The Open Society Foundations’ Early Childhood Program (ECP) promotes healthy development and wellbeing of young children, up to the age of eight, through initiatives that emphasize parent and community engagement, professional development and government accountability. Our rights based approach and social justice framework place particular attention on minorities, including children from refugee and Roma communities; children with developmental delays and disabilities; and children living in poverty. ECP programs are primarily active in Central Europe and Eurasia, Africa and parts of Asia with a growing body of work in Latin America and the Middle East.
The ECP is recruiting a Team Manager to join our team of experienced early childhood and international development professionals. The position will be based in either Washington, DC; New York City or London and is intended for a senior professional who is committed to promoting the rights of young children and their families. The successful candidate must be able to articulate a vision of social change that can achieve this, and which is based on substantial experience and knowledge of the early childhood development field. The new staff member will work both independently and collaboratively to manage a varied portfolio of grants and projects on select issues/geographies and will also have responsibility for overseeing the work of a Program Specialist.
The post will engage across more than one substantive area of the Early Childhood Program’s programming but will have a major focus on ECP’s global portfolio of grants and initiatives. Priority will therefore be given to candidates with experience of engagement to strengthen and promote early childhood services and systems in more than one region of the world. Experience of participation in projects or initiatives with a global reach is required, as is the ability to advocate and communicate effectively with senior international leaders within the early childhood and related fields. ECP is particularly interested in candidates with experience strengthening early childhood development systems and services with a focus on health, nutrition or protection systems, serving disadvantaged children under the age of three and their families.
This post requires experience of working with civil society organisations and/or governments and/or international organisations and both formal and informal contexts, to improve early childhood development outcomes, services and systems. Essential duties and responsibilities will include:
- Design and development of strategies, including research into new areas of potential work alongside collaboration with colleagues and experts to think creatively both about the Team Manager’s specific areas of own work as well as the ECP’s work and OSF’s work more generally;
- Development of collaborative relationships within the Early Childhood Program, across OSF’s geographic and thematic entities more widely as well as externally to further programmatic goals;
- Negotiation and management of grants, projects, project budgets and contracts with diverse organizations, including provision of mentoring and technical assistance through long-distance support;
- Management of administrative and other staff as required, ensuring regular supervision and support for professional development;
- Development and management of multi-country, multi-agency initiatives, including advocacy, coordination with partners and management of consultants;
- Assessment of organizational capacity, including an understanding of financial health and organisational capacity;
- Design and implementation of monitoring and evaluation processes to generate evidence of learning and impact;
- Frequent travel to visit and learn from partner and grantee organizations, government officials, academic institutions, civil society groups, and community members, as well as to meet with other donors and stakeholders;
- Critical assessment and reflection of what is working and what is not working in order to adjust programming and advocacy accordingly;
- Preparation and delivery of concise, targeted written reports, advocacy and communications pieces and presentations for diverse groups, including peers, internal Boards and as well as external audiences.
- Master’s degree in Early Childhood Development (ECD) or related fields or equivalent experience/education;
- 7 -10 years of progressively relevant experience and training in progressively responsible roles;
- Experience/expertise in service development for young children and their families, preferably including services for children from birth to three years of age;
- Experience of supervising and managing staff;
- Experience of working in the non – governmental sector and /or in government systems responsible for identifying and supporting the needs of young children and their families;
- Knowledge of the field of Early Childhood Development with demonstrable understanding of current international debates, leading figures and controversies;
- Experience of advocacy and of influencing key international players and debates;
- Familiarity with the activities of key development partners, foundations and donors in the field of early childhood development;
- Familiarity with the issues surrounding good grant-making, including an understanding of the power dynamics in the grantee/grant-maker relationship;
- Experience of designing strategies to promote social change in rapidly shifting contexts;
- Experience of managing complex relationships and of exercising sound judgements to further long term goals;
- Commitment to addressing the needs of young children and their families;
- Excellent computer skills, proficient in Microsoft office, with the ability to learn new systems;
- Ability to function effectively and inclusively and demonstrate leadership in cross-cultural settings;
- Excellent written and spoken communication skills in English. Proficiency in additional languages, such as Arabic, French or Spanish is desirable, but not essential.
- Willingness to travel frequently.
Please send applications by March 30, 2018, and include a CV, Cover letter and Writing Samples as part of your application. Initial interviews for short-listed candidates will be held in April.
We are strengthened by the diversity of our colleagues across the Open Society Foundations. We welcome applications from people of all cultures, backgrounds, and experiences, and are committed to providing reasonable accommodations so that colleagues with disabilities are able to fulfil the essential functions of the job.