SPOON, an innovative global nonprofit, is the only organization dedicated to transforming nutrition and feeding for children living without permanent families and children with disabilities. SPOON empowers and equips families, communities, and institutions to safely feed and adequately nourish children through trainings and implementation of proprietary tools. UNICEF and Ashoka recognize SPOON for our progressive approach and systems-changing work that has catalyzed national policy change and yielded dramatic improvements in children’s health and development.
Given SPOON’s mandate, experience, and growing global recognition, we have tremendous potential to be effective agents of change by leveraging SPOON’s and the community of practice’s data to 1) ensure that the issues for the vulnerable children we serve are included in national and international health policies/programs, and 2) influence the mainstreaming of their rights in global child-focused agendas. We are positioned to deliver evidence-based recommendations to decision makers, stakeholders, and/or those who influence them. As such, we are seeking an experienced advocacy professional to serve as our Policy and Advocacy Advisor. As a key member of the program team, s/he will lead SPOON’s strategic efforts to impact national and global policy related to feeding and nutrition for children living outside of family care and children with disabilities by defining our policy and advocacy strategy and developing and executing our advocacy plan.
This full-time, exempt position is based in Washington D.C., and requires domestic and international travel throughout the year. This key position reports to the Executive Director and is empowered to creatively and strategically shape the impact of the organization, and the lives of children around the world.
ESSENTIAL JOB FUNCTIONS
• Develop, lead, and execute a comprehensive advocacy plan with specific goals, objectives, and indicators with a focus on partnering with governments and the global community to effect both national and global policy change
• Identify and build relationships with our key policy audiences – the decision-makers who have the power to bring about policy change and achieve our goals
• Develop and/or represent SPOON within existing coalitions and inter-agency working groups (i.e., InterAction) to partner in advocacy efforts to transform global nutrition and feeding policies and practices
• Develop compelling and effective advocacy messages and the right methods for delivery
• Build new partnerships and expand upon collaborations with existing SPOON partners and other stakeholders to advance SPOON’s advocacy objectives
• Stay abreast of key issues and players in all relevant sectors (i.e., global health, international development, disability, child welfare and protection) and connect the Executive Director and Director of Programs with contacts in these sectors
• Work closely with SPOON leadership to manage opportunities to build SPOON’s thought leadership profile with key stakeholders through white papers, publications, and/or media, including social media as relevant
• Present or participate in presentations that advance SPOON’s advocacy and thought leadership efforts
Assist in cultivating D.C.-based board members or advisors to SPOON
- Must be DC-based with strong experience in international development, disability and/or children in alternative care, and advocacy
- 5-7 years policy or advocacy-related experience within a public health and/or child welfare context. Significant understanding of advocacy in the context of INGOs, and experience working with civil society, foreign and U.S. governments, donors, media, and public stakeholders to effect change on issues of humanitarian policy (experience in child welfare and/or protection preferred)
- Master’s degree in public health, international development, business management, or other relevant field preferred
- Experience working effectively in or building key coalitions/networks, and strengthening their capacity and opportunities to engage in dialogue/advocacy with policymakers
- Experience with US government funding mechanisms, including USAID, as well as strong knowledge of other large institutional funders at the federal and state level
- Excellent skills in writing, editing, formatting, research, negotiation, and verbal communications; excellent presentation skills and ability to serve as spokesperson for SPOON domestically and internationally
- Proven policy and advocacy writer with the ability to translate programmatic and technical writing to a broader audience
- International experience living and managing programs in resource limited countries preferred, with demonstrated success operating in cross-cultural contexts
- Solution-oriented approach to facing challenges and ability to work well under pressure, and manage multiple deadlines and complex schedules
- Entrepreneurial attitude, results-driven, and able to work independently as well as collaboratively
- Passionate about SPOON’s mission