Africa Public Health Foundation (APHF)

The partnerships platform for the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention

APHF exists to forge partnerships and mobilise resources to support critical public health initiatives across the continent, in support of the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC). Africa CDC is a specialised technical institution of the African Union. It was established to support public health initiatives of Member States and strengthen the capacity of their public health institutions to detect, prevent, control, and respond quickly and effectively to disease threats.


Catalysing and coordinating partnerships

Governments, private and philanthropic partners each bring unique capacities to the goal of strengthened public health systems. We believe that by forging partnerships, in support of Africa CDC, we can accomplish more to address health threats and mitigate the impacts of existing and future diseases on the continent’s most vulnerable people.


APHF believes that by forging partnerships, in service of Africa CDC, we can accomplish more to address health threats and mitigate the impacts of existing and future diseases on the continent’s most vulnerable people. With that goal in mind, APHF is focused on ensuring our network of partners can have an outsized impact. We offer:  

  • Grant-making in service of Africa CDC. We fast-track partnerships with Africa CDC’s chosen implementing partners, enabling a timely response.
  • A commitment to pro-actively secure new investments. We invest in partnership development and resource mobilization, leveraging the funds of our donors.


Our Journey

Launched in September 2019, the establishment of the Africa Public Health Foundation was accelerated as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Foundation is now managing grants in excess of US$ 43.94 million and is committed to developing long-term partnerships that will strengthen public health systems.


APHF has continued to provide the ideal platform to facilitate a coordinated philanthropic effort, disbursing over 80% of US$29.1 million in funds received for Africa CDC programme grants to implementing partners, to accelerate the work of Africa CDC for the most urgent public health priorities in Member States.


APHF is still ambitious about what can be achieved in the coming years. As a result of the work of APHF in its first years and its critical role in the COVID-19 pandemic response, the Foundation is well positioned to raise and manage significant funding for Africa CDC’s work going forward. Critical to this will be raising funds from philanthropy while also diversifying funding to include other institutions, in Africa and globally.  


Impact Highlights

Thanks to the support from our donors, we have worked with local partners to ensure Africa CDC programmes are delivered. Since its inception, we have achieved the following:

  • Distributing over 580,000 COVID-19 test kits to 17 countries
  • Training over 2,000 community health workers to support COVID-19 tracing and testing, like those with Project Hope, alongside Africa CDC colleagues
  • Forging partnerships with 10 Implementing Partners and 2 suppliers in over 17 Countries
  • Deploying Rapid Responders to support COVID-19 vaccinations
  • 73% Burn rate achieved, for funds received for Africa CDC programme grants

Role purpose

The External Relations Director will lead APHF’s communications and resource mobilisation efforts. As a member of APHF’s senior leadership, the External Relations Director will be responsible for planning, developing, and implementing strategies to mobilise resources from individuals, foundations, and the private sector, as well as identify new opportunities to expand APHF’s income base. The External Relations Director will supervise communications initiatives that support APHF’s mission, enhance the organisation’s visibility, and cultivate our brand.


The External Relations Director will be a trusted advisor and reports directly to the CEO, participating in long-term strategic planning and ensuring that fundraising strategies are aligned with APHF’s growth plans. The Director will manage all day-to-day fundraising efforts, including supervision of the Communications and Resource Mobilisation Leads. The ideal candidate is passionate about building a great organisation and comfortable with a fluid role in a dynamic environment.


As a new organisation, staff are empowered to start new programs, institute best practices, and develop traditions that will define their experiences and those of their colleagues in the years to come. Innovation and entrepreneurship are valued and will be essential to the Foundation's success. In addition to providing training, management-level advice, and mentoring, staff are supported to learn by positioning them as core members of the APHF team to drive public health impact.


What you'll be doing day to day

The External Relations Director will have the following key responsibilities:

  • Advise and support the CEO and Council on long-term strategic planning and align resource mobilisation efforts to support the foundation’s growth plans.
  • Identify, develop, and maintain long-term and collaborative relationships with key stakeholders and funders.
  • Lead on the development and implementation of strategic fundraising, communications, and advocacy strategies
  • Solicit support for APHF and manage a portfolio of individuals, foundations, and private sector funders.
  • Actively seek new opportunities for investment, revenue generation, and strategic partnerships
  • Provide guidance and best practices on structures and innovative funding approaches.
  • Achieve stated fundraising targets, as determined in collaboration with the CEO and team.
  • Manage the development and implementation of APHF’s communications plan, ensuring messages are aligned with APHF's mission, values, and strategies.
  • Support the development of compelling narratives on the success stories of the Foundation for external use.
  • Represent APHF in external engagements, including any media and speaking opportunities and events.
  • Coach and retain high-performance team members, providing regular feedback that empowers staff to elevate their level of responsibility.
  • Manage staff performance by setting goals, monitoring work, and evaluating results.
  • Work with staff to develop systems to ensure consistent, high-quality project management.
  • Prepare departmental reports with timely information and key metrics to measure progress.
  • Develop annual external relations budget.
  • Any other tasks as directed by the CEO.


What We're Looking For

Essential qualifications and experience

  • A master’s degree or higher required
  • Minimum ten years of experience in fundraising and/or communications in complex institutions OR as a grant maker or funder
  • Experience and track record in relationship building and securing funds of $1M+ from a variety of donors, such as foundations, the private sector and government agencies
  • Strong regional and global networks
  • Strong interpersonal skills with experience of working with senior leaders & funders in the region
  • Experience of developing marketing and communications strategies that leverage the power of online media and audience engagement
  • Excellent written and personal communication skills, with the ability to explain complex public health issues in a straightforward and non- technical manner.
  • Excellent organisational skills, with the ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously under tight deadlines, and working with flexibility in a collaborative, fast-paced, goal-oriented environment
  • Demonstrated leadership ability, including the ability to build a team of highly motivated and well qualified staff, and to foster the integration of diverse, multi-disciplinary actors into focused initiatives addressing clear targets
  • Demonstrated fluency in English speaking and writing skills, proficiency in other AU official languages is a plus


  • Experience in resource mobilisation and partnership development for public health initiatives
  • Experience developing and supporting multi- stakeholder platforms for collaboration, including supporting events and high-level meetings
  • Experience of working in different national and regional contexts in Africa


Role Overview

Title: External Relations Director

Location: The position shall be based in Nairobi, Kenya, at the APHF Operations Head Quarters. Remote working in a time zone compatible with working hours in Africa (GMT to GMT +3 will be considered for candidates with the right qualifications.

Reporting line: The role reports to the Chief Executive Officer. The External Relations Director currently manages a team of two, a Communications Lead and a Resource Mobilisation Lead with scope for expansion subject to funding.

Contract type: This is a full-time position with the successful candidate being contracted on a two year basis with the possibility of renewal.

Salary and benefits: The gross salary for this position is USD 132,000 per annum, complemented by a competitive benefits package.


How to Apply

To apply for this position, please ensure you complete the Application Form provided below. It is essential that you submit your CV in English, specifically in Microsoft Word format (.doc/.docx).


Applications in other languages or formats will not be considered.


Rest assured, all information will be handled with the utmost confidentiality.


SRI Executive is exclusively retained by Africa Public Health Foundation to undertake this assignment.

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