Program Officer, Polio Advocacy and Communications – Gates Foundation

Deadline: 15 November 2023
London, UK


Gates Foundation is the largest nonprofit fighting poverty, disease, and inequity around the world. Founded on a simple premise: people everywhere, regardless of identity or circumstances, should have the chance to live healthy, productive lives. They believe their employees should reflect the rich diversity of the global populations we aim to serve. GF  provides an exceptional benefits package to employees and their families which include comprehensive medical, dental, and vision coverage with no premiums, generous paid time off, paid family leave, foundation-paid retirement contribution, regional holidays, and opportunities to engage in several employee communities. As a workplace, we’re committed to creating an environment for you to thrive both personally and professionally.

The Team

The Program Advocacy and Communications (PAC) team works in partnership with program teams and other teams in Global Policy and Advocacy (GPA) to achieve their policy and finance goals by:

– Developing and coordinating the execution of advocacy and communications strategies.

– Leveraging leadership and foundation voice to implement advocacy strategies.

– Developing and managing a grant portfolio dedicated to achieving advocacy outcomes.

– Directly advocating with sector leaders, influencers, media and government officials in order to achieve advocacy outcomes.

– Leading issue-specific communications in service of advocacy goals.

– Developing policy recommendations or proposals in partnership with programmatic and regional offices.

Your Role

The Program Officer (PO), Polio Advocacy and Communications supports the development and implementation of strategies for the foundation’s polio country advocacy and communications efforts thorough partner engagement, grant/contract management, and internal and external communications. As a key team member on polio advocacy initiatives at country level in endemic settings, the PO will be responsible for contributing to cross-foundation country strategies aligned to government priorities and supporting the implementation of components of these strategies in the focus geographies.

The postholder will be based in London and report to the Deputy Director, Immunization and Polio Program Advocacy and Communications, Global Policy & Advocacy. In addition, they will work closely with, collaborate, and co-create with the Polio Team and other relevant foundation teams.

What You’ll Do

The PO will support an advocacy body of work to generate and support awareness and political commitment to polio, mobilize domestic resources (where feasible), improve country-level partnerships, and generate necessary policy changes to achieve improvements across polio endemic geographies (Pakistan and Afghanistan). Core responsibilities include:

  • Supporting preparation of briefing notes and reports for foundation leadership engagement on polio eradication in endemic countries.
  • Supporting Polio Oversight Board Secretariat on endemic country engagement, trip planning and advocacy outreach.
  • Maintaining regular liaison with the Global Polio Eradication Initiative (GPEI) Hub advocacy secretariat and supporting maintenance of monthly Hub advocacy activity calendar.
  • Provide updates to the Endemics team on activities and reports of Afghanistan and Pakistan-based political/advocacy consultants.
  • Represents the Endemics teams in PAC engagement within the wider GPA division to highlight opportunities for endemics advocacy.
  • Participate in daily Polio Team and biweekly Polio Endemics Team meetings.

Your Experience

  • Advanced degree in international relations, development or business, or equivalent work experience preferred in development and/or humanitarian sectors.
  • Demonstrable experience supporting strategic planning, and implementing innovative and impactful approaches to project and portfolio management, ideally in a management consultancy, government or international initiatives capacity.
  • Knowledge of and work experience in Pakistan, Afghanistan or in humanitarian and fragile settings – specifically with political actors and government decision-making – is desirable.
  • Work experience in advocacy and communications with a knowledge of development and global health with strong management skills, and experience in developing policy, advocacy, and communications strategies.
  • Experience supporting the development and implementation of advocacy or influencing strategies aimed at achieving specific policy or financing outcomes.
  • Familiarity or experience with polio and immunization advocacy and communications.
  • Experience supporting the development and coordination of complex projects and/or grants in support of policy initiatives, advocacy programs and events at the global, regional, national, and sub-national level.
  • Ability to effectively adapt to a changing environment. Must be comfortable with ambiguity.
  • Demonstrated success in supporting programs or initiatives requiring a combination of prioritizing demands, and strong analytical, writing and management skills.
  • Ability to work across multiple partners and teams, with flexibility and a high level of rigor, collaboration, and diplomacy, both individually and as part of a complex team effort.

Other Attributes

  • Comfortable in a wide range of cultural, geographic and operational situations, demonstrating culturally sensitive behaviour with a diverse range of people and a deep commitment to development issues and high standards of personal integrity.
  • Ability to travel up to 20% domestically and internationally.

Must be able to legally work in the country where this position is located without visa sponsorship.

For more information please visit the official website.