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The Fund for Global Rights

Program Officer for the African Great Lakes

Programs – Washington, District of Columbia
Department Programs
Employment Type Full time
Minimum Experience Experienced

The Fund for Global Human Rights

Program Officer for the African Great Lakes

 About the Fund

The Fund for Global Human Rights is a leading supporter of on-the-ground human rights groups around the world.  Dedicated to finding and funding the most effective human rights organizations in regions from Latin America to Africa to Southeast Asia, the Fund for Global Human Rights offers grants and facilitates technical support to ensure the long-term effectiveness and viability of frontline groups working in challenging conditions with scant resources.

 As an employer, we are deeply committed to the overall well-being of our staff.  We offer 100% employer paid health benefits, generous paid leave, and flexible working options designed to meet the diverse needs of our globally based team members.

 About this opportunity

The Fund is seeking a highly qualified applicant for the position of Program Officer for the African Great Lakes.  Within the region, this position currently is responsible for grant making programs in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Burundi. In these two countries, the Fund currently supports grantees working to advance the rule of law and justice, women’s rights, children’s rights, environmental justice, and the rights of sexual and other minorities. The position reports to the Director of Regional programs and will work as an integrated part of the full Program team.  Preference will be given to candidates who are based in the region, London, or the Washington, DC area.

 Key Responsibilities:

 Manage grant making and technical assistance programs in the African Great Lakes

  •  Keep abreast of human rights issues, trends and activities in the region; attend meetings and conferences, read current literature, and maintain contact with leaders in the field
  • Develop appropriate grant making, technical assistance, and capacity building strategies and priorities in assigned countries
  • Identify new grantee organizations through networking activities and open RFPs; conduct appropriate due diligence to evaluate potential grantees
  • Undertake all aspects of the grant making cycle including: proposal review, grant recommendations, docket preparation, indicator review, progress evaluation
  • Oversee and manage the Fund’s full-time consultant living and working in the region
  • Approve the consultants work plans, monthly reports and invoicing, and provide guidance on priorities and activities of the consultant on a continuing basis
  • Maintain contact and develop high quality working relationships with all current grantees and make regular site visits
  • Facilitate technical assistance to grantees on strategic planning, human rights skills, fundraising, and partnering with other NGOs and Fund grantees
  • Evaluate requests and make recommendations for discretionary / emergency support in each assigned country
  • Develop and implement appropriate and effective evaluation tools
  • Participate in annual program planning and evaluation
  • Partner with grants management staff to ensure smooth and efficient organizational workflow of administrative logistics
  • Coordinate special initiatives or projects as assigned

Docket Preparation

  •  Recommend allocations for each assigned country's grant docket and present recommendations of grantee organizations to the Director of Regional Programs and the Vice President for Programs
  • Prepare summaries of each grantee's work
  • Develop an annual program strategy memo that analyzes the context of the work in each country and lays out grant making, technical assistance, capacity building, and thought leadership strategies to have the most impact
  • Create annual grant making and travel budgets with initial decisions about grant allocations and program costs for internal approval
  • Track Great Lakes budget outlays and program costs on an ongoing basis to align with forecasted projections and donor requirements
  • Jointly with grantees, develop indicators to track progress of each grantee organization

 Donor Relations and Communications

  • Partner with development staff to steward existing and prospective donors to the Great Lakes program, ensuring good communication flow about programmatic work for use in fundraising activities
  • Edit written reports and provide regular reporting updates to donors
  • Partner with development staff on donor tours, grantee visits to the US and UK, and other efforts
  • liaise with existing donors to the Great Lakes program providing reporting updates and occasional in-person visits to keep donors abreast of the issues and challenges
  • Assist in conception of and writing for the Fund’s public communications pieces related to the African Great Lakes or assigned thematic initiatives

  Building a Network of Collaborative Partnerships

  • Maintain contact and collaborate with other organizations – funders and funder networks, regional organizations, INGOs, etc. – working in the region
  • Develop partnerships, share ideas, and create opportunities to leverage other funding with grant- making organizations working in the region or on similar issues

Other Contributions:

  • Over time, develop expertise in, and take on leadership for, one or more thematic areas of the Fund’s grant making
  • Participate in bi-weekly program team and all-staff meetings, and in-person biannual full staff retreats
  • Work closely with the Fund’s thematic program officers who manage the children and armed conflict, corporate accountability, and enabling environment programs when these thematic areas involve Great Lakes grantees and program


 Candidates should demonstrate the following range of skills, experience, and qualities:

Minimum Requirements:

  • 5+ years of experience working in the human rights arena; field experience and/or advocacy experience in the region highly desired
  • Demonstrated commitment to human rights and to building a vibrant and powerful grassroots human rights movement
  • 3+ years of grant-making or fundraising experience strongly preferred
  • Knowledge of international and grassroots human rights NGOs and international organizations
  • Experience living, working, or traveling extensively in the DRC and Burundi
  • Effective communication and writing skills required

Desired Qualities:

  • Self-driven initiative to contribute to any and all efforts underway to strengthen the Fund and the African Great Lakes program
  • Strong interpersonal and collaboration skills; proven ability to be flexible independently or in a team-oriented approach with diverse groups of people
  • Proven track record of excellent relationship development and management, both in-person and remotely
  • Strong critical thinking skills, including the ability to identify emerging human rights trends and analyze issues from multiple perspectives 
  • Organized and able to manage multiple priorities simultaneously while producing excellent quality work
  • High level of comfort traveling independently in developing countries required


  • Must be willing and able to travel from four to seven times per year, including to Burundi and the DRC, often for stretches of seven to ten days or longer
  • Must be willing and able to travel to the US at least twice a year
  • Fluency in English and French required

The Fund for Global Human Rights encourages candidates of all racial, ethnic and religious backgrounds to apply. Personnel are chosen on the basis of ability without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, or gender identity or expression, in accordance with U.S. federal and state law.

How to ApplyVisit  to upload resume or CV and cover note.

 Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis.  Earliest anticipated start date is May 2018.

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  • Location
    Washington, District of Columbia
  • Department
  • Employment Type
    Full time
  • Minimum Experience
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