Amplify Fund Site Strategy Consultant Role (2) | Neighborhood Funders Group

Position: 
Amplify Fund Site Strategy Consultant Role
Location: 
Nevada / South Carolina
Organization Name: 
Neighborhood Funders Group
  

Apply ASAP, we will consider candidates on a rolling basis

The Amplify Fund is seeking two part time consultants to lead our strategy development work with local strategy advisors in Nevada and South Carolina; desired start date May 2019.



  

Overview

The Amplify Fund is a national pooled grantmaking and capacity building fund focused on supporting work to build the power, influence, and direct decision-making authority of communities of color and low-income communities to advance equitable development. Grantmaking operations began in 2018 in three pilot sites: Missouri, and Puerto Rico, as well as in California, through the Fund for an Inclusive California. The Fund has developed a strategy for North Carolina and will launch grantmaking in late Summer 2019. Also in 2019 Amplify will begin to work in four new places – in the states of Nevada, South Carolina, and work at the city level in Nashville and Pittsburgh. Anchored in a framework of racial justice and building power among most affected communities, the Amplify Fund invests in local groups, coalitions, tables, and organizations, with a goal of disbursing more than $14-17 million in grants across its eight geographic places over a four-year period. The majority of the Fund’s grantmaking will be general operating support and the Fund’s grantees will be locally-led organizations that operate with an analysis of race and power.

Amplify is housed at NFG with grants administration support provided in partnership with Common Counsel Foundation. Amplify is NFG’s first grantmaking fund, and today, contributing funders include Ford Foundation, Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation, The JPB Foundation, The Kresge Foundation, Moriah Fund, Open Society Foundations, Surdna Foundation, and The California Endowment.

The Amplify Fund is attempting to address a clear problem: communities of color and low-income communities are experiencing the most negative impacts of development, and (currently) have the least power and say over how decisions that directly affect them are made. The Fund’s theory of change asserts that historically systemic racism is at the heart of these decisions and therefore a racial justice analysis has to be applied to solutions in order for them to be effective. We believe that people in communities have much of the wisdom and clarity to drive an equitable development agenda. In order to insert that wisdom in the decision-making process, greater power among communities of color and low-income communities is necessary.   


  

Amplify Fund Local Strategy Advisor Model 

The Amplify Fund is committed to values of transparency and openness and strives to disrupt status quo power dynamics in philanthropy. A defining characteristic of the fund is our commitment to being locally guided, and the primary means of achieving this will be through engagement with local advisors in the strategy design process.

In each Amplify Fund site the context is unique and Amplify takes a broad view of what development issues can fit in a local grantmaking strategy. In some sites the issue work may focus on housing and displacement, or land use policy, in others equitable solutions to infrastructure may rise to the top, while community control/ownership of community assets may be a driving concern in other places. And the specifics of strategies necessary for building power and centering people of color and low-income people in decision-making processes have to be responsive to the local context. The relationship of local work to the state policy environment will be important in strategy development. Amplify staff and other stakeholders know we need local advice and guidance to appropriately tailor the Fund’s grantmaking strategy in each place.

Advisors will participate in a strategy design process where local advisors and staff co-create a grantmaking strategy that will contextualize and articulate the Fund’s local role in each site. Advisors are not the only people who will be consulted in the strategy process, many local leaders will inform the strategy, but local advisors are asked to help staff grapple with conflicting information and arrive at a way forward.

Advisors at each site will represent a mix of these three categories:

  • Core local funders who are either planning to invest directly in the Amplify Fund, or have an aligned grantmaking portfolio, and have shared values with those articulated in the Amplify Fund theory of change

  • Local field leaders who agree to take part in movement/field-level strategy conversations specific to funding equitable development and power building in their city/state/region

  • Thought leaders and “experts” such as academics, elected officials, public sector leaders, etc. whose work or field of study/research is relevant to Amplify’s strategy

All advisors who are able to accept compensation – in the form of a one-time 6-month $25,000 general operating support grant to their organization (and when not possible sometimes as a direct stipend) – will be compensated for the time and contributions they make to the strategy design process.


   

Amplify Fund Strategy Development Process 

In every site so far, the Amplify Fund has followed a consistent set of steps to develop grantmaking strategy in collaboration with our local strategy advisors. Over the course of about 3-4 months, we:

  • Hold a handful of 1:1 meetings and phone calls between local strategy advisors, Amplify staff/consultant and possibly national steering committee members to brainstorm, help sharpen our thinking about the local context, and hone in on an appropriate role for Amplify

  • Convene and facilitate an in-person meeting with the full group of advisors and 1-2 Amplify Steering Committee members, to share perspectives and make key decisions about strategy

  • Staff and advisors co-author a grantmaking strategy document for Steering Committee approval

  • Jointly local strategy advisors and staff/consultant communicate the proposed strategy to the Amplify Fund Steering Committee



    

Local Strategy Development Consultant 

 

Key Responsibilities and Deliverables

Amplify Fund is seeking two short-term (3-4 months) part time consultants to lead our strategy development work in Nevada and South Carolina (one consultant per site). The consultants will:

  • Use research Amplify has already done to conduct a mapping of the local power building and equitable development ecosystem in each place

  • Produce an evolving ecosystem map of the local movement landscape

  • Based on the initial mapping identify and recommend Local Strategy Advisors for the site

  • Plan and facilitate one staff trip to the site, to learn and jointly consult about local advisor selection

  • Once selected, with staff, conduct joint orientation of local strategy advisors

  • Manage the one-time grantmaking process to compensate local strategy advisors

  • Using the Amplify Fund discussion guide as a starting place, conduct and document 1:1 calls with local strategy advisors to understand the Fund’s TOC in local context

  • Plan, convene, and facilitate an in-person meeting of all the local strategy advisors, a staff member, and (pending availability) 1-2 steering committee members

  • Produce a synthesis of information from the in-person meeting, including producing an initial draft of strategy recommendations based on the process

  • Manage advisor input into the written drafts of the strategy paper

  • Maintain constant flow of communication with Amplify Fund staff, keeping in mind always a healthy transition of relationships and knowledge to staff at the end of strategy development

  • Plan and facilitate a learning day in the site for the Fund’s steering committee in October 2019 or early 2020

  • Create documentation of the strategy process that will serve as an adequate basis to bring staff and steering committee along

Amplify Fund staff will support the consultants with:

  • Guidance, management and oversight of the overall project

  • Notetaking at the in-person local strategy advisor meeting

  • Logistics and contracting of services (catering, etc.) for in-person local strategy advisor meeting

  • Ongoing consultation, guidance, and final approval of local strategy advisors

  • Staff will be available for two trips to the state, coordinated by the consultant. One trip will be relatively uninterrupted time to work jointly on advisor selection and other elements of the strategy development process, the other will be to attend the in-person local strategy advisor meeting

  • Advice and oversight of the co-writing process, based on past experiences

  • Intake and processing of grants to local strategy advisors


  

Consultant Qualifications:

  • Excellent relationship building skills

  • Meeting facilitation capability

  • Strategic thinker who has a track record of developing thoughtful grantmaking strategy

  • Understanding of both the power and limitations of the tool of grantmaking

  • Deep knowledge of power building and a community organizing background - ability to evaluate groups and individual’s analysis and understanding of these strategies with ease. Content knowledge about equitable development

  • Racial justice core competency

  • Has a solid network in the social justice space

  • If not from the site, enthusiasm about exploring a new place/landscape, credible and able to reach out to a wide set of contacts to do a landscape mapping of the state. Knowledge of the state is an added plus.

  • If from the site, a deep network and proven track record of acting in a productive field/movement building role. Understanding and hunger to explore the state landscape beyond their pre-existing networks

  • Ability to take careful and comprehensible notes, capturing learnings that can be easily shared

  • Ability to travel; a driver’s license will be essential

  • Ability to be present July 30-31, 2019 for the Amplify Fund steering committee meeting in NYC



 

To apply, send your resumé, an anticipated budget, and a statement of interest to Amy@nfg.org. Reflecting our core value of centering the people most affected, we strongly encourage Black, Latinx, and other people of color to apply.