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OPERATIONS COMMUNICATIONS OFFICER (Search And Rescue – Central Mediterranean)

On board Ocean Viking and onshore


SOS MEDITERRANEE is a civil European rescue association founded in 2015. Facing the humanitarian tragedy and the lack of adequate rescue capacity in the Mediterranean on the deadliest migratory route in the world, a group of European citizens created a maritime and humanitarian association in order to rescue persons in distress at sea, to protect and assist them, as well as to testify about the realities and many faces of migration.

Today, SOS MEDITERRANEE is a network composed of four national associations (Germany, France, Italy, Switzerland) sharing the same mandate. Search and Rescue (SAR) operations have been carried out since February 2016 in the Central Mediterranean off the Libyan coasts with the chartered ships Aquarius and Ocean Viking.  To date over 34.000 people have been rescued by SOS MEDITERRANEE.



SOS MEDITERRANEE is recruiting a Communications Officer for its department of Operations.

The Communications Officer (CO) is part of the SOS MEDITERRANEE search and rescue team aboard the rescue vessel Ocean Viking. S/he is responsible for SOS MEDITERRANEE’s operational communications on board. S/he also works in the Operations Headquarters (in Marseille, France if possible) in-between missions on board.  The CO implements SOS MEDITERRANEE’s communications strategy on board and produces content for the Operations’ Department and for the SOS MEDITERRANEE’s national associations:  press releases, social media and website content (internal and external communications). The CO also coordinates the media teams and is in charge of the onboard photographer/videographer.

The Communications Officer will rotate missions at sea with two other communications counterparts. S/he will alternate missions at sea, compensation time-off and onshore work in the Operations department in HQ (in Marseille, France if possible, or through remote working).

Working language on board and within the organization is English.



Under the supervision of the Operations Communications Manager while onshore and of the Search and Rescue Coordinator (SARCo) while on board, and in close collaboration with team members, the main responsibilities of the Operations Communications Officer are to:


  • Functions as primary contact person on board the Ocean Viking for SOS MEDITERRANEE’s Headquarters (represented by the Operations Communications Manager).
  • Provides regular content to be used externally (social media content, photo, video, text).
  • Conducts interviews with rescued individuals on board. Ensures that these interviews follow strict ethical standards (i.e. informed consent, anonymity, “do no harm” as main guiding principle).
  • Provides regular and fast internal updates on the situation on board, on rescue operations and on the context of operations from the ship.
  • Is the main contact on board for external media regarding SOS MEDITERRANEE’s search and rescue operations. The CO can also function as spokesperson if requested by the Operations Communications Manager.
  • Coordinates with the post-rescue partner (IFRC) Communications focal point on board on communication topics.
  • Actively supports on-going rescue operations. Acts as a “shadow” for the medical team during “Mass Casualty Plans”.


  • Assists the operations communications department in
    • internal communications: drafts daily updates, weekly operations newsletter; monitors news/social media/context
    • external communications: drafts social media content, press releases, organizes interviews with spokespeople
    • other tasks upon request


  • Master’s degree in journalism and/or communications and/or political science.
  • Substantial experience in the field of media/communications.
  • Previous experience with a humanitarian organization and/or with maritime organizations.
  • Command of social media.
  • Ability to produce photo and video material on board. Video editing is a plus.
  • Excellent writing and language skills.
  • Excellent command of the English language, written and spoken.
  • Good command of French, German, Italian or Arabic is an asset.
  • Extensive knowledge of the geopolitical context of search and rescue operations in the central Mediterranean.
  • Ability to cope with stress and work in an environment where team security is a top priority.
  • Teamwork, flexibility and adaptability. Detail-oriented.
  • Empathic and able to adapt to the situations on board and willing to help out in case of an emergency and where possible with day-to-day jobs when necessary
  • Committed to the vision, mission, and values of SOS MEDITERRANEE.
  • Candidates must have work authorization in France or Europe.


Terms of contract:

  • Contract: 6-month contract (renewable).
  • Starting as soon as possible
  • Position based on board the Ocean Viking for around 3-6 weeks and in SOS MEDITERRANEE’s Operations Headquarters in Marseille, France. Possibility of teleworking when onshore.
  • Evenings and week-end work

Annual gross salary: according to SOS MEDITERRANEE’s salary grids and to the candidate’s professional experience.

SOS MEDITERRANEE covers travel expenses from/to Ocean Viking (public transportation and plane).

SOS MEDITERRANEE covers costs on board.

Please send your application (CV and cover letter) in English no later than 20 February 2022 via email to and indicate “Application COMS Officer – OPS” as the subject of  the email.  Kindly note that no information will be given by telephone.


When you apply for a job, we collect and store your personal data within our recruitment department for the administrative management of applications and the recruitment process. The purpose of the information requested as a candidate for employment is to assess the professional qualities and skills of your application, to the exclusion of any other purpose. The legal basis for this processing is to obtain your consent and for pre- contractual measures for the employment contract. If your application is successful, this data will be kept for the duration of your contract. If your application is not successful, this data will be deleted immediately unless you advise us otherwise. In accordance with the French Data Protection Act of 6 January 1978 and European regulations, you may access your personal data, rectify it, request its deletion or exercise your right to limit the processing of your data. You can request more information and exercise your rights at any time by contacting SOS MEDITERRANEE – France CS 20585 // 13205 Marseille Cedex 01 – France.