Senior Advisor, Co-Founder Strategy & Influencing

London, UK | Full-time; Permanent

I. Position Summary

The Senior Adviser, Co-Founder Strategy & Influencing supports Malala Fund’s Co-Founders – Malala and Ziauddin Yousafzai – with effective decision-making, time and project management, and execution of strategic initiatives and activities. Reporting to the CEO and working closely with the Co-Founder Relations Manager, they act to best leverage the voices and time of the Co-Founders in achieving the organisation’s strategic objectives. Informed by the Co-Founder’s vision for impact and their experience as activists, this role will inevitably focus on campaigning, communications, and advocacy priorities.

The Senior Adviser, Co-Founder Influencing & Strategy works across Malala Fund with senior representatives of each department, to ensure the provision of the best possible information and advice to the Co-Founders on programme strategy, advocacy messaging and positioning, and impactful external engagement and strategic communications opportunities. They also support the Co-Founders to manage strategic external relationships, often with high-level government officials, donors and allies, in line with Malala Fund’s strategic objectives.

Malala Fund’s Co-Founders have specific strengths, and therefore needs, in their work as influencers, activists and advocates. Malala Fund is seeking to build a support system for the Co-Founders which will help build and strengthen their knowledge, expertise, contacts and connections, as well as advise them on strategic travel to a range of countries that makes the most effective and best use of both Malala Fund resources and the time and energy of our Co-Founders.

Specifically, the Co-Founders need tools and resources at the ready so they can respond efficiently in unanticipated and emergency scenarios, and they need to better understand and be able to articulate short- and long-term success stories of advocacy. The Senior Adviser, Co-Founder Influencing & Strategy will ensure a balance is maintained between the communications, development, programmes and advocacy sides of work as follows:

  • Supporting the Co-Founders to develop and strengthen their engagement in Malala Fund advocacy. This includes working closely with the Advocacy Department to design and execute a comprehensive government engagement strategy for the Co-Founders across key countries and regions and coordinating Co-Founder engagement in strategic advocacy activities.
  • Lead on Co-Founders engagement in Malala Fund advocacy campaigns, representing the Co-Founders in campaign working groups and keeping the Co-Founders informed of campaign progress.
  • Oversee the effective implementation of the Co-Founders Fund, a newly established grantmaking fund that supports priority areas of philanthropic interest for the Co-Founders.
  • Support the Co-Founders engagement with Programme Directors and In-Country Representatives in Malala Fund’s programme countries, to stay abreast of relevant events, strategic updates and influencing opportunities.
  • Maintain fluid communications between the Co-Founders and Malala Fund senior staff across all departments.

Salary range: £78,600 to £83,600

II. Responsibilities

Supporting the Co-Founders' engagements in Malala Fund advocacy

  • Working with the Chief Advocacy Officer, identify and advise the Co-Founders on their own advocacy strategies and activities, ensuring alignment with Malala Fund’s influencing agenda.
  • Coordinate and triage all incoming requests for the Co-Founder’s time and input into Malala Fund advocacy activities. Work with Malala Fund’s Advocacy Department, and in consultation with the Co-Founder Relations Manager, to identify and present advocacy opportunities to the Co-Founders.
  • Proactively follow up with Malala Fund Advocacy team members on the status of advocacy objectives and activities and the role of the Co-Founders. If and when goals are not being achieved, work together to determine why objectives are not being met. Work with the team to identify and implement actionable recommendations for improvement.
  • Work closely with the Advocacy Department to design and execute a comprehensive government and multilateral engagement strategy for the Co-Founders across key countries and regions and in relation to the UN (in particular Malala’s role as UN Messenger of Peace), the World Bank and IMF. This should support regular Co-Founder connections with relevant government/political offices.
  • Work with the Chief Advocacy Officer to identify opportunities for external experts to provide support to Co-Founder advocacy as needed through, for example, offering strategic guidance, or relevant contextual or political analysis.
  • Work in cooperation with the Co-Founder Relations Manager and the Chief Advocacy Officer to prepare the Co-Founders for important advocacy meetings and events and ensure timely follow-up. As needed, accompany the Co-Founders to advocacy engagements.
  • In coordination with the Advocacy and Communications Departments, undertake first draft and/or review advocacy briefing materials, talking points and reading material for the Co-Founders, highlighting any necessary changes to content or format with the Advocacy and Communications Departments.
Leading on Co-Founder Engagement in Malala Fund advocacy campaigns
  • Work with the Advocacy and Communications Departments to identify issues and opportunities for impactful advocacy campaigns, campaign strategy and timelines and Co-Founder engagement in campaign activities. Proactively bring campaigning ideas aligned with Malala Fund strategic objectives for Co-Founders consideration.
  • Represent the Co-Founders in cross-organisational campaign working groups and keep the Co-Founders informed of campaign strategy and progress.
Overseeing the effective implementation of the Co-Founder Grant Fund
  • Work closely with the Malala Fund Grants Team to strategically and proactively support the Co-Founders Fund, aligning the objectives of the grant fund with Co-Founder priorities, tracking the spend and making recommendations for allocation of the grants.
Maintaining fluid communications between the Co-Founders and Malala Fund senior staff
  • Work with Malala Fund’s Executive Leadership Team (ELT) to coordinate individual member’s engagement with the Co-Founders, developing a cadence of direct communication that facilitates greater impact.
  • Act as an extension of the Co-Founders and information funnel, filter and facilitator with Malala Fund’s ELT members, representing the Co-Founders in ELT meetings as and when required.
  • Keep Malala Fund ELT updated on Co-Founder priorities in a proactive manner.
  • Facilitate special projects initiated by the Co-Founder, and ensure action items are executed on behalf of the Co-Founder.
  • Coordinate rapid action on requests between the Malala Fund and the Co-Founders.

Organisational Culture

  • Upholds the values of Malala Fund.
  • Actively contributes to making Malala Fund a diverse and equitable workplace through inclusive practice and openness to different perspectives, cultures and ideas.
  • Maintains behaviour and conduct that uphold the highest standards for safeguarding, professionally and personally.
  • Acts as a role model for a ‘learning organization’s culture by seeking insight and using problems as opportunities to learn.

III. Knowledge, Experience and Behaviours


  • Significant experience in a similar role, advising and working closely with high level or high profile individuals (as an employee or on a consultancy basis)
  • Strong political instincts and proven ability to cultivate influential networks of diverse stakeholders and creativity to influence decision-makers
  • High-level experience developing strategic engagement frameworks for principals.
  • Demonstrated relationship management experience and high degree of diplomacy and discretion.
  • Deep knowledge of political engagement and experience of working with high-profile people.
  • Emotionally intelligent leader with exceptional degree of humility and integrity
  • Ability to demonstrate a high degree of trust and confidentiality.
  • Ability to work effectively with a wide variety of people in a fast-paced environment with multiple priorities and frequent deadlines.
  • Excellent communication, project management and organizational skills
  • Strong drafting and editing skills; high attention to detail, accuracy, quality.
  • Ability to think critically and consistently apply good judgment.
  • Shows initiative and is able to work effectively under pressure independently, within a team and with a wide range of stakeholders.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication, can recognises high quality written materials including policy explainers, op-eds, strategy memos, talking points and more
  • Strong commitment to Malala Fund’s mission, purpose and values.
  • Strong commitment to gender equality, anti-racism, anti-discrimination, decolonisation and social justice.


  • Experience of working with high-level politicians or in a politicized context.
  • Up to date knowledge of policy debates surrounding girls’ education
  • High-level understanding of government engagement and/or public relations
  • Degree in politics, education, international development or related field.
  • Extensive experience in international development and contributing to policy change by planning, managing and implementing advocacy programmes.

Malala Fund is committed to racial equity and social justice. We actively seek applicants from diverse backgrounds, experiences and identities, to provide a wide range of perspectives, ideas, views and insights into the strategy, policies, culture and ambitions of Malala Fund. We would particularly welcome applications from candidates who have lived in countries in which Malala Fund is operating.

Note: This position is eligible for immigration sponsorship in the U.K.

IV. About Malala Fund

Registered as a public charity in the U.K. and U.S., Malala Fund is working toward a world where all girls can learn and lead. With more than 130 million girls out of school today, we're breaking down barriers that hold girls back.

Malala Fund advocates for resources and policy changes needed to give all girls a secondary education. The girls we serve have high goals for themselves and we have high expectations for leaders who can help them. We invest in local education leaders and front-line organisations — the people who best understand girls in their communities — in regions where most girls are missing out on secondary school. We give girls the tools they need to advocate for education and equality in their communities and a platform for the world to hear their voices. We believe girls should speak for themselves and tell leaders what they need to learn and achieve their potential.

V. How to Apply

Please submit your cv/resume and cover letter through the application link by 11 July 2022.

Please be aware we are reviewing applications on a rolling basis and reserve the right to close the vacancy should a suitable candidate be identified before the closing date.

Please note that due to the very high number of applications we receive when positions are posted, we are only able to respond directly to candidates with whom we wish to move forward in the interview process.

Malala Fund is an inclusive organisation and welcomes applications from under-represented and intersectional groups including BIPOC, LGBTQ+ and persons with disabilities. We are seeking people from different backgrounds, cultures, age, experience and identities, to provide a wide range of experience, ideas, views and insights into the strategy, policies, culture and ambitions of Malala Fund.

Malala Fund is committed to ensuring the safety of those involved in our work. Our first priority is protecting everyone who comes in direct or indirect contact with our organisation. Malala Fund has a zero-tolerance approach to abuse and exploitation by any of our staff, representatives or partners. We commit to ensuring that those who work with Malala Fund or on our behalf are able to work in an environment that is free from harm. To this end, Malala Fund reserves the right to conduct background checks on prospective and current employees.