Unit Lead - Water, Advice & Innovation Unit

Datum 10 sep. 2021
Vervaldatum 27 sep. 2021
Aantal uren 32-40
Plaats Den Haag
Betaald Ja
Organisatie Het Nederlandse Rode Kruis

We help to strengthen resilience of vulnerable people exposed to hazards and crisis situations and we respond to disasters and conflicts to save lives and alleviate suffering. In the Netherlands with more than fifteen thousand volunteers and internationally through technical assistance, supplies and money. Together we act before, during and after disasters to meet the needs and improve the lives of vulnerable people. We do this without regards to nationality, race, religious beliefs, class or political opinion. Our seven principles guide our humanitarian work: humanity, impartiality, neutrality, independence, voluntary service, unity and universality. The International Assistance division is responsible for all Netherlands Red Cross (NLRC) international support for victims of disasters and conflicts and for vulnerable people exposed to hazards. The International Assistance division has opened a vacancy for a: Unit Lead - Water, Advice & Innovation Unit (The Hague, 32-40 hours p/w)

The NLRC enables other Red Cross Crescent Movement (Movement) partners to achieve greater collective impact in helping people to cope with crises. NLRC supports its partners with financial and technical support, through humanitarian innovation and by building partnerships.
Following a strategy development process for the coming decade, NLRC has prioritised water, use of data and digital solutions and financial sustainability of Red Cross Red Crescent sister societies as its key focus areas for the period 2020-2030 for its international assistance. The focus on a limited number of expert areas requires adjustments to the way the NLRC has operated during the past decade: the variety of in-house expertise will be reduced, and the expertise that has been prioritised will be strengthened.
Water expertise, together with other technical support functions that remain in-house (resilience, response preparedness, protection gender & inclusion - PGI support), and innovation are concentrated in one unit: Water, Advice & Innovation (WA&I). Together with other units (Disaster Response, Strategic and Programmatic Partnerships, Data, Programme Development and Strategy) programmes and projects are developed and implemented through bilateral and multilateral partnerships. Local needs are the starting point for everything we do and so is our way of working: as local as possible, as international as needed.
Currently, the NLRC is working mainly on Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WaSH) in both emergency contexts as well as on longer term programmes and projects in 12 partner countries. It is the ambition to grow the portfolio of the NLRC in the field of water, focussing on humanitarian assistance, collaboration with local and international partners and through partnering with the Dutch private and public sector. Sub-domains that we have defined in which the portfolio can grow are water management, (urban and rural) WASH and WASH in emergencies.
The WA&I Unit is part of the International Assistance division and works closely with other divisions within the Netherlands Red Cross such as Fundraising & Market Development and Communications.

Purpose of the position
The unit lead WA&I will be responsible for the overall management of the unit. Together with key experts in the field of water, resilience, preparedness and humanitarian innovation, (s)he will be leading the thematic development positioning of the NLRC in the Red Cross Red Crescent movement and build partnerships with Dutch private and public sector and academia.
Especially in the field of water, NLRC intends to become a key player in the global Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement. The unit lead will be driving the strengthening of collaboration, unlocking the Dutch water knowledge and expertise in the field of water and linking it to Movement partners that can’t address needs with only local knowledge and solutions.
The NLRC’s long term objective is to make communities more resilient, so they can anticipate, cope with and respond to disasters and adapt their habits and/or environment in such a way the impact of disasters or reoccurring climate related hazards is reduced. Water related hazards, both seasonal floods, droughts and extremes are key risk factors for many communities. The WA&I unit will play a key role in strengthening the link between water and community resilience, by leading the dialogue in the Movement (e.g. through competency networks) and by actively using other NLRC solutions and approaches in the use of data and digital solutions and yearly defining two humanitarian challenges that require innovative approaches. An important task of the unit lead is to establish these links, promote internal and external collaboration and strive for collective impact and shared value with internal and external partners.


  • Keep WA&I Unit’s overall goal and ambitions up to date and aligned with international strategy; develop and monitor the WA&I annual budget;
  • Develop, manage and resource a cohesive, multi-disciplinary team of professionals (ca 10FTE) and actively look for synergies between the different disciplines and members of the Unit and across Units and other departments and external partners.
  • Represent the WA&I team in the International Departmental Management Team;
  • Ensure access to relevant fields of expertise that are no longer in-house, e.g. through framework agreements with Movement partners;
  • Lead the realization of NLRC’s ambitions in the field of water, community resilience and humanitarian innovation;
  • Develop, disseminate and drive take up of sectoral policies and guidelines;
  • Ensure good collaboration and understanding with other Units and Divisions;
  • Grow and maintain our global network with relevant actors, including Movement Partners, line ministries, (I)NGOs, knowledge institutes and private sector partners.
  • Challenge the team in being relevant, useful, efficient and effective;
  • Support the team in such a way that people can grow professionally and perform optimally;
  • Ensure excellent planning, monitoring and evaluation for learning, improvement of our work and compliance;
  • Keep the Unit’s team and the IH Management team informed.

Functie-eisen en profiel
Profile candidate

  • MA degree in relevant field


  • At least 10 years professional experience in Humanitarian or International work
  • + 5 years field-based experience in development or humanitarian contexts;
  • Demonstrable knowledge of key international humanitarian and development themes, including WASH, Public Health, DRR, Preparedness, Livelihood and Community Resilience;
  • Demonstrable experience with incubation of partnerships with international companies.
  • +5 years of experience in leadership positions (with teams of multi-disciplinary specialists);
  • Track record in liaising with Institutional Donors (EU, Ministries);
  • Demonstrable network and ability to position organisations in (inter)national platforms;
  • Proficiency in Dutch; Fluent in English;
  • A work and residence permit for the Netherlands (if applicable);
  • Excellent and engaging communication and inter-personal skills;
  • Affinity with and knowledge of innovations in humanitarian work (e.g. innovative investment mechanisms, possibilities with data, alternative energy);


  • Experience working for a Red Cross Movement organization (IFRC, ICRC, National Society);
  • Proficiency in French.


  • Organisational sensitivity, cooperation, providing feed-back, helicopter view, strategic insight, planning, decisiveness, motivating, engaging, encouraging.

Ons aanbod

  • A full time appointment (based on 40-hour work week) for one year, with the possibility of extension depending on performance. 
  • A flexible and human centred working environment in an international environment with a variety of international organizations. 
  • Well balanced employment conditions with space for initiative and development.
  • Remuneration: the salary scale level is set at 13 as mentioned in the CAO, depending on education level and experience (min. € 4.413,95 until max. € 5.860,96 gross per month on the basis of full-time employment).

Informeren en solliciteren
Applications: Please send your resume in English and letter of motivation with reference to Annemieke van Teeffelen before 27 September 2021 using this link. For more information about the position, you can contact Sandra Cats: SCats@redcross.nl. An assessment and reference check are part of the selection procedure. The Red Cross is looking for employees with talent and excellent competences for a position and is not guided by cultural background, physical limitations, gender identity, religion, sexual orientation or age. For more information about the work of the Netherlands Red Cross, please visit www.rodekruis.nl On Facebook and Twitter

Acquisition for this vacancy is not appreciated