Response Manager – Ebola response – eastern DRC
The mission of Translators without Borders is to provide people access to vital knowledge in their language through translation, training of translators, best use of technology, and building translation capacity in underserved languages.
Contract length: 6 months
Location: Goma, North Kivu, DRC with travel in eastern DRC
Application Deadline: 20 February 2019
Due to the urgency of the vacancy, screening and interviews will commence immediately and the candidate can be selected at any stage before the closing date.
About Translators without Borders
Translators without Borders (TWB) envisions a world where knowledge knows no language barriers. The US-based non-profit provides people access to vital knowledge in their language by connecting non-profit organizations with a professional community of translators, building local language translation capacity, and raising awareness of language barriers. Originally founded in 1993 in France (as Traducteurs sans Frontières), TWB translates millions of words of life-saving and life-changing information a year.
On 1 August 2018, the Ministry of Health (MoH) of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) declared a new outbreak of Ebola virus disease (EVD) in the town of Mangina, Mabalako Health Zone, North Kivu Province. Confirmed cases have since between reported from thirteen different health zones in North Kivu and four in Ituri. North Kivu and Ituri are among the most populated provinces in the country, share borders with Uganda and Rwanda, and are experiencing conflict and insecurity, with over one million internally displaced people and migration of refugees to neighboring countries.
As of 16 January 2019, the Ministry of Health reported 663 cases, with 614 confirmed. 407 deaths have been confirmed. WHO and partners are working to increase awareness of Ebola among health care and other frontline workers, and to strengthen infection prevention and control (IPC) measures.
Health workers are trying to monitor more than 1,500 people who have been in contact with Ebola patients – but the task is challenging due to outbreaks of violence in the eastern region, where many rebel groups operate. Vaccines and experimental drugs are being used to help limit the spread but the authorities expect the number of cases to increase.
The MoH, WHO, and partners continue to systematically monitor and rapidly investigate all alerts in other provinces and in neighboring countries. Alerts in several provinces of the Democratic Republic of Congo as well as in Uganda, Rwanda, and the Central African Republic were investigated; EVD was ruled out for all.
Risk communication and community engagement remain key pillars of current efforts to contain the spread of the virus and ensure those infected receive effective care. In the linguistically diverse context of eastern DRC, however, comprehension of official languages and lingua francas cannot be assumed. At present no data is available on the extent to which language is affecting either comprehension and acceptance of information on prevention and treatment, or the capacity of people in the affected areas to communicate with responders. A similar data gap exists in relation to language support needs in the wider humanitarian response in eastern DRC.
To best respond to the information and communications needs of people in the affected area, TWB is currently finalizing plans to:
- conduct an initial assessment to determine comprehension levels and preferred modes of communication
- establish a humanitarian language support program in eastern DRC
Beyond the Ebola response, action taken within this program is ultimately intended to foster multilingual communication with communities across the wider humanitarian response.
The Startup Manager leads and coordinates the initial setup phase of TWB’s program in eastern DRC, with overall responsibility for timely and effective identification, planning and implementation of activities, including innovative and scalable research and learning, partnership development, and fundraising.
Assessment and evidence
- Coordinate and oversee all necessary assessments, including comprehension surveys
- Collect, collate and share internally information on languages and dialects that TWB will need in order to provide services; this should include all information relevant to the use of any of these languages as pivots for effective communication
- Disseminate TWB’s existing field guidance on humanitarian interpreting and cultural mediation
- Liaise with language specialists, humanitarian organizations in DRC, and internationally, on collecting, visualizing and disseminating data on language and comprehension
- Disseminate and promote understanding of TWB’s findings and products for DRC within the humanitarian community
- Identify funding opportunities in proportion to the level of need and network with partners and donors
- Proactively seek opportunities to expand the depth and breadth of the project in response to need, and relay information to TWB global crisis response team colleagues to that end
Humanitarian liaison and coordination
- Represent TWB and build the organization’s profile within the humanitarian community in eastern DRC, ensuring professional and productive engagement with government authorities, UN agencies and national and international civil society partners
- Engage with humanitarian coordination and strategy development, using existing evidence to ensure that issues relating to language and risk communication and community engagement (RCCE) are taken on board in key strategic and planning decisions
- Liaise with responding organizations on RCCE efforts, to ensure that language is factored in with TWB’s support as needed and appropriate
- Actively participate in any RCCE meetings and initiatives
Legal, logistics, security, financial and human resources management
- Working with the Crisis Response Program Manager, lead on planning and resourcing (staff, finance, etc.)
- Establish the necessary administrative, logistical and security partnerships for TWB to be able to operate legally, safely and efficiently
- Ensure that TWB has adequate security measures in place approved by the Executive Director and that security guidance is understood and adhered to by all team members, including visitors
- Recruit, lead and manage the team needed for the successful implementation of program plans
- In collaboration with TWB’s global finance and HR team, ensure financial, logistics and HR systems and procedures are in place and adhered to
- Contribute to a positive, innovative and supportive work environment
- Maintain open and professional relationships with the internal TWB team, TWB volunteers, partner agencies and donors
- Develop a costed program plan, identifying partners and donors, based on assessment findings
- Contribute to the design of a strategy for developing and maintaining a community of translators, interpreters, and cultural mediators for the key languages of the humanitarian response
- Liaise with humanitarian organizations on developing an open-access library of information, education and communication materials translated into key languages and formats tailored to the needs of the affected population
- Liaise between partner organizations, RCCE group members and TWB’s translation team to ensure the timely delivery of high-quality translation and terminology services, potentially including translation of audio or video documents in addition to texts
- Liaise between partner organizations, RCCE group members and TWB’s translation team to ensure the timely delivery of high-quality plain language editing and transcreation services
- Coordinate training activities (on language awareness and multilingual communication, translation, cultural mediation, and interpreting), including liaising with partner organizations on needs, timings and venue; identifying suitable trainers with the right skills and languages; managing budget and logistics; monitoring learning outcomes and satisfaction levels; and maintaining a register of trained language support personnel
Monitoring, accountability, and learning
- Ensure MEAL is an integral part of program plans, ensuring flexibility and innovation are incorporated and embraced
- Work closely with the TWB MEAL Manager on executing the MEAL plans
The Response Manager should be an innovative self-starter with a strong sense of initiative, an understanding of the humanitarian sector and/or the language industry and management credentials, and enthusiastic about the importance of increasing access to knowledge through language. The right candidate is an energetic team player and leader who agrees with TWB´s basic beliefs and values and who can work virtually with team members based throughout the world.
- 5+ years of assessment, startup, project design and management experience in the humanitarian sector
- International humanitarian aid experience and demonstrated understanding of communicating with communities programming
- 3+ years’ experience of external representation
- Excellent writing and presentation skills in English
- Fluency in spoken French and working-level French reading and writing skills
- Knowledge of eastern DRC and local languages a plus
- Training or research skills and experience a plus
- Medical or health sector background a plus
- Interpreting or translation experience a plus
Translators without Borders employees and volunteers are made of people who believe passionately about the value of this work and take personal responsibility for achieving the mission. Translators without Borders’ mission and organizational spirit embody the core values established in its strategic framework:
Excellence: As the leading voice for communicating humanitarian information in the right language, Translators without Borders is a leader in the translation industry and in the non-profit sector.
Integrity: Translators without Borders believes that every person, whether it is the people who we serve, our volunteers or our staff, has value, deserves respect and has inherent dignity.
Empowerment: Translators without Borders believes in using language to empower people around the world to control their own development and destiny.
Innovation: Translators without Borders recognizes and celebrates the power of innovation to address humanitarian and crisis issues around the world.
Sustainability: Translators without Borders recognizes that meeting our mission necessitates establishment and maintenance of a solid financial and organizational infrastructure.
Tolerance: Our staff and volunteers are highly knowledgeable and skilled; value each other, our partner and our recipients; create a supportive work environment; and, conduct themselves professionally at all times.
Translators without Borders is an equal-opportunity employer, committed to diversity and inclusion, and encourages qualified candidates of all genders and from all national, religious and ethnic backgrounds, including persons living with disabilities, to apply to become a part of our organization.