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Justice Defenders

Finance Director

About Justice Defenders

From Uganda to the United States, we are living amidst a global justice crisis. The lack of access to justice impacts 5.1 billion people worldwide, affecting families, communities, and society at large. Three million men, women and children are being held in overcrowded prisons without a trial. Countless voices are lost in the noise. 

Founded in 2007 as the African Prisons Project, Justice Defenders is an organisation and movement from all walks of life: prisoners, prison officers, lawyers, judges, and allies. Over the past 13 years, Justice Defenders has leveraged its success to build committed relationships with influential international organisations and individuals and relies on a network of connected and generous donors. Justice Defenders is a registered U.K. charity and U.S. nonprofit with a global team currently based in the U.K., Kenya, Uganda, Gambia, Italy, and the USA.

The organisational culture is shaped by the core values of bravery, humility, and solidarity. These influence the thinking and daily behaviour and are used routinely in decision making, priority setting, and implementation of all aspects of the organisation’s work. 

About the Role

The Finance Director will report to the Chief Operating Officer and help Justice Defenders’ operational performance, effectiveness, and accountability through adequate financial planning, budgeting, and monitoring. The Finance Director will also work closely with the Director of Fundraising and Communications with planning and monitoring income generation.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Effectively plan and work at the strategic and operational levels, supporting planning and implementation of budgets and forecasts.
  • Develop the system of budgetary control, liaising with budget holders to develop their understanding and skills. 
  • Oversee financial administration and bookkeeping ensuring efficiency and high accountability standards.
  • Provide timely, accessible and useful financial reports for Executive Management, and proactively develop the quality and utility of financial reporting and communications.
  • Develop an internal audit function and work with external accountants/auditors to manage the preparation and audit of end-of-year accounts.
  • Oversee the payroll system, including pensions.
  • Evolve and ensure adherence to finance policies and procedures.
  • Ensure that staff members are properly trained on financial and accountability policies, standards and processes.
  • Work with colleagues to ensure that income generation processes are effectively integrated with finance systems (e.g. Gift Aid declarations).
  • Ensure systems are in place to track spending against specific funded projects, and produce reports for funders as needed.
  • Provide relevant and reliable financial data, analysis, and insights for strategy reviews.
  • Oversee insurance requirements across the organisation.
  • Oversee timely submission of accounts and reports to HMRC, Companies House and Charity Commission.

Skills and Experience

  • Qualified accountant (ACA, ACCA, CIMA, CIPFA) or equivalent professional qualifications
  • A strong track record of senior-level financial management within NGOs, foundations, social enterprises, or businesses in international development, including budgeting, reporting, cash flow, treasury and audit (e.g. VAT, SORP reporting requirements and restricted fund accounting).
  • Demonstrate servant leadership, building financial management capabilities across offices through example, coaching and empowerment.
  • Understanding of the role of matrix management in driving collaboration, change, innovation and performance 
  • An eye for detail and the big picture 
  • Excellent problem-solving and analytical skills
  • The ability to work under pressure and meet deadlines
  • Proven initiative, flexibility and enthusiasm in managing complex activities in a changing environment.
  • Considerable experience with computerised accounts software including creating and tailoring reports
  • Demonstrated interest in legal education or legal practice is desirable but not essential.
  • Experience living and working in countries where JD operates (Uganda; Kenya; Gambia; USA; the UK).