Natural Resource Management and Biodiversity Conservation Research Assistant

This fixed-term contract position has opened at the Association of Water and Rural Development (AWARD), an NGO based in Hoedspruit, Limpopo Province. This position will form part of the AWARD team within the USAID RESILIM-Olifants program, the purpose being to reduce vulnerability through building improved transboundary governance and management of the Olifants Catchment so as to enhance the resilience of its people and ecosystems through systemic and social learning approaches. This post aims to support the restoration and sustainable management of priority ecosystems in the Olifants Catchment.

Job Purpose: To contribute to holistic and systemic action-research and implementation related to restoration of ecosystems in support of biodiversity and water conservation, sustainable natural resource management, and (climate) change adaptation in the Olifants Catchment.

Tasks and Responsibilities:
• Support the collaborative design, planning and implementation of transformative approaches for ecosystem restoration in key areas of the Olifants Catchment so as to promote biodiversity and water conservation, sustainable natural resource management, and climate change adaptation
• Provide input and partake in the technical and socially-orientated field work and monitoring in relation to the above work
• Support and strengthen the development of coordinated and integrated restoration and Invasive Alien Plant control by restoration practitioners, as well as the development of institutional arrangements enabling restoration practices
• Support engagement with further stakeholders involved in above areas, including land owners, communities, conservation, forestry and natural resource management agencies and organizations, and academic institutions
• Contribute to research and systemic analysis of ecosystems, biodiversity, livelihoods and natural resource management in relation to climate change and other change factors and drivers
• Partake in strategic planning and management of action-research and implementation initiatives directed at natural resource restoration and protection in a changing world

Qualifications, experience and key competencies:
Job specific:

• Minimum Honours or Masters degree in either Natural Resource-, Environmental-, or Biodiversity Conservation – management, or related field required
• Minimum of two (2) years professional working experience with focus on natural resource- or biodiversity conservation –management and research;
• Interpersonal skills;
• Interest and experience in participatory approaches;
• Cross-cutting knowledge and skills related to biodiversity and natural resources management with a focus on climate change adaptation;
• Experience in initiatives aimed at ecosystem restoration;
• The following skills, experience or knowledge of, will be advantageous:
Systemic thinking, understanding of resilience as a framing concept;
• Ability to engage with a wide range of stakeholders and sectors;
• Good report writing, presentation and communications skills;

General:
• Teamwork and collaboration;
• Liaising with project partners;
• Fluency in English (read, write, understand)
• Literature searching & reviewing;
• Computer literacy and knowledge of office software packages (Microsoft Office package);
• Knowledge of and experience in using GIS will be advantageous;
• Attention to detail and high level of accuracy;
• Adaptability;
• Planning and project management skills;
• Preference will be given to persons that have previously worked in an NGO environment;
• Valid driver’s license (B) – must have driving experience of more than 2 years;
• Willingness to travel and working irregular hours.

Closing date: 23 January 2017.

Candidates who meet the above requirements should forward their motivational letter, resume and recently certified copies of certificates, ID copy and driver’s license including at least three contactable references via email to the attention of Office Manager:

E-mail to: prince@award.org.za

Note: please include the following for your referees: a reachable mobile or telephone number and a working or valid email address.

AWARD is committed to fair recruitment and selection practices and shall not discriminate on grounds of race, gender, sex, pregnancy, marital status, family responsibility, ethnic or social origin, colour, sexual orientation, age, disability, religion, conscience, belief, political opinion, culture, language and birth.

AWARD reserves the right to withdraw this advertisement at any time or choose not to fill this position or to employ from within the organization