Transform your impact at one of these organizations

Director, Policy and Advocacy, Africa

Simulare Medical

Simulare Medical

Indiana, USA · Remote
Posted on Thursday, June 27, 2024

Job Title: Director, Policy and Advocacy, Africa

Location: Africa* (Nigeria)

Employment Type: Full-Time

About Smile Train:

Smile Train is an international children’s charity that supports 100%-free cleft repair surgery and comprehensive cleft care for children globally. Our sustainable model empowers local medical professionals to provide cleft care in their own communities. Our sustainable model has allowed us to reach nearly 2 million children in 90+ countries to date and we’re just getting started. Our vision is to ensure that every person has access to high-quality comprehensive cleft care and is able to live a full and healthy life. We are truly changing the world one smile at a time.

Position Overview:

Smile Train is seeking a passionate and dedicated regional lead in Policy and Advocacy at a director level to join our team that will build political priority for Comprehensive Cleft Care as part of the regional and global development agenda and consolidating Smile Train’s status as the leader in Comprehensive Cleft Care. The person will have core skills in the ability to work collaboratively with multiple stakeholders, strategic use of media, ability to conduct strategic analysis and ability to identify a policy problem and solution. Act when and where necessary to ensure the best interests of the organization and our programs. Be polite, reliable, knowledgeable of Smile Train programs and comprehensive cleft care.

The successful candidate will have a passion for advocacy in public health and 15 years’ experience in this field. The Director, Policy and Advocacy will work in collaboration with Education & Training, Communications, and other technical leads at Smile Train to support implementation and scale up of Policy and advocacy initiatives in Africa contributing significantly to our mission of transforming the lives of children and their families across Africa.

This is a full-time staff position based in Nigeria.


Vice President and Regional Director, Africa

ESENTIAL DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES include the following. Other duties may be assigned as needed.

Develop Advocacy Strategy and Campaigns

  • To ensure effective coordination and monitoring of regional responses to emerging advocacy and policy trends and deliverables with governments and key alliances that align the WHO Health Systems Building Blocks in the region.
  • In collaboration with the Regional Director, regional team leads and program managers to develop a regional advocacy strategy and relevant advocacy campaigns to support prioritization of cleft care and promote Smile Train’s programs as part of the public health and global development agenda.
  • With oversight from the regional director lead the production of relevant high quality external policy, and advocacy materials including talking points, letters, briefing notes, position papers and advocacy reports as well as respond to information requests from public, policy makers and the media.
  • S/he would manage the existing advocacy coalitions and MOU with Ministries of Health including working with program managers and local partners, to identify policy gaps, advocacy agenda and support evidence generation in line with the regional programmatic priorities.
  • S/he would work with the global director policy and advocacy to ensure alignment across global policy objectives.
  • Work closely with regional director and global director policy and advocacy to develop and implement a research uptake plan for findings and move from policy to practice.
  • monitor the successful delivery and implementation of the set objectives and enhance overall organizational growth and sustainability goals.

Administration, Documentation and Coordination

  • Work with various Smile Train leads, coordinating meetings and communication with relevant stakeholders, supporting the communications team to document and disseminate the lessons learned using various formats (e.g. case studies, fact sheets, photography, narrative stories & videos).
  • collaborate with relevant HQ teams to develop thought leadership opportunities in areas of global health and ensure that the regional perspective is reflected in all key processes and discussion.
  • Contribute to the annual work plan and budgeting.
  • Compile and submit timely project reports to the regional director for technical review in line with regulatory requirements.
  • Any other duty may be assigned.

Fostering organizational relationships

  • Facilitate convening of stakeholder meetings and support coordination of national and regional stakeholder network(s) such as PASHeF, G4Alliance Africa Working Group, etc.
  • Develop relationships with local and regional media to promote Smile Train’s agenda.
  • Contribute to coordination of workshops with diverse stakeholders including health professionals, NGO representatives, and government officials.
  • Work with local partners to interface with other policy advocacy actors to ensure harmonized advocacy efforts.


  • Conduct research to identify priority advocacy areas and contribute to development of program materials, fact sheets, briefing notes, and other relevant messaging to help mobilize engagement from regional and global partners during regional and global conferences and events.
  • Support local partners and program staff to review current surgical healthcare policies and respective instruments to identify any policy gaps in pediatric surgery and/or /cleft surgery, relevant policy actors and understand policy dynamics in the country/region.
  • Identify and document any emerging policy opportunities in cleft care, challenges and keeping line management abreast on suggestions on how to address the concerns and optimize the opportunities.

Educational Background:

Minimum of Master’s degree or equivalent in public policy, public administration, public health, political science, international relations, communications or related field.

Skills and Experience

  • 15 years’ experience in related fields (policy development, advocacy, communications, non-profit sector, public health)
  • Good understanding of regional advocacy, public health, or non-profit landscape.
  • Excellent relationship management skills and ability to work cross-culturally with a diverse range of professionals.
  • Energetic, hard-working individual capable of establishing trust and maintaining strong organizational relationships.
  • Excellent organizational, time management, and problem-solving skills.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills in English and (French, added advantage)


  • Remuneration, an annual amount of $30K
  • Pre-approved travel budget where necessary.

Application information

Smile Train is an equal opportunity employer, committed to inclusive hiring and dedicated to diversity in our work and staff. We strongly encourage candidates from all groups and communities to apply.