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Overseas Volunteer Opportunity – Kenya



WHERE:  Nairobi, Kenya
WHEN:  end of February/early March 2018 for six-month assignment (exact timing to be negotiated with the successful candidate)
DURATION:  Six months   
REPORTING TO: Fresnel Devalon, Program Manager  
DEADLINE: January 31, 2018

Note: This is a voluntary assignment. Domestic and international economy airfare, ground transport, visa, travel insurance, out of country accommodation, and a meal/incidental allowance will be covered by CDF Canada.  You must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident.



Improving Rural Financial Inclusion through Financial Co-operatives (IRFITCO) project, is a four year, $3.3 million USD, working with three national savings and credit co-operative apex organizations in Malawi, Tanzania and Ethiopia.  Implementation partners are the African Confederation of Savings and Credit Co-operatives (ACCOSCA) and the Irish League of Credit Unions Foundation (ILCUF) and The Co-operative Development Foundation of Canada (CDF Canada).  The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), is the main project funder.  

Financial co-operatives are a growing force for financial inclusion in Eastern and Southern Africa. They often operate in remote areas where other financial institutions are unable or unwilling to operate. However, they face challenges in being able to innovate, effectively develop demand-driven products and services, access relevant training programs to increase the capacity of their staff and directors, attract qualified staff and management and to advocate on their own behalf. Lack of confidence in their own management capacity inhibits SACCOs (Savings and Credit Co-operative Organizations) from reaching beyond their traditional bonds of association to become more inclusive. Through building capacity of the Apex organizations and consultations with regulating bodies, the IRFITCO project strengthens the co-operative sectors in Ethiopia, Tanzania, and Malawi. Innovative technologies and products are being designed for co-operatives to provide to their members, with a focus on rural, agricultural communities.

The African Confederation of Savings and Credit Co-operatives, ACCOSCA, is the Pan African confederation of national associations of savings and credit co-operatives societies established in 1968. The organization was revitalized in 2009 having been defunct from 1999.

The General Assembly which currently comprises of twenty-eight countries is the highest organ of the organization. Currently, ACCOSCA has developed programs aimed at empowering and promoting cooperatives in Africa and is collaborating with various government bodies, development agencies and research institution in her service delivery to promote financial inclusion in Africa. Overall ACCOSCA aims at: Promoting the establishment of an institutional framework for mobilizing personal saving and credit cooperatives, Capacity Building, Technical Assistance, Information exchange and Research on topical issues and address them amicably. ACCOSCA is instituting change in her organization that is guided by the current strategic plan which is a three-year plan from 2018 -2020 with a view of turning around the institution.

ACCOSCA’s mission is to empower savings and credit co-operatives (SACCOs) in Africa through technical programs and the vision is to promote financial inclusion in Africa.   ACCOSCA’s top priorities are:

  • Membership Growth – Currently ACCOSCA has 9 active members and 21 inactive members. To achieve our goal there needs to be growth in the membership.
  • Financial stability and sustainability - To attain desirable growth, ACCOSCA will grow its revenue base by 10% in 2018, 15% in 2019 and 15% in 2020.
  • Human resources– Improve Human Capacity within ACCOSCA and hence professional and knowledge transfer within its Members.



The Knowledge Management Specialist will work closely with the ACCOSCA team and will promote an integrated approach to identifying, capturing, analyzing and sharing all the organization information assets.  


The specific activities of the assignment include:

  • Lead efforts to develop studies that inform the implementation of Improving Rural Financial Inclusion through Co-operative project (IRFITCO) design mechanisms for continuous learning, collaboration, and adaptation for project staff, partners, donors, host country government counterparts, and other stakeholders
  • Conduct information audits from member countries time to time to ensure that the security, accessibility and quality of information remains consistent and up-to-date.
  • Research and establish a network of information providers
  • Oversee the implementation of all activity monitoring, incorporation of lessons learned from external evaluations and research, and capacity building of district and sub-district activities to achieve results;
  • Contribute in monitoring, knowledge management, and related capacity development
  • Lead the design and implementation of the project’s learning activities. Learning activities include—but are not limited to—operations research, performance evaluations, impact evaluations, and rapid/special studies;
  • Incorporate technical, contextual and experiential learning into technical strategies, interventions, and processes;
  • Develop, capture, share, and test methods, models, and tools to advance objectives;
  • Contribute to Knowledge Transfer work plans, quarterly and annual reports and other reports and papers summarizing project results and evidence.
  • Participate in CDF Canada’s volunteer orientation process (both on-line, via SKYPE and possibly at CDF Canada’s offices in Ottawa) prior to travel to Kenya.
  • Upon return to Canada, debrief Ottawa-based Program Manager.  


The successful applicant must possess the following skills, experiences and personal characteristics:

  • Bachelor Degree in International Development and/or Social Science (focus on Education, Knowledge Management or Transfer)
  • Experience with participatory approaches and methodologies an asset
  • Experience facilitating group learning/training sessions or focus groups
  • Understanding of co-operatives or member-based business enterprises
  • An excellent communicator who can initiate and continue interaction with the people who can share their insights and knowledge
  • Be proficient with computer applications
  • Must be able to handle difficult situations with patience, tact and professionalism
  • Preferably, knowledge of and experience in Africa
  • Openness to new experiences
  • Flexible
  • Detail oriented
  • Be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident


  • At ACCOSCA offices in Upper Hill area of Nairobi (Kilimanjaro Road)



Please submit a resume and letter of intent by end of day January 26th, 2018 to You must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident. Successful candidates will be required to obtain a police check from their local police/RCMP detachment.   No phone calls please.  All applicants are thanked for their interest in CDF Canada; however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted.



The Co-operative Development Foundation of Canada (CDF Canada) is an international development charity that helps improve the lives of women, men, children and their communities through cooperatives. We envision a world where self-reliant communities flourish. CDF Canada is working with local partners in Africa, Asia, Latin America and in Eastern Europe to establish and grow community owned co-operatives that help people achieve more prosperous, self-reliant lives.

For over 70 years, CDF has been mobilizing financial resources, volunteers and knowledge — mostly from Canadian co-ops and credit unions — to make the world a better place. For much of that time, CDF Canada worked with the Canadian Co-operative Association (CCA) and other partners to help communities move toward prosperity and create more secure lives through community-owned cooperatives.

CDF and CCA amalgamated in 2017 under the CDF Canada brand. For more information about CDF Canada, visit


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