Position title
Program Officer, Nutrition & Seed Specialist

Established in 2006, AGRA is an African-led and Africa-based institution that puts smallholder farmers at the center of the continent’s growing economy by transforming agriculture from a solitary struggle to survive into farming as a business that thrives. Together with our partners, we are working to sustainably grow Africa’s food systems.

AGRA strengthens seed systems, develops and promotes sustainable farming practices, helps unlock trade and markets, and supports governments who lead their countries’ development. We work with farmers to adapt to climate change, increase soil health, and protect the environment.  AGRA believes deeply in the urgency of reducing the inequality that women face in agriculture, and to unlocking the power and innovation of youth.

Achievement of global nutrition targets on the African continent remains a challenge. Not a single country on the continent is on course to meet the targets for reduction in anemia in women of reproductive age which results in low birth weight, diabetes, and obesity.  Biofortification is among the highest value-for-money investments. Biofortification has been proven to be cheaper and easier compared to industrial fortification.  0nce the desired nutrients are in the variety nothing more is required for both processor and end-user. There is now a concerted global effort to support school feeding programs that incorporate locally grown biofortified nutritious foods given the cost efficiency and resilience of local food supply chains.

AGRA Strategy 2023-2027 is focusing on four business lines: Seed System, Sustainable Farming, Inclusive Markets and Trade, and Policy and State Capability and three cross cutting themes of Gender and inclusivity, Nutrition and Climate Change and Adaptation.  AGRA seed system business line supports the five food system tracks in the adoption and commercialization f biofortified crops for enhanced nutrition.  AGRA with support from The Rockefeller Foundation aims to support three African countries (Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi) to strengthen production systems of biofortified crops and access to institutional markets like school feeding programs.

To support the successful delivery of this transformation, AGRA is seeking to recruit an experienced and exceptional individual to the role of an experienced Program Officer, Nutrition & Seed Specialist to support program implementation.

The role will be based in either Nairobi, Kenya 

Why AGRA? 

At AGRA we believe Agriculture is the single greatest opportunity to deliver inclusive economic growth, jobs, and health to the African continent. An alliance led by Africans with roots in farming communities across the continent combined with an inclusive and diverse workforce from 24 nationalities. Our values of (I-RISEIntegrity, Respect, Innovation, Stewardship and Equity.) espouse our commitment to a call to action to go beyond ourselves as we arise and transform Africa’s Agriculture.

When you join us, we present you with intellectually stimulating assignments and structured career advancement with 30% of open roles being filled internally through promotions and transfers, and a Leadership commitment for this ratio to increase. This is after setting you up for success with a World Class Onboarding for new hires where a bespoke induction trains on all aspects of the role that you will need to succeed. You will gain a full understanding of our lofty ambitions to transform African agriculture, and how you can contribute to an amazing employee experience.

We are looking for people who are passionate about Africa, curious and collaborative to join our innovative, growing, and multidisciplinary team.

For more information on AGRA, applicants can visit www.agra.org

The Position

The incumbent will report to the Head for Seed Systems & Research, AGRA and will be responsible for day-to-day operational management and implementation of the grant in close liaison with other relevant stakeholders internal and external to AGRA.

  • Overall project management of this grant for quality, time and cost implementation.
  • Working closely with others e.g Seed Systems, Extension and Market Teams to identify grantees, prepare for and support fundable proposals and investments.
  • Ensure timely grant making through the AGRA grant process and procurement guidelines where needed.
  • Work with M&E to ensure delivery of milestones and tracking of results.
  • Review and approval of project reports and deliverables.
  • Monitor budgets and ensure adherence to budget lines.
  • Coordinate and supervise field visits in collaboration with country teams, AGRA Nairobi, donors, technical partners, and stakeholders.
  • Liaise closely with all sub-grantees particularly Harvest Plus to synchronize the project teams for downstream delivery.
  • Work with AGRA teams to support CESSA, incorporating key partners like One CGIAR, while maintaining AGRA nutritional and gender focus.
  • Ensure donor compliance, updates and timely reporting, adherence to donor requirements, monitor progress on the ground.
  • Engage in regional exchange and learning trips to share lessons.
  • Work closely with knowledge management and communications team to document case studies, models for scale.
  • Prepare quality and timely workplans and reports to support management decision making.
  • Identify resource materials for communication that would support the achievement of the project goals.
  • Secures collaboration with stakeholders to identify potentially high-impact opportunities to complement and enhance seed systems in integrated grants.
  • Builds strategic partnerships with public and private sector in seed systems and nutritional reforms.
  • Organizes and carries out (including the use of consultants) rapid market assessments to ascertain the areas for intervention.
  • Responds to grant requests from country and regional teams.
  • Builds the capacity of grantees.
  • Develops concept notes and proposals for resource mobilization.
  • Plans, oversees, monitors and evaluates the awarded grants to ensure that targets and milestones are being achieved in a manner that is consistent with the mission and objectives of AGRA and its funders.
  • PhD/MSc in Agriculture preferably in seed systems or breeding or extension with 5 years’ post qualification experience.  At least 5 years of experience in program management, and in nutrition-oriented seed systems in Africa.
  • Innovative and motivated self-starter with a strong work ethic.
  • Highly organized, results and detail orientated with a very hands-on approach.
  • Experience in working on joined projects with African governments, researchers, partners and familiar with agricultural development programs.
  • Excellent organizational, and problem solving/decision making ability.
  • Strong relationship management.
  • Good command of English required; French is an added advantage.
  • Proficient in MS Project or any other related software.
Employment Type
Job Location
Nairobi, Kenya
Date posted
October 22, 2022
Valid through
October 24, 2022
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