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Save the Children

Save the Children


Position: Program Development Specialist
Job Time: Full-Time
Job Type: Contract
Place of Work: Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Posted date: 1 month ago
Application Deadline: Submition date is over


The Program Development Specialist will work with the Senior Program Development Manager and Head of Programme Development to proactively seek out and disseminate information on new funding opportunities; cultivate excellent relationships with donor agencies, partners, and Save the Children Member offices globally. He/She will facilitate program development for the Ethiopia Country Office through identification of opportunities for funding, donor research and relations, drafting proposals and supporting project design, and ensuring proposals are compliant with internal and donor standards. The position will also support research and documentation of lessons learned and ensures utilization of evidence in the design process and builds other teams’ capacity to develop high-quality proposals.


Reports to: Senior Program Development Manager

Dimensions: Save the Children works in 8 regions in Ethiopia with a current staff of approximately 1,600 and an annual expenditure of approximately $80 million.

Staff directly reporting to this post: None


Donor research and relationship building

  •  Conduct donor landscape analysis and support the drafting and management of donor engagement plans for priority donors
  • Assist in seeking and tracking donor intelligence on prospective new opportunities or partnerships; particularly for long-term funding opportunities 
  • Closely coordinate with the Senior Program Development Manager to cultivate relationships with potential partners and donors for strategic funding opportunities

 Program development

  • Facilitate go/no-go decisions for the CO senior leadership to determine if to pursue funding opportunities
  • Support and coordinate among technical and field teams to design cost-effective, innovative, and high-quality programs to serve children in Ethiopia in development and emergency contexts
  • Lead the development and coordination of high-quality concept notes and proposals aligned with Save the Children’s country strategy for Ethiopia and in line with donor priorities by identifying and clarifying opportunities and needs; studying calls for proposals, and sharing information with relevant sector teams as well as drafting/developing proposal sections
  • Work closely with the Budget Development team to ensure the alignment of the budget, implementation plan, budget narrative, and technical narrative sections of all proposals
  • Track and ensure the incorporation of reviewers’ feedback into concept notes and proposal documents, and ensure alignment to other active Save the Children led awards/projects or proposals
  • Conduct detailed quality review of proposals for technical and operational soundness and compliance with donor and agency requirements
  • Communicate with relevant Save the Children Member contacts throughout the proposal design process and ensure timely reviews and approval of concept notes and proposals before donor submission
  • Participate in needs assessments as necessary for proposal/concept note development and ensure findings are documented with specific analysis of children
  • Work closely with the Budget Development team to ensure the alignment of the budget, implementation plan, budget narrative, and technical narrative sections of all proposals
  • Assist in regular communication and training on program design processes and requirements 

Documentation and learning

  • Maintain a detailed funding tracker for the country office and feed it into monthly portfolio performance analysis
  • Support the development of capacity statements on SC’s experience in specific sectors and sub-sectors to support positioning for future funding
  • Capture and document learning from ongoing projects to be applied to project design
  • Ensure that all documents are properly filed within the award management system and country office shared drives. Secure all needed approvals before submission. This includes ensuring documents are posted on AMS as applicable, maintaining proposal libraries, documenting lessons learned, etc.
  • Maintain up-to-date knowledge of relevant government, Save the Children member and donor guidelines and ensure their compliance in proposal development

SKILLS AND BEHAVIOURS (our Values in Practice)

  • Accountability: • Holds self-accountable for making decisions, managing resources efficiently, achieving and role modeling Save the Children values
  • Holds the team and partners accountable to deliver on their responsibilities - giving them the freedom to deliver in the best way they see fit, providing the necessary development to improve performance, and applying appropriate consequences when results are not achieved


  • Sets ambitious and challenging goals for themselves (and their team), takes responsibility for their own personal development, and encourages others to do the same
  • Widely shares their personal vision for Save the Children, engages and motivates others
  • Future orientated thinks strategically


  • Builds and maintains effective relationships, with their team, colleagues, members, and external partners, and supporters
  • Values diversity, sees it as a source of competitive strength
  • Approachable, good listener, easy to talk to


  • Develops and encourages new and innovative solutions
  • Willing to take disciplined risks


  • Honest, encourages openness and transparency


  • Minimum BA Degree in international development, international relations, social science, business, or a related field.
  • 8 years related experience in an NGO or similar environment, preferably including experience-developing programs for children.
  • Demonstrated experience working across the full project management cycle.
  • Practical proposal writing management experience for donors such as EU, USAID, SIDA, NORAD, GAC, BMZ, SDC, Gates Foundation, UNOCHA, UNHCR, BPRM, etc. Experience working on large proposals in a consortium is a plus.
  • Excellent writing skills
  • Proven ability to track, manage and represent large and diverse funding portfolios
  • Excellent analytical, organization, communication, and management skills. Must have attention to detail and ability to multi-task
  • Experience in Save the Children’s priority sectors: Heath, Nutrition, Education, WASH, FS/L, Child Protection, Child Rights Governance, Migration in development and/or emergencies
  • Highly self-motivated and energetic, with a go-getter attitude and the resourcefulness to solve problems effectively
  • Ability to provide support and training to staff and partners on donor requirements
  • Knowledge of project design methods and tools (including assessments, logical frameworks, and work planning) and a strong appreciation for innovation and partnership as part of project development
  • Good analytical skills with the ability to positively influence cross-departmental and cross-sector working, and ability to work both independently and as well as a team player
  • Strong results orientation, with the ability to meet deadlines and produce high-quality products
  • Positive attitude and willingness to learn and work in a context of people with various ethnic and religious backgrounds
  • Ability and willingness to change work practices and hours, and work with proposal development teams to meet deadlines
  • Strong interpersonal and communication skills with the ability to express ideas and concepts clearly and persuasively with internal and external stakeholders
  • Commitment to and understanding of Save the Children’s aims, values, and principles including rights-based approaches  

The Organisation

We employ approximately 25,000 people across the globe and work on the ground in over 100 countries to help children affected by crises, or those that need better healthcare, education, and child protection. We also campaign and advocate at the highest levels to realize the right of children and to ensure their voices are heard.  

We are working towards three breakthroughs in how the world treats children by 2030:

  • No child dies from preventable causes before their 5th birthday
  • All children learn from quality basic education and that,
  • Violence against children is no longer tolerated 

We know that great people make a great organization and that our employees play a crucial role in helping us achieve our ambitions for children.  We value our people and offer a meaningful and rewarding career, along with a collaborative and inclusive environment where ambition, creativity, and integrity are highly valued.

 We need to keep children safe so our selection process, which includes rigorous background checks, reflects our commitment to the protection of children from abuse.

All employees are expected to carry out their duties following our global anti-harassment policy