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Gender Equality Advisor - Malawi

6-9 months, , in-country and online support

Overseas Volunteer Opportunity: Malawi

Gender Equality Advisor

Contribute. Discover. Grow. Volunteer with CDF Canada.


Eligibility criteria:   Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada 

Location:   Lilongwe

Start Date:   Exact timing will be negotiated with the successful candidate.

Duration:   6-9 months, , in-country and online support

Language Requirement:   English (Mandatory)

Reporting to:   Country Program Officer


The Program – VOICE for Women and Girls

The VOICE for Women and Girls program is a seven-year initiative (2020 – 2027) aimed at strengthening the performance of developing country partner (DCP) organizations to advance gender equality and economic empowerment of 50,000 women and men from marginalised communities, in particular young women, in Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Senegal and Malawi with a focus on action areas of the Feminist International Assistance Policy (FIAP), namely:

  • Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women and Girls, and
  • Growth that Works for Everyone.

The Progran responds to the needs identified by women and men of co-operatives and the entire members in the countries of operation and is designed to increase the capacities of individual producers and primary co-operatives to support more inclusive, sustainable, and resilient growth. Supporting institutions, including apex co-operatives, co-operative colleges, and government/regulatory institutions will also be engaged to increase the capacity and prioritization of vulnerable groups.

The Partner you will work with

Co-operative Development Foundation of Canada is working with Malawi Federations of Cooperatives (MAFECO), the national apex body for co-operatives. MAFECO aims to be a vibrant and sustainable national co,operative organization capable of providing quality leadership and services to the co,operative movement in Malawi. The organization has a vision to facilitate and coordinate promotion, development, and growth of sustainable, independent, and autonomous co,operatives in a competitive environment.

What you will do – Activities and deliverables

The Gender Equality Advisor volunteer will be working under the suspervision of the country program officer, who coordinates all program activities in the country. The volunteer will support and groom/mentor the local partner (MAFECO), in establishing/updating their gender equality strategy. The volunteer will take the leading role in training the program team (staff and volunteers) and its stakeholders on gender related topics that will be cascaded to the program targeted co-operatives/communities. The volunteer will be required to travel to the program sites (rural communities) to deliver program interventions. 


The main objective of this mandate is to provide capacity building to program staff and co-operatives on the gender equality strategy. The volunteer will also be required to support local partner in ensuring that they have an updated organization gender strategy. In addition, the volunteer will be required to document their volunteer experience in Malawi to increase international volunteer recruitment and public engagement of Canadians.


  • Liaise with the gender specialist in Ottawa to work on developing and updating the VOICE gender equality strategy.
  • Train the program staff, volunteers, and government staff on the VOICE gender equality strategy (GES).
  • Work with other volunteers to ensure they have incorporated the needed gender content in their session plans and training materials.
  • Lead in the development of the gender model family (GMF) strategy for Malawi.
  • Work with other volunteers to support the gender model families.
  • Work with other volunteers to integrate gender in their planning, collect the needed data, analyze, and use the information to review the gender strategy from time to time.
  • Development of gender responsive training manual for all training under the program.
  • Support partner and co-operatives on gender related policies, procedures, and tools.
  • Track staff training needs and provide training for the staff to improve their capacities.

Your qualifications


  • Degree or equivalent experience in gender theories, approached and practical experience in gender field activities.


  • Experience and knowledge in gender strategy development, contemporary issues on gender in developing countries.
  • Knowledge and skills in collecting and analyzing data to update the gender strategy.
  • Excellent capacity to analyze, develop recommendations and capture lessons learned.
  • Knowledge in community participation methodologies.
  • Experience facilitating group learning/training sessions or focus groups.
  • Knowledge or experience working in the co-operative sector is an asset.
  • Ability to travel to and live in remote locations where services are minimal .
  • Ability to work autonomously, be flexible and analytical.

Support package

This is a voluntary assignment. CDF Canada supports volunteers through the provision of a comprehensive package designed to cover a modest and healthy lifestyle, while allowing for effectiveness in the placement:

  • Monthly living allowance.
  • Return-trip international and/or domestic airfare.
  • Visa-related costs (if needed).
  • International health insurance.
  • Vaccination and health-related costs (if needed).
  • Interpreter and/or translator (if needed and depending on the position and duration of the assignment).
  • Pre-departure support and orientation.
  • Support and orientation during the assignment.
  • Debriefing upon completion of the assignment.


Depending on the nature of the placement, volunteers are encouraged to provide e-volunteering support to our local partners before or after their placement.

Engaging Canadians

CDF Canada provides technical and logistical support to young and experienced professionals through volunteer assignments to apply and acquire new skills and knowledge in international co-operative development. We ask each volunteer, regardless of the duration of their mandate, to share their experience in the country of assignment and in Canada. The experience can be shared by providing stories of human interest and photographs that can be used for social media outreach; Participate in events/conferences or other public engagement activities to share their experience to motivate others.

Application Process

Please submit a cover letter and CV/resume, by applying directly on our recruitment webpage. You must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident. Successful candidates will be required to obtain a police-check from their local police or RCMP detachment. All applicants are thanked for their interest in CDF Canada; however, only those selected for an interview will be contacted.