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

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Virtual Service Pilot

Strengthen the Capacity of City Council in Project Design & Management

Activity/project background

Partner: Horodenka City Council, Department for Projects, International Cooperation, Youth and Tourism (Government)

Horodenka is a small community of about 9,000 residents located at the foothills of the Carpathian Mountains. Horodenka City Council, Department for Projects, International Cooperation, Youth and Tourism develops grant applications related to various areas of community development. Recently, it completed the 3-year project awarded by the International Solidarity Fund to enhance the local Fire Department’s capabilities. In early 2024, the city council department submitted a number of project proposals to various donors including a proposal for the Embassy of Japan to Ukraine to improve medical facilities, an environmental project with Interreg NEXT Ukraine-Poland, an agricultural project with the German counterparts, and a project with National Endowment for Democracy in order to increase the community’s tourism potential through improved marketing strategy. The city council department actively supports the integration of internally displaced populations (IDPs) and veterans into the community.

With several projects and proposals active in various stages of the lifecycle process, this city council department aims to improve their project design/management skills through collaboration with a Virtual Service Pilot Participant (VSPP). The VSPP will collaborate with several staff members who have varying degrees of English to conduct project design and management (PDM) trainings.

The organization has not collaborated with the 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 an assessment of existing project design and management (PDM) practices
• Co-analyze the history of successes and failures in their PDM history
• Co-plan and co-facilitate a series of PDM training sessions for organization members
• Assist organization members with the development of a project proposal and application process

VSPPs are expected to engage on the tasks listed above for an estimated 5-15 hours per week. This engagement is estimated to be 5-8 hours per week including preparation.

Online collaboration will generally occur twice a week between 3:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m., Ukraine time on Tuesdays and Thursdays, each session lasting for about an hour. Specific times will be determined during orientation.

The Host Country Counterpart will have access to email, Zoom, and WhatsApp 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

Language: Basic Ukrainian

Experience: 1 year of experience with project design or management

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 marketing, public administration, business administration, international relations, non-profit management, or a related field OR PMP certificate

Language: Intermediate Ukrainian

Experience:
• 3 years of experience with project design or management
• Familiarity with virtual engagement and communication

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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