Please pass along to anyone who might be interested!
The Redemption Song Foundation (RSF) is seeking a full-time volunteer to join us in Uganda for 3, 6 or 12 months, beginning summer 2015 (or earlier if you can). This is a full-time all-volunteer position. Join a growing team working on a very exciting project to align environmental sustainability with community livelihoods. We are a small but growing nonprofit with a big vision and a big heart.
If grant money becomes available, this could turn into a full-time job down the road.
The position involve working with indigenous Batwa pygmies who live in extreme poverty, as well as other marginalized communities. We work holistically to improve quality of life, health, and the environment — in the vein of the late Nobel Laureate Elinor Ostrom’s “Design principles.” Any given day, we may be making the steep trek to Karehe village to inventory houses and do community education, take HIV+ women to the hospital to ensure they receive their medicine, supervising latrine digging or mud-house-building, or (this is something we will be doing in the near future) tree planting for carbon sequestration projects RSF wants to get started, or working with Batwa children on our "educational soup kitchen” day. Computer work may involve working on inventory of baskets and jewelery (part of an income-generating Artisan Co-op), communicating with donors and potential donors, and working on grants.
An ideal candidate has a college degree in sustainable development,international development, sanitation engineering, or ecology (with an interest in sustainable livelihoods), some experience with living or at least traveling in developing nations, a positive, can-do attitude and a solid work ethic. I am flexible and we can implement new, innovative projects that the volunteer candidate has a special interest in.
For more info about RSF visit http://www.redemptionsongfoundation.org
, or the Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/redemptionsongfoundation
. After earning a M.S. in Ecology (and “almost” a Phd in Ecology/Evolutionary Bio), I have worked as an environmental journalist and photographer for nearly 2 decades, and my growing interest in environmental justice issues led me here. A grant from Mongabay brought me to Uganda in Jan/Feb, and not long after, I sold my house in Houston and moved to Uganda permanently in September 2014.
RSF is a (US) 501c3 nonprofit organization with our “base” a few km outside of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, home to critically endangered mountain gorillas, as well as a small community of indigenous Batwa “pygmies.” The Batwa are struggling to survive and thrive since the park’s creation. Here’s an article I wrote about the situation before I moved here: http://www.takepart.com/feature/2014/11/25/conservation-refugees-of-uganda-batwa-mountain-gorillas
. (Note I didnt come up with that title and don’t like it!)
You will be required to pay your way here (airfares can be as low as $860 from the US to Uganda, plus transport from Kampala to Bwindi, which can be another $450 round trip airfare, or a $400 car hire). Very low-cost or possibly free housing is available. You may be required to pay a small monthly fee for food, though it will be cooked for you, if you wish. RSF headquarters are in a fairly remote village (the nearest bank is 1 hour away, for example), although it is simultaneously a hub for mountain gorilla tourists. We have no vehicles, but there are motorcycles to transport you, and there are several tourist lodges within 1 km of the headquarters that allow visitors for dinner or drinks. One of the best hospitals in sub-Saharan Africa is right here, Bwindi Community Hospital. The RSF house has solar power, hot water/showers, flush toilets, and everything you need to be comfortable after the sometimes tough field conditions.
**Note – I am looking also for volunteers in the US who want to help with everything from social media to website updates/blogging to grant writing (write yourself a job!) so if you’re interested, let me know, email me at redemptionsongfoundation AT gmail DOT com.