The African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) is a pan African conservation organisation whose mission is to ensure wildlife and wildlands thrive in modern Africa. AWF is currently seeking a dynamic leader to oversee and drive the development and implementation of AWF’s new 10-year country strategy in Cameroon, a focal country for delivering on the new AWF Strategy. The AWF Strategy has three main goals: promoting African leadership for conservation on the continent; protecting habitats and ecosystem services and conserving species in situ. Strong country offices are key to implementing this Strategy so as to engage more actively and effectively with Governments, partners and private sector to promote leadership on conservation issues as well as support the field programmes. Cameroon has been identified as a focal country for accelerating investment in a country office and national capacity, expanding AWF presence.
The AWF Cameroon Country Director will be responsible for providing overall leadership, strategic focus, management and accountability for AWF’s programs in Cameroon. This position reports to the Senior Director Project Management & Partnerships but will be expected to maintain strong lines of communication with several other senior management positions, particularly on policy, strategy, funding opportunities and species protection programmes. The Country Director will help to design new programs and grow AWF’s conservation and development project portfolio in Cameroon.
The Cameroon Country Director is expected to be a highly visible individual in the country’s conservation sector with ties to decision makers in other sectors shaping land and resource use, and the capacity to manage programs with social, political, cultural and economic complexities. He/she is expected to be results oriented and able to provide leadership to a team of highly qualified professionals to achieve results and meet program targets and goals. He/she will be expected to exercise a high degree of decision making and sound judgment.
- General Management
- Directly assist in the recruitment and then supervise country staff in Yaoundé
- Develop and motivate staff members to contribute to their full ability to AWF’s mission, vision, and strategic plan
- Oversee the development and maintenance of the AWF country office
- Ensure AWF is fully compliant with all laws and regulations in Cameroon
Leadership, Government Support and Policy
- Increase number of influential Africans who speak on behalf of wildlife conservation
- Establish a high level of credibility and manage strong working relationship with both internal and external stakeholders
- Directly supervise (list positions of staff supervised)
- Develop and motivate team members to contribute to their full ability to AWF’s mission, vision, and strategic plan
- Enhance effectiveness and prominence of African conservation leaders
- Increase engagement of women and youth in conservation
- Drive the adoption of innovative development policies and investment plans that preserve and restore wildlife and wildlands
- Support government leaders with policy analysis, development and implementation at national and international levels including support for key international treaties including Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES)
- Promote AWF as the institution that assists the Cameroonian government and other partners in creating solutions that deliver on conservation and development ambitions
- Ensure a collaborative approach to position AWF as a thought leader and draw on capacities within and external to AWF to achieve our country strategy
- Develop excellent working relationships with major stakeholder groups, national governments, protected area authorities, local government, community and private sector, in the region.
- Identify, engage and recruit potential candidates for the AWF Board of Trustees
- Provide support to the project managers and their teams for the development, management and successful implementation of programs in Cameroon.
- Ensure program activities are based on strong evidence-based conservation that result in sustainable outcomes for conservation and communities.
- Ensure program activities are in line with Government objectives and are compliant with national laws and regulations.
Program Development & Growth
- Lead the development of the Cameroon Country Strategy in collaboration with key stakeholders, the Cameroon staff, Strategy teams and other AWF departments.
- Support the expansion of AWF’s conservation and development project portfolio in Cameroon.
- Regularly engage donor partners, providing donors with updates on AWF programme priorities, insights from implementation, and facilitate connection to host country processes and people to raise profile of how wildlife and wild lands fit into donor programming
- Regularly inform the International Policy & Government Relations team of developments in country related to donor priority areas and collaborate to engage donors and facilitate alignment between donor and Cameroon government priorities; and
- Collaborate with fundraising, communications and technical teams to prepare materials for in-country donor engagement help design, develop and build new programs in Cameroon that meet AWF’s objectives and mission.
- Participate in and support the development and design of funding proposals for submission to key donors for support of the program.
- Travel to cultivate and steward donors – prospective and existing – in key fundraising markets.
- Keep abreast of relevant programs and opportunities in Cameroon for AWF involvement, including funding opportunities, and link as appropriate relevant staff to opportunities such as Program Design and Philanthropy.
- Represent AWF at national and district government levels and with other donors to ensure effective collaboration and maintenance of AWF’s reputation and role as a conservation leader in Cameroon.
Program Oversight and Implementation
- Support project managers to ensure full compliance with any donor agreements and AWF policies and procedures.
- Develop and motivate team members to contribute to their full ability to AWF’s mission, vision, and strategic plan.
- Establish a high level of credibility and manage strong working relationship with both internal and external stakeholders.
- Promote teamwork, professionalism, and integrity
- Provide leadership in tracking and reporting of program performance against prescribed criteria to AWF and partners in a timely manner.
- Build and manage a team of professional staff; ensure roles & responsibilities are clearly defined and performance is managed with the required focus and discipline.
- Work with AWF’s Finance Department to develop and track working annual budgets, ensure efficient use of resources and eliminate fraud.
- Support a fully operational data collection, management, reporting and learning framework (M & E).
- Ensure quarterly and yearly means of verification (MOVs) are defined and delivered in a timely manner.
Public Relations, Corporate Communications and Marketing
- To be the focal point for all AWF communications within Cameroon.
- Work closely with the AWF global communications teams to ensure consistent and coordinated messaging and branding within Cameroon
- Collaborate with global communications team in promoting AWF programmes and highlighting both successes and challenges within country and globally.
- Ensure strong internal communications for AWF staff within the country.
- Post graduate qualification (MSc or PhD) in natural sciences, social science, economics or any other field directly related to conservation.
- Minimum 12+ years of proven managerial and field experience in conservation and development.
- Experience in leading implementation of large and complex projects in Cameroon with a solid understanding of conservation in Cameroon and how to deliver effective sustainable conservation programs that benefit wildlife and communities
- Results focused orientation with proven track record of delivery
- Ability to manage and motivate a highly qualified team of professionals in different fields
- Solid understanding of financial management and budgeting
- Proficiency in French and English (spoken and written)
- Experience leading and managing large complex projects budgets, delivering and reporting results, and ensuring compliance with donor requirements
- Outstanding interpersonal skills including the ability to build coalitions, negotiate, and manage conflict situations
- Outstanding communication skills with ability to clarify vision and strategy
- Experience working with different levels of government (especially senior levels) and partners in Cameroon
- Genuine respect for the skills and perspectives of communities, partner organizations and the private sector
- Good report writing skills and working knowledge of computers and MS Office software package
- Sound understanding and motivational fit in conservation
- Commitment to AWF and its mission