Associate, Food Initiative, Africa
Job Type Full Time
Qualification BA/BSc/HND
Experience 4 years
Location Nairobi
Job Field NGO/Non-Profit
The Associate will provide support for the team as it moves into an exciting period of execution and expansion. This role is intended to strengthen the teams’ capabilities in; impact investing and specifically in supporting SME’s to expand their operations. The role requires a candidate that has strong analytical skills and knowledge in cutting-edge measurement and evaluation. The role will also contribute to the implementation of the Food team’s overall strategy through grant management, knowledge management and project management.

This position is only open to those with valid working status in Kenya.

Principal Duties and Responsibilities

  • Contribute to the development and implementation of the Food team’s overall strategy and activities, with a focus on East Africa, through tactical and project management tasks.
  • Work with Food team in Nairobi on the management of a portfolio of grants within the food initiative, which includes understanding the capacity and effectiveness of potential grantees, research potential grantees, designing and writing grant memos and other key documents, maintaining grantee relationships, participating in site visits and other monitoring activities.
  • Perform high-quality analyses drawing on a range of sources and methods to provide nuanced analysis so that key hypotheses are fully tested and that the strategy is dynamically reviewed
  • Support the team in surfacing cutting edge measurement approaches and provide guidance to grantees and partners in implementation of measurement approached.
  • Working closely with grantees and partners contribute towards systematic learning and reflection processes that lead to continuous adaptive management.
  • Be a resource for the Food Team and its grantees in: pipeline development of appropriate SMEs, business modeling, due diligence and quantitative analyses of SMEs, and market intelligence.
  • Stay on top of developments in the field – new players, key events, new information being generated, policy movements, important upcoming events, etc.
  • Monitor and draft relevant knowledge management products: search and scan reports; research, write, and edit original reports, commentaries, and issue briefs on agriculture, nutrition and energy nexus.
  • Prepare documents for internal communications (quarterly reviews, reports) and external convenings (event organization, briefing reports, talking points, input into speeches, etc.) as needed.
  • Represent the foundation at meetings and events and provide remarks where necessary as a member of the broader program team, work collaboratively with other foundation offices and entities to deliver the mission and vision.
  • Schedule own travel, prepare own expense reports as well as manage files, mail, correspondence, etc.
  • As part of the Africa Region Office team, participate actively in team events, including but not limited to planning and facilitating execution.
  • Support the MD in the management of the budget and forecasts, prepares materials for meetings.
  • Support special projects as designated by the MD.
    Qualifications and Skills 

Technical Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree ideally in a relevant field.
  • At least 4 years professional experience, preferably in SME acceleration/incubation or private sector development or supply chain management or running a food/agribusiness enterprise.
  • Experience in employing market-based solutions to address complex social and development challenges will be an added advantage.
  • Experience in Impact Investing, Development Finance Institutions and/or grant-making institutions will be an added advantage.
  • Experience in East Africa ideally in the agriculture / food industry will be an added advantage.
  • Strong business analytical skills required with a track record in using data and analytics to inform business decision-making will be an added advantage.
  • Experience with cutting-edge measurement and evaluation will be an added advantage.
  • Good project management skills; manages their own time well to successfully meet deadlines; has a sense of urgency and takes responsibility for their work and how it impacts the rest of the team; is able to juggle multiple tasks simultaneously; is able to multi-task and works well under pressure; employs attention to detail with their work and has high standards for accomplishing their work.
  • Experience in communicating externally, either in large groups, or in smaller engagements for representational and influencing purposes will be an added advantage.
  • Ability to travel, particularly within East Africa, and at times in challenging rural conditions.
  • Computer proficiency in MS Word, Outlook, Excel, PowerPoint and Internet search skills and ability to learn new applications quickly.
  • Communication: Excellent interpersonal abilities; excellent listening skills; writing and verbal skills; assertiveness in presenting ideas; able to present ideas to a range of stakeholders in a clear and compelling way.
  • Team-Work: Leverage functional and substantive expertise organizationally; demonstrates inclusiveness, collaboration.
  • Leadership: Ability to work independently; demonstrates accountability.
  • Strategic Ability: Anticipates future opportunities and consequences, demonstrates innovative approach to work, ability to organize multiple ideas into coherent plan.
  • Execution: Strong project management skills; meets deadlines; sense of urgency and responsibility; ability to multi-task and work under pressure; detail oriented.
  • Decision-Making: Ability to evaluate risks and opportunities; uses analytical and problem-solving skills; takes initiative and drives for results; able to prioritize.
  • Partnership and Relationship Building: Strong professional representation of the Foundation, intercultural knowledge and appreciation, strategic partnership building.


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About Rockerfeller

The Rockefeller Foundation has a unique opportunity to play a central role in fixing food loss-an eminently fixable problem. Just as we deployed resources to increase production when there simply was not enough food to feed humanity, we now have an opportunity-and an imperative-to ensure that the food that is grown is consumed. This is why the Rockefeller Foundation launched the YieldWise Initiative in January 2016.