Vacancy: Director of Communications & Advocacy

Vacancy: Director of Communications & Advocacy

Mental Health Reform is seeking to appoint a creative and committed professional who has the skills and experience to design and oversee an effective communications and advocacy programme to support our strategic goals and position MHR appropriately in the public sphere.

Working closely with the Executive Director, the Communications & Information Executive and the rest of the MHR team, the Director of Communications & Advocacy will be responsible for sustaining and amplifying our coalition voice, generating individual activism and individual donor support, and organising a programme of impactful, collective action to achieve our strategic goals.

Mental Health Reform is the national coalition driving reform of Ireland’s mental health services and social inclusion of people with mental health difficulties. Our vision is of an Ireland where people with mental health difficulties can recover their wellbeing and live a full life in the community. With more than 50 member organisations and 10,000 individual supporters, MHR provides a coordinated voice to Government, its agencies, the Oireachtas and the general public on mental health issues.

The current social and political environment provides a unique opportunity to build a modern mental health system. Visibility of mental health as a topic of concern in the public domain has never been greater. Political interest in the issue of mental health has also increased, as evidenced by cross-party membership of the Oireachtas Group on Mental Health and successive Dáil debates on mental health during 2016. Public activism towards improving mental health services and preventing suicide has also surfaced in recent campaigns such as #OurStateOfMind, #IAmAReason and #InOurHourOfNeed, as well as in the national demonstration against a €12M diversion of funds in April of this year.

Mental Health Reform has become a ‘go to’ organisation for expert commentary on mental health in Ireland and is recognised as the umbrella body for the mental health sector. MHR is a focal point for activism to improve the mental health system and a trusted partner with like-minded organisations including A Lust for Life, Uplift, Future Voices and First Fortnight. In this context, the opportunity exists for the right person to lead MHR’s communications and advocacy strategy, leveraging media, public and political interest with the strength of a coalition voice to bring about real improvements to Ireland’s mental health and related social services.

The successful candidate will have a minimum of five years’ experience in external communications, experience in a functional role responsible for collective advocacy or campaigning and experience in designing and implementing campaigns to successful achievement of strategic goals. A detailed person specification is contained in the full job description for the post.

This is a permanent position, subject to a 12-month probationary period. An attractive remuneration package commensurate with experience is available.

Application is by submission of a cover letter and CV via email to smcdaid@mentalhealthreform.combinedmedia.com. For further information and/or a copy of the job description, contact Shari McDaid. Deadline for receipt of applications is 5pm, Thursday, 22nd December, with interviews anticipated during the 2nd week of January 2017.

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