Partnerships Manager, Africa

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Wetlands International, is the only NGO, dedicated to the safeguarding and restoration of wetlands. At the heart of our vision is a plan to demonstrate whole landscape recovery in large wetland landscapes across mangroves, peatlands and freshwater wetlands, of the Sahel and across the African continent. These are landscapes which are among the top global biodiversity treasures, but which are also sources of much of the world’s land-based climate emissions and where people are most poor and vulnerable.

We are seeking to hire a Partnerships Manager for Africa, to support stepping up its work to inspire and mobilise society, working within and across strategic partnerships globally to secure and enhance wetland landscapes as a basis for green recovery and a prosperous, healthy society.

  • Reporting to: Employment via Africa office with day to day support from the Heads of Office; strategic supervision from the Global Office
  • Full-time/Part-time: Full-time
  • Location: Flexible in Africa (likely Dakar or Nairobi)
  • Salary: Competitive, dependent on experience

Purpose of the role

The Partnerships Manager will be responsible for developing and nurturing relationships with partners and donors to enable the financing of Wetlands International’s leading continental initiatives. The post holder will be responsible for supporting the execution of key elements of Africa Strategy, and a step change in the organisation’s fundraising efforts in Africa.

The post-holder will bring strong fundraising acumen and programming experience, being able to identify donor opportunities, facilitate donor engagement, assist in the development of fundraising strategies, and coordinate proposal development for large and strategic funding opportunities. They will nurture the interest of international donors and coordinate and motivate collaboration amongst offices and partners on fundraising in Africa and Europe. Central to the role will be building an effective and innovative pipeline of proposals focused on Wetlands International’s priority initiatives and programmes Initially the focus will be to mobilise the partnership and finance for the “Blue Lifelines for a Secure Sahel” (BLiSS) initiative, enabling finance for wetland conservation and restoration propositions in key river catchments and wetland areas from Senegal to Ethiopia. Additionally, he/she will coordinate and enable upscaling of the Mangrove Capital Africa initiative.

Responsibilities and tasks

  • Contribute to the shaping and communication of strategies for mobilising and upscaling continental initiatives in the Africa Strategy, with an initial focus on “Blue Lifelines for a Secure Sahel” and Mangrove Capital Africa.
  • Work with staff and ambassadors to establish a broad envelope of political and operational partners and alliances across the region, identifying and opening up opportunities for resourcing Africa-wide initiatives.
  • In coordination with the wider fundraising and technical team and partners, identify and engage with donors to enable finance of a portfolio of programme concepts, driving forward our donor and partnership relationships and converting opportunities available into concrete action to enable Wetlands to drive the change we want to see.
  • Engage with partners in Europe and Africa to help create an enabling policy and investment environment in countries, companies, regional conventions and donor institutions.

Working relations

INSIDE Wetlands International

  • Integral staff member of the African network of offices.
  • Works closely with each of the three sub-regional Directors (West Coast, Sahel and Eastern Africa) as well as with the global Resource Development Manager and European Fundraising Coordinator.
  • Partners, donors and other key stakeholders.
  • Regarding the BLiSS initiative, there will be closest engagement with the Director of the Sahel Office (based in Bamako) and the Senior Advocacy Officer there.
  • Regarding Mangrove Capital Africa, there will be close engagement with the directors of the West Coast and Eastern Africa offices and project offices in those regions.

OUTSIDE Wetlands International

  • Partners, donors and other key stakeholders


The successful candidate will have demonstrated experience and networks in mobilising partnerships and finance for complex, large-scale programmes that connect science, policy and practice in the field of natural resource management in Africa. S/he will have active, current networks in Europe and internationally, will be highly organized and used to working within and across different cultures, with excellent communication skills.

To be considered for this role you will ideally come to us with experience working in a fundraising setting and a good understanding of the important elements of managing corporate relationships and strategic partnerships. You will ideally have experience adopting a systematic approach to generating and managing leads, and a passionate for the conservation issues at the heart of Wetlands International.

Education and experience

  • Relevant education to a minimum of Masters level in relevant field
  • At least 10 years of relevant experience in an internationally operating organisation in Africa.
  • Demonstrated successful experience in acquiring sizeable funds from different donor communities, such as trusts, foundations, governmental agencies, corporate companies, and relevant EU institutions.
  • Management experience; demonstrated management capability (with experience in field and management roles).
  • Experience of working in a project based/funded organization, and/or
  • Experience of working in a technical or science-based organization, and/or
  • Experience of working in an international (environmental) NGO.
  • Working knowledge of relevant IT systems.
  • Fluent language skills (written and oral) in French and English.
  • Existing donor and partner networks relevant to Wetlands International’s field of work in Africa.
  • Effective interpersonal skills with a facilitative and service oriented style.
  • Ability to write clearly and persuasively to a wide range of different target donors and supporters.
  • Ability to work across cultures.

Core competences

  • Develops and uses systems to organize and keep track of information or work progress.
  • Considers the strategic direction of client focus
  • Builds coalitions, strategic relationships and networks
  • Communicates a compelling vision
  • Strategically expands networks
  • Plans and organizes at a strategic level
  • Ensures strategic stewardship of resources

Other aspects

The Partnerships Manager will operate within the context of a global team of fundraisers while being an integral staff member of the African network of offices. S/he will work closely with each of the three subregional Directors (West Coast, Sahel and Eastern Africa) as well as with the global Resource Development Manager and European Fundraising Coordinator. Regarding the BLiSS initiative, there will be closest engagement with the Director of the Sahel Office (based in Bamako) and the Senior Advocacy Officer there. Engaging in strategic regional and sub-regional meetings and helping to shape programme development, s/he will work with programme staff from and Africa team and Global Office, as well as partners, donors and other key stakeholders. The role will have an external orientation, and will also include regular extensive travel within Africa, supporting all sub-regional offices.

How to apply

To apply for this post, please check the OxfordHR website manager/(available per April 10th) and send the documents requested for to [email protected]