Careers Vacancy

Private Sector Engagement Specialist for the Indigenous Women and Girls Economic Empowerment Initiative (I-WEE)

Position: Private Sector Engagement Specialist for the Indigenous Women and Girls Economic Empowerment Initiative (I-WEE)

Location of the activities: Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador

Reports to: I-WEE Program Lead

Deadline: November 13, 2022

Potential starting date: November 2022

Full time



The FSC Indigenous Foundation (FSC-IF) is an Indigenous-led global private interest entity established by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), that promotes the co-creation of forest and nature-based solutions, and the strengthening of Indigenous Organizations so their values, rights, livelihoods, ecosystem services and natural capital are incorporated into forest governance, the climate change agenda and market systems.


Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador are currently facing an increasing migratory and humanitarian crisis throughout the region. Economic and political instability, violence, displacement due to the effects of intensified weather events, lack of inclusive mechanisms to incorporate Indigenous Peoples and women into national development policies, and increasing impoverishment, are among the many causes of this crisis, disproportionately affecting women and girls in these countries.

In order to strengthen the approach of promoting the rights, capacities, and economic empowerment of women and girls in Indigenous Peoples, the FSC-IF will work on the implementation of the Indigenous Women and Girls Economic Empowerment Initiative (I-WEE), funded by USAID/Washington and FSC. I-WEE is an initiative that aims to promote the economic empowerment of Indigenous women and girls, by strengthening their skills and abilities, generating enabling environments for their active participation and advocacy, and strengthening productive initiatives led by Indigenous women. This initiative will take place in Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador.

The activities formulated by this initiative will be developed with multi-sectoral partners to strengthen resilience against the underlying drivers of humanitarian displacement and increased poverty, generating greater positive social, economic, and environmental impact for Indigenous women and girls, and the communities in which they live. These activities are framed within the following three objectives incorporating the gender approach:

Objective 1: Capacity Development – Jointly with Indigenous women and girls, create a capacity building program to strengthen their technical, leadership and entrepreneurial skills; and to design and implement trainings for governmental agencies or other stakeholders to support organizations led by Indigenous women or those who work with this population group. The capacity building program will promote an inclusion-based approach to incorporate their rights, needs, and contributions inside and outside of communities in Guatemala, Honduras, and El Salvador.

Objective 2: Participation – Foster an enabling environment for Indigenous women and girls to participate in decision-making on issues that affect them. Provide support to Indigenous women so they can participate in dialogue platforms and to influence and participate in key decision-making spaces on issues such as public investments and in the search for joint alternatives to remove social, cultural, legal, and policy barriers, thus promoting their social and economic empowerment.

Objective 3: Economic Growth – Promote the sustainable development of Indigenous Peoples’ economic initiatives, mainly those based on their own ancestral principles and systems. Focus support to community enterprises led by or composed of Indigenous women and their growth through capacity development, building partnerships with the private sector, digital inclusion, and sustainable resource management.

The implementation of I-WEE will begin in Guatemala in the following prioritized municipalities:

Totonicapán: San Bartolo Aguas Calientes, Totonicapán, Momostenango y San Cristóbal Totonicapán.
Quetzaltenango: Quetzaltenango, San Miguel Sigüilá y Cajolá

In the case of Honduras and El Salvador, the actions and geographic areas of intervention will be co-created subsequently.



FSC-IF is seeking a strategic and results-oriented Private Sector Engagement Specialist for the Economic Empowerment of Indigenous Women and Girls (I-WEE) who will be responsible for the formulation and implementation of the Private Engagement Strategy (PES) to support the implementation of a subset of activities under the three objectives focused on building partnerships with and leveraging private sector resources to empower Indigenous women and girls in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador. Under the supervision of the I-WEE Leader, he/she will also be the focal person to collaborate with Indigenous Peoples’ Organizations (IPOs), USAID Missions, public and private sector stakeholders, and program partners in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador and at the Mesoamerican regional level regarding private sector engagement.



Private Sector Engagement and business intelligence.

  • Formulate and implement the I-WEE and FSC-IF Private Sector Engagement Strategy (PSE).
  • Oversee various FSC-IF resource intelligence, partnership and expansion activities related to the private sector.
  • Assist in coordinating a portfolio of projects and new initiatives to secure new private sector partnerships and additional resources for I-WEE and other FSC-IF programs in the region, with special focus on Indigenous women and girls.
  • Coordinate with USAID Missions, with partners, the Indigenous Peoples Organizations (IPOs) and the FSC-IF team the implementation and monitoring of the PES.
  • Identification of new opportunities with Indigenous People´s business.
  • Coordinate the improvement of processes, systems and tools, including marketing, communication and outreach initiatives with the private sector.
  • Under the supervision of the I-WEE Program Lead and in coordination with the Indigenous Partnerships and Indigenous Economy Program Lead of IPARD, develop, monitor, and manage activities related to private sector engagement.
  • Assist the implementation and monitoring of the work plan by supporting the development of business partnerships with companies that can support the work in the short, medium and long term.
  • Identify, develop and maintain strategic partnerships with private companies to support I-WEE and FSC-IF objectives.
  • Advertise, identify, and attract potential Indigenous Peoples companies with suitable business ideas to receive small and growing business grants.
  • Conduct routine and periodic monitoring visits to participating private sector companies related to Indigenous women-led enterprises or Indigenous women employees to ensure appropriate follow-up and guidance.
  • Monitoring and follow-up should aim at continuous improvement of skills acquisition, tailoring professional development to the needs of Indigenous businesses.

Program development and partnership

  • Develop, implement, and monitor a fundraising strategy to support the long-term financial resilience of I-WEE and FSC-IF-supported activities.
  • Maintain liaison with the FSC-IF team in Panama and with Indigenous Peoples’ Authorities (IPA) and strategic partners on program and project development and management, including drafting, budget preparation and review of proposals and agreements.
  • Map and monitor Indigenous Peoples’ products and services to identify financial gaps.
  • Conduct a comprehensive analysis of potential donors at the country and regional level based on geographic interest and thematic funding and assess the feasibility of securing multi-year and thematic funding.
  • Map and monitor areas of strategic donor interest (country and regional level) by leading and maintaining partnerships with the public and private sectors.
  • Develop and implement a plan to engage new donors (traditional and non-traditional).
  • Monitor all fundraising programs and donor relations.

Project Management

  • Under the direction of the I-WEE Program Lead, assist in the management of the annual I-WEE work plan in areas related to the Private Sector.
  • In coordination with the I-WEE Program Lead and with the support of the Program Lead – Business Opportunities & Private Sector, conduct value chain analysis and rapid market assessments to identify key challenges, opportunities, and strategies to increase employment opportunities and Indigenous business development for Indigenous women.

Identification of capacity building needs

  • Develop Private Sector Engagement training for staff, partners, and Indigenous Peoples Organizations, to strengthen skills and competencies.
  • Synthesize practices, results, and lessons from specific private sector engagements and experiences across programs and regions.
  • Lead the identification of capacity development interventions for SMEs and start-ups that complement the activities and training delivered by I-WEE and other FSC-IF programs.



Minimum Requirements

  • A bachelor’s degree in economy, marketing, communications, business, finance, international relations, social science, or related areas.
  • At least 5 years of experience working in areas related to PES, community enterprise development, sustainable finance, or similar areas in relation to Indigenous Peoples or local communities.
  • Experience working in similar positions in some of the three countries where I-WEE will take place.
  • Strong oral and written communication skills in English (C1) and Spanish.

Specific Experience and/or Knowledge Requirements:

  • Demonstrated experience working with the private sector
  • Understanding of Indigenous Peoples’ rights and sustainable development in Central America a plus.
  • Networking and collaboration with the private and financial sectors, as well as relevant donors will be an asset.
  • Demonstrated ability to establish trusting relationships with national, regional and global partners, especially the private sector and donors.
  • Knowledge of laws and regulations related to business approaches to human rights or responsible business development.
  • Familiarity with business development efforts of USAID or other donors.
  • Experience in job placement required.
  • Demonstrated cultural awareness and sensitivity to the diversity of values, views and approaches to issues relevant to FSC-IF.

Other important requirements

  • Master’s degree preferred in related field.
  • Being a member of an Indigenous People community would be an advantage.
  • Demonstrated ability to follow standard practices and procedures, receive general instruction and supervision, and contribute to projects and initiatives.
  • Strong attention to detail, organization, and time management with minimum oversight.
  • Willingness to travel and work abroad for long periods of time.
  • Demonstrated resourcefulness in problem solving and initiative to learn new skills.
  • Demonstrated leadership skills and ability to take initiative.
  • Strong knowledge of MS Office applications.
  • Ability to work both independently and as part of a team.



Interested candidates should apply by November 113h, 2022 (5PM, Panama). Please send the following documents to

  • Curriculum Vitae in English.
  • Motivation letter (max. Two pages) in English, stating the salary expectation and at least two professional references.
  • The interview will take place in English