Organizational and Community Development Facilitator

Before You Apply

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Project Description

Organizational and Community Development Facilitators work under Peace Corps Georgia’s Individual and Organizational Development (IOD) Project to contribute to Georgia’s efforts to build a strong democratic and economically sound society. Through this project, Volunteers will help citizens of Georgia, particularly youth, women, and vulnerable populations, to attain improved social and economic well-being.

Volunteers are placed in small cities, towns, and villages to work with local non-governmental organizations, community-based organizations, regional youth departments, educational centers, departments of local
municipalities, or other not-for-profit or governmental organizations. The capacity level of these organizations varies, ranging from well-established, high-functioning to newly-established and limited (both human as well as infrastructural) capacity organizations. You will serve as a facilitator, adviser, mentor, and consultant to your organization and community. You will work closely with local counterparts and community members to design and implement projects and activities to build individual and organizational capacity in project design and management skills, grant writing, fundraising, information technology, marketing, advocacy, and networking. In collaboration with your counterparts you will design and deliver professional development trainings or mentorships in the areas of employability skills, basic financial literacy skills, leadership, girls’ empowerment, and gender issues.

In addition, volunteers work to expand access to education for adolescent girls around the world by abolishing barriers to their education and career paths. While girls in Georgia often outperform boys at school, they face challenges pursuing successful careers after school due to existing rigid gender norms. All Volunteers in Georgia have an opportunity to work on girls’ leadership and empowerment through both primary and secondary activities. Please keep in mind that as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Georgia, you are not expected to identify problems but rather to help your partners identify strengths and build on individual, organizational, and community assets. You will join your partners on an exploration of the best of what is and the best of what might be. If you focus in this way, you will work on project activities that are designed to be sustainable both during service and after you finish service.

Peace Corps Georgia offers high quality technical training and support in the areas of assignment for all Trainees and Volunteers, earning a strong reputation of excellence. Peace Corps Georgia is committed to providing all Volunteers with relevant professional and cultural training for effective service in their communities.

Required Skills

Qualified candidates will meet or exceed the following criteria:
* MA/MS in a discipline with an emphasis in non-profit management, public administration, or organizational development; or
* BA/BS in any discipline and 2 years of management, leadership, or organizational development experience with non-profit or community based organizations; or
*Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Science degree in any business discipline
* Minimum 5 years professional work experience with nonprofit organizations in a management or organizational development capacity
* Basic computer skills (required)

Desired Skills

Qualified candidates will also meet or exceed the following criteria:
* Strong commitment to organizational capacity building and working closely with fledgling organizations;
* Creativity and experience consulting, mentoring, or coaching organizational leaders or workers;
* Experience with youth in the areas of informal education, employability skills development, summer camps, teaching conversational English, or volunteerism/community service;
* Experience with one or more of the following: non-profit development, financial management, budgeting, training, human resource development, strategic planning, project development, grant writing, fundraising, event management, marketing, public relations, advocacy civic participation, or public administration;
* Excellent communication, interpersonal, and networking skills and solid computer skills;
* Ability to establish strong working relationships with organizational leaders, employees, youth, and community members;
* Demonstrated self-reliance, self-motivation, initiative, flexibility, and open mindedness;
* Strong sense of professionalism and a desire to contribute to the development priorities of the people of Georgia.
* Interest and curiosity in Georgian culture and a willingness to integrate into a new culture and community.

Required Language Skills

There are no pre-requisite language requirements for this position.

Georgian is a Kartvelian language with a unique script, 33 letters, and some challenging sounds. Candidates must be motivated and ready to dedicate themselves to learning a complex language that is not spoken widely outside of Georgia. In most organizations, there are a limited number of people who speak English. Therefore, candidates must commit to learning and practicing Georgian language skills as an essential element of successful Volunteer service.
Trainees will be required to achieve at least an Intermediate Low level of proficiency by the end of their 11-week Pre-Service Training. Candidates with Russian language skills may find this to be an asset in some parts of Georgia and with some segments of the population.

Living Conditions

Georgia has strictly defined, conservative gender roles, especially for women. Volunteers, as foreigners, may experience a lot of attention in their communities; ethnically diverse Volunteers may face additional unwanted attention. While homosexual relationships are not considered a crime, sexual orientation and gender identities are typically considered taboo topics in Georgia. Most LGBTQ Volunteers choose to be discreet about their sexual orientation and/or gender identity within their host communities.

Peace Corps is committed to creating a supportive and inclusive environment for volunteers of all backgrounds throughout service. Peace Corps Georgia recently created a Peer Support Network and Diversity Working Group to ensure volunteers are able to discuss diversity related concerns with peers and/or staff throughout service confidentially. Volunteers of a diverse range of backgrounds have been able to successfully serve in Georgia.

HOUSING
Host family stays are required during training and three months after Swearing-in. Volunteers may be allowed to move into separate housing after three months. Most choose to live with their host families for their entire service because of their close relationships and the safety and cultural integration it affords. In many small sites there will be a scarcity of independent housing options, and living with a host family for two years may be necessary. The experience of living with a Georgian family is often one of the most rewarding aspects of Volunteer service. Host families offer Volunteers a deeper understanding of local culture and customs and help them become an integral part of the community.

In every Host Family setting, Volunteers have a private room with a functioning lock. Every household is equipped with a kitchen, bathroom, and heating source for cold weather periods.

COUPLES
There are sites available for couples who are married or in a domestic partnership. Couples have separate work assignments within the same community and are placed in different schools/organizations.

TRANSPORTATION
Georgia has easily accessible inter-city transportation options, though the amount of time required to walk from home to the first available transportation option may vary from 10 to 60 minutes. Most small villages or towns don’t have intra-city transportation, and walking is the main way of getting around or getting to the main road.

CONNECTIVITY
Internet connectivity is available in most places, though the connection speed and consistency can often be lower than what you are accustomed to in the United States. At times, Internet access will be limited due to irregular power supply, poor telephone lines, or limited Wi-Fi capabilities.

PHYSICAL HARDSHIPS
Rural Georgia has an underdeveloped infrastructure and some organizations may lack adequate facilities, including heating, equipment, and other resources. Most homes are equipped with Turkish style squat toilets. Volunteers need to be able to handle the uneven terrain and lift and carry at least 20 pounds.

OTHER
Most assignments for Organizational and Community Facilitators are in small or medium-sized towns (population

up to 50, 000), with a focus on serving vulnerable populations. Volunteers will work the same hours as the host organization, ranging from 30-40 hours per week, plus occasional weekends depending on organizations’ projects, events, and activities. Volunteers are expected to maintain a professional appearance and adhere to cultural norms and expectations. This includes wearing conservative attire and having a neat appearance.

Learn more about the Volunteer experience in Georgia: Get detailed information on culture, communications, housing, and safety — including crime statistics [PDF] — in order to make a well-informed decision about serving.

Couples Information

Couples in a domestic partnership are asked to present themselves as a married couple to their host community due to local cultural expectations.

Medical Considerations in Georgia

  • Georgia may not be able to support Volunteers with the following medical conditions: insulin-dependent diabetes; some types of gynecologic support; requiring a psychiatrist for psychotropic medications support; seizure disorder; ongoing counseling.
  • The following medication(s) are not permitted for legal or cultural reasons: Adderall, Ritalin and Vyvanse.
  • Volunteers who should avoid the following food(s) may not be able to serve: gluten.
  • After arrival in Georgia, Peace Corps provides and applicants are required to have an annual flu shot and mandatory immunizations.

Before you apply, please review Medical Information for Applicants to learn about the clearance process and other health conditions that are difficult to accommodate in Peace Corps service.


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