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Job opportunity: Senior Adviser (London, deadline: 10 December)


Update: Senior Adviser – Girls Not Brides Secretariat, London

The deadline for applications for the post of Senior Adviser was 10 December 2013.

Candidates who have been shortlisted for this position will be contacted by 21 December 2013.

Girls Not Brides is seeking an experienced and committed Senior Adviser to contribute to and help facilitate international advocacy efforts to end child marriage, and to support this dynamic, results-driven global Partnership. Download the job description.

Girls Not Brides: The Global Partnership to End Child Marriage brings together civil society organisations from around the world that address child marriage at all levels. Girls Not Brides now has over 300 members across more than 50 countries, based throughout Africa, South Asia, the Middle East, Europe and North America. Members are united by a commitment to end child marriage and enable girls to fulfil their potential.

Girls Not Brides works to empower those seeking to end child marriage; to raise awareness of the harmful impact of the practice and the solutions to end it; and to call for urgent action by relevant stakeholders. Girls Not Brides was initiated by The Elders, a group of eminent global leaders brought together by Nelson Mandela to promote peace and human rights worldwide.

Based in the Girls Not Brides office in London, the Senior Adviser will mainly focus on working at a global and regional level to achieve the policy, programmatic and funding changes that will be crucial to bringing an end to child marriage. S/he will increase the team’s overall capacity for developing and managing relations with key actors and high-profile champions in the fast-growing global movement, and provide strategic and practical support to the efforts of grass-roots groups, national partnerships and regional and international bodies. As an integral member of the Girls Not Brides secretariat, s/he will work with the Global Coordinator and her colleagues to contribute to the broader strategic, programmatic and communications work of the Partnership and help achieve its overall objectives.

Main responsibilities will include:

Working with key high-level international processes and actors to further global advocacy goals on ending child marriage

  • Provide skilled, knowledgeable and effective senior involvement from the secretariat at important international and regional discussions and assemblies (for example, related to the Human Rights Council and the post-2015 development process, among others);
  • Act as a thought leader on child marriage, bringing the issue into global discussions as appropriate;
  • Identify and build relations with additional platforms, donors, organisations and discussions with which Girls Not Brides and its members could engage in a productive manner;
  • Create and facilitate appropriate linkages between international actors and Girls Not Brides national partnerships and grass-roots activists;
  • Be an accessible and knowledgeable resource, sounding board and guide to Girls Not Brides members, partners, donors and secretariat colleagues on international advocacy issues, players and dynamics.

Connecting, convening and co-facilitating results-oriented processes and initiatives

  • Take an active role in agenda-setting, inviting participants, convening respectful and inclusive discussion and follow-up action at fora in which the Girls Not Brides secretariat is playing either a lead or supportive role;
  • Identify partner organisations, sub-contractors and consultants who can extend and amplify the secretariat’s work; develop terms of reference for their work and guide their efforts to prompt and impactful completion;
  • Act as a back-up spokesperson for Girls Not Brides, in a variety of technical, policy or media-related contexts.

Contributing to the management of Girls Not Brides, and its broader strategic, programmatic and communications work

  • Inform the activities of Girls Not Brides and help mentor individual team members with his/her knowledge of the international development landscape;
  • Assist the Global Coordinator with, and be willing to take the lead on, some fundraising activities;
  • Assist with developing the strategic messaging and communications efforts associated with global advocacy;
  • Act as a secretariat point of contact for select high-level contacts and donors, as required;
  • Provide a back-up senior presence at the office when the Global Coordinator is absent.

We are looking for candidates with the following qualifications and skills:

  • Senior level experience with successful advocacy for change on a global policy or development issue; in-depth knowledge of the child marriage issue and the advocacy dynamics around gender and children’s rights are desirable though not essential;
  • Broad-based experience in building alliances and working relationships in and between UN institutions, other multilateral organisations, bilateral agencies and government ministries, leading international NGOs, foundations, small grass-roots groups, and champions of social change;
  • Graduate qualification or proven experience in a relevant area (such as public policy, development studies, international relations, human rights or gender issues);
  • An inspiring senior-level presence, with the ability to empower others to greater effort, commitment and action;
  • Experience in working with coalitions and the ability to effectively inform international policy discussions with the realities of grass-roots work;
  • Excellent strategic thinking and practical planning ability;
  • Understanding of protocol and effective diplomatic relations in a global and regional context combined with the ability to interact in genuine, effective cooperation with grass-roots actors;
  • Ability to use discretion and maintain confidentiality;
  • Top-notch public speaking, writing and editing skills to effectively reach very different audiences in a variety of contexts; familiarity with writing and overseeing development of fundraising proposals desirable;
  • Proven ability to convene, facilitate and translate passionate discussion and commitment into formal decisions and action;
  • A sensitivity for a changing context and the discernment to spot new opportunities; flexibility to reframe views, resolve problems and adapt plans as needed;
  • Experience in managing consultants in teamwork and directly managing staff is desirable;
  • Ability and willingness to work in a small team environment;
  • Fluency in written and spoken English; proficiency in French or other relevant languages is desirable;
  • Willingness to travel extensively and often.


A competitive salary and benefits package will be offered to the successful candidate. All interested applicants must be able to provide proof of eligibility to work in the United Kingdom.

How to apply

Please send a concise CV and one page cover letter demonstrating how you meet the criteria for this position to, clearly stating “Senior Adviser” in the subject line. Due to the large number of applications expected, only short-listed candidates will be contacted.

Closing date for applications: 6pm GMT on Tuesday 10 December 2013. 

Download the job description.