Founded in 2001, Volunteers for Sustainable Development in Africa (VOSIEDA) is a Liberian nonprofit and a network of development professionals working to promote prosperity, reduce extreme poverty, and strengthen peace and stability in Liberia and West Africa’s Mano River Union Basin region. VOSIEDA’s work focuses on saving the planet and fighting extreme poverty among women, youth, children, and other excluded groups. We advance community solutions to address development challenges and empower local people to care for nature that sustains all lives.
VOSIEDA is implementing a program on Low Carbon / Climate – Smart Agriculture in rural Liberia, with an emphasis on Nimba County. The project is funded by the Embassy of Sweden. VOSIEDA will implement the program by working with the Ministry of Agriculture, other relevant government institutions, and international and national non-governmental organizations to address climate change impact in Liberia’s agriculture sector. To lead the Office’s engagements and delivery of programmatic outputs including engagements with the private sector for partnerships, farmers groups, and service provisions, VOSIEDA seeks the services of a Program Management Specialist. S/he will work full-time and lead all aspects relevant to the achievements of the objectives of the project, in addition to the development of the VOSIEDA Food Security and Livelihood Enhancement Program.
The Program, funded by Sweden, is entitled “Building Community Resilience to Climate Impacts and Livelihood Support through Climate Smart Small-Scale Farming”. The program aims to facilitate climate-smart agriculture techniques to empower smallholder farmers, mainly women, and youths, to employ sustainable and regenerative farming practices in Nimba County, Northern Liberia. The overall project goal is to strengthen rural communities’ resilience to climate change impact through small-scale agricultural practices that promote increased and sustainable productivity and reduced agricultural sector GHG emissions.
- Improved land use and productivity increased through climate-smart agriculture practices.
- Strengthened communities’ resilience to climate change.
- Reduced agriculture-based greenhouse gas emissions.
- Enhanced income generation of smallholder farming communities.
The activities include setting up climate-resilient lowland rice farming groups, roots, and tubers (cassava) farming groups, vegetable and fruit productions, and farmers’ field schools as learning and demonstration sites. About 1,400 hectares of farmland will be developed, with farming techniques that ensure that farming practices continue in the same spots for decades, without any need for shifting to new sites.
Under the overall guidance of the VOSIEDA Team Leader and the direct supervision of the Project Manager, the Climate Smart Agronomist, liaising with other technical staff, and relevant colleagues will undertake the tasks outlined below
The Climate Smart Agronomist will provide technical guidance for the Sida – VOSIEDA Climate-Smart agriculture project. Specifically, the Agronomist will collect relevant information, support the identification of climate-smart technologies and crops, and support the preparation and evaluation of the farmers’ business plans. She/he will prepare and facilitate training sessions on selecting and disseminating climate-smart technologies and rural investments. The Agronomist will review and provide feedback to the project on relevant crops and, investments in the context of climate change adaptation and mitigation in rural Liberia.
Tasks and Responsibilities
The incumbent will undertake the following
- The Agronomist shall use an ecosystem-based adaptation (EbA) approach to instigate a paradigm shift in the agro-based rural economy of rural Liberia.
- Shall lead a team of technicians to circumvent and disrupt climate impacts on small-scale farmers, such as soil nutrient loss, flood damage, and drought-induced crop failure, using a suite of interventions at the plot, farm, and landscape levels. EbA interventions will include conservation agriculture, intergrade soil health and stabilization techniques, agroforestry, agroforestry, irrigation, etc.
- Shall provide strategic advice to the Project Management Team and district officers of MoA and lead farmers on the development and implementation of the project activities.
- Shall review and update existing project analysis and implementation strategies to mainstream the Climate Smart Agriculture (CSA) technologies across all areas of intervention, including high-value crops and irrigation.
- Shall provide training in climate-resilient seed production and establish rural agro-based markets to supply climate-resilient seed varieties to targeted farmers.
- Shall provide technical guidance/recommendations to support the selection of rural investments.
- Shall work closely with Gender and Irrigation Specialists to mainstream climate-smart solutions across all project components and activities.
- Shall work with technicians to connect Farmers to Domestic Markets and increase the Value-Add of Agriculture Products, Extending the Shelf Life of Products.
- Shall work with technicians to support Remote Rural Areas and increase farm productivity and food security through Farmer Field Schools and other activities to build farm capacity.
- Shall work with technicians to expand the number of agricultural products through value addition and product diversification, such as processed jams and sulfur-dried apricots.
- Shall work with technicians to link farmers with traders and buyers in domestic markets, such as through domestic food expos meetings.
- Shall work with technicians to build the capacity of Agribusinesses to maximize output and quality for domestic markets.
- Shall work with technicians to support initiatives such as improved post-harvest handling infrastructure for traders, including packing houses, cold storage, and improved packaging.
- Shall work with technicians to enhance the climate resilience of smallholder farmers in northern rural Liberia through the implementation of Ecosystem-based Adaptation interventions.
- Shall work with technicians to enhance and diversify income generation of smallholder farming communities through climate-resilient livelihoods and improved post-harvest produce management; ii) investment in hard, agro-based assets; and iii) strengthening of business and financial management expertise.
CANDIDATES WILL BE ASSESSED AGAINST THE FOLLOWING
- A Master’s degree in Agriculture Science, Project Management, Irrigation Engineering, Environment, or a related natural sciences field is preferred. Bachelor’s degree in these and related field is a requirement.
- At least five (5) years of experience in project management, and implementation, and program delivery, around climate-smart agriculture, forestry, environmental protection, biodiversity conservation, natural resource management, community-based development planning is required.
VOSIEDA Core Competencies.
- Results Focus
- Effective written and spoken communication skills
- Building Effective Relationships.
- Knowledge Sharing and Continuous Improvement of Technical/Functional Skills
- Demonstrated result-based management capabilities with an ability to manage a complex irrigation system.
- Ability and willingness to travel extensively in support of program implementation.
- Knowledge of research analysis and program development.
- Work experience in more than one location or area of work, particularly in field positions is essential.
- Demonstrated result-based management capabilities with an ability to manage programs.
- Ability and willingness to travel extensively in support of program implementation.
- Excellent communication, networking, written, and presentation skills.
- Experience in developing and delivering land used or management plans is an asset.
- Experience working with international partners or donors preferred with a strong preference to candidates with prior experience working with Swedish International Development Agency.
- Demonstrated ability to provide technical coordination and leadership with a broad range of interested parties, across cultures, languages, and varying capacity levels.
- Experience working with national governmental technical agencies, civil society organizations, and other international technical partners (preferred).
- Strong program management and organizational skills including concept note development and donor reporting.
- Proficient computer skills including Microsoft Office and database management (required) and GIS (preferred).
- Experience working in the field with rural communities and local government authorities for potentially extended periods.
- VOSIEDA does not charge a fee at any stage of the recruitment process (application, interview meeting, processing).
- Incomplete applications will not be considered.
- If you need help, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Applications received after the closing date will not be accepted or reviewed.
- VOSIEDA seeks gender and geographical diversity in its staff and consultants.
- Qualified female applicants are encouraged to apply. Persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.
HOW TO APPLY
- Candidates must send a letter of motivation, an up-to-date CV, and copies of academy credentials by email to email@example.com.
- We encourage applicants to apply well before the deadline date. If you need help or have queries, please get in touch with us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.