Community Health Outreach Specialist

Before You Apply

Peace Corps Response positions are open to returned Volunteers or U.S. citizens with significant professional and technical experience.

Don't meet these requirements? View our Peace Corps Volunteer openings.

Project Description

Several Peace Corps Response Volunteers are needed to serve as Community Health Outreach Specialists as part of the re-opening of the Peace Corps program in Kenya. Kenya’s Health Sector Strategic & Investment Plan (2013-2018) specifies that Community is the foundation of the health care service delivery system for demand creation, health promotion, diseases prevention, and referrals. This community focused system dovetails well with Peace Corps’ approach to development and impactful Volunteer placements. Prior to the suspension of the Peace Corps Kenya program in 2014, Peace Corps Volunteers in the 27-month program were slated to work with Community Health Volunteers (CHVs) who are hired to provide community services to households and subsequently attached to a Community Health Assistant (CHA) responsible for training and education around health. Peace Corps Response Volunteers (PCRVs) fit well into this public health role in assisting the CHVs and CHAs in building their capacity around outreach, monitoring and follow up on addressing critical health issues, specifically mitigating HIV/AIDS, malaria and maternal health issues at the household level. Peace Corps Kenya was also actively involved in providing technical assistance via community level interventions such as awareness raising, education, prevention and linkage to care efforts. The efforts were targeted around youth and these needs continue.

The Community Health Outreach Specialists, with Bachelor’s degrees in health or a related field and experience in maternal health, infant and young child health or nutrition, malaria control, household-level health outreach, TB/HIV will be placed with different NGOs working on those aspects of community health. PCRVs will also act as a vital partner in the USG DREAMS initiative to keep girls in schools by creating linkages to youth friendly services, stronger social protection systems and better family and community support. Peace Corps is preparing to reopen the country program with 27- month Volunteers when conditions allow, but will initially resume operations with a small group of skilled and experienced health professionals. As part of the initial cohort participating in Peace Corps’ re-entry, the PCRVs can expect to help further develop relationships with the partner organizations, refine the needs assessment, and prepare the way for the 2-year Peace Corps Volunteers to follow.

Please note that departure dates and other details of this project could change because of the uncertainties as Peace Corps and local partners resume volunteer operations. Candidates selected for this position will be arriving in Kenya together as a group, so while the departure dates for the whole group could change, dates cannot be changed for individual candidates.

Partner Information

Ministry of Health facilities and community health NGOs (specific partners to be assigned later)

Required Skills

• High tolerance for ambiguity and high level of flexibility – some details of this project could change because of the uncertainties as Peace Corps and local partners resume volunteer operations
• Bachelor’s degree in Health or a related field
• At least two years’ experience in one of the following public health areas during Peace Corps service or through other professional work in a developing country: maternal health, infant and young child health or nutrition, malaria control, household-level health outreach, TB/HIV
• Returned Peace Corps Volunteer (RPCV) or a minimum of two years working overseas in an international development context
• Flexibility and patience to adapt to changing circumstances and work without constant or close supervision
• Intercultural communication and relationship-building skills
• Basic Kiswahili language or the willingness and ability to quickly self-learn Kiswahili language communication skills prior to departure, including ongoing study and practice during service

The Peace Corps embraces and leverages the diversity of its volunteers as a reflection of America's diversity. Peace Corps Response is committed to reflecting the diversity of the United States in the professionals we send into the field to support the mission of world peace and friendship. Applicants with diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Serving in Kenya

Learn more about the Volunteer experience in Kenya: Get detailed information on culture, communications, housing, and safety in order to make a well-informed decision about serving.

Medical Considerations

Before you apply, please review Medical Information for Applicants to learn about the medical clearance process.

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