Job Title: US Grant Specialist
Location: Alexandria VA
This position is responsible for the overall administration of the US grants program. The position executes all aspects of the grant-making process, coordinating closely with the regional program coordinators to ensure their engagement with the grant partners in their regions and contributions to the grant management process. The position also serves as the organizational point person for receiving, consolidating and conveying information from US grantees internally and externally, and supports the provision of technical assistance. The position reports to the Director of US Programs.
Essential Duties and Responsibilities:
- Contribute to the design and ongoing upgrade of grant administration systems.
- Ensure timely response to all correspondence and inquiries; rapid turn-around on grant decisions; efficient preparation for legal review and general timeliness across all stages of the grant process.
- Ensure the preparation of clear, comprehensive and evaluative project summaries by regional coordinators.
- Present all US projects to the Project Approval Committee, and respond to PAC inquiries as needed.
- Ensure that all domestic grants are appropriately screened for risk issues.
- Review program and financial reports; determine if reporting is satisfactory or further information or other remedial action is required, document the quality and completeness of reports, and provide feedback to grantees.
- Negotiate the terms of IRUSA grant agreements, within the scope of defined authority.
- Prepare grant agreements for legal review and approval and secure executive approval.
- Process payment requests.
- Maintain program financial and administrative records and tracking tools, ensuring that information is accessible and up-to-date at all times.
- Contribute to the development of a monitoring protocol for funded organizations.
- Develop and manage a monitoring schedule (in person or desk audit) for all funded organizations; coordinate monitoring schedules with relevant staff; conduct in-person monitoring of funded organizations, as well as information-gathering visits.
- Ensure that all monitoring is documented, any recommendations are conveyed to grantees, and that IRUSA receives action plans and follow-up reporting if needed.
Environmental analysis and information-sharing
- Gather and summarize information regarding the issues the grantees are addressing, the systemic challenges they face, and possible solutions.
- Serve in a knowledge management role, formally sharing information gathered from grantees with IRUSA staff and key stakeholders, ensuring that knowledge flows across the IRUSA grantee network.
- Represent IRUSA externally, conveying the domestic concerns addressed by IRUSA, the observations of funded partners, and the programmatic solutions.
- Identify technical assistance needs and work closely with the US Network Manager to develop appropriate interventions.
- Support the US Network Manager in organizing workshops, conferences and technical assistance training for US grantees.
- Convey respect and understanding for the challenges faces by local partners, and appreciation for their contributions.
- Communicate with prospective grantees with clarity and tact, and an astute understanding of cultural and political nuance.
- Contribute to the development of comprehensive guidance material to prospective grantees, clarifying eligibility, IRUSA priorities, administrative requirements, proposal guidance, budget preparation guidance, and other guidance that may be needed.
- Coach prospective grantees through the grant application process and other administrative processes required by IRUSA.
- Convey concerns with regard to grantee performance with honesty, firmness and respect, and establish clear expectations of mutual accountability.
- Develop and administer an enhanced process for conveying the thanks and appreciation of Islamic Relief for the contributions of grantees to US society.
Strategy and Planning
- Contribute to the development of domestic grant-making priorities and strategies, and manage the portfolio mix of US grants to align with domestic priorities and strategies.
- Participate in department planning, budget preparation, and coordination work.
Other Organizational Responsibilities
- Coordinate with regional program staff to ensure seamless and consistent program administration, from vetting of prospective grantees to monitoring and recognition.
- Participate in meetings, working groups, collaboration processes and other departmental or organization-wide efforts.
- Communicate program parameters and status to relevant colleagues.
- Contribute positively to the culture of Islamic Relief USA.
- Other duties as required.
Qualifications and Competencies:
- Minimum 3 years’ relevant work experience plus Bachelor’s Degree in related field, or equivalent combination of work and experience.
- Superb written and spoken communication skills; ability to:
- listen carefully and grasp substance, tone and nuance.
- convey issues in compelling terms.
- deliver crisp presentations that clarify critical issues.
- clearly explain complex procedures and ideas.
- tailor written and spoken communication for different audiences.
- address difficult issues honestly and diplomatically.
- Highly responsive to grant-seekers and other stakeholders; demonstrated ability to understand and address needs and concerns in a timely and thorough manner.
- Analytical ability; capacity to assess the alignment of programs to organizational goals, values and strategies; skilled in synthesizing data and information; capacity to undertake technical analysis of program activities; capacity to grasp complex concepts.
- Experience working in a grant-making setting; understanding of the tools and processes used for this type of work.
- Superb organizational skills; demonstrated track record of creating and maintaining accurate records and data tracking tools.
- Familiarity with budgets and financial statements.
- Ability to work effectively in a faith-based setting, including in interfaith and multi-faith partnerships.
- Commitment to the values of IRUSA, and the ability to translate these values into programmatic terms.
- Awareness of the social, economic and environmental issues critical in the US context, and willingness to learn more.
At Islamic Relief USA we are committed to safeguarding and protecting all individuals we come into contact with through our work. IRUSA representatives must adhere to its organizational values: Sincerity, Excellence, Compassion, Social Justice, and Custodianship. In accordance with these values, IRUSA operates and enforces policies on Safeguarding, Code of Ethics, and Anti-Harassment and Discrimination.