Location: Kingston, Jamaica
Start Date: November 2023
Placement Length: 12 Months
Language Requirements: English Level 5-Fluent
Open to Canadian Citizens and Permanent Residents of Canada Only
The Volunteer’s Role
The overall purpose of this placement is to support the Abilities Foundation of Jamaica (AF) in implementing its programs and activities including psychosocial support to students and program development (including resource mobilization). As a volunteer, you will be instrumental in supporting their internal processes to optimally manage their programs and services offered to beneficiaries
Abilities Foundation serves to provide quality vocational education and life skills training to persons with disabilities enabling them to function as creative and productive citizens of society. Working with Abilities Foundation will further strengthen Cuso International’s aim to provide greater opportunities to vulnerable groups, particularly the PLWD group and achieve a more inclusive society.
As a volunteer, you will:
- Support the Project Coordinator with daily project tasks as required to execute program deliverables and targets.
- Support the project staff with grant applications to secure sustainable funding for projects
- Support the implementation of the Living Labs project
- Support the psycho-social support and development of students
- Support the capacity building of staff in psychosocial methodologies and counselling
- University degree in social sciences, project management, or another relevant field
- Experience in working with groups, preferably community-based groups with strong teamworking skills
- Excellent oral, writing and communication skills
- Experience working in organizational development, planning and project management
- Experience in project management
What’s in it for YOU? A life-changing experience!
About Us, the Project and the Partner
Cuso International is a not-for-profit development organization that works to eradicate poverty and inequality. Each year, we mobilize hundreds of volunteer professionals to work alongside local partners to maximize their impact through capacity building. We work in partnership with governments, civil society organizations, multilateral agencies and the private sector to develop and deliver programs aimed at advancing gender equality, promoting the empowerment of women and girls, and improving access to and quality of economic opportunities for young people.
Project – Sharing Canadian Expertise for Inclusive Development and Gender Equality (SHARE)
Cuso International will deliver the Sharing Canadian Expertise for Inclusive Development and Gender Equality (SHARE) project, with a contribution from Global Affairs Canada (GAC) over seven years (2020-2027). SHARE aims to improve the economic and/or social well-being of the poorest, most marginalized and vulnerable people, particularly women and girls, in developing countries, with a view to contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals. In addition to increasing engagement of Canadians in international development and key global issues, this project will aim to increase the performance of country partners to deliver more inclusive, innovative and environmentally sustainable development initiatives that advance gender equality, in support of the action areas of Canada’s Feminist International Assistance Policy.
Partner – Abilities Foundation of Jamaica
The Abilities Foundation was established in November 1991 and is a registered voluntary organization. The Foundation works in collaboration with the Ministry of Labor, Social Security and the HEART Trust/National Training Agency. The Abilities Foundation is committed to providing quality vocational education to persons with disabilities to enable them to function as creative and productive citizens. It is the leading organization offering learning opportunities that will produce graduates who are able to access further education and training and become confident and competent individuals in the workplace and in society at large.
Terms and Conditions
Cuso International terms and conditions allow you to lead a modest and healthy lifestyle while being effective in your placement. This support package will cover basic living expenses for one volunteer and is not intended to cover home-based expenses (ex. loans, support payments, etc.) or luxury items such as imported items in placement or international personal travel.
- Modest monthly living allowance (varies depending on country)
- Accommodation while in placement
- Return airfare and visa/work permit costs
- Cost of required vaccinations, antimalarial medication, and health insurance
- Pre-departure training and in-country orientation (more details below)
- On the ground support through our Cuso International country program office
- Access to Employee Assistance Program while in placement and upon return
- Bonus: Additional return flight home or cash in lieu after 12 months of service for volunteers who extend for another 6 months
- Please note that if you are shortlisted for the placement, you will be required to:
- Provide two Professional References and one Personal Reference
- Complete an oral assessment during your preliminary telephone interview in the language required for your placement
- Obtain a Police Check at our request
- Complete a full medical exam and be medically cleared by the Cuso International Medical Advisor prior to your departure
- Due to the COVID-19 situation, be double vaccinated in accordance with the World Health Organization-approved vaccines
- We seek individuals who share our values and are dedicated to supporting marginalized groups, including those from the LGBTQIA+ communities
We ask each volunteer, regardless of placement length, to raise $2,000. All volunteers receive support from Cuso International to help achieve the goal through fundraising. If the volunteer chooses not to fundraise or is unable to achieve the fundraising goal, he/she can make a one-time donation or become a monthly donor to support our work.
Pre-departure Training and Briefing
We commit to helping you prepare as best as possible for your placement. You will have an advisor to support you through the process and will receive essential training as part of your preparation. This training is designed to maximize your understanding of your placement and culture, help you identify and plan your own learning, and help you stay safe and healthy during your placement.
Overview of pre-departure training:
In-Country Training and Learning
You will receive an In-Country Orientation (ICO) that builds upon the pre-departure training. This will be conducted by either the country program office or the supporting partner organization. This normally lasts for 2-10 days (depending on language learning requirements and other factors). In some countries, volunteers will be able to access ongoing language training opportunities. In-Country Orientation equips you with the relevant skills, knowledge, and country-specific information to be successful in your placement. Furthermore, our Country Program Office or local partner will provide you with continuous in-country support throughout the duration of your placement.
Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abuse
Cuso International works with poor, vulnerable and marginalized people, mainly women and girls, to eradicate poverty and inequality. We understand the need to uphold and enforce the highest standards of ethical and professional conduct.
At Cuso International, we believe that all people, regardless of race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed (religion), sex, age, record of offences, marital status, family status, sexual orientation, gender expression and identity or disability have the right to live lives free of harassment, sexual exploitation and abuse.
Cuso International considers all forms of harassment, sexual exploitation and abuse to be incompatible with fundamental belief in the human dignity of all people, international and national agreements and standards, and with its core values. Cuso International volunteers must agree to uphold the Child Protection, Prevention of Workplace Violence, Prevention of Workplace Harassment and Discrimination, and Prevention of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse Policies and Code of Conduct.
Residency and Citizenship
The majority of Cuso International volunteer applicants are residing in Canada at the time of application and during the pre-departure process. Occasionally we received applications from volunteer applicants who are residing outside of Canada at the time of application. In both instances, between your application date and placement start date, we must be able to contact you and you must be able to contact us easily and promptly throughout the process.
We may require your passport and would need to be aware of your current place of residence and any travel plans you may have during this time. You will also require unrestricted access to Canada during this time for training, as applicable.
Leaving your country of residence can have significant effects on your citizenship status in that country. It is your responsibility to research the consequences of traveling to Canada during the pre-departure process if you are living outside of Canada and of leaving your country of residence for a placement with the immigration authority where you live.
By applying to this placement, you accept full responsibility for any consequences related to your citizenship, residency, and immigration status or penalties as a result of travel to pre-departure training, international placement, or other Cuso International related travel.
You must check the implications that apply to you, but examples include:
- Canadian permanent residents may need to make arrangements with immigration authorities before traveling. These arrangements allow them to travel without risk to their status in Canada. Without them, residency status may be withdrawn.
- Citizens of other countries, including those visiting Canada on a visa, may have travel restrictions.