Social entrepreneurs co-founded WE and WE Charity, an international charity and educational partner, 20 years ago. They have grown it into a family of organisations across a number of countries, linked by their shared mission: WE makes doing good, doable.
WE Schools are academic programmes run in schools globally, including 3,000 primary and secondary schools in the UK. The programmes give children (and their teachers) the skills, knowledge and motivation to bring positive change in themselves and the world. The WE Schools programme is proven to increase academic engagement, active citizenship and university and workplace readiness.
WE Villages is a five-pillar international development model bringing positive change in Africa, Asia and Latin America. Through education, water, health, opportunity and food programmes, WE tackle poverty holistically and for sustained change in the communities in which they work. The impact is impressive and is a useful tool to showcase their work.
WE Day is a celebration of the WE movement, and an opportunity to celebrate the young people who have made a difference. It is truly unique: you can’t buy a ticket, you must be invited, and it attracts world-renowned speakers, performers, celebrities and real-life impact stories. From a fundraising perspective, WE Day is also a useful hook for potential partners.
Virgin Atlantic funded the establishment of WE Charity’s London office almost 10 years ago. Corporate and foundation support continues to make up most of the UK voluntary income, such as the Virgin Atlantic Foundation, the #iwill Fund, Boots, Unilever and the Rumi Foundation. Income has hovered around the £3m mark for the past four years, but with some contracts coming to an end in 2021, a bigger focus is needed on new business development in the coming years. Targeting large global brands is key.
WE Charity are looking for a Director of Business Development to manage a Business Development Manager. Together you will be responsible for all prospecting, new approaches, networking, pitching and securing of new significant corporate partnerships. Some of this will be foundations work, but mostly you will be looking at marketing or strategic partnerships.
The charity have some fantastic products. These include Track Your Impact, a fantastic tool which means consumers can purchase a CRM product (either made through the WE social enterprise, or one of the retailer’s own products), as well as WE Day (see above).
The pipeline has been established, with five or six potential partners which look promising, and a wishlist of ideal partners. The team are organised and meticulous with their pipeline tracking on Salesforce, so the new Director of Business Development should be able to get to grips with ongoing conversations quickly. The postholder will start working on big and long-term prospects, rather than going after quick wins straight away.
WE Charity need a first-rate specialist fundraiser to help them on their journey. They expect to continue the rapid trajectory of growth, and in years to come this role could also oversee wider fundraising elements, including statutory, trusts and foundations, and philanthropy.
The Director of Business Development should be personally leading new business development, and ideally will be out at meetings, pitches and/or networking opportunities as much as possible. Some leads will be warm (made through connections, major donor work, trustees, founders and Canadian contacts) but the postholder needs to be equally comfortable going after cold prospects if there is a strategic fit. The role is very senior in order to be able to have the gravitas and confidence to negotiate and influence at C-suite level.
WE Charity is a vibrant, purpose-driven, fast-paced, highly dynamic organisation. It is successful around the globe but has retained its start-up feel. The charity aims high, is run by highly influential founder-directors, and has a strong mission and ambitious culture.
Having been founded by a 12-year-old who was frustrated at the responses to his ideas for good, there is a culture of collaboration and encouraging ideas. Confident, intelligent, creative individuals thrive in this environment.
The Director of Business Development will visit international work in the field a few times a year, as well as meetings in North America. They will also be asked to spend some time at the WE global headquarters in Toronto, Canada at the beginning of their employment, for training and induction.