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

Support Environment NGO with Ecotourism and Partnership Building

Activity/project background

Partner: Promocarpathians NGO (Local NGO)

Promocarpathians NGO is in the town of Yaremche, which is a popular tourist destination in the Carpathian Mountains. The NGO’s goal is to transform the region into the real “gem” of the Ukrainian Carpathians. Since its inception in 2018, the NGO has implemented several projects including a youth summer camp, an English-language webpage and tourist guide for English-speaking tourists, and the purchase of an electric stove for a local kindergarten and internally displaced-people. Currently, the NGO is creating content for “Conserve” and “Invest” sections on their website, as well as on a survey for an upcoming youth summer camp.

Promocarpathians NGO is seeking a Virtual Service Pilot Participant (VSPP) who can support the organization with developing best practices for eco-friendly tourism. Furthermore, the NGO would like to set up global partnerships with international organizations to learn more about how to drive successful programs that can increase tourism to the area in the future.

The organization has previously collaborated with the Peace Corps. They have hosted 3 Community Economic Development Volunteers and one VSPP. They understand that the role of a VSPP is very different than a two-year Volunteer. Host Country Counterpart is fluent in English.

Engagement and tasks

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

• Co-create a communication strategy to improve ecotourism including the identification of potential partners who have been successful in the promotion of community led ecotourism
• Advise on how to conduct outreach to potential partners and on appropriate business etiquette to be mindful when collaborating with external partners including within the United States
• Support the development of additional promotional information on the unique environment and intercultural exchange opportunities in the region for the “Conserve” and “Invest” sections on their website and to use in outreach to external partners

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 hours per week including preparation. The proposed dates and times for meetings: Tuesday, Thursday 6:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. (Ukrainian time) or Wednesday 5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. (Ukrainian time)

Online collaboration will generally occur twice a week between 5:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. Ukraine time. 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

• 1 year of experience working with a business or nonprofit in marketing, fundraising, project design or management, capacity building, or community mobilization
• Experience designing and implementing ecotourism programs

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, business administration, non-profit management, or a related field

Language: Intermediate Ukrainian

• Familiarity with virtual engagement and communication
• 1 year of professional work experience with a national park or an environmental NGO in marketing, fundraising, project 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 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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