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Call for applications: Project Coordinator – Great Lakes Region

DefendDefenders (the East and Horn of Africa Human Rights Defenders Project) is the secretariat to a network of more than 75 member organisations drawn from eleven countries in the sub-region that is, Burundi, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia (and Somaliland), South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda. The project was designed to strengthen the work of human rights defenders (HRDs) in the East and Horn of Africa sub-region by reducing their vulnerability to the risk of persecution and by enhancing their capacity to effectively defend human rights.
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Project envisions a region in which the human rights of every citizen as stipulated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) are respected and upheld. DefendDefenders implements activities in the areas of protection, advocacy and capacity building.
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Additionally, DefendDefenders acts as the secretariat for the Pan-African Human Rights Defenders Network, which brings together five sub-regional networks from North, Central, West, Southern and the East and Horn of Africa. Further information can be found on the website or through our social media outlets on Twitter and Facebook.

DefendDefenders is in the process of recruiting a Project Coordinator for its work in supporting human rights defenders in the Great Lakes region.

Key responsibilities:

  • Coordinate the implementation of our Great Lakes region project, including project design and planning, implementation, coordination of activities, budget management, evaluation and reporting to ensure that the project is effectively and efficiently managed in accordance with the strategy of DefendDefenders and the parameters of its partner regulations and procedures;
  • Ensuring high quality, integrity, transparency and accountability of key processes in the project, including: project design, development, and budgeting; project approval process; financial management; and reporting;
  • Ensure swift communication and collaboration with the Great Lakes region project partners for the effective implementation of the project;
    Establish or reinforce partnerships with other organizations in the field, to create synergies for raising awareness on human rights compliance and protection in the Great Lakes region;
  • Undertake regular visits to countries of the Great Lakes;
    Monitoring the human rights legislations, issues and development in the Great Lakes region;
  • Support network of human rights defenders and organization in the Great Lakes region;
  • Engage in strategic advocacy activities, including press releases and statements in conjunction with the advocacy team.



  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills (spoken/written), including the ability to listen to and incorporate the views of stakeholders;
  • Ability to engage with project partners, donors and state authorities clearly and effectively, both orally and in writing;
  • Ability to communicate diplomatically, clearly and effectively (both verbally and in written);
  • Ability to tailor language, tone, style and format to match the audience.


  • Proven ability to operate effectively across organizational boundaries;
  • Ability to establish and maintain productive and sustainable partnerships with project stakeholders;
  • Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships in a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic environment with sensitivity and respect for diversity.

Staff Management

  • Ensure all personnel related issues for the staff are carried out in accordance with DefendDefenders guidelines;
  • Ensure that staff receive appropriate and adequate training including commitment to team-building and ability to develop and support other team members;
  • Hold regular team meetings through a consultative leadership style;
  • Promote the security of the staff of the designated project by ensuring the application of security guidelines and safety in the workplace;
  • Strong time management and coordination skills.

Planning and Organizing

  • Ability to develop clear goals that are consistent with agreed strategies;
  • Ability to foresee risks and allow for contingencies when planning;
  • Ability to identify beneficiaries’ needs and suggest appropriate solutions;
  • Ability to identify priority activities and adjust them as required.


  • Strong comfort with usage of information and internet technologies;
    Ability to learn new software and systems promoting efficiency and effectiveness;
  • Ability to follow digital security protocols.

Education and experience

  • A master’s degree in human rights, law, social sciences, political science or a related field from an accredited academic institution with a minimum of three years of relevant professional experience on project management;
  • A solid understanding of human rights and protection mechanisms;
    Familiarity with the Great Lakes region and previous experience working in the region;
  • Good conceptual and analytical capacity;
  • Very good budgeting, project management and report writing skills;
    Ability and willingness to travel.


Fluency in English and French (both spoken and written) is a must, and fluency in Kirundi and/or Kinyarwanda a strong asset. As part of the recruitment process, short-listed candidates will be tested on their knowledge of both English and French.


The position will be based in Kampala, Uganda with frequent travels within and out of the country. Applicants should be eligible to work in Uganda without restriction. Applicants should send a letter of motivation, CV and contacts of three references to: [email protected] by 25 January 2017. Do not send scanned copies of certificates.
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The subject line of the email should read “Application for Project Coordinator-
Great Lakes Region position”