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Asia Program Officer/ Communications Specialist - Veterinarians without Borders

Sep 27, 2020
Ottawa, Ontario

Position: Asia Program Officer/ Communications Specialist

Location: Ottawa, Ontario – combination of remote and office work

Reports to: Program Director

Hours: full time

Term:  2 year, renewable based on performance and funding

Application deadline: September 27th, 2020

Start date: October 2020


Veterinarians without Borders/ Vétérinaires sans frontières – Canada (VWB/VSF) is a charitable, humanitarian organization whose mission is to work for, and with, those in need to foster the health of animals, people, and the environments that sustain us. More information about the organization can be found at


VWB/VSF is presently seeking an Asia Program Officer/ Communication Specialist to join our team. The successful candidate will lead volunteer recruitment, engagement and administration of VWB/VSF’s Asia portfolio and manage the Volunteers Engaged in Gender Responsive Technical Solutions (VETS) program related communications. In this fast-paced work environment, the individual will require exceptional communication, time management and organizational skills, be self-sufficient, and able to think quickly on his/her feet. S/he must be able to consistently project an enthusiastic, positive approach that contributes to a closely-knit organizational culture. The ideal individual will have the ability to exercise good judgment in a variety of situations, with strong written and verbal communication, administrative, financial, and organizational skills.



Project and volunteer administration

  • Lead the volunteer engagement process including outreach, recruitment, logistics, in-country plans, and post-placement activities
  • Help build project partnerships and guide volunteer placement planning in collaboration with the Program Director
  • Working through a gender equality lens, ensure that gender equality is a cross-cutting theme mainstreamed throughout VWB/VSF programs and reporting
  • Lead the VWB/VSF Young Volunteer Program (YVP) alongside the Africa Program Officer
  • In coordination with the VWB/VSF Country Coordinators, ensure timely and accurate monitoring and evaluation of country projects including the compilation, documentation and analysis of country specific data
  • Maintain health and evacuation insurance for VWB/VSF’s international volunteers
  • Ensure appropriate travel arrangements for international volunteers are made and tracked quarterly according to organizational policies/procedures
  • Ensure all legal documents and contracts are collected and safely stored for each volunteer (contracts, waivers, etc.)
  • Distribute, update and maintain volunteer handbooks, in-country guides, safety and security protocols, and resource folders for volunteers.
  • Lead volunteer debriefing sessions with returned volunteers, ensuring proper documentation and lessons learned shared with VWB/VSF team and project partners
  • Deliver pre-departure training sessions to outgoing volunteers alongside Africa Program Officer and consultants
  • Under new PSEA requirements, ensure appropriate measures (protocols, training) are in place as well as needed follow up in the case of reported incidents.


Communication and Public Engagement

  • Adhere to VWB/VSF’s style guide, ensuring high-quality communication publications, donor documentations and social media content
  • Work closely with the Africa Program Officer and volunteers to arrange public engagement events (webinars, seminars, etc) including the preparation and distribution of presentation materials, event registration, etc
  • Ensure that public engagement activities conducted by VWB/VSF staff and volunteers are tracked and presentations archived
  • Work with ED, staff, and volunteers to sustain effective relations with VWB/VSF project supporters
  • Develop and implement a VETS communication strategy that includes media outreach, public engagement and social media content creation.
  • Manage social media communications for the volunteer cooperation program and also for the organization as a whole.
  • Provide support for volunteers to produce media materials (articles, videos, web and social media content, etc) to share their experiences in the volunteer cooperation program
  • Create content for the VWB/VSF website, infographics, blogs and newsletters.
  • Support and evaluate results of communication campaign
  • Build and maintain relationships with the media and other key external role-players.


Finance and Administration

  • Work with Africa Program Officer and Program Director to devise and maintain office systems, including data management and filing related to the project
  • Ensure logistics and finances of volunteers and pre-departure administration are completed (e.g. expense claim forms, banking info forms, etc.)
  • Examine invoices, expense claims and partner financial reports for accuracy
  • Ensure project invoices are approved by the Program Director
  • Code invoices, expense claims and expense reports to appropriate project accounts
  • Assist with preparation of quarterly financial reports for the project to the funder
  • Maintain project accounts (including verification of project invoices, subcontractor and consultant invoices, and field reports)




  • Bachelor’s Degree in International Development and/or Communications, Journalism, or a related field/work experience (essential).


Key competencies

  • A minimum of 2 years experience in communications and in International Development
  • Some knowledge/experience in Monitoring and Evaluation
  • Strong organizational skills and ability to multi-task
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skill
  • Content writing experience for all media platforms
  • Works well under pressure and meets tight deadlines
  • Meticulous attention to detail
  • Strategic and creative mindset
  • Proven social media and networking expertise
  • Demonstrated intercultural sensitivity and effective interpersonal skills
  • Resourceful team player who can also be very effective independently
  • Highly computer literate with capability in email, MS Office and related communication tools (Social Media platforms, Mail Chimp, etc)
  • Knowledge of photo and video editing software is considered an asset
  • International experience in Asia considered an asset
  • Bilingualism (French/English) strongly recommended.


We thank all those who apply, however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted.


VWB/VSF VWB/VSF recognizes the existence of discrimination and structural barriers to equality based on gender, race, ethnicity, religion, age and mental or physical ability. Therefore, we take an intersectional approach to equality, diversity and inclusion, and incorporate this understanding into our programming, policies and procedures. We welcome applications from: women, Aboriginal persons, persons with disabilities, ethnic minorities, persons of minority sexual orientation or gender identity, visible minorities, and others who may contribute to diversification and share our values. If you are invited to continue the selection process, please notify us as soon as possible of any particular adaptive measures you might require.


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