Media Defence Logo


We’re recruiting: Grants Officer

We’re recruiting:  Grants Officer

Role Summary

The Grants Officer plays a key role at Media Defence, administering the grants that we make to partner organisations, helping assess grant applications, and helping with communications via social media and other channels.

As Grants Officer, you will also manage and administer our financial grants and non-financial support to journalists facing legal action, as well as identifying potential new grantees.

You will be flexible and creative, have exceptional communication skills and a good understanding of the realities faced by lawyers and journalists operating in various regions of the world, including under repressive regimes.

About Media Defence

Media Defence is a charity that helps journalists defend their rights. We support independent media, journalists and bloggers who are under legal threat by making sure that lawyers are available to defend them. We engage in strategic litigation to improve the regulatory environment for media freedom, make grants to organisations in various countries to run media defence programmes, support individual journalists facing legal action by covering their lawyers’ fees, and build the capacity of the lawyers and organisations we work with on issues of media law. Founded in 2008, we have established ourselves as a leader in the field.

Main Responsibilities

Grants Management

  • Support the Senior Grants Officer in their work
  • Manage our block grant and individual emergency defence grant application processes, including assessment of applications and project proposals, proposal development, preparation of final recommendation for approval by Board and others
  • Manage grant award process, including contracting, setting of KPIs and reporting requirements
  • Monitoring of awarded grants, including tracking developments in litigation, assessment of partner/grantee reports and grant compliance; financial oversight of grants and grant budgets; provision of additional support as may be required by grantees
  • Ensure smooth running of Media Defence’s grant making and administration of Media Defence’s grants database
  • Act as lead contact in relationships with grantees throughout the process


  • Undertake and support partner/grant assessment/evaluations and country mapping visits as may be required
  • Support the work of the Development cluster by providing material for news stories and accurate information for knowledge management
  • Assist team members in ensuring data related to our block and individual grants is provided in a timely manner for use in grant/case reporting, communications material, funding applications and reports
  • Support the Finance and Operations Director with periodic reviews and updates of grantee terms and conditions
  • Monitoring the situation of press freedom with outreach to individuals and organisations where appropriate
  • Act as one of the primary conduits between our organisation and networks of NGOs in the sector
  • Represent our organisation at external events and meetings
  • Identify and carry out any other duties which fall within the scope, spirit and purpose of the post as requested

Person Specification


  • Good general education to degree level
  • At least two years’ experience in working for a human rights organisation
  • Strong proven project management skills and experience of delivering successful projects
  • Proven experience of grant making administration and the process of grant making
  • Ability to analyse and synthesise complex information quickly and effectively
  • Competent IT user including Microsoft Office Packages, internet and email
  • Ability to work creatively and flexibly in a small team, supporting other colleagues, and with a strong commitment to learning and improvement
  • Excellent written and spoken English, good editorial skills and the ability to communicate with diverse communities
  • Experience of working with, and relating to, a diverse range of people, and a pleasant, diplomatic manner and disposition when interacting with colleagues at all levels, as well as with our partners
  • Proven track record of an organised and methodical approach to work, combining numerical accuracy with attention to detail and ability to meet deadlines
  • Experience with databases
  • Right to work in the UK



  • Good working knowledge (spoken and written) of Arabic, French, Russian or Spanish would be an advantage
  • Experience working in the media law sector
  • Legal training or experience of working hands on in a legal environment and the management of legal documentation

How to apply

  • To see the full role description and specifications, click here.
  • To apply please send a cover letter and CV with the subject line: ‘Grants Officer application’ to
  • Deadline: 1 September 2022
  • Equality and diversity are fundamental to our mission. We are committed to the recruitment and retention of individuals from diverse backgrounds and who reflect the diverse communities in which we operate.


Recent News

Freedom of expression in Poland: legal harassment against journalists and widening political control over the media

Welcome to the latest instalment of our Partners blog series. In this series, we interview our partners from around the world about their critical work in protecting freedom of expression. This time our communications assistant Julie Reintjes spoke to Konrad Siemaszko, who works as a lawyer for the Poland-based Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights (HFHR). […]


Call for Consultants: Independent Evaluation of ‘Empowering Women in Digital Rights Advocacy’ project

The consultancy We are looking to engage an experienced evaluation consultant to carry out an interim and final evaluation of one of our projects. The project, called Empowering Women in Digital Rights Advocacy (EWDRA), is based in sub-Saharan Africa and began late last year. In addition, the consultant will conduct independent research with an intersectional […]


Spying in the digital age: The use of spyware against journalists

Spyware and freedom of expression Encryption is a valuable tool for freedom of expression online. It allows journalists, lawyers, human rights activists, and citizens to communicate securely. In recent years however, journalists around the world have experienced increasing digital surveillance, despite encryption becoming more accessible. In particular, investigative journalists uncovering corruption, abuse of power, and […]