Foundation Overview

The Roma Education Fund (REF) is a Swiss foundation created in the framework of the Decade of Roma Inclusion in 2005. Its mission and ultimate goal is to close the gap in educational outcomes between Roma and non-Roma. In order to achieve this goal, REF provides grants, technical assistance and policy advice to governments and civil society organizations in 16 countries of Europe. The headquartersof REF is in Budapest, Hungary.  REF operates with network entities located in Montenegro, Serbia, Slovakia and Romania and is planning expansion in the near future. The work of network entities is regulated through the Cooperation Agreement signed among them. 


Additionally, REF Governing Board adopted a new Strategic Framework for 2020 – 2030 which will guide the work of the organization and its further growth. REF is currently transitioning and preparing plans for implementation of the new strategy. 




The Network Coordinator will be a part of REF headquarters team in Budapest. The headquarters is responsible for the overall strategic, operational and financial supervision of REF national foundations, including grants making, grant implementation and monitoring, contracting and assurance of REF quality standards.  Under the general supervision of the Executive Director, the Network Coordinator will: 


General Responsibilities

The responsibilities include, but be not necessarily limited to, the following scope of work:


Oversight of REF Network Entities, implementation of their strategic and annual work plans, their alignment with REF Strategic Framework, internal control systems and the Cooperation Agreement

Oversee and monitor of implementation of strategic and annual work plans, providing guidance in case modifications are needed and bringing to the attention of the Executive Director issues that require follow-up or that impact the overall functioning of REF;

Ensure alignment of REF Network Entities programs and activities with REF Strategic Framework and the Cooperation Agreement;  

In collaboration with the Deputy CFO and CFO, monitoring budget implementation and expenditures and raising to the attention of the Executive Director issues that require follow-up or that impact the overall function of REF; 

In collaboration with the Deputy CFO, analyze budget new project proposals from REF Network Entities and provide recommendations, as needed; 

Oversee operations of REF Network Entities and their alignment with Internal Control Systems, REF manuals and provide recommendations for further improvements, as needed

Analyze functioning and operations of REF Network Entities and provide recommendations for further alignment and synergies.

Program/project development support to REF Network Entities

Provide guidance and feedback on program/project development in all stages of project cycle to REF Network Entities while ensuring alignment with REF’s Strategic Framework, policy and programs

Coordinate input and feedback from REF Headquarter staff and other REF Network Entities to ensure synergies across the Network

Production of annual reports based on input from REF Network Entities; 


Oversight of legal developments in REF Network Entities and organizational development of REF Network Entities 

In collaboration with Country Directors/Managers in REF Entities, ensure that operations and programs of REF Network Entities are conducted in accordance with applicable legal frameworks; 

Ensure that operations and programs of all REF Network Entities standards aligned with REF Switzerland and its headquarters;

Supervise Country Directors;

In collaboration with Country Directors and the Deputy Director, prepare plans and proposal for organizational development of REF Network Entities and submit it to the approval of the Executive Director. 

Coordination of REF Network Entities

Organize regular meetings of REF Network Entities, prepare the agenda in collaboration with REF Network Entities

Participate in events organized by REF Network Entities as appropriate

HR supervision of the branch offices: staffing, appraisal principles (time sheeting), 

Assures that the Foundation’s staff has the skills and qualifications necessary for their daily work

Maintains procedures manuals, gives recommendations on how the internal control system should be placed and improved  

In cooperation with the CFO supervises and ensures transparent and accountable use of financial means, including adequate spending dynamics and procurement principles are applied across the network 

controlling REF CH support (grants and loans where applicable)   

coordinating financial and administrative cooperation between REF network entities


In addition, below listed responsibilities outline more specifically the terms of the position: 


Support to cross-country coordination activities 


Project/program development 

Contribute to the design and implementation of programs/proposals granted from different donors, including contribution to the (pre)assessment stages of the processes in collaboration with REF staff and other entities;

Provide the necessary support to REF strategic partners, institutions and beneficiaries in terms of priority investments and general educational support at national level, predominantly on thematic focus, relevance of activities, methods, partners’ pursuit 


Program/project support and monitoring 

Contribute to the timely design and dissemination of information on implementation, related to the methods and tools for successful cross-country exchange and learning (e.g. synchronizing human, material, financial and time-related resources, facilitating uniformed/standardized production of immediate outputs and outcomes, provide regular and timely feedback on country reports of REF foundations) in collaboration with REF staff;

Monitor and oversee the progress of annual work plans of REF foundations, participate in REF network activities (especially transnational seminars), facilitating or approving adjustments based on the progress reports;

Design coordination and internal control mechanisms in support to the delivery of REF networks’ work plans, activities and deliverables through regular channels of communication, workshop sessions etc.

Contribute to the monitoring and use of data collections while coordinating REF network expertise and resources  



2. Support to capacity-building activities 



Capacity Building and Recruitment 

Support the organizational and human capital development, including identification of training needs of REF foundations, capacity building actions and steering recruitment processes in case of designated new posts for permanent employment;

Contribute to the monitoring and compatibility of HR standards across REF Network of foundations, regular review and adjustment to the ongoing development needs as well review the quality, efficiency and pricing of capacity-building activities

Develop and maintain data base of external experts, consultants and training companies/vendors from the market of human resource development 



3. Program Implementation 


Regarding Implementation, the Network Coordinator, under the responsibility of the Executive Director, will be in charge to: 


Contribute to the production of the annual implementation reports in accordance with donor standards and requirements; 

Collect and develop macro data as part of the annual implementation report to the donors and other possible publications (geographical data, country fact sheets, beneficiary data, program level statistics linked to indictors etc.);

Contribute to the REF PMC and Fundraising Committee’s preparation on all issues related to networking and capacity-building projects; 

Support finance team in monitoring the result indictors, output indicators at country and network level; 

Support other departments in filling in indicators at program level through shared IT platforms 




BA or MA degree in human sciences or similar fields;

Minimum of five years of experience working in any of these or related fields;

Fluent written and spoken English. Working knowledge of Romanes and/or any language spoken in countries of Central and South Eastern Europe in which REF is active is considered as an advantage;

Good analytical skills and attention to details;

Ability to work in a multinational team, under pressure, large number of tasks and meeting tight deadline;

Ability to build and manage relationships within and outside the organization

Project management skills;

Solution and action orientation;

Excellent knowledge of Microsoft Office programs;

Ability to read and analyze financial statements

Knowledge and experience in capacity building with external clients;

Familiarity with the Decade of Roma Inclusion and working with Roma NGOs would be advantage.


Please send your professional CV as well as a cover letter and references in support of your application explaining what makes you suitable for this position, to recruitment@romaeducationfund.orglatest by January 23, 2019. 


Please put ‘Application for Network Coordinator’ in the subject line of the email. We thank all applicants for their interest, but only those selected for interviews will be contacted.