Washington, DC or New York, NY

Country Program Officer, Wellspring Philanthropic Fund

The Organization

Wellspring Philanthropic Fund is a private grantmaking foundation dedicated to advancing the realization of human rights and social and economic justice for all people. Wellspring has offices in New York, NY, and Washington, DC.

Wellspring’s work is rooted in respect for the dignity and worth of every human being and is informed by the following beliefs:

  • Social institutions and structures should promote the full realization of human rights and human potential, and should be accountable to these ends.
  • The rights of all people are advanced when the rights of the most marginalized and vulnerable peoples are protected.
  • Social justice movements should employ means that are consistent with their ideals, and should give agency to the people whose interests they seek to advance.
  • As responsible stewards, we must strive to maximize the impact of our charitable investments.

As a private foundation, Wellspring’s key functions are to conduct research and education tailored to our mission; manage a grantmaking portfolio of various programs, administer grants and monitoring grantee performance; and work to promote the effectiveness of programs that receive donor funding.

Wellspring Philanthropic Fund hires, promotes and retains employees based on their professional qualifications, demonstrated abilities and work performance, as well as on the degree to which these qualities are required in the employment positions made available by the Foundation’s service needs and business requirements. Wellspring welcomes candidates with diverse experience backgrounds and strongly encourages people of color and persons with disabilities to apply.

All personnel decisions, including but not limited to recruitment, hiring, compensation, assignment, training, promotion, discipline and discharge, are made without discrimination based on race, color, religion, national origin, citizenship, ancestry, age, disability, gender identity or expression, genetic predisposition or carrier status, marital or familial status, domestic partner status, veteran or military status, sex, sexual orientation or any other characteristic protected by federal, state, or local law (each a “protected characteristic”). This policy also bans discriminatory harassment. Qualified candidates for employment having records of arrest or criminal conviction will be considered.

Position Overview

Wellspring Philanthropic Fund is seeking a program officer to manage its country programs. The program officer will have the opportunity to oversee grants supporting local civil society in East Africa and interact with a dynamic staff working in the fields of international human rights and social justice.


  • In close partnership with locally-based consultants, responsible for a grantmaking portfolio and budget supporting local human rights and social justice NGOs in East Africa. Assess and implement opportunities to decentralize and increase local ownership of the grantmaking program in East Africa.
  • For grants in which staff is directly responsible, conduct comprehensive due diligence, including: monitoring and evaluating grantee performance; recommending new, renewal, and final grants; and ensuring grantees satisfactorily complete applications and reports.
  • Manage relationships and maintain regular and responsive communications with all relevant partners. Prepare written summaries and evaluations of grant proposals; track spending; enter all information in grants database; prepare and manage consultant contracts.
  • Support the development of external reviews and strategic plans for the program; create presentations and written reports for internal learning.
  • Support Wellspring’s expansion to other geographic areas of interest in the developing world as requested.
  • Act as point person for international program coordination and planning in East Africa and other geographies as relevant. Support collaboration with international programs on areas of common interest.
  • Stay abreast of new developments and trends, and provide analysis and synthesize implications for Wellspring.
  • Advance program goals through external outreach to relevant stakeholders and funder colleagues.
  • Assist consultants and partners with organizing and executing international travel, including periodic travel to the U.S.
  • Perform other duties and responsibilities as required.


  •  Minimum of 7 years of programmatic experience in international human rights and social justice or related field.
  • Experience living in sub-Saharan Africa and/or working with locally-based civil society organizations in Africa strongly preferred. Experience in East Africa and/or other developing country contexts a plus.
  • Grantmaking experience; experience with issues of closing civic space, human rights defenders, and/or organizational capacity building preferred.
  • Strong organizational skills; ability to handle a variety of programmatic and administrative tasks independently and meet deadlines.
  • Excellent research, writing, editing, and communications skills.
  • Foreign language skills, including Spanish, a plus.
  • Initiative, resourcefulness, flexibility, and strong cross-cultural skills.
  • Ability to handle confidential information with complete discretion.
  • Relevant graduate degree or commensurate experience.


Salary range: $110,000 – $120,000 based on experience. Wellspring offers a very generous benefits package including payment of 100% of the health insurance premiums for employees (and 80% of the premiums for spouses, domestic partners and qualified family members). Wellspring also offers other benefits including life insurance, long‐term disability protection, a group 401(k) retirement plan (with an employer match), support for continuing education, and is committed to providing transgender‐inclusive healthcare.

How To Apply

For employment consideration, please submit application to jobs@wpfund.org. Subject Line: “[Your name]— Country Programs PO.” All applications must include:

  • a resumé;
  • a thoughtful cover letter, including how you became aware of this opportunity (i.e. job portal, referral, etc.) and salary requirements (must specify actual amount and range); and
  • one writing sample (no less than 3 and no more than 5 pages, attached in PDF format).

No phone calls pleases.

NOTE: At this time our preference is that applicants have work authorization to work in the United States. If you need sponsorship, please let us know in your cover letter.

The application deadline is May 10th, 2018.

Sign up