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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

Support Carbon Footprint Services for Agriculture NGO in Jamaica

Activity/project background

Partner: USDA Food for Progress Jamaica Spices (JaSPICE) Project - ACDI/VOCA (International NGO)

ACDI/VOCA has been awarded the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food for Progress Jamaica Spices (JaSPICE) Project. It is five-year (5) project focused on revitalizing Jamaica’s ginger, turmeric and pimento sectors through sustainable agricultural practices, innovations, and robust market led approaches to expand the sale of Jamaican spices products in both the local and export markets.

The JaSPICE project operates on four key pillars which are: to increase access to clean and high-quality planting materials for Jamaican farmers of turmeric, ginger, and pimento; to increase sustainable production and farmer resiliency by providing Jamaican farmers with the requisite technical training required to improve their agricultural competence; to strengthen market connections by improving local and export buyer–seller relationships for targeted spices; and to increase access to funding by strengthening the agricultural linkages with financial institutions and the development of sector appropriate financial products.

The Virtual Service Pilot Participant (VSPP) will support the USDA JaSPICE Marketing and Finance Team Lead by assisting in conducting carbon footprint mapping along the spice value chain. The development of a carbon footprint mechanism along the value chain will help to develop a sustainable investment stream targeting pimento agroforestry production and/or indigenous carbon financed loan products.

JaSPICE has not previously worked with a Peace Corps Volunteer or a VSPP. 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:

• Assist in the identification and evaluation of opportunities for reducing carbon emissions at various stages of the crop and products life cycle
• Assist with identifying barriers and solutions to creating a carbon footprint and climate finance system for the spices value-chain in collaboration with supporting sector working groups, local research institutions, and anchor firms
• Co-develop an initial assessment report to summarize the opportunities, barriers, and potential carbon reduction pathways for the value chains

This engagement is expected to be approximately 27 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, 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Jamaican time. Specific times will be determined during orientation.

The Host Country Counterpart will have access to Microsoft Teams Suite 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 environmental science, sustainability, engineering, or a related field

• Knowledge of relevant regulations, standards, and reporting frameworks related to carbon footprinting and carbon reduction (e.g., ISO 14064, PAS 2050, CDP, GRI, SBTi)
• Knowledge in conducting carbon footprint assessments and familiarity with carbon accounting tools and databases (e.g., GHG Protocol, WRI/WBCSD, Ecoinvent, GaBi)
• Strong understanding of greenhouse gas accounting principles, carbon footprint methodologies, and life cycle assessment (LCA) concepts. and other related fields

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

Technical Skills:
• Familiarity with virtual engagement and communication
• Proficiency in data collection, analysis, modeling, and interpretation, using software tools such as Excel, database management systems, and statistical analysis software

• Five years of relevant experience in planning, managing, organizing, and evaluating agricultural research and innovation systems and programs
• Experience with field measurements or modelling of agricultural carbon
• Experience collaborating with stakeholders at all levels of the organization to drive sustainable practices and carbon reduction initiatives

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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