Grants Officer – Africa Programs | International Crane Foundation

International Crane Foundation


Grants Officer – Africa Programs

The International Crane Foundation is recruiting an experienced grant professional that can secure medium to large grants for our programs in Africa. Over the past 45 years, the Foundation has grown from the dream of two college students to a world-renowned conservation effort to save the world’s cranes and the flyways and habitats they frequent. This is a new position designed to assist in our growing African programs.

What is it like to work at the International Crane Foundation? Prepare to be surrounded by people who are passionate about our mission, dedicated to the organization and engaged with their fellow staff and associates. Our team is committed to fulfilling the dream started 45+ years ago. This position offers a competitive salary ($65,000 -$73,000) and an exceptional benefit package. While the International Crane Foundation is located in beautiful Baraboo, Wisconsin, a brief 45-minute drive from Madison, this position is designed to allow working onsite or telecommuting with planned trips to the Baraboo campus.

Position Summary:

The International Crane Foundation works worldwide to secure endangered cranes and the ecosystems, watersheds and flyways on which they depend. In Africa, the Foundation works in partnership with the Endangered Wildlife Trust across the continent, with research and conservation programs in 12 countries and regional offices with local partners in Uganda, Kenya, Zambia and South Africa. Our programs focus on a range of conservation issues including sustainable water management, protected area stewardship, conservation on agricultural lands, climate change adaptation and conservation-friendly livelihood development.

The Grants Officer – Africa supports the International Crane Foundation’s mission by fully managing grants to fund our Africa Program from foundations, corporations and government sources. The Grants Officer leads grant researching, writing, review, submission, reporting, donor communications and renewal processes, in close collaboration with Foundation staff based in Africa and our headquarters in Baraboo, Wisconsin. The Grants Officer – Africa also collaborates closely with International Crane Foundation senior leadership, including development, finance and administration, to determine priority submissions where multiple projects are eligible, track program revenue and expenses budgets linked to grants, and coordinate grant submission with individual donor and prospect relationships.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Lead and oversee the International Crane Foundation’s comprehensive grants program with respect to funding needs for our Africa Regional Program and projects/partners across the continent.
  • Engage in regular, effective work planning and fundraising meetings as an integral member of the Africa Regional Program team to understand their needs and priorities.
  • Research new grant sources for mission match with International Crane Foundation programs and funding needs, communicating opportunities with program staff and directors.
  • Cultivate relationships with large, private and corporate foundations and government agencies to increase the Foundation’s competitive advantage for larger grants (>$100,000), multi-partner grants and bilateral/multilateral funds.
  • Write, edit and package well-crafted proposals that include letters of inquiry, compelling project descriptions and detailed budgets, logical frameworks, progress/stewardship reports, grant agreements, and other materials for donors and prospective supporters.
  • Manage each stage of the grant process with program and finance staff, from the proposal development stage to proposal submission, notification and reporting, and acknowledgment.
  • Working closely with program staff, ensure successful grants are managed in accordance with donor specifications, tracking and reporting on any variations to output and budgets.

Additional Responsibilities:

  • Maintain and regularly update an archive of project proposals to reflect the current thinking and approaches for individual projects, including language that can be used or easily modified for new proposals to increase the efficiency of new proposal development.
  • Periodic travel to Africa project sites to enhance program knowledge aimed at improving grant writing and management.
  • Maintain portfolio of select major donors and potential donors, aimed at advancing personal connections.
  • Use Grant Hub to track and record grant and program activity, maintain lists, perform information queries, generate reports and maintain foundation deadlines and stewardship schedules.
  • Provide occasional editing assistance to development, marketing and communications teams related to the Africa Regional Program.

Qualifications Required:

  • Master’s degree or equivalent strongly preferred but not required.
  • Five years of grant writing experience including researching grant sources, writing grants and reporting.
  • Ability to assimilate complex and technical information from various sources and prepare clear, persuasive communication using various writing styles to meet the needs of the donor/granter communications.
  • Demonstrated success in securing and managing large (>$100K) foundation or government grants.
  • Knowledge and understanding of conservation, biology, ecology or related field. Familiarity with livelihoods, community development and links between conservation and poverty alleviation desirable.
  • Excellent grammar and written communication skills, including the ability to draft, proofread and edit grants and reports.

Critical Skillsets for this Position:

  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office software.
  • Familiarity with the Open Standards for the Practice of Conservation.
  • Ability to prioritize, use time efficiently and effectively, and make strategic decisions.
  • Ability to work independently and manage time to meet deadlines.
  • Thoroughness and attention to detail.
  • Excellent verbal communication skills.
  • Ability to research, assess relevance and analyze issues from multiple perspectives, assimilate information, reach sound conclusions, make appropriate decisions and recommendations.
  • Ability to work cooperatively with others to develop and implement solutions to achieve mutually desired results.
  • Ability to handle multiple simultaneous demands/projects by organizing and prioritizing competing deadlines, and completing work accurately and on time.
  • Ability to work the number and schedule of hours needed to accomplish assigned tasks and regular job responsibilities.
  • Demonstrated skill working as a constructive member of a team, including the free sharing of information and technical expertise as needed.
  • Respect and sensitivity for others, including international cultural competency, trustworthiness, and strong work ethic and integrity.
  • Ability to adapt quickly and effectively to changes in work objectives, processes and technology.

Physical Abilities and Work Environment:

The physical abilities and work environment characteristics described below are representative of those an employee encounters while performing the essential functions of this position. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Physical Abilities:

  • Ability to use hands and fingers to type.
  • Ability to talk and hear.

Work Environment:

  • This position is based in the USA, but the incumbent will report to the VP-International in Africa currently based in South Africa and maintain regular, effective communications with that supervisor.
  • May work remotely (telecommuting) most days from a suitable location with sufficient communication (wireless and phone) to perform the duties required for this position.
  • Must be willing and able to travel to the International Crane Foundation Headquarters office in Baraboo, Wisconsin, on an as-needed basis.

To Apply:  Please send Resume and Cover Letter to  Please put “Grants Officer” in the subject line.