Mercy Corps

Senior Advisor (Resilience Storytelling and Communications)

Mercy Corps

Job Description


Mercy Corps is powered by the belief that a better world is possible. To do this, we know our teams do their best work when they are diverse and every team member feels that they belong. We welcome diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be stronger and have long term impact.

The Program / Department / Team

Mercy Corps is a globally recognized leader in resilience, pursuing bold strategies to analyze and address interconnected shocks and stresses by improving and strengthening systems and capacities so all members within a community can cope, adapt and thrive. We apply our resilience approach to catalyze transformational change in chronically risk-prone environments facing Climate Change and conflict, working together with diverse partners to improve food security, economic opportunity, water security, peace and good governance. The Resilience Technical Support Unit supports the operationalization of Mercy Corps’ global strategy by stewarding and championing the application of our resilience framework, working closely with programs across the development-humanitarian-peace nexus to integrate resilience practices and elevate results and learning to inform regional and global strategy and influence wider industry change. Identifying and effectively articulating resilience change using methods that elevate community and local practitioner voices, and which draw upon robust documentation, learning and communication capacities and systems, is an essential component of this work and contributes directly to Mercy Corps’ global strategy.

General Position Summary

The Senior Advisor - Resilience Storytelling and Communication provides a combination of technical leadership over resilience storytelling methods and guidance, management of a pipeline of resilience documentation opportunities, and strategic direct support to programs on resilience-focused learning capture and resilience communications strategy. The Senior Advisor works closely with other technical roles in the Resilience TSU to link storytelling methods with broader guidance on and methods for resilience-informed Program Design, measurement, learning and quality implementation. She/he partners with program teams to improve systems for deliberately identifying and communicating participants and communities’ lived experience of resilience dynamics and anecdotes of change in a way that reinforces program learning for adaptation and quality. She/he also engages deeply to harvest and produce high quality resilience stories and strategic results and learning documentation. This role also enhances knowledge sharing among Mercy Corps’ global network of resilience practitioners through managing Mercy Corps’ dynamic Resilience Community of Practice. This role has a global remit with geographic concentration in the Africa Regional Resilience Portfolio.

Essential Job Functions


  • Set direction for and steward global approach and methods for resilience storytelling, ensuring they are data-driven and promote community and local practitioner assets, voices and perspectives in line with Mercy Corps’ core values around Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
  • Lead the development of detailed technical guidance, didactic materials and tools to improve the use of resilience storytelling in programs as part of Mercy Corps’ overall Resilience Theory to Practice initiative and curriculum
  • Develop and manage implementation of a strategic pipeline of high-impact resilience stories, results and learning documentation opportunities, and regularly identify and nurture new opportunities into the pipeline
  • Hire, manage, and mentor consultants supporting program teams with resilience storytelling


    • Partner with program teams to define resilience storytelling objectives, develop tailored systems to collect and produce high-impact resilience stories and integrate systems within broader program learning and adaptive management mechanisms (focus: resilient food security and nexus portfolios in the Africa region). Provide ongoing mentorship to teams to improve story collection and production.
    • Collaborate with program technical and MEL/CLA focal points to connect story collection to M&E, learning, reflection and adaptation systems and processes, including by designing and leading facilitated learning sessions.
    • Lead collection and production of high quality resilience stories and strategic documentation efforts (e.g. case studies, learning briefs) to capture key resilience results and lessons learned.
    • Facilitate program teams’ linkage with additional resilience storytelling and documentation resources and consultants and guide/support their production of resilience communication products.
    • Lead or facilitate the development of communication strategies that support a strategic approach to program communication with an emphasis on highlighting resilience capacities, advocating for resilience programming, and evidencing Mercy Corps approach to resilience
    • Work with media and communication outlets to facilitate strategic dissemination of resilience stories and documentation.
    • Design and implement capacity strengthening and facilitation materials for resilience story collection and development, supporting programs’ ability to consistently and effectively communicate their resilience vision with key audiences.
    • Counsel programs on recommended staffing and resourcing strategies to build a foundation for strong resilience storytelling and documentation. Support recruitment and hiring of program-level resilience-focused communication roles.
    • Provide strategic and tactical support to resilience portfolio/backbone programs to enhance quality of their resilience communication components.
    • Enhance flagship resilience programs’ strategic communications approach for resilience and support them to develop plans to elevate their stories, evidence and influence externally and internally.


      • Manage Mercy Corps’ Global Resilience Community of Practice, developing plans and systems for engagement, leading implementation of activities, and implementing methods to track overall satisfaction, engagement and quality.
      • Support implementation of occasional resilience learning events, including developing operational plans, helping develop content, and facilitating participation in events.


        As part of our commitment to organizational learning and in support of our understanding that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities they serve - we expect all team members to commit 5% of their time to learning activities that benefit Mercy Corps as well as themselves.


        Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts towards accountability, specifically to our beneficiaries and to international standards guiding international relief and development work, while actively engaging beneficiary communities as equal partners in the design, monitoring and evaluation of our field projects.

        Supervisory Responsibility: None


        Reports Directly To: Global Resilience Director

        Works Directly With: Country and Program Leadership, Africa Regional Team and other Resilience TSU colleagues.

        Knowledge and Experience

        • BA or BS in International Development, Journalism, Communications, Humanities, or relevant field
        • 5+ years’ experience working in the development field
        • Familiarity with resilience thinking and systems approaches
        • Familiarity with food security related sectors, such as agricultural systems and livelihoods; market systems development; cash programming; Climate Change Adaptation and disaster risk reduction; natural Resource Management.
        • Proven ability to synthesize and communicate complex subjects/topics effectively to multi-stakeholder groups through written formats. Experience communicating through other media formats is a strong plus.
        • Demonstrated success developing and implementing effective communications strategies and written and visual materials. Design experience is a plus.
        • Demonstrated storytelling experience
        • Experience facilitating Communities of Practice is strongly preferred.
        • Exceptional English writing skills.
        • Strong representation, networking and facilitation skills.

          Success Factors

          The successful candidate will be creative, positive, and constantly on the lookout for innovative ways to advance impact, influence and innovation. S/he will be passionate about learning, collaborating and co-creating and can apply a strong combination of program leadership and relationship-building abilities with an outstanding ability to work independently and juggle multiple priorities. S/he is skilled at facilitation and cross-cultural communications. Flexibility and public relations skills are integral success factors in this position. S/he will have interest and ability to travel and work in remote environments and awareness of and sensitivity to multicultural international development/humanitarian work.

          Living Conditions / Environmental Conditions

          The position requires travel roughly 30-35% time, including to the field where living conditions may be exceptionally rugged or be in volatile environments where security protocols will need to be followed. Team members must be ready to deploy to field environments on short notice in response to any emergency or crisis. When in the field the team member must able to work in remote settings, over weekends and/or evening as required by the schedule, and in settings with limited infrastructure, food options, and living conditions.

          Mercy Corps team members represent the agency both during and outside work hours when deployed in a field posting or on a visit/TDY to a field posting. Team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and respect local laws, customs and MC's policies, procedures, and values at all times and in all in-country venues.

          Fostering a diverse and open workplace is an important part of Mercy Corps’ vision. Mercy Corps is an Equal Opportunity Employer regardless of background. We are committed to creating an inclusive environment.

          Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

          Achieving our mission begins with how we build our team and work together. Through our commitment to enriching our organization with people of different origins, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of thinking, we are better able to leverage the collective power of our teams and solve the world’s most complex challenges. We strive for a culture of trust and respect, where everyone contributes their perspectives and authentic selves, reaches their potential as individuals and teams, and collaborates to do the best work of their lives.

          We recognize that diversity and inclusion is a journey, and we are committed to learning, listening and evolving to become more diverse, equitable and inclusive than we are today.

          Ongoing Learning

          In support of our belief that learning organizations are more effective, efficient and relevant to the communities we serve, we empower all team members to dedicate 5% of their time to learning activities that further their personal and/or professional growth and development

          Equal Employment Opportunity

          Mercy Corps is an equal opportunity employer that does not tolerate discrimination on any basis. We actively seek out diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and skills so that we can be collectively stronger and have sustained global impact.

          We are committed to providing an environment of respect and psychological safety where equal employment opportunities are available to all. We do not engage in or tolerate discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender identity, gender expression, religion, age, sexual orientation, national or ethnic origin, disability (including HIV/AIDS status), marital status, military veteran status or any other protected group in the locations where we work.

          Safeguarding & Ethics

          Mercy Corps is committed to ensuring that all individuals we come into contact with through our work, whether team members, community members, program participants or others, are treated with respect and dignity. We are committed to the core principles regarding prevention of sexual exploitation and abuse laid out by the UN Secretary General and IASC. We will not tolerate Child Abuse, sexual exploitation, abuse, or harassment by or of our team members. As part of our commitment to a safe and inclusive work environment, team members are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner, respect local laws and customs, and to adhere to Mercy Corps Code of Conduct Policies and values at all times. Team members are required to complete mandatory Code of Conduct e-learning courses upon hire and on an annual basis.

Apply Now