Educate!, a fast-growing nonprofit social enterprise, is looking for a Director of East Africa External Relations to lead its growing eight-person, Africa-based business development team and global fundraising operations. As we work towards impacting millions of youth per year, we are looking for an ambitious, people-driven leader to fuel our continued financial growth and build the capacity of our fundraising team to take on even larger-scale funding in the future.
The Director of East Africa External Relations position is senior role in which you will be at the helm of a high-performing team on the cusp of its next phase of growth. Reporting to Educate!’s U.S. Director (Loren Crary), you will work towards full ownership of Educate!’s fundraising systems, team leadership, and activities, including by leading major grants, investor visits, implementing new revenue strategy, and collaborating closely with our global team and each of our three country teams, as well as by driving high performance across the team. We are looking for an experienced, self-motivated leader and manager with exceptional communication, relationship-building, and writing skills, as well as strong professional judgment and accountability. You should be ready and excited to take on leading a mature fundraising function and team for a high-growth organization at a key moment of expanding its revenue s. You’ll join a motivated, passionate, overachieving international team that is positioning Educate! to be the leader in skills-based secondary education in Africa.
Educate! tackles youth unemployment by partnering with schools and governments to reform what schools teach and how they teach it, so that students in Africa have the skills to start businesses, get jobs and drive development in their communities. Our model is delivered through practically-trained teachers and youth mentors. Educate!’s goal is to make this practical, skills-based model part of national education systems.
- Educate! has partnered with the governments of Uganda, Rwanda, and Kenya to integrate key parts of our curriculum nationally.
- In 2019, we’re partnering with the government to pilot in 60+ schools in Kenya, working in 175+ secondary schools in Rwanda and 750+ schools in Uganda (25% of the country) reaching over 44,000 students intensively and 545,000 more broadly. Educate!'s long-term vision is to design solutions that measurably impact millions of youth across Africa each year.
- Our measured impact shows Educate! participants earn double the income of a control group towards the end of secondary school and created 64% more businesses. More on our commitment to results here.
- Our graduates change their lives and their communities, such as Lillian Aero who employs over 100 AIDS-affected women.
- We have been backed by top foundations such as the MasterCard Foundation, Big Bang Philanthropy, Mulago, Echoing Green, Ashoka, and Global Innovation Fund.
- Educate! won a 2018 Klaus J. Jacobs Prize, a 2015 WISE Award, and was featured by Bill Gates, in an Al Jazeera documentary, Forbes 30 under 30, and The Brookings Institution as one of 14 case studies in their global scaling education learning initiative.
- Educate!’s team includes 200 staff and 300 volunteer youth mentors. 90% of our staff and 100% of our Mentors are East African nationals.
Team management and Leadership (30%)
People are the key to our impact, and we invest heavily in training rockstar coaches and managers who build high-performing and engaged teams. In this role, you will manage, coach, and lead our five-person East Africa External Relations team, ensuring that the team is motivated, aligned on priorities, and performing at the top of its ability. You will:
- Provide ongoing coaching, professional development support, and performance feedback to the team, including through bi-annual performance reviews, weekly team and one on one meetings, and other management structures that you will continue or introduce with the goal of supporting team members to be productive, connected, happy, and growing personally and professionally
- Lead team goal-setting, tracking, and accountability in alignment to the fundraising strategy set in collaboration with Loren and the Executive Director (Boris Bulayev.)
- Assign and prioritize work, with the goal of expanding team capacity and developing team skills through strategic division of labor
- Act as the liaison between External Relations and operating teams across East Africa, building strong relationships and ensuring that there is efficient and effective cross-functional communication and collaboration
- Share strategic updates with team regularly and create platforms for team-wide learning, communication, and alignment
- Ensure team structure (reporting structure, role designs, etc.) make best sense and align to strategy
- Identify gaps and opportunities for team improvement in systems, work flows, training, policies, structure, etc.
Major Grants Management (30%)
We’re expanding our impact every year, and we need to continuously grow our budget to achieve our ambitious goals. You will play a crucial role in driving this growth by overseeing reporting and proposals to top priority funders.
- Own major grant proposals and reporting processes for top priority funders, ensuring that finished products are customized and aligned to our strategy
- Responsible for top level oversight of our grant proposal, reporting, and compliance systems so that deadlines are met, opportunities are prioritized, quality is high, unnecessary stress is low, expectations are clear, and work is done efficiently.
- Lead team to manage reporting and proposal processes efficiently—assign responsibilities, ensure materials are ready early and exceed expectations
- Anticipate and identify gaps in our proposal processes and systems, and lead the fundraising team in building solutions
Investor Visits Oversight & Strategy (25%)
We’re building the reputation and support base to position Educate! as the leader in skills-based education in Africa, and that includes being able to effectively show our partners what our work looks like on the ground. In this role, you will:
- Oversee donor visits across our three countries of operation, ensuring that we consistently deliver excellent experiences for current and prospective investors and partners
- Lead top priority visits, build relationships, and communicate our impact
- Lead the team to implement strengthen visits systems and tools to improve our processes across countries
- Train team in visits best practices
New Revenue Strategy and Relationship Management (15%)
As we work to strengthen and scale our impact, we are experimenting with new revenue channels to achieve our growth goals. In this role, you will:
- Collaborate with the Business Development Manager and Head of Marketing on the development and execution of a bilateral/multilateral revenue strategy
- Build relationships with key stakeholders in East Africa
- Oversee the Business Development Manager to implement the Big Bets revenue channel strategy, experiment with new tactics, and collaborate and problem solve with the Business Development Manager and US Director to iterate on the strategy
We are looking for someone who is
- A MOTIVATED LEADER AND MANAGER – You know that people are the key to impact, and you measure your success by how well you drive high performance in those around you. You have substantial experience leading international teams and rely on your well-honed professional judgment to make critical decisions in fast-paced environments.
- AN EXCEPTIONAL COMMUNICATOR – You will represent Educate! to a wide range of external stakeholders and serve as the bridge between Educate!’s East Africa External Relations team, the U.S. office, and other Africa-based teams. As such, you are an exceptional communicator and a natural relationship-builder, who brings clarity, intentionality, and a collaborative spirit to every interaction.
- DETAIL-ORIENTED – You are meticulous and have excellent organizational skills. You are comfortable juggling a wide range of complex projects and responsibilities at once and are known for your accountability and follow-through: you don’t let anything fall through the cracks.
- FLEXIBLE – You are able to manage a diverse set of team needs, and aren’t afraid to step outside your job description or your comfort zone to help the team reach its goals. You’re comfortable with shifting priorities and don’t expect every day to go “as planned.”
- AN EXCELLENT WRITER – You are a clear and compelling writer, with a knack for making complex concepts easy to understand. You will be the final eye on grant reports and proposals going out to our top priority investors, and it will fall to you to ensure that these materials are clear, accurate, and persuasive 100% of the time.
- GROWTH-ORIENTED – You bring an eagerness to grow as well as to roll up your sleeves and contribute. You have a go-getter attitude and a drive to solve problems and boost team efficiency. When something is your responsibility, you always find a way to see it through to the end.
What You Bring:
- A minimum of seven years total work experience including at minimum five years of managing individuals and three years of leading teams (Years spent in relevant graduate studies can substitute for some years of work.)
- Substantive experience in the nonprofit/social enterprise sector, including three years working in fundraising or business development.
- At least three years working in international contexts, ideally including time spent living and leading outside the U.S.
- A well-honed sense of professional judgment, integrity, and accountability: you’ll have responsibility for some of our most mission-critical workflows, a dynamic team, and some of our most valuable and sensitive relationships.
- Strong initiative and motivation, able to prioritize and manage multiple projects at once, proactively identify and solve problems, and work independently. Your manager will be a continent and eight time zones away, and you should be quickly moving towards autonomy and raising your levels of responsibility.
- A flexible, collaborative attitude, openness to feedback and change, and ambition to learn and grow.
- A track record of professional growth and excellence.
- You should be a fit for and be excited by our Five Cultural Tenets. These active values are core to the way we work at Educate!, from hiring to performance management and promotions for everyone from our front line mentors in the field to our Board members, and they inform how we make decisions on everything from highest level strategy to where we go for lunch—We encourage you to learn more by looking at Educate!’s culture deck here.
And we’re also requiring for this position:
- Bachelor’s degree
- Business-level proficiency in spoken and written English
- This is a full-time position. A minimum two-year commitment is requested to best meet potential professional growth at Educate! and team needs.
- Located in Kampala, Uganda, working alongside our rockstar Uganda and regional teams. Opportunities for regional travel on a regular basis.
- Benefits & perks include a generous vacation policy, health insurance, and breakfast in the office!
Why You Will Brag About Working At Educate!
- We’ve got the impact.
- Educate! is designed for scale. We quadrupled operations in 2014, going from 54 to more than 200 schools served. We carefully measure our outcomes, and — here’s the best part — we are maintaining quality at four times the size.
- We believe in local leadership — 97% of our on the ground staff is African.
- Our model has gone nationwide in Uganda — Educate!’s model is now incorporated into the national curriculum and exams, impacting thousands more students than we can reach directly.
- Educate is a well-oiled learning machine. We built our model by methodically testing hundreds of assumptions and we are constantly experimenting, evaluating, and improving.
- We’re honored that luminaries and leaders like Oliver Wonekha, the Ugandan Ambassador to the US, and Ann Veneman, a former Secretary of Agriculture and head of Unicef, believe in us enough to have joined our advisory board.