PlayMatters reimagines childhood for refugees. It will bring play-based learning to 800,000 children across Ethiopia, Uganda and a to be confirmed third country. It will redefine education and cultivate a generation of lifelong builders. PlayMatters is inspired by LEGO Foundation’s call to challenge the status quo, to offer children the quality education they dream of. Children are not gaining the skills they need, teachers are under-supported and parents are overwhelmed. The systems built to serve them are failing them. PlayMatters proudly offers something different. It will be delivered by a coalition with a track record of thinking and delivering differently. We bring three distinct characteristics:
- OUTCOMES. Everything we do is fueled by the social, emotional, cognitive, physical, creative and resilience outcomes we seek. We know learning happens when children are at the center and teachers, parents and the system surrounding them embrace children’s agency and have not only skills and resources, but the motivation to drive change.
- RESEARCH AND LEARNING. Effective delivery requires both rigor and a big heart. With LEGO Foundation, PlayMatters will generate scientific evidence that can transform our understanding of play and learning for refugees in East Africa and around the world.
- THOUGHT LEADERSHIP. The LEGO Foundation Humanitarian Initiative offers an opportunity to deliver and comes with the responsibility to lead. Our consortium’s members have a record mobilizing others.
The Communications Specialist will be a member of the PlayMatters regional project team based in Kampala, Uganda and work closely with the global communications teams based in New York. The position will lead on information and communication products to engage internal and external stakeholders on PlayMatters activities with refugees and host communities in diverse settings across Uganda and Ethiopia, and possibly one additional country in East Africa. The Communications Specialist will work closely with the Regional Project Coordinator and each country office to collate, analyze and share information and tailor communication products and messages to various audiences.
- Working with the Global Communications Director, develop and implement the PlayMatters regional and in-country communication plan, ensuring IRC internal communication policies and protocols are appropriately reflected.
- Act as a focal point for communications with PlayMatters consortium partners and provide consortium leadership in ensuring all actors are aligned with and effectively implementing communications deliverables and branding expectations.
- Work with Global Communications Partnership team to collect and develop communications materials (e.g. media stories, photographs, video footage for external news outlets and social media) to raising project visibility via earned media and across IRC digital channels.
- Lead the creation of communication materials, content, and products on behalf of the PlayMatters Regional Project Team (e.g. fact sheets, case studies, powerpoints, graphics, social media content, and newsletters) aimed at raising awareness about the project with key stakeholders.
- Develop and maintain project information, communication and branding policies and protocols in consultation with relevant focal points.
- Respond to internal information requests from staff in international offices, partners and donors in consultation with respective program staff/supervisor.
- Work with partnerships team to prepare briefing packs for donor and other visitors to PlayMatters field activities.
- Track, research and analyze information on key areas of interest as per the programmatic requirements or assignments from Project Director.
- Advise the PlayMatters Senior Management Team on innovative means and ways of communicating internally as they respond to staff’s mutual concerns, issues, announcements etc.
- Support research and writing of briefing materials and advocacy papers in coordination with the Sr. Technical Advisory and Policy & Advocacy Advisor
- Ensure PlayMatters work is positively reflected amongst wider public by capitalizing on the regional and in-country organized public & programmatic events (e.g. ceremonies, commemorations etc.) as needed and appropriate.
Key Working Relationships:
- Position Reports to: Project Director, PlayMatters and is managed in partnership with the Global Communications Director
- Position supervises: n/a
- Indirect Reporting: Global Communications Director
Other Internal and/or external contacts:
PlayMatters regional project team, IRC country program staff; and relevant IRC regional and headquarters units, such as Communications and Advocacy;
PlayMatters consortium partner focal points: War Child Holland; Plan Denmark; Innovations for Poverty Action; Behavioral Insights Team; and Ubongo;
- At least 5 years of relevant communications experience with 3 years’ work experience with any INGO in a similar role
- Experience in collecting and developing content from the field, producing compelling communications materials and working with media
- Excellent verbal and non-verbal communication skills, including the ability to communicate effectively in a multi-cultural environment with international and national colleagues and partners.
- Fluency in English is required and strong writing skills
- Solid organizational skills: the ability to be flexible and work well under pressure, dealing with competing priorities, in a fast-paced team environment.
- Detail-oriented and good multi-tasking abilities to meet multiple deadlines
- Strong understanding of humanitarian crises and contexts in eastern Africa is a plus
- Strong team player
- Excellent graphic design skills, including ability to distill large amounts of information into aesthetically pleasing, donor-compliant and engaging materials for a wide audience.