EUROPEAN CIVIL PROTECTION AND HUMANITARIAN AID OPERATIONS

Junior Volunteer in Climate Change Adaptation and and ecosystem-based management in St Vincent and the Grenadines [GVC_STV_CLI_JR_3]

Junior
— 5 positions
Deployment dates: 
-
Chateaubelair – Saint Vincent and the Grenadines

The EU Regulation of the European Parliament and the Council establishing the European Voluntary Humanitarian Aid Corps – EU Aid Volunteers and related legislation create a framework for joint contributions from European volunteers to support and complement humanitarian aid in third countries.

Therefore, the EU Aid Volunteers Initiative provides opportunities to European citizens and long-term residents, from a wide range of backgrounds and with a diversity of skills and professional experience, to get involved in humanitarian aid projects, support the provision of needs-based humanitarian aid in third countries and engage in volunteering opportunities, through deployment and online-volunteering.

The initiative focuses on strengthening the European Union's capacity to deliver needs-based humanitarian aid by providing professional support through the deployment of trained volunteers to people in need. Furthermore, it aims to strengthen the capacity and resilience of vulnerable communities in third countries, through the implementation of joint projects between experienced humanitarian operators and local organizations in third countries.

The EU Aid Volunteers programme offers:

  • Opportunities for European citizens to become EU Aid Volunteers in humanitarian projects worldwide, showing solidarity with those who most need it,
  • Professional support by trained and well-prepared volunteers to communities affected by disaster,
  • Capacity building for local staff and volunteers of organisations in countries hit by disasters,
  • Technical assistance for organisations based in Europe to strengthen their capacity to participate in the EU Aid Volunteers initiative.

More info available here:

http://ec.europa.eu/echo/what/humanitarian-aid/eu-aid-volunteers_en

http://eacea.ec.europa.eu/eu-aid-volunteers_en

Description

GVC (Italy) and Alianza por la Solidaridad (Spain) are international non-governmental organizations having joined their expertise in management of humanitarian action worldwide and now implement the “EU Aid Volunteers in Action” project.

The objective is adding value to ECHO and other Humanitarian Operations with the support of 38 trained EU Aid Volunteers working within 11 local organizations.

18 senior (more than 5 years of professional experience) and 20 junior (less than 5 years of professional experience) volunteers will be deployed in 8 countries (Cuba, Guatemala, Haiti, Jordan, Lebanon, Nicaragua, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Tunisia).

The project aims also at building the capacities of local organizations in hosting volunteers, preventing emergencies and being prepared in case of disaster.

Moreover, Europeans and locals will work together to strengthen the resilience capacity of vulnerable communities in least developed and fragile countries.

More info available here: https://webgate.ec.europa.eu/echo/eu-aid-volunteers_en/gvc-gruppo-di-volontariato-civile_en

In the framework of the project GVC will deploy 15 volunteers to Saint Vincent and the Grenadines at Richmond Vale Academy.

 

 

Mission Statement

By educating people from St. Vincent and the rest of the world, Richmond Vale Academy aims to build the capacity, knowledge and confidence in its beneficiaries. By achieving personal growth and development, future leaders of St. Vincent and of the world will take action for a more just and more sustainable world.

More information is available here: www.richmondvale.org

 

Program of the 6-months deployment

Deployment is organized in teams of work. During the first month the volunteers and the team will dig deep into understanding the problems at hand and start planning the ways of working in the coming months. The main focus is on studying and investigating the effects of climate change and global warming, both on a global scale and more specific in St. Vincent. In this period the Volunteers will build the foundation for the projects they will carry out in the next 5 months of the program.

During the second month of the Program, the Volunteers and the team will implement projects to make Richmond Vale Academy into a model farm and will work with Permaculture principles in the food production, with water conservation, renewable energy, developing food processing systems, organic cleaning products and/or any other projects that can contribute to increase the sustainability of the Richmond Vale Academy.

The last five months of the Climate Change Activist Program are the major part of the program, in which the Volunteers and their team will carry out actions shoulder to shoulder with the people of St. Vincent, to build sustainable systems and raise awareness and prepare for climate change.

Humanitarian Context
The poject is located in St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG), which is one of the poorest countries in the Caribbean. St Vincent and the Grenadines consist of 32 islands and cays of which 9 are inhabited. The population of SVG is 110,000 of which 98.000 live in St. Vincent. The economy is based on tourism and agriculture. English is the official language and Creole is the native. The country is peaceful with a parliamentary democracy.
Saint Vincent is one of the poorest island nations in the Caribbean and one of the world's most disaster prone countries.
Climate Change means more flooding and hurricanes. In December 2013 extreme weather hit St. Vincent and left thousands without public water, with heavy destruction of roads, bridges and houses and left hundreds in shelters. Estimates from NEMO (National Emergency Management Organisation) records show a loss of EC$566 million/211 million USD on these three events: Hurricane Tomas in 2010, rains/floods in April 2011 and rains/floods in December 2013.
Rainstorm in April 2011 about six month after Hurricane Tomas caused severe flooding, landslides and the destruction to several bridges in some of the same areas affected by the hurricane.
The islands vulnerability is compounded by its geography, geology and narrow economic base. For St. Vincent and the Grenadines therefore, Disaster Risk Reduction is an imperative.
The EU’s Humanitarian Aid department DG ECHO has also provided emergency and post emergency aid to assist with the country’s rehabilitation following the passage of Hurricane Tomas in October 2010.
There is an active volcano in SVG which last erupted in 1979. Although only two persons are known to have died from the event, it created island wide impact. Over 20,000 inhabitants from the north of the island had to be evacuated and were displaced for months. There was also widespread damage to agriculture.
The Climate Compliance Program implemented by Richmond Vale Academy together with other partners, community groups and governmental entities seeks to educate, raise awareness and mobilize people to take action. It offers a practical solution to building greater resilience into vulnerable communities by implementing actions to protect the natural resources that they depend on. Since the start of the program, fifty people from St. Vincent along with hundreds of volunteers from all over the World have educated themselves in Climate Compliance – specifically in the effects on small island nations – and have taken practical action such as planting 25 000 trees and removing 20 tons of trash from rivers, beaches and communities.
The aim is to educate and inform about Climate Change issues and biodiversity to a broad audience from children to adults. This has been done in every possible way – face to face presentations in schools, organizations, community groups as well as through TV, Radio and Newspapers. The program has consistently been present in the public Media and has also produced newspapers which have been distributed all over the Islands about Tree planting, Climate Change etc. This has all increased the awareness about climate change issues and biodiversity and through the actions done in the community a strong network has been built and strong partnerships have been created within Government officials, organizations, businesses and private people.

Security conditions
During the last few years, in St. Vincent there has been an increase of small urban delinquency, however there are no major security issues in the country.
Petty crime might occurs. Ensure that your personal belongings, passports and other travel documents are secure at all times.
About road travel, traffic drives on the left. Road conditions are generally poor. Mountain roads are narrow and steep with few guardrails or markings. Roadside assistance is not widely available.
Taxis and buses are relatively safe, they can be overcrowded and frequently travel at excessive speeds.
Chateaubelair has a local police. The project has additional security measures.
Richmond Vale Academy is responsible for coordination and implementation of activities at national level. The volunteer will also work in direct coordination with local implementing partners aiming to building local community resilience to disasters.
RVA has a no drugs no alcohol policy which is part of securing the safety of the individual. There is zero tolerance for sexual abuse. Besides this there are rules for not walking or swimming alone.
There is a local clinic 10 min away and a doctor. There are clinics for all kinds of illnesses in Kingstown which is 1.5 hours away.

GVC values:
We uphold the Humanitarian Principles: humanity, neutrality, impartiality and independency.
We affirmatively engage the most vulnerable communities.
More information is available here:
www.gvc-italia.org

Tasks
Investigating Climate Change

Preparing Courses and studies about Global Warming, Climate Change, Sustainable Agriculture, Pollution, The Oceans, Small Island Development States, the Caribbean and other activities to adapt to the changing climate in St. Vincent.

Dedicated studies and research on Climate Change

Further studies and research, understanding how climate change has affected St. Vincent

A Project at the Climate Center: Making RVA Climate Compliant

Develop the organic farm, implement projects like biogas, water harvesting, and develop chicken production or recycling of grey water.

Projects in Vincentian Communities (5 months)

Promotion of organic and climate smart agriculture techniques, teach in schools, plant trees, develop model gardens, promote recycling and establish trash management systems, start climate clubs with children and adults or spread awareness through the media or face-to-face.
You will also organize a big Climate Event, as an Open House, where you invite hundreds of people to workshops, lectures, exhibitions and training sessions.

Practical work on protecting and improving disaster-prone areas

An active focus will be put on protecting and improving disaster-prone areas; Vetiver grass and trees will be planted on erosion-prone slopes and wind-breaking trees will be planted in crucial places as well as some beaches will be cleaned as activity under this task.

Trainings to Communities

The objective of this task is to increase the awareness and capacity of sustainable agriculture techniques, through the training of the community. The knowhow in organic farming will be increased and the community will be trained to move towards more resilient farming methods.

Communication and Awareness on EU Aid Volunteers Initiative

The Volunteer shall:
a. Promote local volunteerism in disaster risk reduction, prevention and response;
b. Train local volunteers on organization and implementation of volunteer-based activities, when applicable;
c. Promote partnerships and collaboration between local and European organizations;
d. Draft and publish articles describing volunteer's experience in the field;
e. Gather audiovisual materials to be used in a public awareness activity in the volunteer's local community in Europe;
f. In coordination with the NGOs partner of the project, organize and execute a public awareness activity once back in Europe.

Other

The Volunteer shall perform other duties, as required

Required competences

Studies

  • University degree in Social Sciences, Politics, Economics
  • Biodiversity, Ecosystem-Based Adaptation and Integral Watershed Management will be an asset
  • Interest in learning about Global Warming and Climate Change

Languages

  • Good knowledge of English

Skills

  • Willing to work on a team and live in a community
  • Good interpersonal skills and stress management
  • Ability to adapt and work in different and varied situations and with different people or groups
  • Intercultural awareness and respectful attitude towards other customs and traditions
  • Knowledge of participatory planning
  • Knowledge, management and interest in humanitarian issues, rights, peacebuilding

Experiences

  • Raising awareness and methodologies experience

Prior volunteer experience is an asset

Selection criteria
Applications are made directly within the sending organisation, please check out the how to apply section.

The candidate for EU Aid Volunteers must be a citizen of the EU or a third country national who is a long-term resident in an EU Member State, and must have a minimum age of 18 years.

Availability for training in presence starting from mid October 2017, availability for deployment starting from March 2018

GVC applies a policy of equal opportunities and accepts applications without distinction on the grounds of sex, race, colour, ethnic or social origin, genetic features, language, religion or belief, political or any other opinion, membership of a national minority, property, birth, disability, age or sexual orientation.

Condition of service

The Volunteer will attend a 30-hours online training and a 10-days in presence training before her/his deployment.
The contents of her/his training will be decided according to the competences of the Volunteer and the needs of the hosting organization.
During the apprenticeship (if foreseen), the Volunteer will have the chance to experience the work in a sending organization; during the deployment, she/he will improve languages skills and the ability to work in an international context. His/her professional skills will be strengthen.

Length of Deployment:
• 6 months
Deployment duty station:
• Chateaubelair – Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
Conditions of service during deployment:
• A monthly Subsistence Lump Sum (565,01 Euro per month) intends to cover basic needs and local transport.
• Accommodation, Visa fees, insurance and airfares will be covered.
• The working calendar will be corresponding to the agenda and system established in the field.
• For each month of voluntary activity two days of rest are foreseen.
• For each month of deployment 100 euro of post deployment resettlement allowance are foreseen.

Conditions related to in-presence training:
• If a candidate volunteer is working outside of the EU, travel costs will be fully covered if EU citizens legally reside in a non-EU country for long-term or forever (i.e. who live in that country);
• EU citizens who are on a temporary assignment in a third country that lasts more than 18 months;
On the contrary, only travel costs from an EU country to the training venue shall be covered if:
• EU citizens on a temporary assignment in a third country that lasts less than 18 months
• EU citizens selected by the same organization or affiliate with which they have an on-going assignment in the third country if this assignment is longer than 18 months.
Please note that additional candidate volunteers will be trained above the number planned for deployment, to create an additional pool to cover drop-outs and unforeseen needs.

Selection process

To apply, the candidate shall fulfill the Application Form online, attach the CV, a Motivation Letter and the Self-Assessment Questionnaire.
• Submission of applications: from 15/05/2016 to 15/06/2017;
• Shortlisting and interviews of the candidates: from 16/06/2017 to 24/07/2017.

In case of changes of the dates, the candidates will be notified.

• After the shortlisting, the preselected candidates will be notified and a Skype interview will be fixed;
• The selected candidate/s for each vacancy will be notified by 01/08/2017. Once selected, the candidate/s will be contacted by EACEA to organize the participation to an online and in-presence training;
• Only one candidate will be selected as the Volunteer for the effective deployment: the final decision will be taken after the training, according with the feedbacks of the trainers.

Timetable
Date of training
In-presence training will take place in the Netherlands at mid October 2017. Training sessions will be in English.
Pre-deployment preparation and induction
Pre-deployment briefing is foreseen at GVC HQ in Bologna before the departure, at the end of the apprenticeship (if foreseen). Two days of specific training are foreseen in St Vincent at her/his arrival.
Deployment
Deployment is foreseen to start on 01/03/2018, depending on the needs of the Hosting Organization and of the Volunteer

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