Associate, Program Development Africa

Search for Common Ground
  • Location
    Washington, D.C.
  • Sector
    Non Profit
  • Experience
    Early Career
  • Apply by
  • Posted
    Sep 04

Position description

Search for Common Ground is seeking a motivated young professional to join its Africa Program Development Hub, a high-performing, diverse and dynamic team based across West, Central and East Africa, as well as Washington D.C., and which leads program development efforts for a diverse portfolio that covers the conflict geographies of the Sahel, Lake Chad Basin, Central Africa, the Horn of Africa and the Sudans in over fifteen countries.Program development commences with scoping and pre-positioning for opportunities and completes with the signing of an award. This involves building program development strategies for conflict geographies, capture planning, proposal writing, and engaging with institutional donors and partners.


Based in D.C., the Associate will support project design and the development of program ideas into competitive bids and proposals to secure funding for the region. The Associate will work closely with in-country staff and other Search departments to develop programming that directly responds to the most pressing conflict issues and peacebuilding needs. The Associate will have a particular focus on West Africa, but will support the whole portfolio as required.

Key Responsibilities

  • Supports the creation and implementation of program development strategies.
  • Supports the “capture” process (developing partnerships, capture planning).
  • Supports the development of winning bids, drafting proposals and concept notes.
  • Supports the team’s knowledge management.


  • Strategy development: Carries out background research, record-keeping. Supports strategy processes.
  • Business intelligence: Researches and monitors donors. Analyzes funding opportunities. Ensures internal record-keeping.
  • Positioning and donor relations: Represents Search in line with positioning efforts. Produces marketing materials.
  • Partnerships: Supports partnership discussions. Conducts partner analysis. Ensures knowledge management.
  • Go/No-Go decisions: Conducts background research, including competitor analysis.
  • Capture planning: Conducts desk reviews. Assembles pre-proposal material. Supports delivery of capture strategy.
  • Program design: Provides input and support. Develops background material.
  • Proposal development: Drafts specific sections of proposals or concepts. Lead-writes supporting material development.
  • Proposal reviews: Participates on review teams.
  • Knowledge management and training: Ensures proper record-keeping, including in the Grants Management System. Tracks key program development data and prepares reports as requested.
  • Other duties that are broadly in line with the above key contributions as assigned.


  • Minimum BA or BS in peace and conflict studies, international relations, African studies, international development, or a related field.
  • At least 2 years of relevant experience (preferably in international or cross-cultural environments)
  • Excellent writing, editing, and communication skills in English.
  • Working proficiency in French strongly preferred.
  • Interest and knowledge in the field of peacebuilding and conflict transformation.
  • Familiarity with the Africa region, in particular West Africa.
  • Practical experience with program design, monitoring, and evaluation.
  • High level of analytical and critical thinking skills.
  • Ability to maintain professionalism, creativity, and enthusiasm while working in a fast-paced, multi-cultural environment with minimal supervision is key.
  • Self-starter, able to work independently, and willing to take on tasks small and large. 
  • Well organized, resourceful with time management and technology to prioritize tasks.

Application instructions

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