smile train

Posted 8 months ago

Program Assistant, SMILETRAIN DR Congo

Smile Train is changing the world one smile at a time. Our goal is to transform the life of every person impacted by a cleft lip or palate. We train and support doctors and medical professionals to provide free, life-changing comprehensive cleft treatment to our beneficiaries. Our sustainable model has allowed us to reach 1.5 million children in 90+ countries to date and we’re just getting started. We are truly changing the world one smile at a time.

Smile Train is looking for exceptional people to join a world-wide team of dedicated, passionate, professionals. Our team are creative and highly motivated individuals working to make a positive impact. Come join us!

We are seeking a Program Assistant to support the Program Manager, DR Congo in developing and implementing an annual budget and long-term and short-term action plans to reach as many cleft-affected children as possible with cleft treatment, as quickly as possible, in the most cost-effective manner, whilst maintaining high standards of safety and quality.

The Program Assistant will act when and where necessary to ensure the best interests of the organization and our programs. Be responsible for ensuring full compliance with Smile Train’s Safety & Quality Protocol and organizational Guidelines. Be the ‘face’ of Smile Train in the region. Ensure the best interests of the organization and our programs. Monitor the budget. Be responsible for ensuring full compliance with Smile Train’s Safety & Quality Protocol and organizational Guidelines.

The Program Assistant, DR Congo will report to the Program Manager, DR Congo. Significant travel is expected (approximately 70%). Candidates must be fully fluent in English and French.

This is a full-time opportunity based in Eastern DR Congo (ideally Goma, Bukavu, Kalemi, or Bunia), starting on or around September 1, 2022.


  • Within the framework of the approved budget, draw up operational plans with measurable targets, specific checkpoints, and clear financial commitments.
  • Assist the Program Manager DR Congo to receive, review, and analyze all grant requests from local stakeholders, most typically local partner hospitals, and carry out ‘due diligence’ to either reject or approve those that fall within the agreed financial authority and plans, sharing with appropriate line supervisors when additional approvals are required.
  • Manage and support existing partners and grant recipients for their administrative needs to ensure that programs are aligned with the overall goals, mission, priorities, and policies of the organization.
  • Build and nurture strategic linkages with suitable external partners, e.g. local Corporates, medical and educational institutions etc. that can function as ‘force multipliers’ to bolster our program plans.
  • Ensure all operations are legally and financially transparent and in compliance with all local laws and laws of the U.S. that apply to local business practices.
  • Be the local representative and spokesperson for Smile Train, and the ‘eyes and ears’ within the assigned area. Speak up, when and where necessary, about the organization’s aims, values, and practices; keep track of cleft-related issues and developments and share this feedback internally and with partners.
  • Lead efforts to share Smile Train’s global messaging locally and help to build the brand and awareness of Smile Train programs in D. R. Congo. To this end, develop and maintain effective communications with all key external constituencies, e.g. medical professionals, social and voluntary organizations, government functionaries, the media and patients/guardians.
  • Capture and share stories, images, and videos that help to tell Smile Train’s story and that could be used across the organization to further Smile Train’s mission.
  • Assist the Program Manager in serving as a point of contact for operations within assigned area and communicate regularly with the appropriate line supervisors to keep the Management informed about all significant developments and key plans


Our ideal candidate has/is

  • A BA or advanced degree in Medicine, Public Health, Social sciences, International Relations, Law or Accounting or any other relevant degree.
  • Thorough familiarity with the cultures of DR Congo
  • Professional fluency in both English and French is required
  • 3+ years related work experience in a coordination or management position in a multinational or national for-profit or not-for-profit organization with significant project management experience.
  • Familiar with the Microsoft Office suite (including Outlook, Excel, Word, and PowerPoint) and able to navigate databases and datasets.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills. Comfortable with public speaking and presentations
  • Able to work with a global team, exhibiting cultural sensitivity, a commitment to Smile Train’s vision and goals, strong time management skills, and capacity to work independently with minimal or no supervision.
  • Able to travel, work evenings and weekends as needed.
  • Detail oriented, adaptable, organized, and able to successfully manage multiple projects and tasks.
  • High levels of energy and commitment to excellence

How to apply

Smile Train believes that a workforce made up of people from diverse social, racial, economic, and cultural backgrounds results in a dynamic workplace and enhances the important work that we do. We are committed providing equal employment opportunity to all persons without regard to race, color, religion or creed, alienage or citizenship status, sex (including pregnancy), national origin, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, disability, marital/familial status, genetic information or predisposing genetic characteristics, sexual and reproductive health decisions, military status, domestic violence victim status, or any other characteristic protected by law. We strongly encourage candidates from all groups and communities to apply.

To be considered, please submit a resume and a cover letter that describes why you believe you would be a good fit for Smile Train and this role. 

The application deadline is August 15, 2022. We encourage interested applicants to apply as soon as possible.

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