External Engagement and Advocacy Officer

Start Network

Location United Kingdom with hybrid working options
Salary £29,631 - £31,113 per annum
Team Communications and Digital
  • Closing: 11:59pm, 7th May 2023 BST

Job Description


Start Network is a global membership of over 80 organisations, working across six continents, to tackle what we see as the biggest systemic problems in the global humanitarian system. Start Network is an independent charity. We also work with Save the Children UK, which acts a grant custodian for Start Network.

Start Network’s vision is for a locally led humanitarian system that is accountable to people affected by and at risk of crises. We aim to achieve this vision by making system-level shifts in how humanitarian assistance is approached and delivered.


DECENTRAISLING & LOCALLY-LED ACTION: Shifting power and resources and decentralising decision-making to locally led networks and organisations.

EARLY & RAPID FINANCING: Building a global financing system that reduces risk, anticipates, and acts ahead of predictable crises.

COMMUNITY-LED INNOVATION: Incentivising innovative, locally led, and contextual solutions and learning from them together with people affected by crises.

For more information about Start Network and what we do, please visit our website


WE PUT PEOPLE FIRST: Communities come first in our decision-making and programming.

WE ARE BRAVE: We have great ambition and are willing to explore new things and take risks to achieve it

WE OPERATE COLLECTIVELY: We leverage the value of working as a network, sharing risk and resources, and learning together.

WE ARE INCLUSIVE: We see the value in diverse perspectives and work to remove the barriers that prevent voices from being heard.

WE ARE OPEN: We work transparently and with integrity, building mutual trust in all levels of our work, from governance to programming.

WE ARE ETHICAL: We behave and operate based on key principles of anti-racism, non-discrimination, and anti-colonialism. This is a work in progress.


Advocacy is a key area for Start Network to achieve its system-change vision to transform the humanitarian system. The advocacy team is responsible for positioning Start Network at the centre of high level influencing spaces in the humanitarian sector to advocate for a more locally led, innovative and proactive system. The external affairs and advocacy officer is responsible for supporting the team to build and maintain relationships with our different stakeholders, ranging from Start Network’s teams, hubs, members, donors, and key allies in the global space. This role is on a 12 month contract with a possibility of extension, subject to funding



  • Support the External Affairs and Advocacy team to design, promote and implement campaigns, key messages, policy asks and other written products.

  • Provide innovative ideas for strengthening our advocacy, policy, and campaigning activities to reach our prioritised stakeholders, and unlock new audiences.

  • Represent Start Network in key working groups to continue influencing vital spaces.

  • Support the team tracking and monitoring the impact of the activities we have prioritised as part of our strategy.

  • Knowledge and understanding of advocacy campaigns and development of key messages and policy asks to support the advocacy team to maximise the engagement and impact of the team’s work.


  • Advise on new opportunities to keep positioning Start Network at the centre of relevant international fora.

  • Support the team with key information to better understand the contexts where our hubs operate, especially from a policy perspective.

  • Keep the team updated about news, reports, initiatives in the humanitarian and climate space.

  • Provide advocacy and policy support to our hubs, specifically focused on policy and funding opportunities.


  • Keep our advocacy contact’s mailing base updated.

  • Coordinate internal communication with other teams, including planning and following up action points and tasks.

  • Be the Salesforce and webpage advocacy focal point.

  • Support the team with presentations, travel and project management.


  • Act as a point of contact between the teams in the organisation, particularly the Network Development, Evidence and Learning and Innovation team.

  • Manage our relationship with our membership to further strengthen a trust-based affiliation and maximise the convening power of our network.

  • Provide support and strategise ways to involve and influence different stakeholders in our work and mission, respecting the confidentiality of the information we manage.

  • Support the team to share updates and impact of the team with the rest of the organisation.


  • To carry out the responsibilities of the role in line with the Start Network Code of Conduct and with a commitment to safeguarding adults and children

  • A commitment to the Start Network vision, principles, values, and approach

  • The Start Network team is an agile group of individuals who use their experience and skills across the network, so flexibility to work in and with different teams and functions is a part of our culture.




  • Experience managing multiple tasks, having a proactive attitude, and managing the full cycle of a project or task.

  • Highly motivated person ready to start, create and manage relationships at different levels within the organisation and externally, specially with members, donors and partners.

  • Proven experience of embracing new approaches, technology, and ways of working to make our work more impactful and efficient.

  • Experience in the humanitarian, development, human rights or related fields

  • Innovative, collaborative, and creative thinker.

  • Proven analytical and problem-solving skills, with a proactive mindset to co-design, identify or build upon opportunities to improve our work.

  • Great communication skills both written and orally.

  • Passionate to make a difference in the humanitarian space and able to work under pressure.


  • Experience working to promote locally led action, innovation, and anticipatory action.

  • Experience working for a network or in partnership with local or national non-governmental organisations.

  • Experience brokering partnerships, facilitating dialogue, or building relationships remotely.

  • Experience working with governments, philanthropies, NGOs and UN agencies.

  • Additional languages, particularly French and Spanish or national languages in the existing Hub countries.



Promote different ways to engage different audiences, advising others on how to maximise impact through feedback and coaching.

Build trust by showing commitment to your role, explaining your thought processes, checking your reactions and encouraging others to share their insights.

Strategic Thinking:

Hold both a strategic perspective and enough detail to work with one part of the organisation whilst understanding the impact on other parts of the organisation and network through listening and engaging with other teams.


Actively promote collaboration by spotting and breaking down barriers to siloed working, connecting colleagues, teams and initiatives.

Leadership of self and others:

Willing to share own expertise with others in the organisation and network, both formally and informally.

Ability to adapt and learn:

Anticipate the ‘what ifs’ and actively plan to navigate them together with the team, seeking collaborative solutions and drawing on those with relevant expertise.

Getting things done the Start Network way:

Make best use of all of available resources, including people, technology and money to enable increased automation, digitisation and value for money.

Removing bias from the hiring process

Applications closed Sun 7th May 2023


Removing bias from the hiring process

  • Your application will be anonymously reviewed by our hiring team to ensure fairness
  • You’ll need a CV/résumé, but it’ll only be considered if you score well on the anonymous review

Applications closed Sun 7th May 2023