Position: Grant and Communications Writer
FLSA Status: Full-Time, Exempt
Reports to: Director of Foundation Relations
Direct Reports: N/A
Location: Washington, DC (remote until Polaris returns to in-person operations)
Date Issued: August 21, 2018
Date revised: April 27, 2021
Polaris is leading a data-driven social justice movement to fight sex and labor trafficking at the massive scale of the problem - 25 million people worldwide deprived of the freedom to choose how they live and work.
For more than a decade, Polaris has assisted thousands of victims and survivors through the U.S. National Human Trafficking Hotline, helped ensure countless traffickers were held accountable, and built the largest known U.S. data set on actual trafficking experiences. With the guidance of survivors, we use that data to improve the way trafficking is identified, how victims and survivors are assisted, and how communities, businesses and governments can prevent human trafficking by transforming the underlying inequities and oppressions that make it possible.
The Grant and Communications Writer plays a critical role on the Polaris fundraising team. This position will support securing government and foundation grant funding, which comprise over half of the $13M annual budget, as well as provide key organizational writing that supports fundraising, communications and marketing. We are looking for a very strong writer and communicator who can provide a consistent voice in presenting Polaris’s programs and accomplishments. This is an opportunity to exercise both sides of one’s brain and develop a very diverse portfolio. The Grant and Communications Writer will report to the Director of Foundation Relations but also work closely with the Chief Development Officer (CDO) and Chief Communications Officer.
The Grant and Communications Writer specific responsibilities will include:
Grant Proposal and Report Writing:
- Draft and/or review grant proposals and reports, tailoring each to fit specific focus areas and interests of foundation or government funders;
- Gather, edit, and create content and collateral that supplement proposal narratives, focusing on Polaris’s program impact; and
- Build and maintain strong working relationships with staff members across the organization in order to ensure an ongoing and thorough understanding of Polaris’s program, goals, and strategic direction.
- Draft grant management packets for secured funding, and manage solicitation processes.
- Manage a calendar of deadlines for LOIs, proposals, reports and other deliverables with support from the Development Associate;
- Maintain a library of common grant attachments and finance and organizational metrics with support from the Development Associate;
- Partner with finance department to create budgets using approved templates and/or foundation-specific formats; and
- Assist in developing and monitoring the annual and long-term foundation revenue plan.
- Assist in maintaining a prospect research system leading to the identification and evaluation of new institutional funders; and
- Create prospect research briefings for the Director of Foundation Relations and CDO.
- Submit all foundation proposals and reports through online portals;
- Ensure that submitted materials and other correspondence are filed and documented in various electronic systems;
- Update Salesforce and other systems to accurately reflect planned milestones, accomplished tasks, and awards received;
- Monitor commonly-used language and populate files on a regular basis to allow for consistent narratives in publicly-submitted documents across the organization;
- Assist with communications and marketing materials, including but not necessarily limited to blog posts, supporter emails and newsletters, and fundraising direct-mail letters; and
- Write annual report and other organization marketing collateral materials to provide a consistent voice for the organization.
- Identify gaps in organizational collateral and marketing materials like one-pagers and case studies, and work with cross functional teams to fill them.
- Other duties as assigned by supervisor.
This job description provides a summary of the major duties and responsibilities performed by individuals in this position. Incumbents may be asked to perform other tasks not specifically written in this job.
- Deep passion! Mad skills! Low ego!
- Excellent writing and editing skills, and experience and/or interest in learning marketing writing;
- Experience with program and budget development and monitoring;
- Exceptional project management skills, including the ability to collaborate with staff across multiple program areas to obtain content, information and resources;
- Strong work ethic and ability to meet deadlines and juggle many priorities;
- Highly organized and detail oriented;
- Bachelor’s degree or equivalent combination of education and/or experience
- Minimum of 5 years of grant writing and reporting experience;
- Eager to work both independently and collaboratively in a fast-paced, team-oriented, environment;
- Mission-driven and self-motivated, resourceful team player with strong project management, critical thinking and time management skills.
- Experience using Salesforce;
- Commitment to and interest in social justice and human rights; specific interest in human trafficking.
- Internal - ability to communicate with supervisor, development peers and executive team; and
- External - written and verbal communication and presentation to past, present, and future institutional funders.
- Typical office setting
- Prolonged sitting, chiefly at a computer terminal;
- Requires eye-hand coordination and manual dexterity sufficient to operate a computer, telephone, calculator, and other office equipment;
- Requires normal range of hearing and eyesight to record, prepare, and communicate in writing, in person and by phone; and
- Requires occasional lifting up to 25 pounds.
The work of Polaris is grounded in a set of values and organizational beliefs that provide a common starting point for all of our activities. At Polaris, we look for talented individuals who are passionate about combating all forms of human trafficking and who will strive to embody and model these values within the Polaris community and in the anti-trafficking field. Please take a moment to make yourself familiar with these values and our mission statement before submitting your application. You can find a full description of our values here.
Polaris designs and implements data-driven strategies to prevent and disrupt human trafficking, and to restore freedom to survivors. Achieving this ambitious goal requires both trafficking-specific systemic interventions and broader cultural and structural shifts that reduce the inequities that lead to human trafficking. While Polaris alone cannot build a more diverse, just, equitable, and inclusive society, both the success of its work and its organizational values require modeling in the workplace the change we want to see in the world. This means cultivating a workforce, organizational culture, and priorities that respect and celebrate a dynamic, multi-disciplinary team made up of individuals with different identities, lived experiences, and backgrounds. Within both its team and across every part of its work, Polaris strives to integrate and elevate the full range of survivor voices. This is a living commitment. Diversity, equity, and inclusion are values to be manifested daily, in the work Polaris does, the decisions it makes, and the way staff treat each other and the people they seek to serve. This means creating space where staff can be included, heard, valued, and set up for success, and where everyone feels empowered to bring their full, best selves to work. Polaris will not check boxes and consider it done. The organization will push new innovations and different ways of thinking, and treasure the community built and strengthened by each individual contribution.