Chief of Party – Save the Children – US – Colombo

Save the Children is seeking a Chief of Party (COP) for an anticipated 3-5-year USDA-funded program in Sri Lanka. The McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition Program (McGovern-Dole) feeds schoolchildren, reduces hunger, enhances food security, and improves literacy (especially for girls) in low-income, food-deficit countries around the world. By providing school meals, teacher training, and related education and nutrition support, McGovern-Dole helps boost school enrollment, attendance, and literacy results. McGovern-Dole also provides support to maternal and child nutrition (MCN).

Reporting to the Country Director, the Chief of Party (COP) will provide overall strategic direction in the design, management, implementation and quality assurance of the project. S/he will also provide technical assistance on food security, hunger reduction, literacy improvement, primary education, community participation, and MCN. The COP will be Save the Children’s primary point of contact with USDA. S/he will collaborate with the Ministries of Education, Ministry of Health and other partners to provide high-level support for effective capacity building at the local level and sustainability of the project interventions. The COP will oversee a team of experts and support staff, prepare reports and annual operating plans, align project initiatives with in-country priorities and ensure the program is compliant with USDA and Save the Children’s regulations. The project must align closely with the current objectives of the Government of Sri Lanka so that activities are complementary and create sustainability.

This position is contingent upon donor approval and funding


· Ensure achievements of the project objectives, as contained in project proposal and guidance; developing strategic plans, annual and quarterly work plans, and overall management of the grant implementation in line with USDA guidelines;

· Ensure high quality technical leadership and oversight is in place for the program;

· Ensure that program team, and consortium partners are familiar with program design and targets agreed to in the performance framework;

· Lead team in ensuring proper coordination among local government, country-wide initiatives, community partners, NGOs and other key stakeholders;

· Ensure that relevant technical materials are made available and that appropriate dissemination takes place;

· Ensure good practice by supporting the development of strong M&E mechanisms;

· Ensure program monitoring tools and systems are in place to support high quality implementation by partners;

· Ensure compliance with USDA regulations, and procedures, including compliance with Save the Children guidelines;

· Ensure compliance with all relevant administrative, human resources, procurement and financial policies and procedures of Save the Children and the donor;

· Represent Save the Children as the prime with partners and key stakeholders, maintain positive relationships with USDA, Ministry of Education and Health, and the Sri Lanka Country Team;

· Establish effective communication and coordination with personnel from the Ministries of Education and Health in order to implement interventions and incorporate country-wide priorities;

· Actively participate as a member of the Country Extended Senior Management Team (ESMT), contributing to country strategic plans;

· Assist Country Director (CD) and other country office staff in identification of needs and opportunities for project activities including facilitating in designing and developing of proposals to explore new opportunities;

· Establish, build, and nurture effective teamwork within the FFE team and ensure a cohesive workplace environment for optimum staff retention and motivation;

· Supervise team and provide necessary guidance to ensure that program targets are met;

· Incorporate SC’s vision and values and full adherence to Code of Conduct principles;

· Closely monitor security dynamics in the project areas and report to the CD on significant changes in the security context.


  • Master’s Degree in Education, Agriculture or related field
  • Previous experience as Chief of Party for USDA or other school feeding program, including start-up phase
  • 10+ years of management experience in education, social projects or a related field
  • Demonstrated expertise in educational methodologies on behavior change
  • Experience in the design and development of training plans for institutional personnel
  • Skills and hands-on knowledge on advising, mentoring and training program staff
  • Experience working in Sri Lanka or the region is a plus
  • Familiarity with and commitment to addressing gender equality in programming
  • Demonstrated skills in strategic and program planning
  • Proven ability in promoting and collaborating closely with country governments, the community and donor counterparts at all levels
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and demonstrated ability to lead and work effectively in team settings
  • Excellent oral and written English communication skills
  • Excellent negotiation and conflict resolution abilities
  • Ability to communicate effectively with diverse actors and audiences

Qualified local candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.

Save the Children invests in childhood – every day, in times of crisis and for our future. In the United States and around the world, we are dedicated to ensuring every child has the best chance for success. Our pioneering programs give children a healthy start, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. Our advocacy efforts provide a voice for children who cannot speak for themselves. As the leading expert on children, we inspire and achieve lasting impact for millions of the world’s most vulnerable girls and boys. By transforming children’s lives now, we change the course of their future and ours.

Save the Children is committed to conducting its programs in a manner that is safe for the children it serves and helping protect the children with whom Save the Children is in contact. As a humanitarian agency, Save the Children is obliged to create and maintain an environment that aims to prevent the sexual exploitation and abuse of children and promote the implementation of its child safeguarding policy. All representatives of Save the Children – employees, volunteers, interns, consultants, Board members and others who work with children on Save the Children’s behalf – are expected to conduct themselves in a manner consistent with this commitment and obligation.

Save the Children provides an attractive benefits package including competitive salaries, a matching retirement plan, health and welfare benefits, life insurance, an employee assistance program, generous time off and much more. 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