Project Officer for Growing the Rural Church

This job has now expired
Exeter with some travel throughout the county of Devon (including Plymouth and Torbay)
Fixed Term Full Time
£30,000 - £32,000 Depending on Experience

The Diocese of Exeter matches almost exactly the boundaries of the county of Devon, including Torbay and Plymouth.  We are a family of Christians, worshipping God in many different settings and groups. We are led by the Bishop of Exeter, and governed by Diocesan Synod which is made up of representatives from across the Diocese.

The central office is the Old Deanery, Exeter, where there is a team of around 50 Diocesan staff whose work is arranged to focus on a number of the goals of the Diocesan vision and strategy, ‘Grow in Prayer, Make new Disciples and Serve the People of Devon with Joy’.

These staff work in the following teams: Education, Mission & Ministry, Church & Society, Communications, Property & Church Buildings, Finance, Safeguarding, Vocations, Synod Office, Archdeacons Secretaries, Counselling & Pastoral Care Service and our exciting new Growing the Rural Church Project.

To arrange an informal discussion about this role please contact us by email or contact Sarah Cracknell (Project Manager) on 07590 443905 or Sam Upham (Project Officer) on 07889 542631 or by post:

The Old Deanery,
The Cloisters,


Full Time (36.25 hours per week)

Salary scale £30,000 - £32,000 (depending on experience) per annum 

Fixed term contract to December 2023 

The Growing the Rural Church Project engages with rural communities across Devon and increases community involvement in the life of the church, thereby releasing resources for mission and generating long-term innovative and sustainable futures for rural churches.

We are expanding our team and seeking a dynamic individual with experience in community engagement and project delivery to join our Growing the Rural Church Project Team. 

The Project Officer will play a key role in initiating, developing and supporting projects which increase the sustainability of our rural churches. Responsibilities will include:

  • Establishing and developing relationships with individuals, local groups and agencies, to understand community needs and the potential of rural church buildings to be used for missional, community, cultural and commercial purposes.
  • Finding and delivering creative solutions with community organisations and businesses to secure the viability of rural churches.
  • Encouraging communities to consider wide-ranging opportunities for fundraising, including the development of enterprise initiatives and events.
  • Providing practical information on availability and suitability of grants, and assist volunteers in the preparation and submission of applications.

Candidates must have excellent communication and partnership working skills, be pro-active and self-disciplined, and be able to deliver multiple projects to deadlines. You should be able to work independently, enjoy working in an ever-changing environment and be willing to travel regularly throughout Devon.


Closing Date:          Friday 6th September 2019

Shortlisting Date:   Wednesday 11th September 2019

Interview Date:       Friday 20th September 2019

In conjunction with the Project Manager and Project Support Officer (GtRC):

  • Initiate, develop and support projects which increase the sustainability of the diocese’s rural churches.
  • Provide expertise, support and enthusiasm to develop business planning and promote a wide range of successful fundraising activities and grant applications for rural churches.
  • Build strong relationships with key agencies and personnel across the diocese, and work with GtRC team to communicate GtRC’s aims and success in achieving these.
  • Ensure all projects are underpinned by effective, efficient and appropriate information and data, and monitored according to GtRC processes.

Key Aspects of Role:

The Project Officer role requires a high degree of proficiency across the domains of:

  • Mission Community and Parish relationship building
  • Information and data management
  • Multi agency team working

The Project Officer will be required to apply for a Basic disclosure certificate from the Disclosure and Barring Service in connection with this role.

Extensive travel will be involved due to the geographical location of parishes with regular out of hours working at evening and weekends.

We are looking for someone with the following experience;

  • Experience of developing and managing projects and associated stakeholder and community engagement.
  • Experience of engaging and supporting people to work together to initiate, develop and support initiatives in local communities.
  • Experience of successfully raising charitable funds through community and volunteer engagement.
  • Experience of identifying suitable grant funding schemes and completing application documentation.
  • Demonstrable skills in facilitation, negotiation and change management.
  • Excellent interpersonal, communication and presentation skills, including public speaking, with a proven ability to communicate effectively and persuasively with a wide range of audiences.
  • Able to manage and progress numerous projects at any one time.
  • Able to build trust and work in partnership.
  • Able to organise work and priorities, coordinating with in-house team and external partners to support the development and delivery of projects.

If you would like to find out more about the Diocese of Exeter please visit our website:

Link to DBS Code of Practice