Room to Read is a global organization transforming the lives of millions of children in low-income countries by focusing on literacy and gender equality in education.
The Communications Officer is responsible for providing global marketing and country-specific communications support for Room to Read’s three African offices in South Africa, Tanzania and Zambia. The primary function of this role is to provide material development and donor engagement support. Additionally, the Officer is responsible for vendor management and reporting, as well as generating local awareness, public relations and business development within Africa and for specific local markets within each country where Room to Read operates.
The Communications Officer reports to the Regional Director, Africa, based in South Africa and works in tandem with the Africa especially in relation to business development opportunities in each market. This role also works in close coordination and is in frequent contact with the global Marketing & Communications and Development Departments, headquartered in San Francisco, California, USA, to ensure requests are completed and guidelines are followed.
This is a one-year assignment with an opportunity to extend beyond a year pending organizational need, performance and results.
Duties & ResponsibilitiesMaterial Support (30%)
- Create content for Global Office (GO) marketing materials. This includes collecting and writing stories about our impact, including photography and video-based stories; providing content for GO website; and supporting global awareness campaign content.
- Create content for unique stewardship materials for donor management.
- Using guidelines provided by GO, create or help create country office annual reports, newsletters, brochures/fact sheets, PowerPoint decks and other materials for local stakeholder meetings.
Donor Engagement (20%)
- Plan, coordinate and host donor visits, corporate employee engagement visits and volunteer visits.
- Support relationship management for existing corporate donors, including support to special corporate programmatic initiatives in-country and implement any specific public relations needs in country related to the partnership.
- Train Country Office (CO) staff on site visits and messaging (orientation and ongoing capacity building).
Creative Oversight (Vendor Relations) (15%)
- Oversee creative materials produced by each CO. This includes working in close collaboration with Country Directors and Program Operations staff to track and maintain for photo/video collection and provide quality control for global marketing and donor materials produced within the COs working in close collaboration with the country directors and program operations staff to complete tasks.
- Using guidelines provided by the GO, identify, hire, supervise and train outside vendors (photographers, videographers, printing/design, etc.) to support both GO material development and donor reporting materials (e.g. project-specific photos).
- Provide writing and support for government reports (only if required by the government).
- Review donor reporting photos to ensure they are high quality and meet Room to Read guidelines.
- Provide translation or language support for donor reports, as needed.
Awareness and Public Relations (5%)
- Develop, implement and evaluate local public relations strategy based on local needs and target audience(s).
- Establish and maintain relationships with local journalists and news/media agencies.
- Support local PR/awareness raising opportunities at celebrations and events.
- Act as a brand ambassador to COs using global branding guidelines; train staff on message and brand training (new hires).
- Contribute local content on global and local social media feeds per GO guidelines.
- Monitor Room to Read website for accuracy and inquiries regarding work in Africa.
Business Development (20%)
- In coordination with the Fundraising Manager, identify, research, introduce and cultivate relationships with corporations and foundations that might be interested in giving to education programs in Africa, or to operations in South Africa, Tanzania and/or Zambia.
- In partnership with Relationship Managers, steward relationships with corporate and foundation donors that offer opportunities to extend marketing and awareness within each region and continue to build a case for support of our work.
- Work with London and San Francisco-based Corporations and Foundations team as well as Africa Regional and Country Directors to execute on the fundraising and marketing strategies for opportunities in Southern Africa.
- Work with San Francisco-based grant-writing team to develop clear, compelling visual and written materials for donor solicitation and reporting, as needed.
- Degree in a related field (e.g. communications, marketing, etc.)
- 7-10 years of relevant work experience
- Prior experience in: creating communications materials; project management; and experience in travel, tourism or hospitality, preferred.
- Excellent oral and written communication skills in English.
- Familiarity with design and photography principles, ideally with experience using software such as Adobe InDesign and Photoshop.
- Comfort working both independently and closely with diverse teams.
- Highly organized: Ability to multitask, manage multiple deliverables/timelinesand ensure all deadlines are met
- Strong computer skills including Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, and PowerPoint) and Outlook
- Experience using social marketing and outreach tools including Facebook and Twitter
- Proven ability to pay close attention to detail
Compensation:Room to Read offers a competitive salary with excellent benefits. The non-monetary compensation includes a unique opportunity to be part of an innovative, meaningful, fun, and rapidly growing organization that is changing the world through the lifelong gift of education.