Local Engagement, Action, and Dialogue (LEAD) Program Coordinator
Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand
Position title: Local Engagement, Action, and Dialogue (LEAD) Program Coordinator
Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand, with regular international travel
Reports to: Southeast Asia Regional Director
Duration: 2 Years, Renewable
EarthRights International (ERI) is a nongovernmental, nonprofit organization that combines the power of law and the power of people in defense of human rights and the environment, which we define as “earth rights.” We specialize in fact-finding, legal actions, training grassroots and community leaders, and advocacy campaigns. EarthRights International seeks to defend earth rights by working closely with communities to find real solutions that promote and protect human rights and the environment. We are looking for an experienced Program Coordinator to lead our work on Local Engagement and Action Dialogue (LEAD) project, which aims to support local communities in the Mekong region impacted by large scale private sector development to lead their community’s negotiation processes with private sector, government and other stakeholders. The project is part of ERI’s work on business and human rights. The post is based in Thailand and requires frequent travel in the Mekong region.
Summary of position
EarthRights International’s LEAD program is a new initiative, which aims to support communities throughout the Mekong region to develop comprehensive strategies around access to information, participation, and addressing harms caused by business activities. The initiative aims to equip communities impacted by large development projects, as well as EarthRights School (ERS) alumni and partners, with both the technical tools and advocacy and organizing skills needed to engage directly with corporations and governments. The program seeks to integrate individual community-led tools into a single resource so that communities can effectively develop and implement advocacy actions that are in line with their specific needs and priorities, and that will be effective regardless of whether the community accepts or rejects a project.
The primary purpose of the LEAD Program Coordinator is to support the refinement of the resource, develop a scale-up plan, and coordinate implementation and learning opportunities for ERI’s LEAD project in the Mekong region. The LEAD Program Coordinator oversees the implementation of the tools and identifies areas for adaptation and improvement in order to effectively serve the relevant communities. The Program Coordinator also serves as the organizational expert and resource for LEAD, helping ERI staff, ERS Alumni, and partners to understand how and when to use the tools in the toolkit.
Key roles and responsibilities:
- Coordinate and manage ERI’s LEAD program planning and implementation and ensure that all components are delivered on time to agreed plans and budgets and to the highest standards
- Review national, regional, and global policies and best practices on business and human rights, Operational Grievance Mechanisms (OGMs), as well as advise on how community engagements could be strengthened locally, nationally, regionally, and internationally.
- Work closely with ERI’s global policy and Campaign and Legal teams on finding ways to cross learn and strengthen influence; Serve as the organizational resource on community-led dialogues and the toolkit
- Work closely with ERI’s Campaigns, Legal, and Training teams to ensure the LEAD Project Toolkit is developed and integrated into community campaigns in a contextually-appropriate, gender-sensitive manner
- Lead the development and/or refinement of individual LEAD tools, and add additional tools into the toolkit as relevant; Conduct focus groups and seek feedback on draft materials
- Synthesize existing LEAD tools into a single toolkit that is replicable and adaptable to different contexts in the Mekong region; Create case studies based on the utilization of LEAD tools in ERI’s campaign areas for inclusion in the toolkit, in collaboration with ERI staff working on the campaigns
- Collaborate closely with ERI staff to incorporate LEAD approach and resources into existing community campaigns, with a special focus on the specific contexts of each community
- Support local staff in country offices with community engagement, including project inputs, outreach, and learning
- Oversee implementation of LEAD tools in ERI’s community campaign areas, in close collaboration with the relevant ERI staff
- Strategize with ERI staff, partners, and communities with whom we work to understand how LEAD activities would be useful to them and identify opportunities to integrate LEAD toolkit into their initiatives
- Conduct regular formal and informal assessments with ERI staff and partners on the implementation of the tools, and incorporate the feedback into the design
- Develop and implement training on LEAD for ERS students, Mekong Legal Advocacy Institute (MLAI) participants, members of the Myanmar Environmental Lawyers Network (MELN), and other close partners and networks
- Conduct formal and informal trainings and strategy sessions with all teams, in collaboration with ERI staff, on the materials and how to use them with the communities they serve
- Provide continued support for the Community Driven Operational Grievance Mechanism (CD-OGM) pilot project in Thilawa, Myanmar, as a cornerstone component of the LEAD toolkit
- Participate in the design and implementation of monitoring, evaluation, and learning processes and plans, and collaborate with relevant ERI staff to capture achievements
- Support grant application and management, including regular reporting of project activities internally and externally
- Work with relevant staff, including the Regional Director, with fundraising initiatives
- Represent ERI at various national, regional, and international meetings, trainings, forums, and conferences, and widely share the LEAD approach and toolkit.
- Work closely with ERI’s Training and School-in-a-Box (SIAB) teams to incorporate the LEAD tools into the ERS and SIAB curriculums; Conduct a course on LEAD for ERS students
- Collaborate with ERI’s Communications team on the design and communications strategy of the toolkit, including dissemination plans
Essential skills and experience
- M.A. in anthropology, law, international development, or other relevant fields
- Excellent communication skills in English (written and spoken) is essential for this position. Other Mekong languages are highly desirable.
- Experience in successful project management, including planning, monitoring and evaluation, and financial management
- Experience working in the field of business and human rights, environment, and/or international development focusing on private sector engagement, corporate social responsibility, etc.
- Knowledge and experience developing and implementing participatory and community-led tools (community protocols, participatory EIAs, community monitoring, etc.), and implementing community outreach tools and plans.
- Ability to synthesize complex information into understandable formats for multiple audiences, especially for local communities, businesses, and government stakeholders
- Experience engaging with and influencing government and corporate actors
- Demonstrated experience supporting constructive community-corporate engagement, especially in the resolution of grievances, like OGMs
- Understands the political, social, economic, and cultural contexts in the Mekong region and has a demonstrated ability to analyze policies and laws, and apply this to their work
- Experience preparing, monitoring, and managing budgets
- Experience managing and developing staff
- Strong understanding of gender issues and how to incorporate these into LEAD initiatives
- Experience in community organizing
- Excellent interpersonal skills with positive and professional attitude
- Track record of building strong relationships with a wide range of local and international partners
- Ability to work on own initiative, guide staff, and manage time effectively
- Experience living or working in the Mekong countries.
Interested candidates should email their cover letter describing their interest in the job along with a CV to the following email address [email protected] by 15 December 2018. Be sure to use “LEAD Program Coordinator” as your subject line when submitting application materials.
Please note that only shortlisted candidates will be contacted.