Job Summary

You will be responsible for prospecting new opportunities, grant writing, reporting, as well as supporting on other external and internal communication. Candidates must have very strong writing skills as well as prior experience creating grant proposals.

  • Minimum Qualification: Bachelor
  • Experience Level: Senior level
  • Experience Length: 3 years

Job Description/Requirements

_ABOUT SPARK MICROGRANTS_
Spark MicroGrants believes in a world where everyone lives with dignity and determines their own positive future. Decades of prescriptive aid have sidelined the poor from the very programs meant to uplift them. For nearly a decade, Spark MicroGrants has been pioneering a new approach to international aid. We believe in local solutions and catalyzing rural villages facing poverty into action. After years of refining a community organizing and seed funding model for rural village action we are garnering demand from emerging nations and leading civil society organizations to train and support them to adapt and deploy the approach at scale.

At the heart of Spark’s model, the Facilitated Collective Action Process (FCAP), are ‘town-hall’ style weekly meetings, in which women and men, young and old, plan together for their community’s future. Each village democratically elects a leadership committee, establishes a village savings account, and launches a project of their choice. Members receive weekly trainings on financial management and transparency, leadership, village planning, and advocacy. Each village then receives US$8,000 in seed funds to turn project ideas into reality and receives an additional two years of management support.

In our first decade we reached 320+ villages who have collectively launched more than 300 local impact projects, benefiting over 230,000 lives. In the next three years, we seek to accelerate the growth of this approach, through establishing a national program to reach 12,000 villages in Rwanda, lead cutting edge research on the benefits of facilitation and curate a global community of practice for organizations across the continent and beyond actively using the FCAP.

Our team of 50+ people is spread across 4 countries in East Africa and the US, sharing a common vision and value system. These are:
1) Facilitators. We don’t impose; we enable others to generate impact.
2) Community-driven. We are motivated by what is best for the community.
3) Process-centered. The how of what we do is just as important as the what.
4) Authentic. Our vision and values live in everything we do.
5) Dynamic. We seek opportunities and are willing to take risks to serve our community partners better.

ABOUT THE ROLE
As Spark pivots from a traditional implementation NGO to a training and service provider for governments and civil societies, our growth strategy demands someone to spearhead grant prospecting, writing, management, and coordination.

You will be responsible for prospecting new opportunities, grant writing, reporting, as well as supporting on other external and internal communication. Candidates must have very strong writing skills as well as prior experience creating grant proposals. The Grant Writing Manager will receive exceptional experience in a rapidly growing organization and have a rare opportunity to contribute to the development of a new model for community-driven international development.

The Grant Writing Manager will work closely with the Growth team, as well as our partner-facing Community of Practice and Rwanda teams, to identify and follow up on funding opportunities. We are looking for candidates who are motivated, flexible and passionate about the chance to make a difference in this growing organization.

YOUR RESPONSIBILITIES WILL INCLUDE:

Grant Writing & Reporting (~80% of time)

● Identifying grant funding opportunities.
● Writing, submitting and managing grant proposals.
● Furnishing prospective funders with supporting documents.
● Collaborating with the Development Director to compile quarterly and annual reports.
● Maintaining records in hard copies and computer databases.
● Displaying adherence to Spark’s mission.
● Maintaining proficient knowledge of organization’s history and programs.
● Assisting with the execution of the Growth Department's strategy.

Communications (~20% of time)
● Collaborating with the Development Director to send funders newsletters.
● Leading on Spark’s bi-annual email campaigns.
● Working with field staff to collect, edit, and distribute information and media from Spark's partner communities.
● Supporting the development of marketing materials.

WHO WE ARE LOOKING FOR:

Passion for rural communities owning their future

● You are driven by a world with strong civil society where communities are in the driving seat of local change.
● You are passionate about improving aid delivery and governance.

Educational Background
● You hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited university in a relevant field;
● You must be fluent in English and be confident in both written and verbal communication;
● You are familiar with online platforms such as GSuite and able to produce high quality documents in Microsoft Suite;
● Experience with SalesForce and other online platforms is a plus!

Strong Grant Writing Experience
● You must have 2-5 years of grant writing experience;
● You have excellent written communication skills to appeal to a variety of audiences;
● You have successfully applied for and secured significant grants;
● You manage a full workload well and are able to deliver quality results on time, even with competing priorities.

Reporting Expertise
● You have keen attention to detail;
● You are collaborative in gathering input from multiple parties to tell one cohesive story;
● You can develop and monitor budgets and conduct financial reports as required by funders.

You have the cultural fit to work with us here at Spark if
● You are dynamic, self-driven, and proactively seek out feedback;
● You keep yourself organized, yet lift your head up to think strategically on the regular and relish the challenge of applying a range of approaches to answer complex questions;
● You are a leader with a passion for transforming bold ideas into actionable strategies. You drive new initiatives, embrace and push for change and aren’t afraid to try something new;
● You are a facilitator, you listen intently, integrate feedback and create an environment where everyone feels comfortable to speak up and develop ideas together;
● You drive thoughtful processes to make strategic decisions and problem solve. You collaborate and prioritize an inclusive process that can be replicated in the future;
● You are authentic. You speak your mind and you live your values.

WHY WORK WITH US ?
● Spark has grown every year since founding. You will join as part of senior leadership with immense opportunity to shape the future of the organization and grow as a leader.
● Spark has been recognized by the Government of Rwanda, NYTimes, Obama Foundation, Draper Richards Kaplan, Forbes and beyond as a leader in community-driven change.
● You will be joining a team that hails from ten countries around the world and is committed to a new world where every village and every neighborhood has the power to drive local change.
● You will have the freedom and autonomy to make your role your own. We want to hear your crazy ideas, your vision for the future and your critical questions.
● You’ll never be bored - but we also respect and value work life balance and your need for down time, vacation and reflection.

OTHER INFORMATION
Location will be at one of Spark’s East Africa HQ offices; we are open to either Kampala, Uganda or Kigali, Rwanda with potential travel for site visits.

During Covid: Currently our field operations are on hold to help combat the spread of COVID-19.
Our teams are supporting our communities virtually and we expect that once things open up demand for development solutions will be high in the communities we serve. We are working on refining our growth and virtual support models at this time.

We envision a start date of early May. Onboarding will likely take place partially or completely remotely, depending on Covid-19 restrictions in place with the Government of Rwanda.
We will agree on a three - six month probation period with learning and performance objectives. We are looking for someone who is committed to this role for at least 2 years.

WANT TO APPLY?
Apply through the "Apply Now Button" - be sure to upload a current CV highlighting relevant experience, cover letter detailing why you are a great fit for the role, and writing sample (details in application).

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