American Jewish World Service (AJWS) is the leading Jewish organization working to fight poverty and pursue justice in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean. By supporting hundreds of social change organizations in 17 countries, we respond to the most pressing issues of our time—from disasters, genocide and hunger, to the persecution of women and minorities worldwide. With Jewish values and a global reach, AJWS is making a difference in millions of lives and bringing a more just and equitable world closer for all.
Overview of Team
Through grassrooted grantmaking and advocacy, the AJWS Programs Division provides financial support and builds strong partnerships with activists, organizations and social movements facing complex global challenges – from authoritarianism, to attacks on women, sex worker and LGBTQI+ rights, to the climate and humanitarian crises. The Programs Division works at the intersection of Jewish values and global issues. In a deep collaboration between our Advocacy and Jewish Engagement teams, we advocate for U.S. laws and policies that help overcome injustice and elevate support for grassrooted change in the Global South; and we also use strategic communications to amplify our grantees’ voices and those of our supporters to influence policymakers in the U.S. and around the globe. The Programs Division also houses our International Operations (IOPS) and Grants Management team, which oversees the execution of AJWS’s grantmaking policies, procedures and systems in alignment with the organization’s values of and commitment to flexible, responsive and trust-based practices. The work of the Programs Division is rooted in detailed strategies that each team designs and implements, and can be summarized as follows:
AJWS supports pro-democracy social movements seeking to push back against authoritarianism, promote democratic ideals and advance justice. We work to center the voices of those often marginalized in governance, including youth, women and ethnic, religious or other minority groups.
AJWS prioritizes support for local, grassroots groups that work to meet the unique needs of historically marginalized communities in the wake of disasters so that they can recover fully and become more resilient to future crises.
AJWS supports social movements of rural, indigenous, and marginalized communities, especially women and youth, who are on the frontlines of the climate crisis and advocate for their land, water, forest, and livelihood rights to address climate change. Through funding and accompaniment, we bolster their struggles for natural resource rights and amplify their solutions for climate justice.
AJWS funding and accompaniment enables movements led by adolescent girls and young women (AGYW), sex workers, and LGBTQI+ to strengthen coalitions with allied communities to jointly advocate for rights-affirming laws, services, funding and other empowering resources so that these focus communities have improved access to rights free from discrimination, violence and abuse and can enjoy the full spectrum of opportunities in society and live in health, safety, and dignity.
AJWS advocates domestically to seeking to secure a rights-based U.S. foreign policy aligned with the goals and and priorities of our partners in all our grantmaking portfolios. Working with the U.S. Congress, Executive Branch agencies, peer advocacy NGOs and the American Jewish community and clergy, the Advocacy and Jewish Engagement teams work to create an enabling U.S. foreign policy environment globally and in the communities of our grantees and partners around the world, including advocacy to increase funding for the work of our partners and their movements.
AJWS oversees all grants management functions for AJWS’s $19 million core grantmaking portfolio, as well as $3 million donor-advised funds (DAFs). Executes strategic and values-based grantmaking policies, procedures and systems that operationalize AJWS’s commitment to flexible, responsive, and trust-based practices. Ensures the integrity and efficiency of AJWS’s grantmaking systems, including its foundationConnect/Salesforce grants management database.
The DC-based Policy Advisor is an integral part of the Advocacy team, working closely with the Sexual Health and Rights team, carrying out AJWS’s advocacy strategy to pursue U.S. foreign policies, spending, and diplomacy to advance the human rights of women and girls, LGBTQI+ people and sex workers. In supporting these communities, the Policy Advisor works with Congress, Executive Branch agencies and NGO coalitions on an array of sexual health and rights (SHR) issues, including reproductive justice, HIV/AIDS prevention, and diplomacy to support LGBTIQ+ rights. They also engage in strategic advocacy in partnership with allied advocacy networks to improve availability of US government funding aligned with our partners and their movement’s priorities.
This position reports to the Director of U.S. Advocacy
Responsibilities include but are not limited to:
Compensation and Benefits Information:
Black, Indigenous and People of Color; Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Intersex, Trans and Gender non-conforming people; women; and differently abled people are encouraged to apply. We also encourage applications from people of diverse religious, spiritual and cultural backgrounds.
As an organization committed to promoting social justice around the world, it is essential that we incorporate a diverse, equitable and inclusive lens into all aspects of our work at AJWS. We encourage applicants with a global perspective and a commitment to values around diversity, equity, and inclusion to apply.
Authorization to work in the US is required.