Head of Programmes

Head of Programmes

Ad type



Experienced Professional

Head of Programmes

  • Location

    Mthatha, Eastern Cape, South Africa

  • Qualification

    Experienced Professional

  • Industry

  • Date Posted

    3 weeks ago

  • Apply Before

    12 Apr, 2024

Location:  Based in Nqileni Village (at least 70% of the time)  

Position type: Full-time/ permanent   

Remuneration: Salary will be competitive within the NPO sector  

Please note:  We encourage all applicants to review our  website prior to applying.    


About the role   

The Equality Collective (EC) is on the lookout for a dynamic activist and leader to enhance our team. This role encompasses broad management duties and, in collaboration with the Executive Director, this person will be responsible for the general management, leadership, and development of our team to achieve the objectives of EC’s strategy.   

The successful candidate will take the lead in providing substantial direction and support for the anticipated growth of our local government and right to water initiatives. This expansion, in partnership with three other rural justice organisations, will extend our efforts to two additional regions within Amathole District Municipality (ADM). Additionally, this individual will serve as a crucial liaison with government and community stakeholders.   

This role will be pivotal for nurturing a culture of self-management and self-leadership, while also developing practices of accountability—both horizontal and vertical. The candidate will be key in promoting a passion for personal growth, our work, our team, and the communities we serve, all within a framework of excellence, constructive advocacy, and collaborative effort.   

We are in search of a candidate who not only shares our core values but is also enthusiastic about bringing these principles to life in our everyday work.   

We are a burgeoning NGO in the 'start-up' phase and seek a candidate with energy and dynamism who is willing and able to build this organisation and demonstrates flexibility by tackling a variety of tasks beyond a conventional job description.   

About the Equality Collective  

The Equality Collective is an activist, community-embedded organisation based in Mbhashe Local Municipality in the rural Eastern Cape’s Amathole District Municipality. Our vision is to have thriving communities collectively participating in a just and caring society, and our mission is to be innovative in the advancement of access to justice, build the capacity and infrastructure for collective participation and action, and share research and learning. This, in turn, informs the strategic focus of our work on achieving improved access to socio-economic rights, enhanced responsive governance and accountability, and a strong, more active citizenry.  

We provide the support (research, technical, and organising support) for the collective participation and action of marginalised communities. Equality Collective campaigns to date involve the right to early childhood development ( Real Reform for ECD ) and the right to water.  

What you’ll do  

Programme planning, management, and implementation of tasks:   

  • Together with the Executive Director and Head of Research and Advocacy, lead the development and evolution of strategic plans and budgets for all programmes.  
  • Provide leadership and support to the team to achieve strategic objectives.   
  • Ensure quality implementation and documentation of impact and value across all programmes/projects.  
  • Ensure that programme initiatives are sensitive to and reflective of the communities served and of local customs, processes, and procedures.   

Advocacy and influence  

  • Understand and navigate the local political landscape to effectively advocate for community needs.  
  • Influence policymaking and decision-making processes at various levels through strategic communication, campaign activities, and partnerships.  

Partnerships, collaboration, and networking   

  • Together with the Head of Research and Advocacy, develop strategies for constructive advocacy, deep community engagement, collaboration, and collective power.   
  • Develop and maintain strong relationships with a broad range of stakeholders, including beneficiaries, community leaders, councillors, traditional leaders, government officials, and funders.  
  • Initiate and strengthen our relationship with strategic networks and alliances.   
  • Represent EC and participate in network and alliance meetings, events, and forums at the provincial and national levels.   
  • Ensure clear, consistent, and effective communication both internally and externally.  

Programme reviews, monitoring, evaluation, learning, and reporting   

  • Conduct monitoring and evaluation to ensure strategic alignment and impactful implementation.  
  • Working with the Head of Research and Advocacy, oversee community-data systems and social audits and conduct relevant analyses.   
  • Deliver quality and timely programme and project performance reports.  
  • Promote evidence-based learning and reforms.  

Fundraising and donor relationship management   

  • Support the Executive Director and Head of Research and Advocacy in producing compelling grant proposals and reports.  

Financial and administration management  

  • Oversee activities and work plans to ensure cost-effective attainment of objectives.  
  • Handle financial requests and manage expenditure in line with EC policies and budgets.  
  • Handle admin requests and operational procedures in line with EC policies.   

Human resources management   

  • Together with the Head of Research and Advocacy, lead the co-creation of quarterly work plans with the team.  
  • Cultivate an empowering work environment that encourages self-management, accountability, passion, and excellence.  
  • Foster a culture of innovation within the team to explore new solutions to complex challenges.  
  • Participate in recruitment and performance management processes.  
  • Provide training, coaching, and mentoring to staff to build their capabilities.  


What we hope you’ll bring   

  • Bachelor’s degree in management, law, social sciences, or development studies; postgraduate degree in a relevant discipline preferred.   
  • Demonstrated training or experience in project planning and management, local government, governance, anti-corruption, civic participation and action, movement building, accountability, and monitoring and evaluation.   
  • A minimum of five years’ relevant work experience for someone with a postgraduate qualification, and seven years for someone with an undergraduate degree. This should include work experience in the NGO sector, with at least two years of management experience.   
  • Sound and up-to-date knowledge of rights-based, law, and development concepts, methodologies, and techniques including demonstrated understanding of local government and rural community issues.   
  • Sound knowledge of the political, social, economic, and historic environment that the Equality Collective operates in.   
  • Cultural competence and sensitivity to the traditions and practices of the rural communities served.   
  • Demonstrated skills of being a self-directed worker who embodies the skills of self-awareness, listening and empathy, facilitation, empowerment, adaptability, conflict resolution, integrity, coaching and mentoring, and systems thinking.    
  • Demonstrated skills in coalition and partnership building and donor and government relationships.   
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills required.   
  • Good knowledge of monitoring and evaluation methodologies, including, preferably, the ability to work with qualitative and quantitative data. Ability to use data management systems such as Power BI will be considered an asset.    
  • Basic knowledge of finance and accounting systems required.   
  • Comfort navigating a startup non-profit environment, including the ability to manage multiple tasks effectively and to work well in a growing organisation.   
  • Fluency in written and spoken English and isiXhosa.   

Deadline and how to apply  

Applications will be accepted until 12 April 2024 or until the position is filled.   

Your application should consist of a maximum two-page resume, a short motivation letter and a written response to these three questions:   

  1. Expansion of Right to Water Initiative: The Equality Collective is looking to extend our right to water advocacy to two new areas within the Amathole District Municipality. Describe your initial strategy for undertaking this expansion. What key factors would you consider, and what steps would you take to begin this process?  
  2. Building a coalition: A core objective of ours is to forge a strong coalition of individuals and civil society organisations across the Amathole District Municipality. Outline how you would initiate and nurture the development of such a coalition. What should the coalition’s goals be? What methods would you employ to engage potential members and maintain their involvement?  
  3. Understanding of 'collective': The term ‘collective’ is central to our identity at the Equality Collective. In your own words, what does the ‘collective’ in ‘Equality Collective’ signify to you? How does this concept influence your approach to collaborative work and community engagement?  

Your answers should provide a snapshot of your initial thoughts and approach to the challenges we face. Should you be shortlisted, there will be an opportunity to expand on these ideas further. Please limit your responses to a maximum of 350 words per question. We are looking for clarity, conciseness, and a glimpse into your strategic and problem-solving approach.   

Please fill out your application for this position here:    https://forms.gle/RFxtqkNvEfmF4jeK9 . If you have any trouble using this link please email us at  tess@equalitycollective.org.za .  

Please note that only short-listed candidates will hear from us.   

We appreciate your interest in joining our team and your commitment to rural justice.