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Director of Programs

Skoll World Forum

Skoll World Forum

Posted on Thursday, January 4, 2024

LOCATION: Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, with 30% domestic travel

JOB STATUS: Full-time

Touch Foundation, an international NGO dedicated to health-systems transformation and designing and implementing data-driven programs to address some of the biggest barriers to equitable and reliable healthcare delivery in Sub-Saharan Africa, is seeking an outstanding individual to join its team as its Director of Programs.

The Director of Programs will join a team of highly mission-driven professionals with diverse backgrounds and experiences, ranging from management consulting to global public health. The Director of Programs will work closely with Touch’s leadership and team members across all levels and functions, becoming an integral part of Touch’s commitment to improving health in sub-Saharan Africa.

Touch Foundation is an international nongovernmental organization working to strengthen health systems in Sub-Saharan Africa. We use technology-enabled solutions and leverage long-standing local partnerships to ensure countries have an available, skilled, productive and optimally distributed health workforce, provide access to care for rural mothers and newborns, create efficient hospitals with effective equipment, and develop private health sector solutions and technology for public good.

Touch’s work is data driven and evidence based, and we strive to share the knowledge and the information obtained through years of implementation with policy makers and other stakeholders globally. Touch’s staff and Board members represent diverse backgrounds, expertise, and geographies; our core implementation teams are based in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), with administrative and development functions centered in the US and Europe.

Our organization has implemented programs and advised the Government of Tanzania on health system strengthening since our inception in 2004, with programs that are being scaled across the entire Tanzania as well as across multiple countries in SSA.

Touch’s health sector work spans three programmatic pillars: empowering Africa’s healthcare workforce; expanding access to care for rural communities; and building excellence in hospital service delivery. Touch delivers programs in Tanzania, Lesotho, and Kenya and has plans to expand to additional sub-Saharan African countries over the next five years. Touch’s key programs include:

m-mama: an innovative and cost-effective Emergency Transportation System for pregnant women and newborns implemented by Touch Foundation and Pathfinder International. m-mama transports 50,000 patients annually across Tanzania and Lesotho and is launching in Kenya in 2024

POA: Touch’s ‘Prioritization and Optimization Analysis’ tool has been deployed in Tanzania, South Africa, Nigeria, Mozambique, and Guinea-Bissau to assist Ministries of Health with data-driven decision-making for health worker allocation.

Faith-based health sector strengthening: Touch works in partnership with USAID and the Christian Social Service Commission (CSSC) of Tanzania to support optimized management and service delivery at 30+ hospitals and health centers. Programming includes a platform for rural teleconsultations; revenue growth strategies; and health management tools and training.

MediFIKIA: Touch strengthens care delivery for non-communicable disease treatment through programming that builds capacity in pharmacy and supply chain management and patient tracking.

Touch Foundation is seeking an experienced professional to become its Director of Programs, responsible for the overall design, implementation and impact of a large part of Touch’s portfolio of programs in Tanzania.

The Director of Programs will be responsible for providing leadership, supervision and support to the teams on the ground, while ensuring that Touch’s programs under their responsibility deliver the quality of outputs and impact expected by Touch, our local partners, and our funders. The Director of Programs is expected to provide technical leadership on public health program implementation, solution design, monitoring and evaluation of activities, as well as technical assistance and expert advisory to Government officials within the Ministry of Health and the President’s Office, Regional Administration and Local Government. The Director of Programs will play a critical role in confirming Touch as a strategic and reputable advisor for the Government of Tanzania, public health donors, and other implementation partners.

The Director of Programs will be a senior leader of the organization in Tanzania, leading the program teams and reporting directly to the Chief Program Officer (CPO). The Director of Programs will also support Touch leadership, including Touch’s Chief Finance Officer (CFO), to ensure Touch operations in country are efficient and Touch employees are empowered and motivated. The Director of Programs will indeed support Touch’s Chief Advancement Officer (CAO) to strengthen Touch’s internal culture of teamwork and excellence, build strong relationships with funders and partners on the ground, and share Touch’s expertise with the larger global health community.

The overall objective of the Director of Programs will be to strengthen Touch’s impact in Tanzania by empowering the Touch team to deliver to the best of their abilities and serving as a trusted advisor to our partners and government counterparts.

Program Responsibilities

  • Lead program implementation teams for multiple projects and in multiple geographies within Tanzania (and short term in other countries as necessary) to deliver activities on budget and on time, with the highest level of quality
  • Lead the design of program implementation plans and ensure their continuous review and iteration during the entire life-cycle of the programs
  • Lead management and monitoring of program budgets, including liaising with the finance and operations teams for reconciliation, reporting, and re-forecasting
  • Lead the engagement strategy with government stakeholders, funders, partners for the relevant programs, including establishing trusted advisory relationships with key individuals, developing engagement plans, and pro-actively seeking relationship building opportunities
  • Lead communications, reporting and grant management for program funders in relevant programs
  • Co-lead the refinement of Touch program strategy and priorities in close collaboration with the CPO, CAO and the program development team
  • Co-lead with the CPO, CAO and other specialists the development and implementation of the Monitoring & Evaluation frameworks for each program and ensure data collection, analysis, and discussion of findings to inform implementation and improvements
  • Coordinate closely with CPO and Touch leadership to ensure program implementation is aligned with Touch’s strategic goals and long term vision

Leadership Responsibilities

  • Lead multiple teams on implementation activities across the country, including supporting day to day activities, problem solving issues and solutions, and proactively managing risks and mitigation plans
  • Foster close collaboration and knowledge sharing across different programs and teams within Touch, including other program teams, finance and ops staff, and overseas personnel
  • Develop internal talent and create opportunities for career growth, through mentorship of junior staff and coordination with senior leadership on goals and aspirations of key staff
  • Represent Touch in national and local meetings with critical stakeholders (e.g. government, funders, implementing partners) and take a lead role in relevant technical working groups or other forums connected to relevant programs

Other Responsibilities

  • Provide visibility to Touch senior leadership on Tanzania programs and implementation activities, and input into strategic discussions for shaping Touch’s future
  • Contribute to thought leadership on Touch future programs and strengthening of Touch’s implementation strategy
  • Support CPO in reporting program status and progress to the Program Committee and Board of Directors
  • Support Touch’s leadership and CFO with organizational operations and administration of staff in Tanzania as appropriate
  • Represent Touch in international and other external events as applicable

As job vacancy announcements cannot be exhaustive, the Director of Programs will be required to undertake other duties that are broadly in line with the above key duties.


  • Master’s degree level in relevant field of global health, international development, business administration or similar
  • A minimum of 10 years of progressive experience managing programs, people and budgets, and working in international organizations in sub-Saharan Africa
  • A minimum of 5 years of experience in managing a portfolio of programs in health system strengthening or other global health priorities
  • Demonstrated leadership experience in designing and implementing international development programs with bilateral, multilateral, or major private philanthropic funders
  • Experience with and knowledge of USAID and other donor program planning cycles, agreement rules and regulations, and reporting;


  • Advanced oral and written communication skills and ease communicating with different types of audiences
  • High emotional intelligence and the ability to work collaboratively across multiple cultural contexts and time zones
  • Strong analytical, organizational and problem-solving skills, including budgeting, program management, conflict management and negotiation skills
  • Ability to develop strong trusting relationships in order to gain support and achieve results;
  • Ability to manage employees in multiple locations
  • Full proficiency in English required, proficiency in Kiswahili is desirable


Travel required: up to 30% of the time will be travelling to regions in Tanzania and Dodoma

Please submit a Resume and Cover Letter outlining your interest in the position to: jobs@touchfoundation.org and cc vparisi@touchfoundation.org. Please put “Touch Director of Programs” in the subject line of your e-mailed application.

Deadline for the application: Wednesday, January 31, 2024

Touch Foundation is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, national origin, color, sex, age, gender identification, sexual orientation, veteran status, or disability. All qualified applications will be given equal opportunity and selection decisions will be based solely on job-related factors. Compensation will be commensurate with experience.

For more information about the Touch Foundation, please visit www.touchfoundation.org