Support Creation of and Co-facilitate American Culture Club for Youth

Activity/project background

Partner: Rukhi Public School (Government)

Rukhi Public School is a medium-size rural school in close proximity to Russian-occupied territory in Georgia and with limited access to external learning opportunities and resources for the youth it serves. In previous years, the school applied for a Peace Corps Volunteer several times but was unable to engage with Peace Corps Georgia for safety considerations due to its proximity to the administrative border line zone of Georgian territories occupied by Russia.

Rukhi Public School is requesting the support of a Virtual Service Pilot Participant (VSPP) to engage with 10–20 youth, ages 12–16, to complement their in-class English education to improve their English speaking and critical thinking skills in an informal, fun, online English club setting. The school would like to initiate it as an American Culture Club that will broaden student’s knowledge of English as well as of American culture, history, and education system.

The school has previously worked with a VSPP and views this new engagement with a VSPP as an opportunity for local youth to engage in a meaningful way with the Peace Corps. 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:

• Co-design the curriculum for 10-12 weekly virtual American Culture club meetings
• Co-design meeting resources including lesson plans, and supplementary materials (e.g., PowerPoints, worksheets, etc.)
• Co-plan and co-deliver 10-12 one-hour-long virtual American Culture club meetings once a week
• Plan and conduct a debrief meeting with the counterpart to analyze the strengths of the club implementation and recommended modifications to either the club curriculum or the implementation plan

This engagement is expected to be approximately 12 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, Georgia time. Specific times will be determined during orientation. The online English Club meetings with youth will happen between 5:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. Georgia time. Specific times will be determined during orientation.

The Host Country Counterpart will have access to Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Drive, Google Meet, WhatsApp, and email for regular communication and collaboration.

The club meetings will utilize various online platforms and tools e.g., PowToon, Kahoot, Story jumper, etc. to make language acquisition more fun and engaging for the youth.

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 or relevant certification: TEFL, TESOL, Cambridge, or similar

Experience: Experience teaching or 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

Education: Bachelor's degree in secondary education or related field

Technical Skills: Familiarity with virtual engagement and communication

• Experience working with youth development initiatives and activities
• Experience working in a multi-cultural setting
• Experience co-planning or co-teaching
• Experience teaching US history, geography, and culture

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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