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Eco-Viva Fellowship

 

Amigos de las Americas and EcoViva are proud to announce an exclusive fellowship opportunity available to Amigos Alumni.

Support Grassroots Community Development in El Salvador!
Spring 2012 International Fellowship

EcoViva is a U.S.-based solidarity organization seeking a full-time international fellow to serve for six months in rural El Salvador, from February to July 2012.  You will live and work with our partner communities in the Bajo Lempa, a coastal region located next to the Bay of Jiquilisco U.N. Biosphere Reserve.  You will witness grassroots community organizing in action and learn about innovative programs in the areas of natural resource management/conservation, sustainable agricultural, youth leadership, and small business development.  You will serve as a direct channel of communication with EcoViva´s Oakland office and network of supporters, helping to convey the sights, sounds, and political nuances of day-to-day life.  You will also have the opportunity to work directly on at least one of the exciting projects administered by our partner organization, the Mangrove Association.

Interested applicants must:

1.         Be 18 years of age or older

2.         Have a high school diploma or GED by the start of the fellowship period

3.         Be able to commit to a minimum of 6 months

4.         Speak advanced Spanish.  Previous experience in Latin America is strongly preferred, and   experience with oral interpretation is a plus.

5.         Have excellent writing skills in English.  Ability to translate written documents is a plus.

6.         Have access to a digital camera.  Photography/videography skills are a plus.

7.         Possess a basic understanding of Salvadoran history and socio-political context.

8.         Familiarize oneself with and support EcoViva´s work.  Please see our website for more information: www.eco-viva.org

9.         Be able to work both independently and in teams.

10.       Be proficient with Microsoft Office Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.

11.       Be willing to live in a rural area of a tropical developing country.  Although electricity, running water, and cell phone service are usually available, other conveniences such as flush toilets, air conditioning, and personal transportation are rare and sometimes nonexistent. 

Responsibilities:

•              Support communication between EcoViva and a local youth artisan cooperative to help launch a small business development project.

•              Attend meetings and events at the community, regional, and possibly national levels. Write timely synopses to communicate to U.S.-based EcoViva staff for potential publication in written and online sources (newsletters, website, blog, etc.).

•              Interview key personnel and community members for their stories and perspectives. Take pictures of people, places, and events when appropriate.

•              In coordination with EcoViva and Mangrove Association, collect data and write descriptive summaries of project outcomes for purposes of internal monitoring/evaluation and reporting to funders.   Participate, as needed, in the development of project evaluation plans.

•              In collaboration with EcoViva and Mangrove Association staff, help coordinate logistical arrangements for visiting groups participating in Community Empowerment Tour, as needed.  This may include:

·               Scheduling tours, developing itineraries and preparing budgets as needed.

·      Corresponding directly with group leaders/tour participants and the EcoViva office to ensure the prompt completion of paperwork and answer questions regarding the above items and general logistics (lodging, food, weather, safety, etc.).

·      When appropriate, accompanying the group during their stay to help with logistics, interpretation, and relationship-building.

•              Fellow is responsible for their own travel to and from El Salvador and travel insurance. EcoViva will provide room and board.  Please read more about that in the benefits section.

Benefits:

•              A rare opportunity to take part in real grassroots change and international collaboration at minimal cost.  Lodging and meals with a local family are provided, as well as a cell phone and a bicycle for local transportation (the office will be a ten minute ride from the family's home).  The fellow should budget a minimum of $60/month for spending money.

•              Substantive career experience in grassroots development

•              Regular check-ins with EcoViva staff (via telephone, internet, or in person) for general support and professional guidance/development.

 Safety Information:

EcoViva’s work is primarily focused on the western side of the Lower Lempa River Estuary and the communities surrounding the Bay of Jiquilisco, on the southern central Pacific coast of El Salvador.  Other areas in El Salvador are currently experiencing a high level of violent crime. Comparatively, this area is known for its low crime levels, and has not, to our knowledge, experienced any active threats to foreigners.  EcoViva has been working in this region for over 15 years and have sent numerous volunteers, youth and university groups to work with local partner communities without any safety concerns.  

To Apply:

Please submit a letter of interest (written in Spanish), a resume (written in Spanish), and the name, email, and phone number of two references to Zach Weismann immediately.   The subject line should read “EcoViva Fellowship Application”. Please be sure to include your AMIGOS experience in your cover letter, including year and projects served on.

Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis, and the position will be open until filled.  EcoViva is seeking to make an applicant selection as soon as possible for the Spring International Fellowship Position, which runs February through July 2012.  Don't delay!

Amigos de las Américas (AMIGOS) hosts programs for young adults to volunteer abroad. AMIGOS’ volunteer opportunities focus on youth leadership training and community development in Latin America.

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