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Policy and Advocacy Advisor

Mercy Corps

Deadline 06.03.2023 €3,666/month (est.)

Mercy Corps is looking for a Policy and Advocacy Advisor

Location: Brussels, Belgium


Position Status: Full-Time


Salary: Belgium: circa 44K

Travel: Up to 20%

Apply with CV and Cover Letter by February 6th.


Candidates must have the Independant right to work in Belgium at the time of appointment. 

About Mercy Corps

Mercy Corps is a leading global organisation powered by the belief that a better world is possible.

In conflict, in disaster, in hardship, in more than 40 countries around the world, we partner to put bold solutions into action — helping people triumph over adversity and build stronger communities from within. Now, and for the future.

Mercy Corps’ presence in Europe) has grown rapidly in terms of volume of activity and complexity. With offices in Edinburgh, London, Geneva and The Hague and a presence in other European locations we now attract over £120m in income, and employ over 150 domestic and expatriate field team members. The breadth and impact of our programmes makes Mercy Corps a unique and truly rewarding place to work. Our teams are proud of what we achieve in the field and we are always looking for talented individuals who share our passion and commitment.

In 2022 Mercy Corps launched a new global strategy, articulating how we will respond to communities impacted by conflict and climate change.  While we will continue to respond to humanitarian crises around the world we also work to build communities’ resilience, increasing their ability to cope, adapt and thrive.  We work  in four key areas - peace and governance, food security, water security and climate resilience, and economic opportunity.  The strategy also reconfirms our commitments to localisation and to gender, diversity and inclusion.  These themes are central to all our work, including our advocacy.

The Role

We are looking for a Policy & Advocacy Advisor to join our European advocacy team, to help increase our profile and influence with key European institutions in Brussels on Mercy Corps global advocacy priorities.  These are:

  • Peace and governance

  • Food Security

  • Humanitarian response, access, and response to key crises

  • Cash and Market based responses to crises

  • Climate Change Adaptation and Loss and Damage 

The Advisor would work closely both with our Brussels Representative and our global advocacy leads on each of those themes to identify opportunities to influence EC policies in those areas. 

The Advisor would also be the European lead on one or more themes relating to humanitarian issues and cash and market based responses, working with advocates in other capitals and our technical and communications teams.

The Advisor will be responsible for identifying, managing and building relationships with key targets from within EC institutions and with key allies and partners in Brussels, organising private and public events to deliver our messages, and representing Mercy Corps towards relevant policy-makers and other external stakeholders.  They will also support others across Mercy Corps to understand policy developments in Brussels and to deliver impactful advocacy.

They should have a minimum of three years of policy, advocacy, or campaigns experience including a track record of developing impactful communications and in influencing high level policy for an NGO, or in an agency working with NGO clients.

Essential Job Responsibilities

 External Representation

A fundamental part of the role is to represent Mercy Corps with policy makers and in key forums in Brussels:

  • Identifying and attending priority contact groups, forums and networks to track and influence policy related to priority themes and crises.

  • Creating and maintaining bilateral relationships with policymakers in key institutions.

  • Communicating and presenting Mercy Corps’ research and policy positions to key advocacy targets, in both written and verbal form.

Communicate our Messages and Achieve Influence

  • Develop and deliver high quality, impactful communications products to our key target audiences, including drafting or editing policy briefs, web articles and op-eds;

  • Convene Mercy Corps meetings, events and roundtables to share findings and recommendations from global research and policy teams;

  • Secure opportunities (for self and other key Mercy Corps staff) to participate on panels and in key fora globally in order to highlight our work and recommendations;

Policy tracking and Analysis

  • Identifying and tracking policy developments in a select number of issue areas and communicating those in a timely way to relevant teams in Mercy Corps

  • Building and maintaining analysis of key decision-makers

  • Tracking opportunities for influence and facilitating other Mercy Corps teams engagement in those opportunities

Act as European Lead on a selected theme

  • Mercy Corps Global Policy and Advocacy team has a global lead on each of our global advocacy priorities.  We are looking for the European Policy Advisor to act as the European support to the global policy lead on humanitarian response and linked themes.

  • This would involve working closely with the global lead to develop the influence strategy, maintain talking points and key messages, support or produce policy briefs, and act as focal point and key external representative on that theme in Europe.

Organisational Learning

As part of our commitment to organisational learning and in support of our understanding that

learning organisations 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.

Accountability to Beneficiaries

Mercy Corps team members are expected to support all efforts toward 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.

Knowledge and Experience

  • Minimum three years of advocacy, policy or campaigns experience including strong experience in developing impactful communications and in influencing high level policy.

  • Experience of working in an NGO, or in an agency working with NGO clients, is essential.

  • Educated to degree level, with a good knowledge of government and policy making processes and institutions in Brussels.

  • Some experience of meetings and events organisation essential.

 Success Factors

  • A strong eye for detail.

  • Ability to manage and deliver complex projects involving multiple partners to deadline.

  • Demonstrable research and analytical skills.

  • Able to build and maintain effective internal and external relationships. Strong team worker.

  • Able to cope with changing priorities, often at short notice, and work well under pressure.

  • Proactive and solutions-based attitude.

  • High levels of motivation, professionalism and resilience.

  • Skilled in anticipating and solving problems and communicating issues, involving others as needed.

  • An exposure to and interest in international development issues is important, along with an empathy for MC's mission.

The position is based in Brussels and will require some national and international travel.

Mercy Corps team members represent the agency both during and outside work hours when deployed in a field posting or on a short term assignment or trip to country offices. 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 Mercy Corps locations.


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