More than 1,400 people, both specialized staff and delegates, are currently on field missions for the ICRC across the globe. This work is backed up by some 11,000 local employees and supported and coordinated by around 800 staff at its Geneva headquarters.
Priorities can change rapidly, so all ICRC personnel must be flexible and ready to leave for any destination at a moment’s notice, to work in the unfamiliar environment of a country at war or emerging from war.
ICRC personal must be prepared to accept unaccompanied postings abroad during the first 24 months of employment.
The ICRC seeks mature, motivated people with team spirit, the ability to interact with people from a wide variety of backgrounds and cultures, as well as resistance to stress and the difficult situations that cause it.
Working for the ICRC?
A demanding job! ICRC personnel perform a difficult and demanding job. They must endeavour to act efficiently and professionally, in contexts in which violence and suffering are rife: countries stricken by war and the devastation it leaves in its wake, post-conflict situations in which society is still nursing the scars of the fighting.
ICRC staff members work in sensitive, tense and sometimes dangerous situations, and in a wide range of settings, from government offices to the rudimentary facilities of camps for displaced persons. They move without pause from distributions of food rations to high-level negotiations with the military authorities. They are in constant contact with people of all kinds: the powerful and the powerless, the victims and their aggressors, diplomats and humanitarian volunteers.
The job requires human qualities that at first glance appear contradictory: ICRC staff must be tenacious yet flexible, creative but methodical, at one and the same time curious and discreet, sensitive but able to control their emotions. The job allows them to make a profound personnel commitment. It affords a unique human experience, enabling staff to make a direct contribution to humanitarian action by exercising a profession that is based on knowledge and experience and is constantly being reshaped by events.
In the field
In the field, staff work from a delegation, which is the ICRC's office and its operational arm in the country. The delegation's significance and size vary from one context to another, depending on the scope of the conflict and the activities it conducts.
Each delegation has a head of delegation, who coordinates all activities and contacts in the country. The head of delegation stays in touch with ICRC headquarters and with the ICRC's other offices in the country (the sub delegations). Day-to-day operations and any problems encountered are discussed and dealt with in the delegation, in close liaison with Geneva.
The role of headquarters is to provide support for activities in the field and expertise in a variety of areas. Headquarters obtains the political support required for ICRC action from international players.
Several hundred people work at headquarters. They are, with few exceptions, experienced staff who are familiar with conflict situations and the ICRC activities. They have been on at least three to five field missions and have already shouldered major responsibilities or have specific skills.
How to apply?
Kindly send us your complete application online in English or French, which should include: - your CV - copies of your diplomas - copies of your work certificates - a personal history form and its appendix - a one full-page description, in your own handwriting, of the reasons why you would like to work for the ICRC
Candidates who meet all the criteria required for the position in question, and who submit all the requested documents, will be at an advantage.
While applications from people of any nationality will be taken into consideration, non-Swiss personnel are recruited on the basis of the agreements drawn up with the Red Cross or Red Crescent National Societies of their home country. www.icrc.org