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Peace Corps Volunteer
2 years, 3 months
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Up to 12 months
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Virtual Service Pilot
3-6 months
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Virtual Service Pilot

Co-Develop a Business Plan for a Local Coffee Company in Fiji

Activity/project background

Partner: South Pacific Coffee Company (Private Organization)

The South Pacific Coffee Company (SPCC) is a young and successful company with clear goals for growth. To reach its goals, the company is seeking support to co-create a strategic business plan that will help to identify new market opportunities and streamline the production and processing of coffee beans.

The SPCC aims to create a large-scale coffee industry in Fiji that will significantly boost the country's economy and provide employment opportunities for rural Fijians, predominantly women and youth. To achieve this, it plans to scale up an emerging agricultural industry focused on coffee cultivation and processing. The result will be a viable national level coffee industry accessible to other entrepreneurs in Fiji. SPCC takes pride in being certified as both "Fijian Made" and "Fijian Grown," which are certifications granted by the Fijian government to recognize and promote locally made and grown products. The "Fijian Made" certification ensures that products are manufactured, processed, and packaged in Fiji, using predominantly Fijian labor and resources, thus supporting the local economy and upholding high-quality standards. The "Fijian Grown" certification, on the other hand, signifies that the products are cultivated and harvested in Fiji, emphasizing the use of local agricultural resources and sustainable farming practices. These certifications demonstrate SPCC’s commitment to supporting the Fijian economy and fostering the growth of the coffee industry in the region.

SPCC is requesting the support of a Virtual Service Pilot Participant (VSPP) to co-create a strategic business plan that focuses on growth over the next five years. The business plan will include 1) financial forecasts 2) viable domestic and international markets for SPCC coffee products; 3) evidence-based opportunities for increasing the cultivation and processing of high quality, coffee cherries.

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

Engagement and tasks

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

• Co-conduct research on domestic and international markets for SPCC products
• Support the development of a financial forecast for SPCC
• Co-create a SPCC strategic business plan

Depending upon the expertise of the VSPP and if time allows,
• Document best practices on how to rehabilitate the existing suitable “wild” coffee plantations to increase quality, yields and efficiency in harvesting
• Identify the most suitable geographic areas and compatible coffee varieties for planting new farms

VSPPs are expected to engage on the tasks listed above for an estimated 5-15 hours per week. This engagement is estimated to be 10 hours per week.

Online collaboration will generally occur between 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Fiji time. Specific times will be determined during orientation.

The Host Country Counterpart will have access to different platforms including WhatsApp 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 business management, administration, finance, accounting, marketing, or related field

• 3 years of experience in developing and/or contributing to strategic business plans
• Experience in financial forecasting

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 business administration or related

• Experience with virtual engagement and communication
• 3 years of experience in the coffee business
• Excellent analytical, problem-solving and research skills

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 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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