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Fern is looking for a Communications Project Manager

Fern is a non-hierarchical organisation who coordinates networks and works with partners to protect forests and the rights of forest defenders.

We believe that to be effective, it is essential to understand and address the social dimension of environmental conflicts; that strong coalitions are more likely to achieve lasting change; and that it is necessary to both highlight problems and present ways forward. We are committed to tackling power injustices and supporting people to improve the wording and implementation of policies that affect them.

We have no director and strive to make decisions by consensus. Details of our work areas and campaigns can be found at www.fern.org. We currently have 18 staff working from three offices, in Brussels (Belgium), Paris (France) and Moreton-in-Marsh (United Kingdom). We work with partner organisations across Europe, South-East Asia, Central and West Africa and South America.

As our new communications project manager, you will lead efforts to improve Fern's publications, events, website and social media so that it reaches our target audiences and empowers them to support our campaign aims. This will mean working with campaigners to agree workable processes, supporting staff to deliver on them, coordinating dissemination strategies and evaluating their impacts.

The Communications Project Manager also ensures Fern keeps to a holistic style and is accountable for ensuring Fern has a strong database of consultants such as writers, designers and translators.


1.     Purpose of the role

Ferns has a five person communications team working together to support the public face of Ferns campaigns the exact specifications of the Communications Project Manager role will depend on the person we recruit.

Possible Accountabilities

·       Developing, implementing, and evaluating a new social media strategy to respond to recent changes in the social media landscape.

·       Developing, implementing, and evaluating a new website strategy and working with Ferns website developers to ensure the site helps Fern meet its organisational aims.

·       Building and monitoring feasible timelines for communications products, supporting campaigners to disseminate products widely to key audiences and conducting communications impact assessments to see whether products are achieving their intended goals.

·       Finding, employing and training the amazing interns who join Fern on a revolving internship programme.

·       Being the engine behind Fern events (on-line and in person) - co-designing a plan and seeing it through to completion.

·       Ensuring Ferns monthly newsletter covers key topics, including partner stories, is uploaded and well-disseminated.

·       Guarding Ferns style - ensuring products (including photographs and designs) have the right look-and-feel.

·       Keeping Ferns Customer Relations Management (CRM) databases up-to-date, as well as our database of consultants (writers, designers, translators etc).

·       Supporting Ferns international partners (from Africa, Europe, South America and South-East Asia) when they visit Brussels to meet with high-level political influencers and other NGOs

General Responsibilities

·     Inputting into Ferns long-term strategies and developing annual workplans together with other team members.

·       Working with team members to ensure there is inter-campaign agreement.

·       Facilitating common NGO understanding and positions.

·       Inputting into quarterly workplans and chairing/facilitating meetings when relevant.

·     After 6 months joining an organisational development team and mentoring other staff.

·       After 6 months joining and inputting into management team meetings.

·       Attending and inputting into organisational meetings. 

Other requirements:


·       Travel. As Fern is an international organisation with offices in three countries and activities in numerous countries, travel may be necessary to attend crucial meetings and meet with partners.

·       Flexibility. Fern is a campaigning organisation, and some flexibility will be required in working hours, for example in the case of large events or urgent publications.


Person specification: We do not expect for candidates to fulfil all of these requirements, but it would be preferable that a majority of these skills are fulfilled.


·       Professional proficiency in English

·       Experience of designing and implementing social media strategies

·       Ability to be assertive and ensure people deliver on agreed tasks

·       Experience of organising events both on-line and in person

·       A good eye for design and experience of working with designers

·       Experience of working with CRM systems (Hubspot, Mailchimp...)

·       Experience of web development software

·       Proficiency in other languages (especially French)

·       Excellent organisational (especially the ability to prioritise activities) and computer skills

·       Strong communication and consensus-building skills

·       Ability to establish and maintain good working relationships with partner organisations and consultants

·       Experience in advocacy work, preferably at European level.

2.     Indicative starting salary & working conditions

From €3,987 to €5,243 (full time equivalent) per month gross salary (depending on experience), plus lunch vouchers (€8 per working day), health insurance and a contribution to travel costs from home to office.


Fern offers full time staff five extra days holiday in addition to legal holidays, and up to four additional holidays between Christmas and the New Year. Staff also earn an additional day for every two years worked at Fern, up to a maximum of five days.


The position is based in Brussels. Staff are expected to be in the office at least one day a week but this role is likely to require regular office presence as you will be working closely with staff and partners. It is a full-time role, but we will also consider candidates who wish to work four days per week.


Fern is committed to advancing justice, diversity, equity, and inclusion. We believe that diverse voices and perspectives are essential to solving the planet's most pressing environmental problems, and we encourage applications from candidates whose identities have been historically under-represented in the environmental movement. We are an equal opportunity employer and do not discriminate on the basis of race, colour, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, marital status, sexual orientation, national origin, citizenship, age or disability.


3.     How to apply


Applications should be made in English and comprise:

      I.         A Curriculum Vitae

     II.         A one or two page covering letter explaining what attracts you to Fern, what you could bring to the organisation. Please also explain which parts of the proposed role you would most enjoy, which you would excel at and which you would require training or support to help us deliver.

    III.         An assignment: Fern is planning on re-releasing the publication Options for Europe, what instructions would you give to the designer about how to improve it?

   IV.         Two references that may be contacted after your first interview.


Applications without a properly prepared CV, assignment and covering letter will not be considered. Only selected candidates will be contacted.


Deadline for applications: 23.59 on 5 November 2023

First Round Interviews will be 16 November 2023 in Brussels (if you cannot make that date, please let us know in the application).

The interview process takes a full day and travel costs to interviews will be reimbursed.


Send applications to: julie@fern.org


If you'd like to discuss the job, please contact: Richard Wainwright, richard@fern.org


Fern values a diverse work force and welcomes applications from all sections of the community. If you have any reasonable adjustments you need Fern to take into consideration for either the application or the interview process, please get in touch.

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Daria Andreeva
T. 02 894 46 92