14 Mar Agents of Change

  • Role: Agent of Change
  • Position Type: Pro-Innovator Volunteer
  • Number of Positions: 5
  • Project: EMBRACE
  • Partners: ADRA Cambodia, ADRA Philippines, ADRA Rwanda
  • Locations: Cambodia, Philippines or Rwanda
  • Duration: 3 weeks overseas and occasional public engagement activities until 2019
  • Start Date: July 2017
  • Eligibility Requirements: Volunteer must be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident
  • Application deadline: March 27, 2017
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Youth Challenge International

Youth Challenge International (YCI) is a leading global youth development organization that promotes youth innovation to drive positive change. Over the past 25 years, YCI has supported youth-led initiatives and volunteer engagement with over 250,000 youth in 13 countries around the world. YCI’s programs are a unique and effective opportunity for individuals to participate in development programming. By combining the energy and skills of volunteers with local youth and partners, YCI provides volunteers with the opportunity to contribute to innovative programming while developing personal and professional skills.


The EMBRACE program

EMBRACE (Enhancing Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health through Revitalized Health Services and Community Engagement) is a four-year program designed to improve the maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH) of vulnerable women, girls and boys in Cambodia, the Philippines, Rwanda and Burma. The program is funded by the Government of Canada and is being implemented through a consortium led by ADRA Canada in partnership Youth Challenge International (YCI) and the Hincks-Dellcrest Centre (HDC).


Position Details:

ADRA Canada has partnered with Youth Challenge International to create the Agents of Change Study Tour, an exciting opportunity for Midwifery and Health Sciences students at the university level, who are looking to increase their knowledge of global issues and are passionate about making a difference in their local communities. Ten exceptional students will have a chance to travel overseas for three weeks in August 2017 to learn about global maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH) and nutrition issues. Students will be divided into three groups, each of which will visit a different EMBRACE project country – Rwanda, Cambodia or the Philippines – and have a chance to directly observe and learn from project activities. Upon their return to Canada, the Agents of Change will work with ADRA Canada to use their new awareness and knowledge to engage their communities in global MNCH and nutrition issues. ADRA is a faith-based network of organizations and the students will be expected to respect and reflect the values and lifestyle of the project while in the field.


Study Tour Details:

Students will engage in the following activities before, during and after the study tour:

  • A detailed orientation on global maternal, newborn and child health within the international and community development context;
  • A comprehensive in-person pre-departure training in Toronto immediately prior to their departure;
  • Travel to one of three EMBRACE project communities;
  • Shadow community health workers to observe how they handle maternal and child health issues within a limited resource setting;
  • Shadow community health volunteers to improve their understanding of the determinants of health;
  • Participate in community health groups such as permaculture, savings and Learning Through Play;
  • Document their learning and experiences to share at Canadian public engagement events.

Public Engagement Responsibilities:

Upon their return, Agents of Change will be supported to complete the following tasks:

  • Develop a two-year public engagement plan;
  • Organize and execute a minimum of two public engagements per year;
  • With support from ADRA Canada, prepare materials and content for public engagement events;
  • Support Canadian community groups as guest speakers;
  • Be available for media opportunities such as interviews and/or writing blogs;
  • Support the EMBRACE project social media strategy by actively participating in social media campaigns.


  • Must be a Canadian university student enrolled in a Midwifery, Health Sciences, or related program;
  • Ability and willingness to travel to rural areas and respectfully experience new cultures;
  • Demonstrated interest and knowledge in global MNCH and nutrition issues;
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills;
  • Experience working in small teams;
  • Good conflict resolution skills;
  • Commitment to remain involved with the EMBRACE project until 2019;
  • Previous experience travelling, volunteering or living abroad would be considered an asset. 

Important Information for Students

This is a three-week subsidized overseas study trip, with four days spent in Toronto prior to departure. YCI will provide the following for the volunteers:

  • Preparation support
  • Pre-departure training and post-project debrief in Toronto (including travel and accommodation)
  • In-country orientation
  • Return airfare and visa/permit fees
  • Vaccinations allowance up to $300 CAD
  • Emergency medical and evacuation insurance
  • Modest stipend to cover accommodation, food, work-related communication and transportation

YCI does not cover the following:

  • Trip cancellation and interruption insurance (recommended)
  • Social activities
  • Personal travel

Application Instructions

Applications will be reviewed as they are received until the March 27, 2017 deadline. To apply for these positions, please complete our volunteer application form. We thank all applicants for their interest, but will only contact those that have been selected for an interview. We will not accept any phone calls about this position.


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