Location: Georgetown, Grenada
Start Date: 2023
Placement Length: 10 Months
Language Requirements: English Level 5-Fluent
Open to Canadian Citizens and Permanent Residents of Canada Only
The Volunteer’s Role
As a volunteer, you will coordinate the design of community engagement mechanisms such as communication campaigns and community sessions to empower vulnerable women and girls and civil society groups to access and use gender-responsive programs and services offered by government institutions. Additionally, you will build the capacity of government staff through training on best practices for community engagement including requisite structures and processes for sustainability.
BLUEPRINTS is being implemented in four countries: Dominica, Grenada, St Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines. You will work in close collaboration with Gender Experts in each country. You will also work with a local In-Country Program Support Officer to coordinate support to the Gender Divisions and ministries.
As a volunteer, you will:
- Conduct assessment of current mechanisms in place to engage vulnerable groups.
- Coordinate the design and implementation of communications campaigns to increase awareness within vulnerable groups of programs and services offered by public institutions.
- Coordinate the execution of community engagement sessions to facilitate engagement between public institutions and vulnerable women and girls and other vulnerable groups.
- Coordinate the design of feedback mechanism tools for use by vulnerable women and girls and women’s rights organizations to share their direct interests, needs, perspectives and rights, quality of public programs and services and suggested improvements by public institutions for greater citizen engagement.
- Coordinate formation of community Feedback Committees to consolidate community members responses, comments and observations.
- Coordinate capacity building sessions with staff on community engagement strategies to promote their programs and services to community beneficiaries.
- University degree in communications, marketing, public relations or social sciences related field.
- Minimum of 3 years of demonstrated experience in a position (s) related to communications and marketing
- Experience working with government agencies
- Experience working with senior management
- Experience in training and facilitation
- Experience with developing marketing tools and assets
What’s in it for YOU? A life-changing experience!
About Us, the Project and the Partner
Cuso International is an international cooperation and development organization that works to create economic and social opportunities for marginalized groups. Together with our partners, we are focused on efforts to advance gender equality and social inclusion, improve economic resilience, and deliver progress on climate action. We believe that by sharing skills, we can build better futures. Founded in 1961, Cuso International works in Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, and Canada.
Project - BluePrints for Gender Equality
Cuso will be implementing the four-year BLUEPRINTS project funded by the Government of Canada Global Affairs Canada (GAC); the main focus of the project is to strengthen the capacity of local governments in Dominica, Grenada, St. Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines to integrate gender into policies, programs, and services to better reflect the needs, perspectives and interests of the Caribbean’s most vulnerable women and girls.
The Division of Gender and Family Affairs is the National Women’s/Gender Equality Machinery.
It is a division in the Ministry of Social Development, Housing and Community Empowerment. One of its units is the Domestic Violence Unit which was established in 2003. The Unit is charged with the responsibility of coordinating national responses to prevent and punish acts of domestic violence, and also provides services to protect and support victims by:
o Supporting enforcement of policy and legislation
o Public sensitization
o Assistance to victims in finding safe shelter, counseling and participation in empowerment programs. Temporary safe shelter is available for women in abusive situations at the Cedars Home.
o Educational programs through community initiatives and use of media
Terms and Conditions
Cuso International terms and conditions allow you to lead a modest and healthy lifestyle while being effective in your placement. This support package will cover basic living expenses for one volunteer and is not intended to cover home-based expenses (ex. loans, support payments, etc.) or luxury items such as imported items in placement or international personal travel.
- Modest monthly living allowance (varies depending on country)
- Accommodation while in placement
- Return airfare and visa/work permit costs
- Cost of required vaccinations, antimalarial medication, and health insurance
- Pre-departure training, in-country orientation, and reintegration debriefing, including travel and accommodation (more details below)
- On the ground support through our Cuso International country program office
- Access to Employee Assistance Program while in placement and upon return
- Bonus: Additional return flight home or cash in lieu after 12 months of service for volunteers who extend for another 6 months
- Please note that if you are shortlisted for the placement, you will be required to:
- Provide two Professional References and one Personal Reference
- Complete an oral assessment during your preliminary telephone interview in the language required for your placement
- Obtain a Police Check at our request
- Complete a full medical exam and be medically cleared by the Cuso International Medical Advisor prior to your departure
- Due to the COVID-19 situation, be double vaccinated in accordance with the World Health Organization-approved vaccines
- We seek individuals who share our values and are dedicated to supporting marginalized groups, including those from the LGBTQIA+ communities
We ask each volunteer, regardless of placement length, to raise $2,000. All volunteers receive support from Cuso International to help achieve the goal through fundraising. If the volunteer chooses not to fundraise or is unable to achieve the fundraising goal, he/she can make a one-time donation or become a monthly donor to support our work.
Pre-departure Training and Briefing
We commit to helping you prepare as best as possible for your placement. You will have an advisor to support you through the process and will receive essential training as part of your preparation. This training is designed to maximize your understanding of your placement and culture, help you identify and plan your own learning, and help you stay safe and healthy during your placement.
Overview of pre-departure training:
- Skills and Knowledge for Working in Development (SKWID) program: blended online and in-person training, including 3-day training in Ottawa (Friday, Saturday and Sunday)
- Self-directed briefing documents, online training and external resources accessed through the volunteer portal
- Online health briefing
- Fundraising 101 Webinar
In-Country Training and Learning
You will receive an In-Country Orientation (ICO) that builds upon the pre-departure training. This will be conducted by either the country program office or the supporting partner organization. This normally lasts for 2-10 days (depending on language learning requirements and other factors). In some countries, volunteers will be able to access ongoing language training opportunities. In-Country Orientation equips you with the relevant skills, knowledge, and country-specific information to be successful in your placement. Furthermore, our Country Program Office or local partner will provide you with continuous in-country support throughout the duration of your placement.
Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abuse
Cuso International works with poor, vulnerable and marginalized people, mainly women and girls, to eradicate poverty and inequality. We understand the need to uphold and enforce the highest standards of ethical and professional conduct.
At Cuso International, we believe that all people, regardless of race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed (religion), sex, age, record of offences, marital status, family status, sexual orientation, gender expression and identity or disability have the right to live lives free of harassment, sexual exploitation and abuse.
Cuso International considers all forms of harassment, sexual exploitation and abuse to be incompatible with fundamental belief in the human dignity of all people, international and national agreements and standards, and with its core values. Cuso International volunteers must agree to uphold the Child Protection, Prevention of Workplace Violence, Prevention of Workplace Harassment and Discrimination, and Prevention of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse Policies and Code of Conduct.
Residency and Citizenship
The majority of Cuso International volunteer applicants are residing in Canada at the time of application and during the pre-departure process. Occasionally we received applications from volunteer applicants who are residing outside of Canada at the time of application. In both instances, between your application date and placement start date, we must be able to contact you and you must be able to contact us easily and promptly throughout the process.
We may require your passport and would need to be aware of your current place of residence and any travel plans you may have during this time. You will also require unrestricted access to Canada during this time for training, as applicable.
Leaving your country of residence can have significant effects on your citizenship status in that country. It is your responsibility to research the consequences of traveling to Canada during the pre-departure process if you are living outside of Canada and of leaving your country of residence for a placement with the immigration authority where you live.
By applying to this placement, you accept full responsibility for any consequences related to your citizenship, residency, and immigration status or penalties as a result of travel to pre-departure training, international placement, or other Cuso International related travel.
You must check the implications that apply to you, but examples include:
- Canadian permanent residents may need to make arrangements with immigration authorities before traveling. These arrangements allow them to travel without risk to their status in Canada. Without them, residency status may be withdrawn.
- Citizens of other countries, including those visiting Canada on a visa, may have travel restrictions.