Shelter Technical Advisor – Roster for International Humanitarian Response

Washington DC
Central Operations – Operations Management /
Full time
/ On-site
This position will play a key role in positioning CORE’s shelter capacity during an emergency response by providing technical assistance across the program cycle, contributing to CORE’s strategy and proposal development, managing and implementing a gender-sensitive shelter program responsive to the needs of men, women, boys and girls and building and strengthening capacity (mentoring, coaching, training) of staff and partners ensuring that all shelter programs are integrating and meeting humanitarian principles, protection and gender minimum standards  


    • General Responsibilities 
    • Utilizing past experiences to rapidly assess, design and deliver CORE’s emergency shelter and recovery Programs in response to international natural or man-made disasters and complex emergencies that meets protection and gender minimum standards in humanitarian programming 
    • Provide technical support, advice and oversight for Programs to support CORE in delivery of high-quality Programs, specifically those that adequately address the needs and capacities of vulnerable and marginalized groups. 
    • Co-ordinate with other team members and CORE staff to ensure a rapid, proportionate, integrated and effective response. 
    • Ensure an effective response to immediate shelter needs whilst simultaneously considering longer-term shelter and recovery needs including the development of possible scenarios related to housing. 
    • Take an active role in co-ordination, support and advocacy with other stakeholders. 
    • Provide specific, short-term expertise to CORE, including, but not limited to, structural design, materials selection and procurement, construction, environmental impact assessment and mitigation, needs assessment and evaluation. 
    • Build local capacity on shelter implementation and reconstruction; this will include mentoring, coaching and training of staff and partners.  

Specific Tasks:

    • These tasks are the type of activities any of the above specialists could be asked to lead or contribute to. It is not an exhaustive list but gives an indication of the kind of roles that the team members take on. 

    • Assessments 
    • Provide sectoral leadership and expertise in the assessment. 
    • Conduct initial rapid assessment of the situation in collaboration with local specialists and the affected population; determine priorities, immediate activities and required resources.  
    • Assess potential recovery activities that CORE can be involved in. 
    • Represent CORE to stakeholders, including governmental and non-governmental agencies in relation to the shelter aspects of the assessment. 

    • Program Design 
    • Define aims and objectives for Programs and projects.
    • Select and design activities for Programs and projects.
    • Select and specify any additional inputs needed, such as staff, equipment, materials or funding.
    • Develop design, legal and financial documents where appropriate in consultation with displaced families, host populations and government ministries, ensuring the participation of women.
    • Collaborate effectively with other CORE staff to ensure an integrated approach,
    • Ensure that cross-cutting issues, including protection, gender, livelihoods, DRR and environmental impact, operation, maintenance and sustainability, are factored into the Program design.
    • Ensure Sphere minimum standards are met or exceeded where appropriate.
    • Identify and ensure the input of specialist technical advice where required.
    • Develop letters of intent, concept papers,  ToRs, budgets and proposals.

    • Management and Implementation
    • Plan and manage the Program in a phased and prioritized manner with full consultation and co-ordination with CORE staff and other stakeholders.
    • Ensure gender is fully considered throughout the project cycle with women being enabled to influence decision making around shelter issues.
    • Ensure adequate logistic capacity and systems and ensure appropriate materials and support are available for all activities.
    • Ensure regular monitoring and collection of relevant data including but not limited to PDMs and other relevant MEAL tools.
    • Ensure legal requirements are enforced where necessary.

    • Information and Co-ordination
    • Provide regular updates to the Team Leader and CORE team on progress, priorities and constraints – verbally and in writing on an agreed frequency.
    • Represent CORE to stakeholder groups as needed and agreed with the Team Leader.
    • Train and brief CORE staff and stakeholders on shelter issues.

Key Internal Contacts:

    • Team Leader and other members of the team as appropriate.
    • CORE leadership team including CEO, COO, VP of programming, Senior Director of Humanitarian Response, Data, Partnership Develop

Key External Contacts:

    • Other agencies and groups responding to the emergency.
    • Donors.
    • Governmental representatives from the ministries tasked with shelter and recovery.
    • Local professional bodies and private companies for the built environment.
    • Media.

Reporting Lines:

    • Reports to the Designated Emergency Response Team Leader .

Selection Criteria: Core Competencies for all Roster positions

    • People Skills: Ability to work independently and as a team player who demonstrates leadership and is able to support and train local and international staff and able to work with disaster-affected communities in a sensitive and participatory manner.
    • Communication Skills: Well-developed written and oral communication skills. Able to communicate clearly and sensitively with internal and external stakeholders as a representative of CORE. This includes effective negotiation and representation skills.
    • Integrity: Works with trustworthiness and integrity and has a clear commitment to CORE's values and humanitarian principles.
    • Resilience / Adaptability and flexibility: Ability to operate effectively under extreme circumstances including stress, high-security risks and harsh living conditions. Ability to work and live with a flexible, adaptable and resilient manner.
    • Awareness and sensitivity of self and others: Demonstrates awareness and sensitivity to gender and diversity. Has experience and the ability to live and work in diverse cultural contexts in a culturally appropriate manner. Has a capacity to make accurate self-assessments, particularly in high stress and high security contexts.
    • Work style: Is well-planned and organised even within a fluid working environment and has a capacity for initiative and decision making with competent analytical and problem-solving skills.
    • Knowledge and skills: Have knowledge of Sphere and the Red Cross / NGO Code of Conduct. Has general finance, administration, information management and telecommunication skills and proficiency in information technology / computer skills.
    • All staff members understand and abide by the CORE’s Code of Conduct. All staff must sign the relevant Code of Conduct which includes Prevention of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (PSEA). Staff are required to report any suspicions of exploitation and/or abuse of children and vulnerable people via established internal referral mechanisms. All staff must adhere to CORE’s zero tolerance policy for sexual exploitation and abuse of children.

Selection Criteria: Technical Competencies

    • Knowledge of transitional shelter and settlements options including host family support, collective centers, and camps.
    • Knowledge of different modalities of shelter support, including cash, NFIs, construction and technical assistance.
    • A professional qualification in the built environment (architecture, engineering, planning etc). Experience can substitute for qualifications but not vice-versa.
    • Demonstrated competence in conducting needs assessments, developing shelter strategy and implementing Programs through the emergency response and recovery phases.
    • A thorough and demonstrated understanding of humanitarian contexts (including natural disasters, conflict and complex emergencies) and humanitarian principles
    • Ability to prepare concept papers and project proposals in accordance with the standards required by CORE and donors.
    • Ability to prepare construction documentation in accordance with the standards required by CORE and professional bodies
    • Strong awareness of gender and protection issues in humanitarian interventions, including specifically in shelter programming.
    • Awareness of general public health issues as applied to emergency settings, with special attention to the needs of women and children.
    • Good communication skills in English and ability to speak French, Creole, Spanish and/or Arabic desirable.

Selection Criteria: Education and Experience

    • Minimum 5- 7 years’ international humanitarian aid experience with at least 4 years’ experience in shelter and a requirement of international experience outside of country of residence.
    • Relevant professional qualification or post-graduate in structural engineering, civil engineering, housing, land and property rights, materials science, construction management and logistics or.
    • Demonstrated professional expertise in structural engineering, civil engineering, housing, land and property rights, materials selection and procurement, environmental impact assessment in humanitarian contexts, design of sustainable recovery Programs, needs assessment and Program evaluations.
    • Demonstrated understanding of the different modalities and types of shelter Programs.
    • Demonstrated competence in gender analysis and producing strategies for gender-sensitive programming and of how shelter Programs can address the needs of men, women, boys and girls.