Health Systems Strengthening Officer

Site Helen Keller

Health Systems Strengthening Officer, NTDs (US East Coast or Dakar, Senegal preferred;
other locations where Helen Keller can support employment will be considered)

Guided by the remarkable legacy of its co-founder, Helen Keller, Helen Keller Intl partners with communities that are striving to overcome longstanding cycles of poverty. By delivering the essential building blocks of good health, sound nutrition, and clear vision, we help millions of people create lasting change in their own lives. Working in 20 countries – across Africa, Asia, Europe, and the United States – and together with a global community of supporters, we ensure every person has the opportunity – as Helen did – to reach their true potential.

Helen Keller has established itself as a leader in integrated neglected tropical disease (NTD) control and elimination efforts at the national, regional and global levels. The overarching approach guiding Helen Keller’s integrated NTD programs involves preventive chemotherapy at national scale, morbidity management efforts to address trichiasis, hydrocele and lymphedema, and promotion of water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) efforts through behavior change communication and school health programming.

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), through the Act to End Neglected Tropical Diseases | West (Act | West) program, supports 11 predominantly West African disease endemic countries to control and/or eliminate NTDs with proven, cost-effective public health interventions. Building on the successes that have been achieved through previous USAID investments to expand national, integrated NTD programs, Act to End NTDs | West will continue to support countries to achieve elimination of trachoma, lymphatic filariasis and onchocerciasis (where feasible), and to leverage the drug donations needed to control schistosomiasis (SCH) and soil-transmitted helminths (STH) through sustainable, country-owned programs.

Scope of Responsibility

Helen Keller is seeking a bilingual (English/French) Health Systems Strengthening (HSS) Officer to support this multi-country NTD program funded by USAID. Together with the Senior HSS Advisor, the Officer will support country teams and host country counterparts to implement country-led sustainability activities to sustain long-term control of SCH, STH (and onchocerciasis in selected countries), and to mainstream NTD programs into national health systems. This will include collaborating with consortium partners to coordinate implementation, support and facilitate workshops using the USAID NTD sustainability framework, and contribute to the management and design of HSS activities, annual work planning development, implementation, reporting, and monitoring and evaluation.

Reporting to the Senior HSS Advisor, the Officer will work closely with all members of the distributed central team and country NTD teams to provide technical and operational support for our NTD sustainability and HSS activities in six West African countries. They will work with the members of the NTD team both in the US and the country offices to support the implementation of sustainability and HSS activities.



In collaboration with Helen Keller’s Senior HSS Advisor, country teams, and sustainability consortium partners, promote NTD sustainability and empower country ownership of NTD sustainability plans.

  • Develop and disseminate tools and guidelines for NTD sustainability planning to country teams and partners.
  • Monitor and report on the progress of NTD sustainability plans and initiatives. Co-facilitate workshops and support National NTD programs and Helen Keller country teams to implement national NTD Sustainability
  • Plans and apply a systems-thinking approach to mainstream NTDs into the national health system.
  • Organize and co-lead workshops in collaboration with national NTD programs to implement national NTD Sustainability Plans.
  • Apply a systems-thinking approach during workshops to integrate NTDs into the national health system effectively.
  • Provide technical support and resources during workshops to ensure all participants can contribute and benefit.
  • Facilitate the development of consensus in workshops on NTD program integration and capacity building dependent on the national priorities outlined in NTD sustainability plans in collaboration with Ministries of Health (MOHs) and the consortium partners.
  • Design and implement interactive workshop activities that encourage dialogue and consensus-building.
  • Work closely with Ministries of Health (MOHs) and consortium partners to align NTD program integration with national health priorities.
  • Document agreements and action points reached during workshops and follow up to ensure implementation.
  • Support national NTD programs to identify and leverage cross-sector interventions and non traditional public health platforms for implementation of NTD interventions. o Identify potential cross-sector interventions and non-traditional public health platforms that can be leveraged for NTD intervention implementation.
  • Assist national NTD programs in developing and executing strategies to utilize these interventions.
  • Coordinate with other sectors such as education, agriculture, and water and sanitation to ensure comprehensive NTD intervention coverage.
  • Help advocate for integrated NTD programs into the broader national health system such that:
  • Support efforts to engage with government officials and policymakers to highlight the importance of integrating NTD programs into the national health system.
  • Develop advocacy materials and presentations to demonstrate the benefits of integrated NTD programs.
  • Work with country teams to prepare and present funding proposals to ensure NTD programs are included in national budgets.
  • Support the inclusion and monitoring of NTD indicators within national health monitoring systems.
  • Collaborate with partners within the Act | West consortium to ensure clear communication and coordination of sustainability activity implementation and annual work planning. o Maintain regular communication with Act | West consortium partners to ensure coordination of sustainability activities.
  • Participate in consortium meetings and planning sessions to align efforts and share progress.
  • Coordinate the development of annual work plans that reflect the collaborative goals of the consortium.
  • Advance thought leadership through implementation research, documentation, and working with country teams to document implementation of sustainability activities. o Support the implementation research to identify best practices and lessons learned in NTD sustainability.
  • Document case studies and success stories to showcase the impact of sustainability activities.
  • Draft and publish findings and present at relevant conferences and workshops to promote thought leadership.
  • Conduct learning sessions with the NTD Global and country teams to build capacity on NTD sustainability strategy and implementation.
  • Organize regular learning sessions with the NTD Global and country teams to share knowledge and build capacity.
  • Develop training materials and resources focused on NTD sustainability strategies. o Facilitate interactive discussions and activities to engage participants and enhance their understanding and skills.
  • Support the review and editing of sustainability and HSS activities in semi-annual reports and other key programmatic deliverables with country offices (checking for appropriate content, consistency and outcomes for example).
  • Review and edit semi-annual reports and other key programmatic deliverables from country offices to ensure appropriate content, consistency, and outcomes. o Collaborate with country teams to gather necessary data and information for reports. o Ensure timely submission of high-quality reports and deliverables through developing timelines and communication with team members.
  • Support country and Senior HSS Advisor to design HSS activities in annual workplan and coordination with other consortium partners for submission to USAID (narrative, budget and appendices).
  • Work with country teams and the Senior HSS Advisor to design HSS activities in the annual workplan.
  • Coordinate with consortium partners to integrate HSS activities into the narrative, budget, and appendices for submission to USAID.
  • Support the alignment of HSS activities with overall program goals and objectives. Proactively engage with internal and external Act | West team members in the completion of tasks.
  • Maintain proactive communication with internal and external team members. o Participate in regular meetings and discussions to facilitate the completion of tasks. o Collaborate across teams to address challenges and share best practices.
  • Provide coordination and organizational support to global and local colleagues in strategic operational research.
  • Coordinate strategic operational research efforts by organizing meetings, setting agendas, and ensuring follow-up on action items.
  • Support global and local colleagues in the planning and execution of research activities.
  • Document and share research findings to inform program improvements. Support the preparation of conference abstracts and articles by reviewing and editing submissions.
  • Ensure clarity, coherence, and adherence to submission guidelines.
  • Assist in the submission process to peer-reviewed publications and ensure timely follow-up

Required Qualifications and Competencies

  • Demonstrated understanding of the complexities of health systems strengthening and integrated health programs in low- and middle-income countries is required. Strong facilitation and consensus-building skills.

Demonstrated ability to:

  • advocate for health programs at national levels;
  • facilitate workshops;
  • conduct effective learning sessions; and
  • coordinate multiple stakeholders to achieve results.
  • Strong analytical and strategic thinking skills
  • Fluent written and oral English plus proficient oral French is required.
  • Knowledge of the Africa region and of USAID rules and regulations is strongly preferred. Knowledge of
  • Microsoft software products is a plus.

Ability and willingness to:

  • flex schedule to accommodate availability of colleagues in other time zones; o travel at least 20% to project country offices and/or to meetings and

NOTE: All staff must be vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to travel internationally.

  • Ability to prioritize workload, assume responsibility for work, and follow tasks through to completion.
  • Ability to perform duties that require close attention to detail and synthesize large amounts of information simultaneously.
  • Collaborative, flexible and solution-oriented. An ability to maintain balance when under stress.
  • Demonstrable respect for all persons regardless of religion, ethnicity, class or gender, with a high comfort level working in a diverse environment with a demonstrated commitment to high professional ethical standards.
  • Personal commitment to Helen Keller’s mission and the values embodied by our namesake and co-founder: courage, integrity, rigor, and compassion.


  • Master’s degree in public health, international development, public policy, or related field with an understanding of health systems strengthening; plus


  • a minimum of 5 years of relevant work experience, or equivalent combination of education and experience.
  • Experience supporting or implementing HSS or health programs in low-and middle income countries is a plus.


The midpoint of the salary range for this position is $85,000 with a minimum of $68,000 and a maximum of $102,000. Actual base salary will vary based upon, but not limited to, relevant experience, base salary of internal peers, and business specialty.

Helen Keller offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes first-day eligibility for medical, dental, vision, short and long-term disability, and life insurance coverage, along with an Employee Assistance Program, a retirement savings plan with an employer match, paid vacation leave, sick & wellness leave, parental/adoption leave, and opportunities for learning and development.

To Apply

Qualified candidates should submit a cover letter and resume to Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

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