Work at Sonke

Policy Development & Advocacy Coordinator

About Sonke

With offices in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Agincourt, Sonke works globally, and especially across Africa, to strengthen government, civil society and citizen capacity to take action to promote gender equality, prevent domestic and sexual violence and reduce the spread and impact of HIV and AIDS. In this way the organisation contributes to the development of societies in which men, women, youth and children can enjoy equitable, healthy and happy relationships that contribute to the development of just and democratic societies.

Sonke is seeking to appoint a Policy Development and Advocacy Coordinator.

About the Position

The Policy Development and Advocacy Coordinator is responsible for carrying out policy, advocacy and research activities for Sonke’s public transport, gender-based violence and safety work. The Coordinator will be responsible for working with local, provincial and national government on implementing safer public transport, in particular for women and children. This includes coordinating and developing the policy aspects of Sonke’s “Safe Ride” campaign, research, lobbying, media advocacy and the development of partnerships, which the Coordinator will do by working closely with the PDA and Community Education and Mobilisation Units. The Coordinator will also engage actively in professional learning and development, and will represent Sonke at various fora and conferences.

Key Functions

  1. Serve as the Coordinator for Sonke’s policy, research and advocacy interventions on public transport
  • Develop and maintain key partnerships with external organisations working on gender, health, rights, and public transport.
  • Engage with National, Provincial and local Departments of Government, including oversight bodies, to propose new policy initiatives and monitor the fulfillment of their duties and implementation of relevant laws and policies, focusing especially on the safety of women and children in public transport.
  • Represent Sonke at conferences, fora and dialogues, and present on public transport and gender
  • Serve as Sonke’s representative in the #FixOurTrains campaign, as well as other relevant #UniteBehind initiatives
  • Serve on the Department of Transport’s ICT Sub-Committee on Universal Access in Transport.
  • Initiate a creative advocacy campaign to highlight the need for gender sensitive approaches in public transport
  • Regularly create media content and be available to engage with the media
  1. Research
  • Conceptualise and lead on Sonke’s research on public transport and gender in Cape Town and Johannesburg.
  • Conduct and/or coordinate research and policy development in line with relevant literature and policy development on GBV, public transport and safety, with particular reference to women and children, drawing on international tools and approaches where relevant.
  • Regularly conduct and/or coordinate relevant research on above to support the strategy development of the campaign.
  • Regularly conduct and/or coordinate policy analysis of local and international legislation on gender, GBV and public transport, and other related issues to support a) – c).
  • Train and work closely with Sonke’s Community Action Team members on participatory research methods.
  1. Other Key Programmatic Areas
  • Support other PDA projects and cross-unit collaboration as requested.
  • Project and Grants management and reporting.
  • Support the unit’s resource mobilisation by identifying funding opportunities, developing proposals and budgets, and participating in negotiating agreements with funders, and ensure that grant agreements are implemented.
  • Work with the Research, Monitoring and Evaluation Unit and other relevant staff to ensure external evaluations of grants, as well as ongoing M&E is successfully completed.

Educational requirements

  • Completed or currently enrolled in a Masters degree in relevant field (gender, law, public administration)

Experience required

  • Experience of working on national policy on gender and violence.
  • 1-2 years’ experience in working within the public transport sector (required)
  • 2-3 years’ experience in campaign and project management (required)
  • 3 years of related research, policy, and advocacy experience within the field of gender studies, development and/or sexual and reproductive health rights (recommended)
  • Demonstrated experience developing and implementing trainings and workshops for diverse groups
  • Demonstrated experience coordinating complex projects or campaigns with multiple partners
  • Policy advocacy experience in the public interest or human rights and gender justice specifically.
  • Familiarity with existing South African laws and policies related to gender-based violence, HIV and AIDS, human rights and public transport.
  • Strong grounding in gender justice and feminist theory and research.
  • Familiarity with the functions and duties of relevant Chapter 9 Institutions, the Department of Transport, the Ministry of Women, Department of Social Development, and other relevant government departments and oversight bodies.
  • Familiarity with strategies and programmes aimed at gender-based violence and public transport, including responses and prevention.
  • Fluency in two South African languages recommended.

Skills required

  • Very good writing skills with the ability to write clearly and concisely, and a track record of publications.
  • Strong presentation skills
  • Excellent communication and organizational skills with prior media experience
  • Excellent organizational and planning skills with the ability to prioritize time and work effectively.
  • Strong people skills with the ability to work under pressure.
  • Highly-motivated, confident communicator with the ability to engage with people at all levels
  • Able to multi-task and is deadline orientated
  • Ability to work independently, as well as in a team
  • Ability to work under pressure
  • Innovative and creative, able to see new opportunities
  • Reflective and open to learning
  • Takes initiative and is proactive
  • Willingness to travel

Personal qualities required

  • Confident, assertive communicator who can work comfortably with diverse groups of people, across all levels and various forms of media
  • Emotional intelligence
  • Attention to detail and displays a high level of integrity.
  • Able to prioritise work and manage deadlines
  • Innovative and creative, able to see new opportunities
  • Planning and time management – meets deadlines
  • Reflective, open to learning and to self-care


Cape Town


279K – 400K per annum

Closing Date

22 November 2018