Head of Humanitarian/Emergencies Portfolio

Vitol Foundation
London, UK
Full time Staff

About Vitol Foundation

The Foundation seeks to fund organisations and ideas that support children and families living in deprivation to escape the cycle of poverty and reach their potential in life. Vitol made its first charitable grants in 2002 and established the Vitol Foundation in 2006.

Our focus is on supporting solutions that improve quality of performance, promote greater inclusion, foster appropriate innovation and catalyse access to finance, all within the broader context of poverty. This means that the work we support is invariably in low, and low to middle-income countries, where the challenging effects of chronic under-development, conflict and natural disasters are commonplace.

We work with the private sector, national governments, public institutions and international partners to reinforce and improve existing in-country systems. Where these systems are not working or do not exist, we seek to address the status quo by promoting innovation – or successful solutions from similar settings – to bring about lasting and sustainable change.

In 2020, we supported 112 projects in 48 countries.

The Role

Vitol Foundation is looking for an experienced and engaged individual to manage the Humanitarian & Emergencies portfolio. This a newly created role.

Our humanitarian grants have been defined by the following general criteria:

  • Involve the local community: Fund responses that partner with local organisations, have established a strong relationship with the local community and have a contextual understanding.
  • Balance relief with recovery: Support work that aims to restore normal daily life, does not build aid dependency and helps communities ‘build back better’.
  • Be flexible: Encourage accountability but give the organisation latitude to use funds as the situation develops.
  • Experienced: Fund organisations that have long histories of development work in the geographical area.
  • Connect with other like-minded donors: Share learning, strategies and best practice.
  • Fund with a view to adherence to Core Humanitarian Standards on quality and accountability: These describe the essential elements of principled, accountable and high-quality humanitarian action.

Principal Responsibilities and Accountabilities:

  • Strategic oversight and management of the foundation’s humanitarian portfolio and budget, including drafting of updated strategy.
  • Identification of and engagement with a broad range of appropriate organisations supporting initiatives in contexts in need.
  • Support of prospective partners on technical and financial proposal development.
  • Management of application and assessment process for all prospective funding opportunities.
  • Monitoring and evaluation of all existing and potential grants.
  • Building of relationships with key players within international humanitarian sector.
  • Travel where appropriate for field visits/conferences.

Core Skills and Behaviours

Value Delivery

  • Demonstrates strong written and oral communication skills
  • Demonstrates ability to set priorities, think critically, objectively and strategically
  • Demonstrates strong analytical skills
  • Has technical/field experience in humanitarian work
  • Applies technical skills and evidence-based approach to all work
  • Well organised, skilled at prioritising and managing multiple tasks, attention to detail

Good Partnership

  • Demonstrates excellent interpersonal skills
  • Builds relationships based on integrity and mutual trust; recognises and understands differences in organisational culture and approach
  • Engages effectively with internal and external stakeholders, both to learn and to share knowledge


  • Ability to work well both independently and within a team-oriented environment

Qualifications and Experience

  • Degree level qualification in International Development or another relevant subject
  • Substantial experience in the field and/or experience with a grant-making organisation
  • Able to demonstrate a good understanding of the global humanitarian context and issues surrounding best practice in delivery
  • Fluent in English
  • IT proficiency (specifically in Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint and preferably Salesforce)
  • Legal right to work in the UK is preferred though not essential, as Vitol Foundation could support a UK visa process for an exceptional candidate
Closing date: 
14th June 2021