Support Capacity Development for English Club Facilitators

Activity/project background

Partner: Ecole Supérieure de Gestion, d’information et des Sciences (ESGIS) (Private Organization)

Ecole Supérieure de Gestion, d’information et des Sciences (ESGIS) is an approved private higher education institution that evolved under the aegis of the Board of Higher Education and Research of Togo, Benin, and Gabon. To broaden its global reach and provide the opportunity for its graduates to compete globally, ESGIS successfully partnered with French, British, and Canadian universities. The partnership led ESGIS to identify a critical gap in its academic curriculum: the importance of building the capacity of its faculty and student population to speak, read, and write in English.

Recognizing the global importance and acceptance of the English language, ESGIS Board of Directors made it mandatory for faculty and students to be able to speak, read, and write in English. To increase faculty and student achievement in reading, writing, and speaking English, the school initiated an English Club as an extracurricular activity. Participation in the English Club permits faculty and students to practice speaking, reading, and writing in English.

ESGIS requests the support of a Virtual Service Pilot Participant (VSPP) to build the capacity of two English Club managers to establish the foundation, formation, and fundamental ways of running an English Club. ESGIS previously requested support of a VSPP for a similar engagement and it was very successful especially in terms of sustainability. Demand has increased from students to further develop English language skills in reading, writing, and speaking. As such, ESGIS would like to further strengthen the capacity of the two English Club managers.

ESGIS has not previously worked with a Peace Corps Volunteer but has collaborated with a VSPP. They understand that the role of a VSPP is very different than a two-year Volunteer.

Virtual service engagement and tasks

The VSPP will engage in the following tasks, in collaboration with their Host Country Partners:

• Strengthen the capacity of English Club managers to develop and lead English Club sessions
• Co-facilitate English Club activities with English Club managers
• Co-facilitate virtual conversational practice with teachers and/or students
• Co-assess and support English proficiency of teachers

This engagement is expected to be approximately 26 weeks. VSPPs are expected to engage on the tasks listed above for an estimated 5-15 hours per week.

Meetings between VSPPs and Host Country Counterparts will take place during normal office hours, Wednesdays and Fridays from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. Togo time. Specific times will be determined during orientation.

The Host Country Counterpart will have access to Zoom, WhatsApp, or any communication platform conducive to the needs of the VSPP, 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 any field relevant certification: TEFL, TESOL, Cambridge, or similar

• Experience in teaching English at secondary level or adult learners
• Experience in co-planning and co-facilitating online English non-formal education activities

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

Technical Skills: Familiarity with virtual engagement and communication

Language: Basic French

• Experience in planning extracurricular activities for secondary school level and adult learners
• 1 year experience teaching or coaching adults

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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