Program Advisor (PA), Environment and Climate Action (ECA) – CUSO International

Location: Canada
Reports to: Manager, Program Strategy, Development and Innovation (PSDI)
Status: Permanent, Full-time
Bargaining Unit Status: Included
Classification: Band 5
Salary range: CA$62,320 – CA$75,931
Language requirements: English and French or Spanish


Cuso is a community development organization that works to reduce inequality through efforts of highly skilled volunteers, collaborative partnerships and compassionate donors. Cuso collaborates with partners to enhance women’s and girls’ empowerment, promote inclusive livelihoods and advance gender equality. Each year, Cuso amplifies their impact by mobilizing hundreds of professionals who volunteer their time and share their experience. Cuso is a people-centred organization that prioritizes working in partnership with local organizations. Cuso presently supports programs implemented in Africa, Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC). Find out more at


After 60 years, Cuso has embarked on a process of renewal.  In an era of rapidly changing contexts for international cooperation, Cuso is looking for an experienced PA, ECA that has ambition for contributing to advance human rights, reduce inequality and create both economic and social opportunities for marginalized groups. As a member of the PSDI Team, the PA, ECA will be the subject matter expert on areas such as natural resource management, climate resilience/adaptation, biodiversity, sustainability and inclusive economic growth. The PA, ECA will work closely with the Heads of Programs (HoPs), country program offices (CPOs) and various teams within Cuso, such as the Program Knowledge Management (PKM) Team, to lead on the design and implementation of environment and climate programming within Cuso. The PA, ECA will provide programmatic and technical support to CPOs for project design as well as support capacity building of CPOs to better understand and design environment and climate programming.


  • Lead the promotion and strengthening of environment and climate programming, processes and tools within CPOs and Cuso’s Canada office.
  • Provide expertise and guidance on environment and climate programming, such as sustainable natural resource management, reducing vulnerability to extreme weather effects resulting from climate change, food security, climate change adaptation and development of climate‐resilient and environmentally responsible businesses.
  • Provide technical assistance to staff, volunteers and partners to mainstream environment and climate action/resilience as a cross-cutting theme in Cuso programming and operations.
  • Build on Cuso’s learning from work with marginalized groups (e.g. Indigenous communities) globally and share knowledge and approaches within Cuso’s programming to mitigate and adapt to climate impacts.
  • Conduct and share research on advancements in environment and climate change action across programmatic contexts in Canada, LAC and Africa.
  • Develop and regularly update Cuso’s Environmental Management Systems and ensure integration into program/project design, implementation, management, monitoring, evaluation and reporting.
  • Ensure environment and climate is a cross‐cutting theme within existing and new program/projects.
  • Build relationships with and conduct proactive outreach with CPOs and teams at Cuso’s Canada office and provide technical assistance and organizational training on environment and climate for the successful and impactful delivery of activities throughout the project life-cycle.
  • Provide evidence-based guidance and thought leadership for integration of environment and climate in the design of project ideas, concept notes and proposals.
  • Collaborate with the PKM Team on the design of Cuso’s Global MEAL Framework ensuring environment and climate is fully integrated into the Framework, global indicators and associated activities
  • Collaborate with PSDI Team on the development of proposals and concept notes for a variety of donors, including carrying-out initial environmental analysis, provide guidance on concept design and writing/editing sections of concept notes/proposals when required.
  • Coordinate with PSDI Team on design of thought leadership activities positioning Cuso as a thought leader in environmental and climate action, including contributing to/leading research initiatives and communities of practice and involvement at sector-related events, developing relationships/networks, exchanging and disseminating knowledge, and promoting learning.
  • Design, develop and promote learning tools and knowledge products for Cuso staff, volunteers and partners to strengthen activities and align with sector evidence and best practices.
  • Be an active participant in the innovation movement on environment and climate action at Cuso which aims at improving programs, increasing impact and maintaining leadership position in the sector.
  • Lead the review and revision of Cuso’s Environment Policy, provide support to Human Resources and managers to socialize the policy and regularly monitor adherence.
  • Undertake other specific responsibilities from time-to-time, as may be agreed upon with the line manager.
  • Work extra hours (evenings and weekends) and travel internationally when required.


  • Master’s degree in environmental or climate studies, or similar relevant field of study
  • Five (5) years of professional experience in international development working in environment and/or climate sectors, including designing and implementing programs/projects (e.g., supporting proposal development, developing Theories of Change and logic models and design of indicators), providing technical assistance and promoting knowledge-sharing and learning
  • Proven experience working on environment, natural resource management, biodiversity and climate change issues in community context, including knowledge/experience of inclusion of vulnerable groups
  • Excellent knowledge of environment/climate sector practices and experience identifying, interpreting, and disseminating research and knowledge
  • Proven ability in building organizational and individual capacity in environment and climate action through support, coaching, mentoring and training initiatives, either independently, or as part of a team and designing and implementing participatory learning/knowledge management tools and processes
  • Excellent knowledge of MEAL, specifically Results-Based Management (RBM) and the specific frameworks being used by donors, particularly Global Affairs Canada (GAC) (e.g. GAC Climate Coding)
  • Strong capacity for critical thinking, reflection, and learning and a proven ability to facilitate and contribute to environment/climate related programmatic discussions
  • Ability to manage complex and demanding workload, to set own priorities, and work with minimal supervision
  • Committed team player who can build effective working relationships across teams in different cultural contexts and inspire innovative thinking
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills in English, French and/or Spanish
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, Outlook, Sharepoint and PowerPoint)
  • Experience with volunteer cooperation programs
  • Commitment to Cuso International’s approach to international development


Cuso is committed to creating and fostering an inclusive culture. We strive to actively celebrate diversity, advance our equitable practices, and drive greater inclusion. We offer a comprehensive employee benefits package and insurance, generous days of paid time off, including vacation and sick days, and more.

Please click the “Apply for This Job” button to submit your application by November 18, 2022, at 11:59PM (EST). Expressions of interest should be sent in English. Your résumé and one-page cover letter should demonstrate how you meet all the essential and any desirable qualifications. Please note that a confirmation email will be generated once you submit your application, but it may be directed to your spam or junk folders of your email inbox.

Cuso is an equal opportunity employer and encourage applications from all qualified applicants. Accommodations will be provided at any stages of the hiring process upon request. Thank you for your interest in Cuso.

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