Responsible for ensuring the successful preservation and restoration of a unique 900+ acre site in one of the fastest growing areas of the country, the rare Charitable Research Reserve is an urban land trust and environmental situated in the Waterloo Region of South-Western Ontario.  Its conservation lands provide a natural laboratory for scientific study and research, and related educational programs. Our new raresites land securement team is a collaborative effort; bringing many organizations and individuals under the rare umbrella with the goal to protect more land in the Grand River Watershed and surrounding areas in a truly engagement- based fashion.

Objects found on the property go back more than 10,500 years. The rare Charitable Research Reserve acknowledges the Chonnonton people (“people of the deer”) on whose traditional territory we live and work and offers respect to our Haudenosaunee, Anishinaabe and Métis neighbours as we strengthen our relationships with them. We also look to the future in our relationships with Indigenous peoples. We value Indigenous traditional knowledge and world views and look forward to continuing to integrate this into our organization and unique method of conservation. Through the rare Chain of Learning, we undertake research to further the science that will result in best practices, train the next generation of conservationists and create an entire community of support for them and for conservation goals.

Reporting to the Interim Fundraising Team Coordinator, the Sponsorships & Events Manager will work collegially as part of a fundraising and communications team, and with program advisors, staff and volunteers to interpret rare and its needs to the broader community in order to build support – both political and financial – for its mission and programs. This is a new position and will require flexibility, sensitivity and creativity to help rare meet major campaign goals while building a healthy, ongoing annual fund.

The position works in close collaboration with the Major Gifts Manager, the Development and Communications Officer and the Gosling Engagement Coordinator, often seeking support for events and programs initiated by these colleagues while also assuming responsibility for rare’s Corporations for Conservation effort and integrating it into the organisation’s existing plans, including its Turn the Map Green, Waterfall and Natural Investment campaigns.

Responsibilities include identification, cultivation, solicitation and stewardship to secure sponsorship for events and to build a solid base of annual supporters. This entails, among other things, raising funds and gifts-in-kind for recognition events, cultivation events and program events. In particular, rare wants to grow its annual Walk/Run for rare into a signature event that provides a major boost to the operating budget.

Responsibilities and Deliverables include but are not limited to:

  • In collaboration with the Fundraising and Communications team, participate in the development of an Annual Fundraising Plan, by preparing a draft, with proposed budget, and participating in strategy.
  • Develop new and creative ways to engage and steward rare’s diverse community, with special emphasis on the corporate community, building the rare profile while identifying and engaging key leaders.
  • In collaboration with the Fundraising and Communications team, create the largest possible base of corporate and organizational sponsorships or related support.
  • Lead the Corporations for Conservation program, building on the current membership to create a program of engagement that will grow the list to 25 and ensure their renewal at the end of 5 years.
  • Work with the staff team to set and achieve goals for the Walk/Run for rare annual community event, growing sponsorships and support base to meet set goals.
  • Work with program staff to identify meaningful gifts-in-kind that will provide relief to the operating budget and assist with capital goals and event goals.
  • Prepare reports and analyses of community sponsorship.
  • Support Major Gifts Manager with solicitation and cultivation events, particularly for hosted peer-to-peer and planned giving events.
  • Write grant proposals in collaboration with program staff.
  • Develop communications materials, strategy and plans as needed.

Required attributes:

  • College or university degree
  • 5+ years of sponsorship and event-based fundraising;
  • Previous experience with non-profit/charity fundraising in small organizations
  • Capital Campaign fundraising experience;
  • Proven and demonstrable success in securing sponsorships, major gifts and in-kind contributions for annual budget and specific events and capital projects
  • Direct experience in successful outreach and communications;
  • Professionalism, confidence, ability to network effectively;
  • Creative, high-level thinker who can be flexible and a problem-solver;
  • Strong interest and experience in the environment, conservation and science/technology or
    strong interest and willingness to learn about this field
  • Strong interest and understanding of the role of the arts as a form of inquiry and their
    meaning in people’s life, or strong interest and willingness to read and learn about this field;
  • Strong interest and experience in working with diverse peoples and communities, particularly Indigenous peoples, or interest and willingness to learn more;
  • No fear of big ideas and ability to embrace change;
  • Ability to simplify messages, while understanding the complexity of our organization; and
  • Full, clean driver’s license and access to vehicle.

Key Competencies:

  • Understanding of fundraising and communications strategies, issues and techniques and ability to keep up with changes in this area;
  • Ability to plan and direct and set realistic goals;
  • Ability to produce ideas independently, e.g. identify target audiences, and to
    write plans independently, outlining fundraising strategies/tactics;
  • Ability to inspire and keep staff and volunteers moving toward their goals;
  • Motivated self-starter with a can-do attitude and healthy appetite for taking risks;
  • Ability to provide high-level analysis and management information in a timely manner;
  • Ability to evaluate success of various fundraising efforts;
  • Ability to articulate all aspects of the organization’s programs and mission, to assist with training and leading other staff and volunteers on these topics and to develop plans accordingly;
  • Excellent organizational skills and ability to meet deadlines in an appropriate manner;
  • Excellent writing and speaking skills;
  • Good record-keeping abilities to ensure an organizational history of donor relations;
  • Understanding of financial reports and reporting toward goals;
  • Ability to solve problems creatively and to handle emergencies in a capable manner.
  • Excellent people skills, authenticity, genuine interest in interacting with people from all walks of life; team player and outgoing personality;
  • Ability to work in a collaborative team environment; and
  • Ability to collaborate and keen interest to push boundaries and seek unconventional or non-traditional partnerships

To demonstrate expertise in the areas above, the successful candidate will show evidence of an established network, particularly in the Waterloo Region/Wellington area, and the ability to work with senior volunteers and to maintain relationships.

The Appointment

This position is full time (35 hours/week), commencing as soon as possible pending approval of funding. Applications including a cover letter, resume and contact information for three references should be emailed in ONE file (.pdf) and will be accepted until Oct 5, 2017 at 5:00 pm. Please address applications to:

Dr. Stephanie Sobek-Swant
Executive Director
rare Charitable Research Reserve
1679 Blair Road, Cambridge ON N3H 4R8

Visit rare on the web at www.raresites.org for additional information on the organization.

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rare Charitable Research Reserve
1679 Blair Road
Cambridge, ON N3H 4R8
(519) 650-9336
Charitable Registration:
#8776 15914 RR0001