Promote Gender, Girls’ Education and Empowerment

Eligibility

Open to all RPCVs

Activity/project background

PRESSE JEUNE DEVELOPPEMENT (PJD) is working with the Global Fund Project on the, "Scale up of HIV prevention to contribute to the reduction of HIV-related morbidity and mortality by 2023" project (NFM3), a new 3-year Global Fund grant to fight HIV, malaria and tuberculosis. There are three goals of the project:
1. Reduce new HIV infections among key and vulnerable populations including adolescents and youth
2. Reduce the socio-economic burden of HIV on the country's development
3. Increase the rate of notification of tuberculosis cases through active case finding in the community

A specific program was developed in 2020 in relation with the first goal. The “Return young girls to school to prevent HIV program” is a Global Fund project initiative that considers girls’ education as an important tool to fight against their sexual exposure. Since young girls are 9 times more affected by the HIV-AIDS pandemic in Cameroon than boys, education helps reduce their vulnerability to HIV and early pregnancy and abortion.
The pilot phase was successful; 1,500 girls in one region benefited from an important package of services that supported their schooling through scholarships and textbooks, sanitary pads for their menstrual care, and personal protection kits for a COVID-19-free return to school. In order to scale up this program, the NGO wants to mobilize resources to reach 10,000 young girls in the 10 regions of the country.

An evaluation of the project highlighted the need to strengthen youth and gender issues such as gender-based violence and to promote sexual reproductive health. While this project has ample support from the organization, there is not yet a full-time staff working on these initiatives. PJD is seeking a Virtual Service Pilot Participant (VSPP) to train the PJD staff on gender programming; and assist with the development of the organization’s Youth and Gender strategy aiming to improve gender issues in all the 10 regions of the country. The VSPP will increase PJD’s staff knowledge on strategic planning and monitoring and evaluation.

The organization has not worked with PCVs before, however, the main VSPP counterpart has long experience working with PCVs as a language and cross culture facilitator and has a good understanding of the PCV role as well as the difference of between a PCV and a VSPP.

Virtual service engagement and tasks

The VSPP will engage in the following tasks, in collaboration with Host Country Partners:
• Meet with PJD staff to understand the current strategy, needs, and research available to inform the process to define and implement a gender and youth strategy
• Assist PJD staff to define the goals, and elements to include in the gender and youth strategy
• Assist in developing a gender and youth strategy
• Assist with the development of specific and relevant activities related to gender and youth by providing feedback to PJD staff
This engagement is expected to be approximately 21 weeks. VSPPs are expected to engage on the tasks listed above for an estimated 5-15 hours per week.

Meetings and trainings between VSPPs and Host Country Counterparts will take place during normal office hours, West Africa Time (8:00am - 5:00pm). Specific times will be determined during orientation.

The Host Country Counterpart will have access to internet, phones, zoom meetings, mails for regular communication and collaboration.

Per the Child Protection Code of Conduct, when engaging online with minors (0-18), two adults must be present.

Optional additional activities

The Peace Corps mission is to promote world peace and friendship by fulfilling three goals:

  1. To help the people of interested countries in meeting their need for trained men and women.
  2. To help promote a better understanding of Americans on the part of the peoples served.
  3. To help promote a better understanding of other peoples on the part of Americans.

Goal 1 will be achieved through the VSPP's engagement and completion of the above tasks. The counterpart and VSPP may also choose to identify an activity that aligns with Goal 2. Additionally, the VSPP may identify a Goal 3 activity to implement during their engagement. See recommendations and tools for Goal 3 activities.

Essential qualifications

Education: Bachelor’s degree in women’s studies, sociology, gender studies, public health or related field

Language: Intermediate French

Experience: Experience in gender and youth development work including at least one of the following: developing gender and youth strategies, conducting gender training, gender/youth mainstreaming, engaging in gender advocacy or child protection and safeguarding.

Intercultural skills and motivation: Flexible, strong cross-cultural agility, high tolerance for ambiguity, able to work independently, resourceful, creative, and genuinely motivated and capable to serve virtually

Desired qualifications

Education: Master’s degree in international development, political science, gender/women’s studies, economics, sociology, or related field

Technical Skills: Familiarity with virtual engagement and communication

Language: Advanced Level in French

Experience:
• Experience working in gender and/or youth in other socio-cultural settings
• Experience fostering commitment and capacity building among project staff and key stakeholders around gender and youth integration
• Experience facilitating online meetings and or trainings

Partner background

Name: PRESSE JEUNE DEVELOPPEMENT (PJD)

Type of entity: Local NGO

Mission and goals:

PJD has been operating since 1997 and focuses its efforts throughout the country to promote the health and education of young girls in vocational training centers and fights against gender-based-violence.

PJD leads advocacy for the positioning of the youth agenda and contributes to the improvement of the living conditions of the populations through communication for development. Specifically, it promotes communication for behavior change, health, education and sustainable development as well as strengthens community systems. PJD carries out awareness-raising, capacity-building, and support activities within the communities, and fights against gender-based violence (GBV) towards adolescents and young women.

Terms and conditions of engagement

VSPPs will be engaging with the host country partner, in coordination with Peace Corps post staff, remotely from the US. They should have access to a computer, internet, and telephone in order to enable direct engagement with the Peace Corps overseas office and the Host Country Counterpart assigned by the host country partner.

Orientation with the host country partner will be provided, within the designated virtual service hours, during the first week of virtual service via an online presentation and discussion. The host country partner will provide an overview of its organization, the local context, and how they envision collaborating with the VSPP.

The VSPP will have regular check-ins with their counterpart and bi-weekly check-ins with Peace Corps staff. Spending unstructured time with counterparts can be critical to relationship-building and is encouraged through activities such as coffee chats and informal calls within the weekly 5-15 hours.

Engagement-specific safety and security

The VSPP will receive an orientation on Peace Corps’ Child Protection Policy and how it relates to online engagement along with IT security best practices. The VSPP will be expected to follow safety and security guidelines for online engagement to ensure their safety and that of the Host Country Partner and their counterpart, and any beneficiaries of the engagement.

Supervision requirements

The VSPP will report to a designated Peace Corps staff member. The VSPP will be expected to abide by the Virtual Service Pilot Participant and Donation Agreement and Participant Principles of Engagement. The VSPP will also be expected to check in with the designated host country counterpart as assigned by the host county partner.


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