Country Director- Afghanistan

The Opportunity

Since 1976, Save the Children’s Afghanistan Country Office has been offering exciting opportunities and challenges for children and communities. It has maintained its development programming over the last year in a challenging and changing environment.  Long-term sustainability is dependent on the continued growth in the size and quality of both development and humanitarian programs. The Country Director will lead and deliver on this, helping to shape the strategic vision for the Country Office (both development & humanitarian programs), and bringing the team together to deliver quality programmes, including advocacy for children. Save the Children in Afghanistan Country Office has a staff complement of approximately 4,000 staff, including community-based employees and current expenditure of approximately $80 million each year.


As a member of the Asia Senior Leadership team, you will have shared accountability for Save the Children’s international development and emergency programming in the Asia region of approximately $350 million each year.  To achieve our ambitious goals and breakthroughs for children, the leadership team globally, in collaboration with Save the Children Members and in conjunction with the other regional organisations, aims to drive our organizational goals. 

Key Responsibilities

As a member of the Regional Senior Leadership Team, contribute to:

  • Strategic development and delivery of international programming, in both humanitarian and development contexts, in line with the Save the Children mandate, strategy and theory of change
  • Collaboration with colleagues in the region to deliver any regional programmes and advocacy, in line with regional strategies, operational plans, budgets and SC Member requirements that result in significant impact for children
  • Supporting the development of an organisational culture that reflects our dual mandate values, promotes accountability and high performance and frees up our people to deliver outstanding results for children and excellent customer service to our Members and donors.


Deliver transformational change in-country, including:

  • Developing and delivering improved outcomes for children through the delivery of the Save the Children global programme strategy and global initiatives and growth targets as set for Afghanistan
  • Implementing the Save the Children International operating model for Afghanistan, in consultation with the Regional Director
  • Driving operational excellence to accomplish optimum efficiency and cost-effectiveness in all functions and operations of the country program
  • Ensuring that Save the Children remains a partner of choice for major international donors, by seeking out and pursuing opportunities to raise the profile of the work of Save the Children through engaged staff, partners and other stakeholders to create real shared ownership and collaboration.
  • Developing and maintaining a high level of understanding of donor priorities and planned funding.
  • Ensuring strong collaborative relations with the national/local government entities and relevant foreign embassies and donor representatives
  • Identifying opportunities for appropriate expansion and growth of programs
  • Creating an environment of continuous learning, where staff are encouraged and supported to grow and develop and are willing to be held accountable for their commitments
  • Ensuring that the focus of the organisation remains on the rights and needs of children


Be accountable, and develop the capacity of, mentor and hold staff accountable for:

  • Developing a strong country strategy and operational plans that identify and address significant issues facing children, and are in line with Save the Children’s overall strategy (with a focus on Global Initiatives) and theory of change
  • Preparing for and implementing rapid and effective responses to major emergencies affecting children, including building relationships with key humanitarian and development decision-makers and partners in-country
  • Ensuring country program quality through a rigorous assessment, design, and proposal development and review processes; comprehensive monitoring and evaluation, accountability and learning systems; staff development investments; and partner organization capacity strengthening.
  • Developing and maintaining good relations with Members and Donors, ensuring that a Donor Engagement Plan is fully operational
  • Growing the country programme to become the leading NGO addressing children’s issues in Afghanistan
  • Developing and maintaining efficient and effective operating systems, and ensuring compliance with all Save the Children International essential standards and procedures
  • Maintain effective safety and security management mechanisms and ensure compliance with all global/regional safety and security operating standards
  • Developing and maintaining a strong and efficient core team able to deal with major crisis management
  • Developing and coaching staff to optimise their potential in pursuit of Save the Children’s objectives
  • Contributing to global knowledge and learning in Save the Children


Be accountable, and develop the capacity of, mentor and hold the Senior Management Team accountable for:

  • Developing and coaching the senior management team (SMT) to optimise their potential in pursuit of Save the Children’s objectives
  • Develop a pool of successors from internal talents, promote talents internally and stabilize leadership positions.
  • Serving as a role model and lead the way on the new values and ways of working
  • Ensuring appropriate SMT staffing at all levels; ensuring appropriate gender and ethnicity diversity
  • Ensuring accountability of appropriate professional development opportunities for SMT
  • Ensuring that all staff understand and are able to perform their roles in an emergency
  • Encouraging a team culture of learning, creativity and innovation
  • Building relationships with key decision makers and partners
  • Developing strong country strategy and operational plans that identify and address significant issues facing children, and are in line with Save the Children’s overall strategy (with a focus on Global Initiatives) and theory of change


Risk Management at Organizational and Project Level:

  • Proactively participate in the identification of risks for the organization, its beneficiaries and its staff including reputational, physical and monetary risks with a specific focus on the area of country management
  • Identify, implement and follow up on specific mitigation measures for the risks identified under the country management area
  • Proactively engage and discuss with the staff and provincial teams to raise awareness of risks related to country management areas and what mitigations can be done
  • Bi-monthly update of the Risk Management Plan for areas under the supervision of the Country Director
  • If required, be part of or participate in the SCI Afghanistan Risk Management Committee
  • Report any newly identified risks immediately tothe Regional Director


The Organisation


We employ approximately 25,000 people across the globe and work on the ground in over 100 countries to help children affected by crises, or those that need better healthcare, education and child protection. We also campaign and advocate at the highest levels to realise the right of children and to ensure their voices are heard. 


We are working towards three breakthroughs in how the world treats children by 2030:

  • No child dies from preventable causes before their 5th birthday
  • All children learn from a quality basic education and that,
  • Violence against children is no longer tolerated


We know that great people make a great organization, and that our employees play a crucial role in helping us achieve our ambitions for children.  We value our people and offer a meaningful and rewarding career, along with a collaborative and inclusive workplace where ambition, creativity, and integrity are highly valued.

Application Information


Please apply using a cover letter and up-to-date CV as a single document. Please also include details of your current remuneration and salary expectations. A copy of the full role profile can be found at

Closing Date for Application: 24 August 2022

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.


All employees are expected to carry out their duties in accordance with our global anti-harassment policy.






Job description:

Find out more about this role by downloading the job description here Job description

Date advertised: 2 Aug 2022

Closing date: 24 Aug 2022 - 22:59 +07

Location: Kabul, Afghanistan

Department: Programme Operations

Type: Permanent

Schedule: Full-time

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