Communications Manager

About Graça Machel Trust

Founded in 2010 the Graça Machel Trust is a Pan-African not for profit organisation that serves the women and children of Africa. We aim to amplify women’s movements, influence governance and promote women’s contributions and leadership in the economic, social and political development of Africa, and advocate for the protection of children’s rights.

Building on the legacy and passion of our Founder, Mrs. Graça Machel, the Trust tackles structural barriers to change the way public and private institutions address women and children’s rights. Drawing our founding principles and overarching mandate from her legacy as a liberation fighter and global advocate for women and children’s rights, our mandate is to harness the power of collective action through networks to drive inclusive social and economic transformation.

The Trust has significant influencing power. In 10 years we have reached hundreds of thousands through our work with women’s networks in the business, finance, and media sectors, across 17 African countries. We have strong linkages to multiple decision-makers and spaces at the regional and national levels. We are well positioned to elevate the African agenda globally. We have generated evidence in support of advocacy for women’s economic advancement, and children’s rights in Africa.

Through our work, we have developed an understanding of the levers of change in a system across Africa, and how to effectively engage them. We have led powerful coalitions to achieve policy impact at scale, resulting in national budget allocations to nutrition increasing for 5 countries in East and Southern Africa by 3%. We have achieved impact at scale including by identifying and enrolling 23,000 out-of-school children into accelerated learning programmes; and supporting economic and social progress for 220,000 African women through our advocacy, and capacity strengthening initiatives.

About the Role

You will be joining us at an exciting and pivotal time in our evolution. Having achieved substantive impact over 10 years, we are developing and implementing a bold new strategy that will set us on a path of deeper impact, targeted expansion, and influence.

Against this backdrop, you will help us transform the Trust’s brand and positioning as a leading Pan African organization. You will lead our rebranding journey, ensuring our messaging is clear, consistent and aligned to our values while managing the image and public perception of the Graça Machel Trust brand.

You will help us amplify our impact, and further our advocacy and resource mobilization priorities by integrating our communications with our programs, advocacy, MERL and fundraising functions and goals while building effective systems for efficient and impactful communication.

You will create and drive initiatives to amplify the work of our partners – including our women’s economic networks, who are key collaborators in our advocacy efforts across the continent.

The Communications Manager will report to the CEO, and lead the Senior Communications Officer and a pool of external experts and consultants. Critically, they will work closely with the Trust’s team, including the Office of the Founder, network partners, donors and allies.

Your Responsibilities include:

Leading our Communications Strategy & Brand Management

Strategically contribute to unpacking the Trust’s draft strategic framework, then lead development of an integrated multi-channel Communications and Brand Strategy that transforms the Trust’s brand as a leading Pan-African organization.
With the leadership team, create an Internal Communications Strategy and ensure it is effectively implemented.
Lead the comprehensive redesign of the Trust’s branding tools, including the website.
Execute the new Communications and Brand Strategy and Internal Communications Strategy, driving a bold brand voice across all channels.
Develop and oversee management of a comprehensive budget for the communications unit.
Proactively stay up to date with industry trends and new technologies to innovate around approaches and methods to boost the Trust’s visibility.
Conduct regular audience research and brand audits, and media monitoring to gauge the Trust’s market position and inform and adjust communications strategies/approaches.
Partnering closely with Programs, Advocacy and MERL to ensure strategic and impactful communication of our work

Provide leadership for the communications units’ strategic and day to day collaboration with Programs, Advocacy, MERL, and Business Development.
Work hand-in-hand with Advocacy/Programs in the design and execution of various influencing products and communications campaigns to support the Trust’s advocacy priorities (e.g. convenings, publications, online campaigns, etc).
Lead the planning and execution of communication activities for relevant campaigns and events, aligning each individual campaign with our bigger messaging goals and strategies.
Identify ways to proactively engage and grow the Trust’s audience and ensure our content is relevant, timely, accessible, and engaging.
Help develop communication strategies for the various programs, enabling them to generate success stories and impact data.
Provide day to day communications leadership and quality assurance support to programs teams in implementation of the same.
Strengthen the capacity of program staff in communication, to ensure brand integrity and alignment across portfolios.
Provide conceptualization and planning leadership for the Trust’s flagship and strategic events/convenings.
Provide leadership for communications approaches and strategies during fundraising/proposal development.
Ensure full compliance with our donors’ and partners’ communications requirements.
Build and manage effective relationships with key stakeholders and partners

Provide strategic, targeted communications support to the Trust’s affiliated networks, elevating our joint goals and messages and proactively exploring win-win collaboration opportunities.
Develop contacts with media members, influencers, and community leaders to amplify the Trust’s work and brand.
Leverage the various platforms of the Trust’s Women in Media network (WIMN).
Collaborate with external partners to leverage the Trust’s communication platforms and campaigns and disseminate thought and knowledge products.
Strengthen Internal Systems and Lead Quality Assurance

Take stock, prioritize and put in place effective systems, processes and infrastructure to assist in transforming the Trust’s internal capabilities around communications and brand management.
Provide oversight and quality assurance for the creation of digital, video, audio, and print content, including developing the Trust’s marketing and communications collateral.
Provide editorial, layout, design, and strategic oversight and quality assurance on all reports, publications, knowledge products, and public-facing materials.
Lead Communications Unit

Direct, plan and coordinate the work of the Unit staff including recruitment, supervision, evaluation, training, and team building.
Build and oversee a pool of consultants and freelancers that can support our work.
Support the Office of the Founder and Special Projects

Provide strategic support to the Office of the Founder to amplify the Founder’s work across multiple issue areas, platforms, and spaces.
Ensure that programs communications effectively leverage opportunities fostered by the Office of the Founder, to maximize our visibility and impact.
Provide leadership on special projects such as documenting and archiving the work and contributions of our Founder to the global development agenda.

Who we are looking for

You share our passion and are committed to contribute to initiatives whose vision is to transform the social and economic state of the African continent.
You are a creative visionary who easily gets the big picture, is highly strategic and has a track record of leading and implementing successful communications strategies in a multi-stakeholder context.
You have led an organization through a rebranding journey successfully.
You have successfully helped other organizations integrate various programs/projects/products or services into one joint brand
You have a track record executing campaigns and activities that prompts stakeholder action resulting in transformative change (e.g. advocacy/policy, influencing senior stakeholders).
Excellent written and spoken communication, and copy editing skills: You know how to craft and tell stories that take donors, government actors, and partners on a journey.
You possess experience in brand management, including reputation and risk management.
You are a strong collaborator who is able to harness the strengths of diverse team members to ensure efficiency and effectiveness in delivering results.
You are a natural relationship builder with a strong ability to inspire and draw various stakeholders to align on a common vision or goal. You have a track record in building, engaging, and delivering highly impactful results with diverse stakeholders across all levels
You are a strong project manager who is highly organized and a great planner with the ability to juggle several parallel priorities successfully.
You have successfully helped organizations build their internal communications capacity ensuring team alignment on a common vision and goal and setting up systems and procedures that allow efficient flow of information.
You thrive in agile, lean and fast-changing work setups and are comfortable rolling up your sleeves when needed to get the job done.
You have a great eye for design that leaves an impression (video, digital, print, events) and have successfully collaborated with content creators, designers and event organizers. Basic graphic design skills/software would be an added advantage.
You possess relevant education qualifications.
Note: We are open to professionals from the private sector who have sufficient understanding of how the non-profit world works. First experience communicating social impact/programming and working with non-profit and public actors is ideal.

You are cultural fit to work with us if

You are driven by a strong desire to create high quality results and impact for Africans.
You are passionate and committed to leading African-driven development, and relish the diversity of our continent.
Flexibility and adaptability come to you with ease. You thrive in fast changing work environments, where processes and structures are in definition and movement.
You have consistently demonstrated your ability to create opportunity in resourceful and creative ways.
You have a customer centric approach and always focus on maximizing the experience and value for the stakeholders.
You are bold. You confidently and persuasively communicate your vision and ideas and have a strong ability to hold your own and stand for your ideas.

Why work with us?

Be part of driving Pan-African movements shaping the future and role of women and children on the continent. We are planning to make history in facing key challenges of the coming decades.
Our proximity to inspiring changemakers, including our passionate Founder, Board of Trustees, members of our women’s networks and regional policy platforms gives us a unique opportunity to shape conversation and action.
This is a great opportunity if you are excited to help shape the strategy of an organization that is influential and poised for growth.

Other information

While the Trust is headquartered in Johannesburg, remote candidate ideally from within Sub-Saharan Africa will also be considered. Travel is expected primarily in Sub-Saharan Africa and to relevant global conferences as a representative of the Trust. Ideal start date is Jan/Feb 2023.

How to apply?

First, please have a look at this guide on how to submit your application and tips on our selection process:
Fill the application form below.
You will be asked to upload a video and your CV as part of the application form. Your video should be uploaded as ‘unlisted’ on YouTube. Please ensure the CV is in PDF format, tailored to this role and no more than 3 pages.
Applications will be shortlisted on a rolling basis.
Interested candidates who have questions, can email us on
Recruitment process in partnership with edge. All emails regarding this role will come from email accounts in the domains and