Executive Director

Application deadline closed.

Job Description

Graines de Paix Foundation

Graines de Paix is seeking its Executive Director to lead forward its growing operations. Our work is focused on the transformation of education and the means for it to serve societal purposes.

The context is exciting and challenging

Education systems worldwide are undergoing major transformational changes, including the teaching profession's very purpose. Teachers feel unprepared for developing their students’ life skills when teaching the basic disciplines. There is a real need for training them to teach emotional, relational, resolution and engagement competencies, and this entails training them in novel pedagogical approaches. Students can be in deep sufferance when schooling doesn’t provide them with humaneness, empowerment or purpose. They tend to abandon school when they feel rejected and/or suffer from disciplinary violence. In fact, students learn more, faster and more durably when they are at peace, feel physically and emotionally safe, respected and valued. Our theory of change is that transforming education to provide competencies, humaneness, fulfilment and a clear, peace-oriented societal purpose positively impacts both education and societal indicators. These include greater child well-being and fulfilment, improved mental health of children and teachers, less violence against children in families and classrooms, less societal and geocultural violence, reduced risks of radicalization, broader economic inclusion, heightened ecocitizenship and greater societal harmony.

Position Description

The Executive Director is the key management leader of the Graines de Paix Foundation, reporting directly to the Foundation Board headed by the President/Founder. He/she will:
  1. Lead, manage and grow the organisation for high performance in harmony with the Board.
  2. Identify and push forward innovative new programmes to provide solutions to societal challenges. Lead their digitalization in ways that best serve the pedagogical and societal purposes aimed for. Ensure that the NGO’s new and existing programmes are fully funded, externally evaluated and managed efficiently.
  3. Actively support the Fundraising Manager to ensure that funding is top priority and covers programmes, new developments, administration and growth. Provide leadership in funding through innovative financing solutions.
  4. Build and communicate the organisation’s reputation through active advocacy and be a key spokesperson for the NGO.
    Ensure the financial health and growth of the organisation as it develops.
  5. Ensure efficient and transparent financial controls, reporting and administration.
  6. Hire, manage and develop the staff. Create a collaborative and motivating work climate.
  7. Work closely with the Board and maintain close working ties with the President. Report regularly on progress, successes and issues regarding all operational aspects. Provide it with timely information and reliable advice.
  8. Ensure the organisation complies with the statutes, internal regulations and policies, and with its legal and fiscal requirements.
The senior staff reporting to the Executive Director are highly knowledgeable. The Head of pedagogy and training works directly with the President on pedagogy design and validation.

Professional qualifications required

  • Strong, high-integrity leadership, at ease with all levels of hierarchy, degree-educated. Strong work ethic and a high degree of energy.
  • 5+ years senior management experience of leading a dynamic NGO with a track record of pushing forward its vision, increasing financial results, generating new funded opportunities and expanding into new countries.
  • Experience and skill in collaborating with a Board of Directors.
  • High-level strategic thinking and planning. Ability to envision and convey convincingly the organisation’s strategic future to the staff, Board, funders and stakeholders.
  • Solid organisational abilities, including planning, delegating and collaboration amongst staff.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage, motivate and collaborate with a multidisciplinary team of 20-50 persons of diverse cultures and different geographical locations to achieve these.
  • Full financial management skills, including budgeting, analysis, risk assessment and reporting.
  • Proven success in establishing excellent relationships with funders, partner agencies, ministries, key influencers and stakeholders and in understanding the funding ecosystem.
  • Fluency in English and French, with strong written and oral communication skills for addressing funders, governments, media and stakeholders, including public speaking. German a plus.
  • Fluent digital skills and the ability to push forward the digital optimisation of the NGO’s processes.

Soft skills required

  • High, selfless motivation and the ability to carry forward our mission of transforming education to be child-focused and purpose-designed for the targeted societal goals.
  • Decisive, self-assured and action-oriented, able to provide positive energy, focus and serenity to lead, guide and prioritise multiple programmes and activities.
  • The insight and agility to seize opportunities and build them into fundable programmes.
  • A creative, solutions-oriented mindset for problem-solving and tension-resolving.
  • Empathy-based empowering managerial skills to develop the full potential of the staff, build team spirit and foster mutually satisfying relationships, including with the Board.

The Graines de Paix Foundation

Founded in 2005, the organization is a recognised independent and humanitarian NGO, based in Geneva and active in Switzerland, France, West Africa and progressively in the MENA region.
It develops transformative educational training programmes and resources that foster and combine full Quality education, prevention of violence in all its forms and societal peace. It is the only international organisation to provide one systemic set of practical training programmes and resources that achieve these three societal objectives for the joint needs of the Education, Social Affairs and/or Women Ministries. It helps governments and organisations achieve their SDG goals 3, 4, 5, 16 + 17 simultaneously.
We upskill teachers and educators to take on the above challenges. We focus them on helping students develop their self-esteem through learning multiple competencies. We design student activities by which they can practice dialogue and humaneness between themselves and be motivated to develop a better world around them. We go beyond providing facts on Children's Rights, Human Rights and Environmental Rights: we help make these a daily sustainable reality in the classroom.

Terms & Conditions

  • Start date: May-June 2022
  • Closing date: 11th of April 2022
  • Location: Graines de Paix office (Geneva Centre)
  • Contract duration: permanent
  • Working hours: full time

To apply

Please send your CV, cover letter and recommendation letters to: candidatures@grainesdepaix.org
with the subject title: Candidate-Executive Director – NAME First name (by email only).

Please read before applying


Digital links

Since we receive a large number of applications, we may not be able to answer you individually. We will consider your application with care and confidentiality. If you are not contacted within 4 weeks after the closing date, your application has not been retained. We thank you warmly for your interest in our organisation.