Co-Lead: Northside Rising

  • Location: Sydney, Nova Scotia
  • Deadline: March 13, 2020 at 11:00 pm

Today, more than ever, we are facing a variety of complex community issues that no organization or institution can effectively tackle acting on its own. It will take a collective approach that gets many people and projects pulling in a common direction.

Inspiring Communities is working to build bridges within and between communities, and is a part of changing the way that we are collectively tackling challenges to the health and well being of Nova Scotians. The NR office is located in the Community CARES Youth Outreach building in Sydney Mines. The initiative’s two Co-Leads work together to support the participation of community partners involved with a series of leadership tables and working groups.

The Co-Lead will support the work that has been done while also cultivating a rich environment for continued work towards a more vibrant and healthy Northside community.

Position responsibilities

Leadership and Engagement

Provide a visionary, adaptive and collaborative leadership to bring diverse groups of people together. Lead outreach and develop partnerships with organizations that can support the Network.


Use a variety of community engagement techniques to host courageous conversations that will contribute to enhancing community capacity and creating a vibrant and healthy Northside.

Capacity Building

Develop the capacities of participants, community leaders and other stakeholders to effectively enable the network. Lead training for members, project teams and related organizations.

Project Management and Communications

Co-create the project work plan and steps needed to achieve the overall objectives of the initiative. Develop and coordinate web and social media content, and manage a database of network stakeholders.


Implement a community engagement model that recognizes key local and regional groups, and that includes a culturally responsive lens to working closely with underrepresented communities.

Making Decisions with Data

Create and share data in formats that allows stakeholders to make research-informed decisions (which includes data, evidence and community input). Work with the NR Research and Evaluation (R&E) lead to develop and implement shared measurement systems that will track common outcomes and indicators across the initiative.

More specifically, the candidate should demonstrate a willingness and openness to:

  • Work within ambiguity and complexity.
  • Work collaboratively with the NR Co-Lead, R&E lead, and Inspiring Communities Backbone team.
  • Actively identify, recruit, build and maintain relationships with residents and leaders from across the community, including neighbourhoods, networks, service organizations, businesses and local government; people who are interested and prepared to commit to action towards the shared agenda.
  • Work collaboratively with community members with lived experience from the priority areas.
  • Work within practices for accessibility across differences and with respect for equity and inclusion.
  • Collaboratively plan, coordinate, and debrief community events and initiatives.
  • Work within a learning culture mindset.
  • Participate in the development of indicators and an evaluation framework, then work closely with the R&E lead to support evaluation activities, including progress toward short-term and long-term goals identified for the priority areas of focus.
  • Provide support to the local NR committees and work groups, including skills training, facilitation and building community capacity.
  • Develop and maintain a growing database of all stakeholders to support the timely and ongoing engagement and communication with all interested parties and to facilitate connections around shared interests and goals.
  • Implement regular communications with the NR community, including face to face dialogue, facilitated sessions, community meetings, participation at related events and other emerging approaches that enable highly effective engagement.
  • Facilitate a variety of conversations and events with individuals, and small and large groups that support positive change and mobilize collective action.
  • Develop and maintain a centralized source for research data, information, referrals and consultation.
  • Work closely with the Inspiring Communities backbone team to coordinate support needed to effectively nurture the work across NR and other partners of Inspiring Communities.
  • Identify learning opportunities to build team capacity and contribute to the Inspiring Communities learning plan and platform development.

Salary / Hours of Work

This is a full time position based in Sydney Mines. Inspiring Communities values its people, and recognizes the importance of the contributors who work here. Competitive compensation package is included, commensurate with experience.

Hours of work are flexible as they include evenings and some overnight travel.

Candidate Profile & Capacities

One of the key capacities that communities like the Northside require for their future well-being is the ability to manage complex change processes. The success of complex initiatives relies heavily on the ability of its leaders to continuously balance a variety of important tensions:

  • Long term vision with near-term goals
  • Commitment to outcomes with a commitment to process
  • Big picture thinking with targeted action
  • Desire for consensus with an openness to diversity and debate
  • Opportunity-driven change with strategic analysis and direction
  • Local knowledge and leadership with non-local perspectives and expertise
  • Bias for action with a bias for learning.

Navigating these tensions in real time is more a craft than a science: it requires an endless series of judgments about how best to apply general principles to specific contexts. Backbone staff and others involved in the leadership of Northside Rising are increasingly coming to know the dynamics of such complex processes and the art of navigating its pushes and pulls.

Additionally, a great Co-lead contributor will be able to work independently in a horizontal team, and will be able to demonstrate experience with:

  • Developing positive collaborative working relationships with people from a variety of different backgrounds; including coaching and support
  • Thinking strategically on both organizational and systemic levels
  • Adaptive communication and facilitation approaches to meet the needs of diverse audiences
  • Inspiring and supporting diverse teams to work toward common goals
  • Working with data and shared-measurement systems
  • Report writing and presentations
  • Willingness to work outside a job description to meet the needs of the community

How to Apply

To apply, please merge your cover letter and resume into one PDF and:

  • Send to:
  • Use the subject header: Northside Rising – CL

Applications will be accepted until 5pm, Wednesday March 4th

Please be sure to include a cover letter that speaks to your experience, but we also want to get a glimpse of your personality. Don’t be generic, be yourself.

Statement of intention: Our goal is to be a diverse and inclusive workforce that is representative, at all job levels, of the communities we serve.

We encourage applications from Aboriginal People, African Nova Scotians and other Racially Visible Persons, and Persons with Disabilities. If you are a member of one of the equity groups you are encouraged to self-identify in your covering letter or your resume.