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Protection Coordinator: Eastern Europe and Central Asia

Job Title: Protection Coordinator (Eastern Europe and Central Asia)
Reports to: Protection Manager
Staff reporting: None
Based at: Flexible within the region
Hours: 35 hours per week
Contract: Fixed-term, one year contract
Probation period: All new appointments are subject to a probationary period of 3 months
Salary: €38,083 annually; the post holder is responsible for complying with relevant tax and other legal requirements in their country of residence.

Download the Full Job Description

How to Apply: Applications (CV, cover letter and at least 1 example of research, blog or article) should be addressed to Meerim Ilyas, Head of Protection at:

The closing date for applications is 13 June 2021. Please indicate the full title of the position in the subject line of the email, or the application may be missed.

Job Purpose

The Protection Coordinator (EECA) will be responsible for maintaining and developing Front Line Defenders' contacts with human rights defenders in countries in the region, providing rapid response to cases of human rights defenders at risk, undertaking research on the threats and attacks that they face, providing analysis and producing relevant materials to take action in their support, and inputting into all other programmes and activities in the region.

Key Responsibilities

  • Connect with human rights defenders at risk, while applying intersectional lens, and establish and sustain secure communications with them;
  • Provide rapid response to cases of human rights defenders at risk, including but not limited to through the urgent appeal system;
  • Build the capacity of human rights defenders in the region to respond to and manage security risks;
  • Provide expert input to Front Line Defenders' advocacy, media work, capacity building and protection grants program;
  • Support on activities and strategies to ensure outreach to women human rights defenders and overall gendered analysis of their experiences;
  • Advise on overall strategic direction in the region as relevant to human rights defenders and their movements;
  • Undertake research on the threats and attacks that human rights defenders face, obtain information, verify it and provide input for reports and other related materials which can be used to generate action on their behalf, whilst ensuring the independence, accuracy and credibility of the information Front Line Defenders publishes on the region;
  • Provide analysis and briefing papers on the threats faced by human rights defenders in specific countries;
  • Maintain and update the relevant information on human rights defenders and action taken on their behalf in Front Line Defenders' database and submit timely reports on missions and other activities;
  • Develop contacts and liaise with relevant regional and other organisations with regard to Front Line Defenders' work for the protection of human rights defenders in the region;
  • Represent Front Line Defenders to relevant authorities, international organizations, donors, embassies and the media as appropriate;
  • Undertake other projects as delegated by the Director, Deputy Director, Head of Protection or Protection Manager.

Key Relationships

  • Colleagues on the Protection Team (other Protection Coordinators, Fellows and Managers), Head of Protection, Deputy Director and Executive Director;
  • Colleagues in Front Line Defenders’ other programme areas including grants, visibility and capacity building;
  • Diplomats, embassy staff, and other government officials relevant to missions in the region;
  • Partners at other international, regional and local organisations and networks for joint advocacy strategies, statements, events and collaborative projects;
  • Donors and potential donors who fund work on behalf of human rights defenders in the region;
  • OHCHR, other UN entities, Special Rapporteur on HRDs, and others.

Person Specification

Qualifications, knowledge and experience

The successful candidate will have at least five years experience of work relating to human rights defenders in the Eastern Europe and Central Asia region and excellent written and oral communication skills in Russian and English. Please note that we cannot make exceptions to the language requirement. Command of an additional language spoken in the region (Kyrgyz, Kazakh, Uzbek, etc.) would be an asset.

The successful candidate will have demonstrated

  • Sound political judgement, and a good cross-regional perspective;
  • Ability to deliver accurate and objective written information in a high pressure environment dictated by the need to respond urgently to threats against human rights defenders;
  • Experience with a wide range of defenders, and a strong understanding of the gendered and other risks facing women human rights defenders and LGBTIQ+ defenders. Experience of developing gender responsive, intersectional protection strategies is a plus;
  • Knowledge of key human rights trends in the region; ability to demonstrate a nuanced understanding of contexts in which local HRD communities operate;
  • Understanding of key aspects of holistic protection accompaniment, including digital, physical, risk assessment and well-being. Previous experience in this field is a plus.

Technical and interpersonal skills

  • Ability to quickly assess the type of risk a HRD is facing and advise on the most appropriate course of action;
  • Ability to adopt a holistic approach in protection responses, incorporating elements of digital, physical and psychosocial security;
  • Ability to work in sometimes restrictive environments through the adoption of robust security strategies including communicating safely with human rights defenders;
  • Ability to navigate the rapid response aspect of the work with kindness, patience and expediency, while also practising boundary setting and personal well-being;
  • Ability to connect with HRDs who are most marginalised and/or lesser known, including transgender and non-binary HRDs, rural and indigenous HRDs, HRDs with disabilities and other groups;
  • Ability to work well with a wide range of people from different cultures, backgrounds and experiences;
  • Ability to plan, track and analyze work in a fast-paced environment that frequently requires rapid response;
  • Ability to synthesise and distil large amounts of information and to effectively and efficiently prioritise.

The Protection Coordinator (EECA) works as necessary in Russian and English, and must be willing to travel on a regular basis as part of their role.