About the Livelihood Impact Fund
The Livelihood Impact Fund (LIF) was started in 2021 to meaningfully and durably improve the lives of the global poor. The programs and leaders we support seek to increase people’s ability to support themselves and their families by providing them with skills, capital, and opportunities.
The Livelihood Impact Fund is planning to give away and invest about $25m in 2022, with the majority of the funding focused on sub-Saharan Africa.
The Livelihood Impact Lab is our program which provides donations and capacity building support to African-based organizations. The Lab focuses on organizations past the seed stage (typically with a budget between $300k and $1M, 1 to 5 years old) to expand their breadth and reach through multi-year, unrestricted funding (typically $100-150,000 per year for 3 years) and capacity building support (on average two hours per week of consulting support from our team).
The current Lab portfolio encompasses 11 grantees across Africa (Ghana, Nigeria, Uganda, Kenya, Malawi and Zimbabwe): six operating in the agricultural space, one in entrepreneurship and four in workforce development. We expect to add three to four grantees in 2022.
Learn more: https://www.livelihoodimpactfund.org/
The Fund was founded in 2021 by Dr. Lisa Minsky-Primus and Yaron Minsky (the Fund’s funders who are actively involved) and Jeremy Hockenstein (the founder of Digital Divide Data, a social enterprise in Africa and Southeast Asia). The Lab’s team is composed of seven experienced social and private sector leaders who are consultants to the organizations in the Lab. The Associate will report to Jeremy and work closely with him and the team of consultants.
About this role
We are excited to be hiring for our first full-time position in the Lab. The Associate will provide operational support across the team and help shape our systems on pipeline management, capacity building, internal knowledge management and other areas as we grow. Given that we are a new organization, we expect this person to grow and expand their role over time as the organization develops. You will work in a team of entrepreneurial personalities; this role is ideal if you are self-driven, take initiative and manage your workload confidently.
Responsibilities will include:
Support organizational capacity building and relationship building in the Lab’s grantee portfolio (50%)
- Supporting each consultant as they work with the grantees on building their organizational capacity. (This allows you to get to know the grantees, the team, and our approach/methodologies)
- The associate will join all consultant calls with the organizations and be responsible for managing the next steps and keeping our work with the organizations on track (example: writing up minutes, updating internal dashboards, following up with grantees when relevant, scheduling regular check-ins with the Livelihood Impact Team to get updates on support…)
- Build strong and friendly relationships with the grantees and understand their support needs. Collect formal and informal feedback about our work with them that can help us improve our approach over time.
- Build smooth working relationships with all consultants, based on their work styles and the varying project needs.
- Over time, we expect the associate to play an increasing role in providing counsel and direct support to the Lab organizations depending on interest, capacity, and growth.
Support sourcing and due-diligence of new grantees (25%)
- We expect the associate to play an important role in supporting the decision making process around adding new organizations to the portfolio (for example: conducting desk research on specific organizations of interest, scheduling calls with peer funders to gather insight and support decision making, preparing material for founders review…)
- Over time, we also envision the associate taking on independent research projects (for example, what academic studies have shown promising results but have not been scaled up).
Help Improve Fund Operations and Knowledge management (20%)
- As the only person spending time with all of the lab’s organizations, the associate would play an important role in assessing how our work is going and how it can be improved (example: identifying ways to improve knowledge sharing among the Livelihood Impact Team, capturing and documenting areas of best practice, proactively suggesting new ways of working together)
- Support the CEO in building, iterating and optimizing our approaches and processes over time towards effectively serving our mission (how we source and select new grantees, how we support their development, how we evaluate their impact, internal tracking and coordination tools). This will include gathering grantee feedback, learning from other funders, brainstorming, researching, and taking ideas forward to operationalize them.
- Help keep tabs on the impact of our portfolio through simple data analysis of the grantee organizations’ performance program impact data.
Provide Logistics and Admin Support (5%)
- Help organize trips, meetings and field visits for the Livelihood Impact Fund team and grantees.
- Support with calendar coordination where necessary.
Who You Are
- Committed to poverty reduction: You share our passion for supporting the ability of people across East and West Africa to increase their incomes through skills, capital and opportunities.
- At least 5 years of work experience, ideally in small and growing social impact organizations (e.g. non-profits, social enterprise).
- You understand dynamics and needs of early and growth stage social impact organizations and are excited about playing a supportive role in their growth journey. We’d love to see your passion and hear your vision for our fund’s work – previous experience in grant making or impact investment is not required.
- Organized, operations-savvy and detail-oriented: You’re great at leading projects, prioritization, and keeping everyone on track (and in the loop) to deliver on plans. You have successfully implemented new ideas and optimized processes or tools to make things run more smoothly!
- Analytical and data-driven: You are a numbers person and have previous experience analyzing quantitative data and developing insights about an organization’s social impact and financial efficiency. You are comfortable defining and testing your hypotheses around any topic. You are good with spreadsheets, basic formulas and visualization. An M&E background is helpful but not required.
- People-oriented relationship builder: You demonstrate exceptional interpersonal and people skills with the ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with diverse stakeholders (experience working across cultures and successful collaboration with people of various working styles).
- You thrive in unstructured environments with few procedures. You find your space, add value and evolve with the needs towards your role. You have a track record of working independently. You organize and manage your own workload.
- You both take feedback well and advocate for yourself. You’re comfortable asking others for clarifications and pushing back to colleagues and seniors.
- Excited about an operations role, where you work in the background and support others to make things and projects run smoothly.
- Affinity to using tech tools in your work and previous experience with CRM software, Google Drive and Spreadsheets. Comfortable learning new tools when necessary.