Careers Vacancy

Program Assistant – Business Partnerships and Indigenous Economies (IPARD)



Organization: FSC Indigenous Foundation (FSC-IF)

Location: Panama City, Republic of Panama

Reporting to: IPARD Program Lead, Business Partnerships and Indigenous Economies

Work Percentage: 100%

Expected Start Date: March 31, 2021.



In 2019, the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) established the FSC Indigenous Foundation (FSC- IF) as the operational office of the Permanent Indigenous Peoples Committee (PIPC). The FSC-IF is a private interest foundation in accordance with Law No. 25 of June 12, 1995 of the Republic of Panama. The mission of FSC-IF is to enable an enabling environment to guarantee the rights of Indigenous Peoples and promote sustainable forest-based solutions within 300 million hectares of indigenous forests on the planet. The vision is that Indigenous Peoples’ global values, rights, livelihoods, ecosystem services, natural capital and communities are incorporated into forest governance, climate change governance and market systems.

Indigenous Peoples’ Alliance for Rights and Development

The FSC-IF is the implementing partner of the five-year Global Development Alliance (GDA) program funded by USAID and FSC: Indigenous Peoples Alliance for Rights and Development (IPARD). The IPARD Program is guided by three development objectives:

  • Objective 1: To organize and convene a capacity building program for Indigenous Peoples’ organizations and stakeholders;
  • Objective 2: To foster an enabling environment for the recognition, effective participation and joint decision-making by Indigenous Peoples in matters affecting them; and;
  • Objective 3: Promote the sustainable development of Indigenous Peoples based on sustainable economic models.

IPARD uses three interconnected approaches to support Indigenous Peoples in overcoming their development challenges:

A. Multi-Sectoral Approach (MSA): under the strategic guidance of IPARD’s Steering Committee (SC), the Program convenes and leverages the expertise of multi-sectoral partners to ensure that the needs of Indigenous communities are considered across a wide range of sectors.

B. Country-Focused Approach (CFA): IPARD’s programmatic strategy is guided by a country-focused approach, driven by specific national contexts related to Indigenous Peoples. IPARD implements a structured process to identify, evaluate and select countries for its programs. FSC-IF works in conjunction with the IPARD Steering Committee, and according to the guidelines of the multi-sectoral approach, in order to select countries and identify key priorities and strategies.

C. Indigenous Project Management Approach (IPMA): Leveraging FSC-IF’s networks and relationships with Indigenous leaders and organizations around the world, IPARD seeks ongoing dialogue, consultation, and feedback with Indigenous Peoples to inform the Program. IPARD supports a forum through which the FSC-IF Indigenous Foundation serves as a bridge between Indigenous Peoples, technical partners, national governments, and the private sector. IPARD invests in best practice conservation and effective approaches and methodologies to ensure strategic cohesion of partnerships at various levels.

Through these three approaches, IPARD aims to empower Indigenous Peoples’ organizations and catalyze an enabling environment where Indigenous Peoples can pursue their development.


The Business Partnerships and Indigenous Economies Assistant for the IPARD Program assists the Program Lead for Business Partnerships and Indigenous Economies to ensure the smooth and efficient implementation for Objective 3 of the IPARD program.


  • Collect and prepare data and (background) information in the areas of IPARD IF’s activities at the country, regional and global levels.
  • Maintain logs, files and update records in the prescribed format for subsequent use as indicated.
  • Prepare background material, working papers and tables for briefings, review sessions and meetings.
  • Organize meetings and prepare information prior to the meeting.
  • Provide support to the procurement process, prepares purchase requisitions, prepares templates for evaluation committees, documents procurement process.
  • Prepare reports on different subjects related to IPARD objective 3.
  • Provide support to consultants and communicate with consultants to monitor the project´s outputs .
  • Organize and facilitate technical meetings and any other meetings with counterparts including government, donors, private sector, NGOs and other stakeholders, taking minutes of the meetings when requested.
  • Provide support in preparation of global, regional and other webinars, prepares invitations, prepares lists of contacts, and follows up on preparation tasks.
  • Provide support for delivering training to IPO, Governments, Private sector, and other stakeholders.
  • Prepare databases of companies that export forest products, both import and export, and others that are relevant to indigenous economies. Can include indigenous business and funds available for indigenous enterprises from different sources.
  • Do desk-based and online research to prepare lists of Universities, academic centers, experts that address the indigenous economy, webinars on indigenous economics .
  • Review news, articles, reports, and compile the successful experiences on indigenous enterprises highlighted by media, government, multilateral organizations, NGOs or academic research.
  • Perform other related duties as required.


  • Education: Bachelor’s degree in Economics, Industrial Engineering, Business Administration or area related to the Program´s Objective.
  • Field experience working or living with indigenous communities is desirable.
  • Good interpersonal communication and coordination, organizational, and planning skills.
  • Experience working with International NGO desirable.
  • Experience in handling MS Office, communication platforms (Zoom, Teams, Google Meet and others), and other software.
  • Demonstrated cultural awareness and sensitivity to the diversity of values, views and approaches to issues relevant to the FSC-IF.
  • Ability to respond adequately and efficiently to pressure meeting deadlines.
  • Candidates deeply familiar with Indigenous Peoples culture and communities or a native member of an Indigenous Peoples preferred.
  • Strong oral and written communication in English and Spanish, presentation, and negotiation skills.


Please submit your application by February 23th, 2022 (5:00pm Panama) to

  • CV (2 page maximum)
  • Cover letter (one page maximum) including: (a) your motivation; (b) salary proposal); and (c) two professional references (name, position, organization, email, and phone)