Job Vacancy: Project Officer, Capacity Building & Volunteering Quality

Job Vacancy: Project Officer, Capacity Building & Volunteering Quality

Job Title:        Capacity Building & Volunteering Quality Project Officer
Reports to:     Programme Manager
Location:        12 Parliament Street, Dublin 2

Comhlámh is the Irish Association of Development Workers and Volunteers. Our mission is to nurture, guide and mobilise development workers and volunteers to work for social justice locally and globally. Comhlámh is the leading independent voice and source of information on values-based international volunteering from Ireland, and the coordinator and advocate for good practice in this area through its Code of Good Practice for Volunteer Sending Agencies. We work to promote and support volunteers and development workers to engage in volunteering and action for global justice, and to create societal and attitudinal change. 

We are recruiting a Capacity Building & Volunteering Quality Project Officer, who will play a key role in enabling us to promote values-based volunteering rooted in global citizenship education (GCE) approaches at this time of significant change. We’re looking for a candidate with:

  • A background in international and/or community development
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills
  • Experience of developing and/or monitoring quality standards
  • Background/experience in GCE and an interest in using GCE approaches and methodologies to strengthen values-based international volunteering
  • A track record in supporting organisational capacity building
  • Excellent networking skills, with experience of using consultative and participative approaches to build consensus and create strong, trustful working relationships
  • Experience of volunteering and/or working in the Global South.

This post is being recruited on a 4-day week basis (7 hour working day, with flexi-time) and will offered at the Project Officer scale ranging from €24,000 up to €36,000 (4 day basis). Appointment will be made according to suitability, experience and qualifications. The post is being offered on a permanent contract, and a matching pension contribution of 6% is available after 9 months service. The place of work is our offices in Dublin but a hybrid working model is in place allowing for remote working.  Flexibility is needed in relation to working hours as there is some evening and occasional weekend work.

Application Procedure:

Please apply with a covering letter (max one page) outlining how you meet the criteria and a CV to [email protected], entering PO – Capacity Building & Volunteering Quality in the subject line. Please also include in the subject line where you saw this job being advertised. Closing date for receipt of applications is Thursday 3rd February at 13:00.  Interviews will take place on Wednesday 9th February.

Description: The Capacity Building & Volunteering Quality Project Officer  supports a network of  35 volunteer sending agencies (VSAs) in implementing Comhlámh’s Code of Good Practice (CoGP) for Volunteer Sending Agencies. The position will report to the Programme Manager.

For the past 15 years, the key Irish-based NGOs involved in organising international volunteer placements in the Global South have collaborated to shape and guide values-based practice through their work to mainstream the Code. The Project Officer plays a crucial role in this, through the management of the Code’s strategic development and implementation. This includes overseeing an audit process relating to Code implementation, and managing the participation of several Code groups that focus on strategic issues relating to values-based volunteering. The role also involves work to promote visibility of the Code to a wider audience through the Code Supporter Network of various representative bodies who support our work.  The role also involves networking with international organisations and learning from and contributing to the development of future policy and practice in international volunteering. The role also involves working as part of a team and contributing to the work of Comhlámh in the implementation of its strategic and operational plans.

Specifically, the responsibilities include the following:

Code development, monitoring and capacity building

  • Administering the CoGP member application process, analysing annual CoGP self-assessment reports, and ensuring timely feedback is provided on all self-audits;
  • Coordinating the external audit processes linked to the CoGP and convening an external panel of assessors;
  • Convening of capacity building meetings with VSAs and provision of ongoing support and assistance via phone/email;
  • Organising and co-ordinating tailored training with Code agencies, based on identified needs/issues linked to the CoGP;
  • Convening the Code Steering Committee, which is an expert working group that guides the development and implementation of the CoGP;
  • Leading the evolution and development of the Code in the light of emerging policy and practice in international volunteering.

Network facilitation

Facilitation of signatory and supporter networks, in a way that ensures ownership, participation and growth. This includes:

  • Organising and facilitating bi-annual Peer Support meetings (for all Code members);
  • Organising and facilitating working groups on topics of common interest to VSAs,  including: safeguarding, ecological sustainability, GCE, self-care and sustaining civic engagement, and volunteering and orphanages;  
  • Initiating and supporting joint initiatives between VSAs on topics of relevance to good practice in international volunteering;
  • Facilitating peer support learning between the VSAs;
  • Designing and facilitating a process that ensures ownership and active participation of the Code of Good Practice Supporter network.

Communication and research

  • Identification and outreach to potential Code organisations;
  • Promoting and disseminating the CoGP to VSAs, supporter organisations and volunteers;
  • Coordinating the collection of annual statistical data on the activities of Irish VSAs and producing a report on this;
  • Production and dissemination of regular e-newsletter to the VSAs;
  • Contributing to research on emerging good practice in values-based international volunteering including the need to ensure greater diversity in those who volunteer;
  • Supporting the Communications Officer to grow public awareness of Comhlámh’s role as the leader in good practice standards for Irish VSAs, including through social media engagement and media work;
  • Engaging in national and international discussions on good practice in international volunteering; bringing this learning back into the network of VSAs and delivering presentations at relevant conferences and information events.

OTHER DUTIES

  • Monitoring and evaluating programme activities;
  • Maintaining records on database on a regular basis;
  • Ensuring that activities are managed within budget where responsibility has been delegated for specific activities and report on expenditure as required;
  • Contributing towards the effective working of the team through consultation, support and shared working;
  • Inputting to planning, funding applications, evaluations and reports;
  • Recruiting and mentoring interns and student placements as required;
  • Representing the organisation externally as appropriate;
  • Carrying out such alternative duties as may be assigned by the Line Manager following consultation, from time to time.

Comhlámh has an Equal Opportunities policy and all employees are expected to develop an understanding of and commitment to equality and social justice.

All staff are required to adhere to: Comhlámh’s Child Safeguarding Policy and Code of Conduct with Children and Comhlámh’s values.

Personal Specification:

Qualifications:

  • Masters degree in Development Studies, Community Development, Social Research, NGO capacity building,  or related topic. Comhlámh is open to also considering equivalent acquired learning through experience working in development.

Experience:

  • An understanding of global development issues and the role of values-based international volunteering
  • Volunteer/development work experience in a country of the Global South
  • Experience of co-ordinating and working as part of a network to encourage collaboration
  • Experience of facilitating groups and understanding of group dynamics
  • Experience in assessing needs, building capacity and implementing and/or developing quality standards
  • Experience of policy and practice in safeguarding
  • Experience in Global Citizen Education
  • Experience of relationship building with a range of stakeholders
  • Ability to research, analyse and produce reports
  • Experience of organising events

Knowledge, Skills and Disposition:

  • Project management & delivery skills
  • Knowledge of development education and practice
  • Facilitation skills
  • Presentation skills
  • Report writing skills
  • Organisational skills & ICT skills
  • Ability to work on own initiative and as part of a team
  • Ability to work to deadlines and under pressure
  • Flexibility in relation to working hours as some evening and weekend work will be required around Ireland.
  • Interpersonal and communication skills