Regional Program Development, Quality and Impact Director, West & Central Africa (WCA)

TITLE: Regional Program Development, Quality and Impact Director, West & Central Africa (WCA)

TEAM/PROGRAMME: WCA Regional Senior Management Team, SC International Programs, WCA Regional Office

LOCATION: Dakar, Senegal

GRADE:  International 2

CONTRACT LENGTH: Fixed Term - 36 months


Level 3: The post holder will have contact with children and/or young people either frequently (e.g. once a week or more) or intensively (e.g. four days in one month or more or overnight) because they work in country programs; or are visiting country programs; or because they are responsible for implementing the police checking/vetting process staff.


As a key member of the WCA Regional Leadership Team, the Director of Program Development, Quality, and Impact (DPDQI) leads and manages a large, multi-national team of direct and indirect reports to ensure cross-functional engagement in the development and delivery of Country Strategy Plans (CSPs), developing annual plans and reporting on results at the Implementing Office (IO) level. The main purpose of this role is to drive and advance the region’s capability in quality child rights programming, evidence generation and uptake, innovation, and demonstrating impact (outcomes for children).

S/he is responsible for ensuring quality, contextualized hands-on technical support for Implementing Offices in the region, in all contexts, that contribute to Save the Children’s global Breakthroughs: Survive, Learn, Be Protected. This includes ensuring capability building, mentoring, and coaching of technical specialists in order to support program quality in line with global standards and key performance indicators. The Director of PDQI ensures that a robust research, evaluation, accountability learning and monitoring (REALM) system is in place, that all COs engage in the collection and use of evidence and that this is shared across the global organization, and that reliable data is used for decision-making.  As a senior leader in the regional office, s/he plays a representational role with donors, partners, peer agencies, SC Members, and others. 

In the event of a major humanitarian emergency, the role holder will be expected to work outside the normal role profile and be able to vary working hours accordingly.


Reports to: WCA Regional Director, with a functional dotted line to the Global PDQ Director within the Global Programme Quality and Impact (PQI) team.

Dimensions: Save the Children currently operates in 9 countries in the WCA region with a current staff complement of approximately 2620, and current expenditure of approximately $230 million each year.

Number of reports:

  • 25 solid line/direct reports (Regional Technical team)
  • 9 CO PDQ Director dotted line reports. 

Key stakeholders for this position include WCA RO SMT members, Deputy Regional Director, Regional Operations and Humanitarian leads, Regional Advocacy and Campaigns Director, Members’ Resource Mobilisation staff, peer Regional PDQI Directors, Global PQI teams, and One Humanitarian Central Technical Team (OHT CTT) staff. 

Role Dimensions

The post holder will drive the Quality and Impact agenda in the WCA with a focus on CO capability to drive this agenda, support strategy development, implementation and strategic reporting, Quality technical oversight, thought leadership, Innovation and manage team members. 

In addition, the role will foster relationships with a wide range of internal and external stakeholders including Save the Children Members.


In the WCA Regional Office, contribute as a member of the Regional SMT to:

  • Support the strategic development and delivery of international programming in line with Save the Children’s mandate, strategy, and Theory of Change
  • Drive the regional program evidence and learning agenda and create an environment of continuous learning where staff are encouraged and supported to grow and develop and are held accountable for their commitments
  • Support the development of an organizational culture that reflects our dual mandate values, promotes accountability and high performance, encourages a team culture of learning, creativity, and innovation, and frees up our people to deliver outstanding results for children and excellent customer service for our members and donors
  • Contribute to cross-functional Regional Office deliverables and engagement in CO change processes
  • Contribute to global change projects and initiatives, particularly those led by PQI and OHT CTT, representing the priorities of the WCA region, and supporting uptake of change projects across the region; 
  • Provide high-level monitoring of performance on program KPIs across the region and ensure support to IOs to maintain a high level of performance


  • Drive cross-functional engagement in the development and delivery of Country Strategy Plans (CSPs), developing annual plans, and reporting on results
  • Drive the development of high-quality Humanitarian Strategies during rapid-scale up Humanitarian responses
  • Lead on the development and monitoring of Regional Strategy, and Regional strategic initiatives to support CO and Global ambitions
  • Identify and pursue funding opportunities to advance regional strategic priorities, ensure effective project management for delivery of initiatives
  • Facilitate the development and pursuit of thematic and cross-cutting strategic priorities in line with priorities, to guide current and future SCI programming and Humanitarian Strategies
  • Contribute to key strategic deliverables led by other RO teams, such as Humanitarian Planning, Emergency preparation plans, Master Budget, and Forecasting development, amongst others

Program Quality and Technical Excellence

  • Ensure contextualized, hands-on, demand-driven technical support for WCA Country Offices (COs)
  • Ensure high-quality, contextualized technical support for COs rapid onset humanitarian crises
  • Facilitate capacity building, coaching, and building networks across CO PDQ Directors and technical experts in the region; identify top talents, capacity gaps and facilitate opportunities for learning.
  • Support regional technical experts to understand and contextualize global thematic and cross-thematic guidance for their area, and ensure that learning from the region informs global evidence, technical standards, and strategic direction
  • Ensure that regional technical experts contribute to integrated programming, develop technical guidance, build learning and evidence
  • Ensure that regional technical experts contribute to program development and resource mobilization priorities at CO and regional levels

Evidence and Impact

  • Ensure leadership support for regional REALM and ensure that the regional REALM team supports COs to ensure appropriate systems, data collection mechanisms, and staff capacity are in place to extract and communicate impact and performance in all program settings
  • Support program learning and knowledge management within WCA, linking effectively with the Global and other RO teams
  • Drive the regional research and learning agendas, ensuring evidence generation based on regional thematic and cross-thematic priorities 
  • Create a culture of learning and of putting a premium on measuring and demonstrating outcomes and impact for children
  • Ensure that program best practices are captured and shared to increase collaboration, transparency, and cross-pollination of ideas, driving innovation in the region

Team management and development:

  • Lead the WCA PDQI Team members in supporting the country offices in the region to improve key performance indicators, promote the SC theory of change, advance the regional evidence and learning agenda, advance the regional agenda on gender equality, and build the capacity of country technical and REALM teams
  • Support CO PDQ Directors systematically, establishing and maintaining a robust community of practice across the region, and serve as a matrix manager for CO PDQ Directors 
  • Identify and develop regional talent as potential successors for senior leadership roles to further enhance evidence-based program quality work in the region
  • Provide effective line management of RO PDQ staff, ensuring enabling support to progress performance and development objectives, and ensure compliance with SCI HR policies and procedures

Representation and networking

  • In collaboration with regional New Business Development staff, contribute to regional strategic partnerships; identify partners and donors to strengthen our portfolio in the region
  • In collaboration with Advocacy colleagues, influence key regional stakeholders and policy-makers to ensure they reflect the needs of children in the countries where we work
  • Ensure effective Regional PDQ Team engagement with regional actors and networks


  • Demonstrate leadership in relation to Save the Children policies and practice with respect to child safeguarding, bullying and harassment, code of conduct, equal opportunities, and other relevant policies and procedures.

BEHAVIOURS (Values in Practice):


  • Holds him/herself accountable for making decisions, managing resources efficiently, achieving and role modeling Save the Children values
  • Holds the team and partners accountable to deliver on their responsibilities - giving them the freedom to deliver in the best way they see fit, providing the necessary development to improve performance, and applying appropriate consequences when results are not achieved.


  • Sets ambitious and challenging goals for themselves and their team, takes responsibility for their own personal development, and encourages their team to do the same
  • Shares widely their personal vision for Save the Children, engages and motivates others
  • Demonstrates future orientation, thinks strategically and on a global scale.


  • Builds and maintains effective relationships with their team, colleagues, Members and external partners, as well as supporters
  • Values diversity, sees it as a source of competitive strength
  • Leads in an approachable manner, as a good listener who is easy to consult with.


  • Develops and encourages new and innovative solutions
  • Is willing to take disciplined risks.


  • Behaves honestly, encourages openness and transparency; and demonstrates the highest levels of integrity.


  • An advanced degree in a relevant field either in relation to research, humanitarian, and development studies, monitoring, and evaluation.



  • At least 10 years of experience in a senior role driving humanitarian and development programming in complex environments, including substantial experience with large-scale regional interventions 
  • Extensive experience managing diverse, complex and high-performing teams and supporting professional development opportunities for national and regional teams
  • Demonstrated professional experience designing and implementing programming within at least one of Save the Children’s thematic areas (education, health & nutrition, child protection, child poverty, and child rights governance) or regional cross-thematic areas (Children Affected by Armed Conflict, adolescents & youth, Mental Health & Psychosocial Support, Durable Solutions, Children on the Move).
  • Demonstrated ability to lead and thrive in a matrix management environment, remote management, and with a proven history of delivering results; 
  • Demonstrated experience in program design and research and evidence-generating initiatives
  • Strong experience in structured program learning approaches, including design and implementation of action research methodologies that can guide programmatic excellence and policy change in humanitarian and development contexts, 
  • Experience in developing and implementing organizational vision and strategies
  • Cultural sensitivity, with excellent interpersonal and communication skills including influencing, negotiation, and coaching. 
  • Demonstrated experience in establishing strategic partnerships with key stakeholders such as local NGOs, UN, donors, government, and research institutions. 
  • Strong written and oral English skills
  • Demonstrated ability to build personal networks
  • Experience in solving complex issues through analysis, defining a clear way forward, and ensuring stakeholder buy-in
  • Commitment to Save the Children values
  • Ability and willingness to change work practices and hours in the event of major emergencies.
  • Willingness to travel in developing countries (varying, but expected to be 30-50% of the time).


  • Professional experience in the West and Central Africa region 
  • Relevant English and French language proficiency

Additional job responsibilities

The duties and responsibilities as set out above are not exhaustive and the role holder may be required to carry out additional duties within reasonableness of their level of skills and experience.

Equal Opportunities 

The role holder is required to carry out the duties in accordance with the SCI Equal Opportunities and Diversity policies and procedures.

Child Safeguarding:

We need to keep children safe so our selection process, which includes rigorous background checks, reflects our commitment to the protection of children from abuse.         

Safeguarding our Staff:

The post holder is required to carry out the duties in accordance with the SCI anti-harassment policy.

Health and Safety

The role holder is required to carry out the duties in accordance with SCI Health and Safety policies and procedures.

Female applicants are strongly encouraged to apply. 

13 Sep 2023

15 Oct 2023 - 23:59 GMT


Programme, Development and Quality



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