Program Officer / Senior Program Officer

Work Location: Flexible
Requisition Number: 1163
# of Openings: 1


Program Officer / Senior Program Officer, Emergency Assistance Program          

Location: Flexible (job can be performed remotely).  Deadline for Applications: June 4

Freedom House promotes the spread of freedom and democracy around the world through research, advocacy, and programs that support frontline activists. We are a leader in identifying threats to freedom through our highly regarded analytic reports, including Freedom in the World, Freedom of the Press, Freedom on the Net, and Nations in Transit. With 13 field offices and two U.S. offices, we support the right of every individual to be free.


The Emergency Assistance Program (EAP) at Freedom House (FH) seeks a Program Officer/Senior Program Officer to lead a new initiative that will support feminist organizations to develop the capacity, tools, and resources to provide psychosocial and well-being support to women human rights defenders (WHRDs).

Seeking candidates with expertise with psychosocial support, wellbeing, addressing secondary trauma, or implementation of psychosocial support programs within an organizational context.

The initiative will be implemented in three countries and will work with a lead CSO partner in each country to co-create and drive the implementation of the project activities and contribute to a learning agenda. The PO/SPO will work with the three lead CSOs to develop a context-specific methodology for well-being support that addresses needs at both the organizational and individual level, which could include traditional psychotherapy, mind and body practice, arts and music, community-building, and/or other culturally appropriate ways to strengthen psychosocial support and well-being. The PO/SPO will have primary oversight to ensure that project deliverables and benchmarks are met and will work closely with EAP staff, partners, and consultants to support the lead CSO partners as they design and implement locally appropriate projects.  The PO/SPO will help facilitate virtual and in-person convenings for global and south-south experience sharing among participating CSO partners and other stakeholders. The project will incorporate an intersectional approach that acknowledges overlapping and concurrent forms of oppression including based on sexual orientation and gender identity/expression and sex characteristics.


  • Project design and implementation – Lead the design and implementation of the three country-specific initiatives, forming partnerships with lead CSO partners through subgrants, identifying and contracting with consultants who can provide additional technical expertise to inform the project and support the CSO partners.  Work closely with EAP’s senior advisor for M&E to ensure implementation of the monitoring and evaluation process.  
  • Donor Engagement – Assist with managing the donor award, including developing work plans, submitting narrative performance reports, and maintaining productive working relationships with donor counterparts.
    • Learning Agenda: Oversee the design and support the implementation of the learning agenda, including the convening of country-specific workshops and at least two virtual, cross-regional seminars to share experiences, good practices, address challenges, and develop solidarity for the benefit of the partner CSOs and other stakeholders that will participate in the learning events.
    • Writing and Publication: Lead the project’s efforts to collate, document, write, and publish the findings from the three project sites and to develop resources for the benefit of human rights defenders, community members, and other stakeholders. These publications will serve to foster cross-regional learning during the project implementation, inform the broader human rights community of lessons learned, and to provide resources to enhance CSO resiliency after the project’s completion. As requested, the PO/SPO will also support other EAP efforts to develop well-being projects or learning initiatives.
    • External relations and advocacy.  Effectively and professionally represent FH and its emergency assistance program publicly in domestic and international venues. Build strong external alliances and networks and collaborative approaches with donors and the diplomatic community, partners and grantees, policy community, peer NGOs, think tanks, or other stakeholders.
    • Collaboration.  Participate in EAP and FH activities geared toward organizational success and strength, including cross-team collaboration activities. Maintain an effective and collaborative working relationship with all other EAP staff and FH units, and share and exchange information about the assigned program’s activities, approaches, and strategies.
    • Travel.  Travel within U.S. and abroad as required.



    • Bachelors’ degree in psychology, social work, political science, international relations, anthropology or related field
    • Master’s degree in psychology, social work, political science, international relations, anthropology or related field strongly preferred 

Required experience FOR PROGRAM OFFICER:

  • Minimum three years of professional experience, including project management oversight 
  • Expertise with psychosocial support and addressing secondary trauma; implementation of psychosocial support in an organizational context is preferred.
  • Experience with cross-cultural engagement
  • At least one year of experience overseas strongly preferred

Required experience FOR SENIOR PROGRAM OFFICER:   

  • Minimum five years of professional experience, including project management oversight 
  • Expertise with psychosocial support and addressing secondary trauma; implementation of psychosocial support in an organizational context is strongly preferred.
  • Experience with cross-cultural engagement
  • Experience with conducting research, leading learning initiatives, and capturing best practices
  • At least one year of experience overseas strongly preferred

Training or Certification:

    • MS Office Suite, specifically Excel and Word
    • Program management
    • Ability to use digitally secure means of communication and secure digital databases 

Skills and Competencies:

    • Mastery of human rights principles and mechanisms.
    • Strong understanding of the connection between well-being, mental health, and resiliency within the context of human rights work.  
    • Strong ability to communicate effectively in English, both verbally and in writing; ability to communicate effectively in a second relevant language (Arabic, Spanish, or French) strongly preferred
    • Proven ability to clearly and succinctly communicate complex concepts verbally and in writing; ability to draft high quality documents of all types for external audiences is a MUST
    • Ability to work independently and strong program management skills from design through implementation and strong ability to manage own time, multi-task, and meet tight deadlines
    • Ability to collaborate with others and work as an effective team member in a collegial and positive manner
    • Excellent inter-personal, diplomatic, and cross-cultural skills
    • Excellent judgment in problem solving and decision-making
    • Ability to maintain the highest degree of confidentiality regarding all aspects of work at all times


    • Internal :  U.S. and field employees throughout FH
    • External : Partners, subgrantees, donors, consultants, other implementers, embassy staff, media, vendors, members of the general public, etc., without supervision


General Working Conditions:

    • General working office environment
    • Some long hours including evenings and weekends to complete tasks or attend events
    • Overseas travel approximately 10% of the time
    • Exposed to outside weather conditions when required to attend event venues or travel
    • May involve work in regions that are remote and lack basic modern infrastructure, and in countries under U.S. travel advisory due to threats of terrorist attacks, civil unrest, kidnappings, disease outbreaks, etc.

Physical Requirements:                      

    • Sedentary, regularly required to sit for extended periods of time; constantly talk, hear and understand speech at normal levels using a telephone. Occasionally required to stand, walk, and bend over, reach overhead, use hands, wrists and fingers, to grasp, push, pull, move, handle, feel, and type. Constantly required to use close vision and distance vision for regular computer work. Occasionally required to lift and/or move up to 25 lbs. to waist height.


Qualified candidates must complete an online application and submit a resume, and a cover letter.

Please include salary expectations in your cover letter.

Only candidates who have been selected for an interview will be contacted.

Preference for this to be a D.C. based position with authorization to work in the U.S. However, open to other candidates, including candidates not based in the US.



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