Support United Nations Association with Improving NGO Guidebook

Activity/project background

Partner: United Nations Association of Mongolia (Local NGO)

Civic space in Mongolia is shrinking. Although there are about 25,000 registered NGOs, only about 6,800 of them operate regularly, down from about 10,000 in 2020. This can be attributed to several factors, including limited funding and support from the government, as well as limited capacity, according to a 2021 study on civic space by the Civil Society Consortium.

The United Nations Association (UNA) Mongolia was established as an NGO in 2021. Most UNA members are young people who volunteer their time and efforts for sustainable development projects. To address the challenge related to capacity, UNA Mongolia successfully developed and launched the “Guidebook for NGO Strategy and Management” in collaboration with Virginia Tech Institute of Policy and Governance in 2023. This guidebook aims to improve local NGO capacity and is one of very few supportive tools for Mongolian civil society organizations in their native language. However, the guidebook is limited to beginners only, with basic concepts such as vision and mission statements, Political, Economic, Social, Technological, Environmental and Legal (PESTEL) analysis, and risk analysis.

UNA Mongolia is seeking a Virtual Service Pilot Participant (VSPP) to support the creation of a second edition, more advanced guidebook along with associated training curricula for NGOs. The VSPP will collaborate with representatives from the organization to co-design the content of the guidebook and workshops for NGOs.

UNA Mongolia has not worked with a Peace Corps Volunteer or a VSPP. However, they have previously engaged an American virtual fellow to develop the first guidebook. 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:

• Support the creation of an Advanced Guidebook for NGO strategy and management focused on NGO leadership and advocacy through co-developing/sourcing further content (articles, case studies, examples) and tools on the subject to be further translated into Mongolian by local volunteers
• Co-develop 3-4 curricula/content-based workshops on the advanced guidebook (strategy, management, teamwork, or leadership) to be used during workshops with NGOs
• Co-facilitate 2 sessions for 6-10 UNA Mongolia members on the workshop materials to elicit feedback and improve the workshop content/delivery methods
• Give 2-3 lectures/webinars open to the public on their chosen topic to raise awareness about issues faced by civil society and/or the advanced guidebook in the fall of 2024

This engagement is expected to be approximately 24 weeks. VSPPs are expected to engage on the tasks listed above for an estimated 5-10 hours per week.

Meetings between VSPPs and Host Country Counterparts will take during normal office hours or flexible early in the morning or in the evening Mongolian time (flexible timing possible to allow for the time difference).

The Host Country Counterpart will have access to Zoom, Google Meet, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and email 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 OR certification in project management

Experience: Experience working with a nonprofit or NGO in project design or management, capacity building, or community mobilization

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 public administration, organizational development, OR master’s degree in related field with an emphasis in non-profit management

Technical Skills:
• Familiarity with virtual engagement and communication
• Excellent written and oral communication skills
• Ability to prepare training materials and co-facilitate training in management

• Prior experience working with young volunteers
• 3 years of professional work experience with NGO in management or organizational development

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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