Liaison and Cross Border Coordinator

International Rescue Committee Gaziantep
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Job Description

Job Title: Liaison and Cross Boarder Coordinator

Grade: 6B

Department: Field Management

Location: Gaziantep, Turkey


Background/IRC Summary:  

The Syria crisis is often described as the worst humanitarian catastrophe since the end of the Cold War. Today, 13.4 million people in Syria - more than half of the country's population - are in need of humanitarian assistance with needs increasingly being exacerbated by economic decline. Of these, 6.8 million are refugees and asylum-seekers who have fled the country. This is no short-term humanitarian episode. The devastating human consequences to huge numbers of people will endure for decades. The destruction of relationships, communities, livelihoods, homes and infrastructure will take years to repair.

IRC is offering a robust humanitarian response to the Syria crisis a rapidly expanding portfolio, supported by more than 1000+ staff in Syria Country Program. IRC is undertaking programs in Syria and the neighboring countries of Turkey, Iraq, Lebanon and Jordan in the fields of health, child protection, early childhood development, education, women’s protection and empowerment, non-food items and food distribution, cash assistance, water and sanitation, protection and rule of law, and livelihood programming. Our work in these challenging settings gives rise to some of the most pressing issues facing contemporary humanitarian action, including questions of access, security, funding and coordination.

Job Overview/Summary:

The Liaison and Cross Boarder Coordinator for Syria Country Program will be based in Gaziantep – TURKEY and will oversee the liaison and cross boarder activities of the support office and report to the IRC Representative in Turkey on liaison and access management and to Field Director NWS for day-to-day management and any needed assignments. The liaison and cross boarder coordinator will oversee representations related to IRC’s operations in Turkey side in addition to facilitating cross boarder activities and attending meetings and functions as needed to enhance IRC’s external relationships.

Essentially, s/he is responsible to represent IRC in Gaziantep and handle any inquiries for/with governorate authorities and assist Turkey Rep on government affairs including obtaining approvals for IRC activities, permissions, visas, work permits..etc taking into account all the external factors affecting the operational environment. As part of external liaison, the incumbent will attend clusters meeting and any other ingo fora, and engagements with humanitarian agencies such as Turkish Red Crescent, AFAD , customs authorities, and facilitate the needed for border crossing to northern Syria. Including getting access permissions.


Representation, Coordination and Cross border


  1. In liaison of Turkey Representative, attend operations cluster meetings and other forum convening for Syria response,
  2. Upon request, support Turkey Representative and Syria program management in communication and engagements with humanitarian agencies and Turkish Authorities
  3. Represent IRC and facilitate the processing of shipment formalities with TRC, AFAD, customs authorities and border crossing to Northern Syria. 
  4. In coordination with Turkey Representative, liaise with official authorities to work on activity and access permissions for Northern Syria, when necessary. Legal responsibility to represent the IRC in Gaziantep and handle any inquiries for / with the governate authorities.
  5. Supporting IRC Turkey Representative on government affairs including approvals for meetings and workshops …etc

Access and liaison

  1. Establish and maintain informal relations and a network of contacts (both in Turkey and NWS) allowing the collection of information related with the humanitarian access in Northwest Syria, specifically in the areas of intervention
  2. Develop and keep updated a service mapping inclusive of humanitarian, non-governmental, state actors and their services provided for the area of operations in which IRC operates.
  3. Build and maintain positive relationship and liaise with the Governmental and non-Governmental actors on the service mapping and update them on the services provided by IRC NWS program.
  4. Liaise closely with Liaison working groups and other agencies focal points in area of operation to avoid overlaps and improve meaningful relationships with the agencies on the service mapping
  5. Contribute to development and implementation of government engagement strategy
  6. Provide advice to SMT on strategies to further improve relationship with Government authorities relevant to IRC’s NWS Syria Program
  7. Work closely with Turkey Representative, Deputy Director of Operations and Humanitarian Access Director to advise on specific governmental reporting requirements throughout IRC area of operations and presence in Turkey and NWS
  8. Support and advice Turkey Representative in formulating/drafting/signing MoU’s relevant to all IRC NWS operations.
  9. In close coordination with Humanitarian Access Director, develop and implement Standard Operating Procedures for Liaison related operations and tasks.
  10. Develop and update list of contacts (formal/ informal) and create a stakeholder’s map per district/ sub-district in Turkey and NWS.
  11. Develop and regularly update internal maps on safe and un-safe areas
  12. Identify barriers to access and support the program teams develop strategies to address
  13. In close coordination with Turkey Representative and Supply Chain Department, support all the shipments logistics to NWS and lead on bureaucratic procedures.



Staff Performance Management, Learning & Development

  • Hire, supervise, and build the capacity of team members in relevant technical and management competencies.
  • Develop and implement remote management capacity building approaches to build the strengths the teams teams in Syria.
  • Coach, train, supervise and mentor direct-report staff, including communicating clear expectations, setting annual performance objectives, providing regular and timely positive and constructive performance feedback, and providing documented semi-annual performance reviews.
  • Maintain open and professional relations with team members, promoting a strong team spirit and providing oversight and guidance to enable staff to successfully perform in their positions.
  • Approve and manage time, attendance and leave requests to ensure adequate departmental coverage; ensure monthly, accurate timesheet submission and carry out probationary reviews.
  • Hold high-quality meetings with each direct report on a regular and predictable basis, minimally on a monthly basis.
  • Provide a measurable development plan including on-the-job learning with the aim of strengthening technical capacity, exchanging knowledge within the team and providing guidance on career paths.
  • As required, identify staff performance issues and work with Human Resources to document and address these in accordance with the National Staff Employment Policies.
  • Maintain open and professional relations with team members, promoting a strong team spirit and providing oversight and guidance to enable staff to successfully perform in their positions.
  • Promote and monitor staff care and well-being. Model healthy work-life balance practices. Support appropriate interventions in response to identified staff care needs of both national and international staff.
  • Look for opportunities to support staff in their career growth, where appropriate. As part of succession plan and nationalization goals, identify, train and develop capability and capacity of national staff to successfully transition role and responsibilities, by the end of assignment.

Required Experience/qualification/Skills:

  • At least 5 years of progressively responsible professional experience of humanitarian operations, cross boarder activities and field management related duties.
  • Previous experience in an emergency or conflict-afflicted setting is required.

Demonstrated Skills and Competencies:

  • A commitment to IRC’s mission, vision, values and IRC Way – Professional Code of Conduct.
  • Credible written, presentation and verbal communication skills; ability to convey information effectively and solid experience providing training and staff development
  • Validated sense of professional discretion, integrity, and ability to handle complex situations diplomatically and to effective resolution.
  • Excellent management and interpersonal skills and a solid ability to promote harmonious/cohesive teamwork, in a cross-cultural context.
  • Validated ability to plan long-term, organize priorities and work under administrative and programmatic pressures with detail orientation and professional patience.
  • Highly collaborative and resourceful; ability to establish positive working relationships with senior level management and all other partners to maximize cooperation and productivity.
  • Curiosity, a desire to continually learn and develop and a sense of humor is a must.
  • Analytical ability in creating effective solutions to complex matters while adhering to labor laws and internal policies.


  • English is required, while Turkish and/or Arabic are desired.
  • Travel: 30% to field sites in Northern Syria as well as attending regional and global workshops and meetings.

Key Working Relationships:

Position Reports to:  Turkey Representative.

Position directly supervises: n/a

Indirect Reporting (If applicable):  Field Director, Deputy Director Operations, HAS Director.
Key Internal Contacts:

Key External Contacts: Turkish Government Authorities, INGO Foras/Coordination Clusters, Cross-boarder entities: Turkish Red Crescent, AFAD, Customs and boarder authorities.   

Professional Standards: IRC staff must adhere to the values and principles outlined in IRC Way – Global Standards for Professional Conduct. These are Integrity, Service, Accountability and Equality. In accordance with these values, IRC operates and carries out policies on Beneficiary Protection from Exploitation and Abuse, Child Safeguarding, Anti-Workplace Harassment, Respect at Work Fiscal Integrity, and Anti-Retaliation.

Returning National Candidates: We strongly encourage national or returning national candidates to apply for this position. If you are a citizen of the Country in which this position is based and are currently located outside of your home country and possess over two years of international work experience, the Middle East Region has introduced an attractive remuneration package. The package includes competitive compensation, return flight to post, shipping allowance, temporary housing and a relocation allowance. Certain restrictions may apply. IRC strives to attract, motivate and retain qualified national staff in our programs.

Accountability to Clients: IRC staff must adhere to the commitment of contributing to the sustainability and development of its (CR) Client Responsiveness Mechanisms, preserving the culture of prioritizing the needs of our clients and affected communities by systematically listening to their perspectives and using their feedback to make programmatic decisions and give them greater influence over program design and delivery.

Gender Equality: IRC is committed to narrowing the gender gap in leadership positions. We offer benefits that provide an enabling environment for women to participate in our workforce including parental leave, gender-sensitive security protocols and other supportive benefits and allowances.

Diversity and Inclusion: at IRC MENA, we are passionate about creating an inclusive workplace that promotes and values diversity. Organizations that are diverse in age, gender identity, race, sexual orientation, physical or mental ability, ethnicity, nationality, and perspective are validated to be better organizations. More importantly, creating a safe workspace environment where everyone, from any background, can do their best is the right thing to do. So, bring your whole self to work.

IRC is committed to creating a diverse, inclusive, respectful and safe work environment where all persons are treated fairly, with dignity and respect. In keeping with our core values of Integrity, Service, Accountability and Equality, IRC strives to maintain a work environment built on mutual respect in which all individuals treat each other professionally, and free of bias, prejudice, and harassment. IRC expressly prohibits and will not tolerate discrimination, harassment, retaliation, or bullying of IRC Persons in any work setting. All IRC staff, wherever they are located, are accountable for creating an environment free of discrimination, harassment, bullying, and retaliation.