineering, environmental science/health, public health, or related field
  • Minimum 7-10 years’ experience implementing WASH programming in the context of health programs in a developing world context
  • Demonstrated experience working on USAID/FFP-funded WASH activities, or similarly funded rural WASH targeting highly vulnerable populations.
  • Experience designing and implementing WASH-related trainings and capacity building activities
  • Familiarity with qualitative and quantitative monitoring and evaluation systems for WASH projects
  • Experience in in designing and implementing WASH research activities
  • Ability to communicate effectively and maintain productive relationships with donors, implementing partners, research institutions, and national governments
  • Demonstrated management, planning, supervisory, and leadership skills. Ability to think critically, strategically, and operationally.
  • Proven ability to manage technical and non-technical staff
  • Builds and maintains effective relationships and collaborates with multiple stakeholders
  • Ability to travel 20% of the time. Travel includes both international and domestic trips.
 Preferred Qualifications
  • Master’s degree strongly preferred in a WASH-related field, including, but not limited to, civil and/or environmental engineering, environmental science/health, public health, with at least 10 years of experience;
  • Practical and/or intellectual experience applying WASH in extremely resource-limited settings, with a focus on rural water supply, water service operations and maintenance (O&M); multi-level governance and capacity building; demand-driven sanitation; and hygiene behavior change.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and the ability to work both independently and as a team member with donors, partner organizations, national governments;
  • Strong written and verbal communications skills;
  • French language skills are desirable;
  • Computer literacy in word processing, graphics, and spreadsheet software packages and particularly use of PowerPoint.
What’s In It for You
  • Meaningful work, with a knowledge that you are changing the lives of children all around the world
  • A family friendly work environment
  • Highly collaborative and innovative teams
  • Generous paid vacation days, holidays, family leave days, and sick time
  • Healthcare plans including medical, dental, and life insurance
  • Retirement savings account with matching company contributions
  • Structured and formalized management development and coaching programs for mid and senior level managers
  • Extensive e-learning opportunities on a variety of topics offered through our affiliation with several prestigious universities as well as language learning opportunities

Save the Children believes every child deserves a future. In the United States and around the world, we give children a healthy start in life, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm.  We do whatever it takes for children – every day and in times of crisis – transforming their lives and the future we share. 

Save the Children is committed to conducting its programs and operations in a manner that is safe for the children it serves and helping protect the children with whom Save the Children is in contact. All Save the Children representatives are explicitly prohibited from engaging in any activity that may result in any kind of child abuse. In addition, it is Save the Children’s policy to create and proactively maintain an environment that aims to prevent and deter any actions and omissions, whether deliberate or inadvertent, that place children at the risk of any kind of child abuse. All our representatives are expected to conduct themselves in a manner consistent with this commitment and obligation. Any violations of this policy will be treated as a serious issue. 

We provide equal employment opportunities (EEO) to all employees and qualified applicants for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, ancestry, sexual orientation, national origin, age, handicap, disability, marital status, or status as a veteran. Save the Children complies with all applicable laws. 

Equal Opportunity Employer/Protected Veterans/Individuals with Disabilities

The contractor will not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against employees or applicants because they have inquired about, discussed, or disclosed their own pay or the pay of another employee or applicant. However, employees who have access to the compensation information of other employees or applicants as a part of their essential job functions cannot disclose the pay of other employees or applicants to individuals who do not otherwise have access to compensation information, unless the disclosure is (a) in response to a formal complaint or charge, (b) in furtherance of an investigation, proceeding, hearing, or action, including an investigation conducted by the employer, or (c) consistent with the contractor’s legal duty to furnish information.