Consultancy Announcement: Susan Treadwell Memorial Mentorship Programme

Consultancy Announcement: Susan Treadwell Memorial Mentorship Programme
October 21, 2021 Hannah Stevens

Ipsita Divedi


Ariadne is a network of European funders who work together to strengthen philanthropy, help funders act strategically, and encourage new donors to enter the field with maximum impact. Our vision is of a Europe where a strong philanthropic sector helps protect and promote human rights and social change. Ariadne has more than 600 individual members from 155 member-organisations, based in 22 countries. 


Over the past five years, progressive European philanthropy has become more reflective about its own exclusivity and distance from the social issues it wishes to influence.  Cultural and political moments such as the #MeToo and Black Lives Matter movements inspire foundations to become more invested in gender justice and racial justice; the rise of populism leads philanthropy to question whether it has ignored the needs of the working classes or those living in rural areas.  But as foundations begin to address these issues and seek out the best interventions, they are increasingly moved to acknowledge that relatively few people in leadership positions in their own institutions have first-hand experience to bring to bear.  As a sector, we have blind spots, and these can affect what issues are prioritised, who gets funding, and even how funding decisions are made.   

Ariadne’s late Advisory Board member, Susan Treadwell, understood this very well.  As a long-time staff member of the Open Society Foundations, she sought to elevate the voices of the marginalised and bring those voices into not only policy discussions but also the work of mainstream civil society organisations.  She challenged herself, organisations she helped lead and build, and those around her to reflect on and interrogate their own biases and insisted that any programmatic effort be designed on the principle of ‘nothing about us without us’. It is in her spirit and the memory of her work and out of respect for her impact that we are reimagining the mentorship programme and launching the Susan Treadwell Memorial Mentorship Programme. 

Ariadne is well placed to help those entering the field to orient themselves through contacts with experienced grant-makers.  It is also a resource for those who are mid-career and looking for ways to do their jobs better, perhaps with the aim of moving up the ladder.  We currently run a mentoring scheme for our members, now in year three, that links up more and less experienced grantmakers to help develop the next generation of philanthropy professionals.  The scheme has proved very popular, with around 25 people per year seeking mentoring.  We now seek to consciously develop the mentoring scheme as a pipeline for bringing professionals from a more diverse range of backgrounds into the sector and providing them with the support they need to thrive and take on leadership roles.  


The purpose of this consultancy is to scope out and design the next phase of Ariadne’s mentoring programme with an explicit racial and gender justice lens.  

We expect this proposal will:

  1. identify the needs of foundation staff in Europe from minority backgrounds (including but not limited to racial, sexual, and gender minorities);
  2. scope existing efforts to capacitate emerging philanthropy leaders in Europe and elsewhere;
  3. propose enhancements to Ariadne’s existing mentoring programme to develop it as a pipeline for growing diversity among philanthropy leadership in Europe; and
  4. set out the next steps to develop the programme.


We expect the outputs of this consultancy to include:

  1. interviews with previous participants in Ariadne’s mentoring programme;
  2. interviews with organisations running leadership development or mentoring programmes in the philanthropic sector;
  3. a written proposal or report (c. 5,000 words) that includes the elements identified above;
  4. presentation of this report to the steering committee for this project; and
  5. advice on next steps to Ariadne and the steering committee.


We expect that the successful candidate will have most of the following skills and experience, or its equivalent, and welcome applications from consultants from minoritised backgrounds.

  • Understanding of the philanthropy sector in Europe;
  • Experience of scoping, design and implementation of leadership programmes desirable but not essential;
  • Excellent stakeholder management skills developed in a relevant field – to include strong influencing and partnership skills, and a proven ability to identify competing demands and encourage and facilitate collaboration;
  • Excellent spoken and written communication skills in English, with expert report writing skills and presentational skills;
  • Ability to work autonomously, under pressure to meet deadlines and produce agreed deliverables; 
  • Sensitive to the demands of working across cultures.


Consultancy Title: Design of Susan Treadwell Memorial Mentorship Programme
Location: Flexible/remote, preferably based in or near GMT or CET time zones
Reports to: Director, Ariadne
Compensation: Daily rate commensurate with experience for a fixed number of days
Term: 6 months

Application Instructions 

The closing date for applications is Friday 12th November.  Interviews will be held via Zoom during the week commencing 22nd November, and we hope that the successful candidate will be available to begin work in January 2022.

To apply please submit a maximum two-page CV and a short cover letter (maximum 2 sides A4) to setting out your relevant previous experience and outlining your approach to this project.   

To assist in our administration, please use the following subject line: “Consultant: Last name, first name”. The filename of your CV should be “LastnameFirstname_CV” and that of your cover letter should be “LastnameFirstname_Cover”.  

Thank you for your interest in working with Ariadne.  We look forward to hearing from you.

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