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Master your Spanish Speaking Skills in Ecuador

First application for July 2023 start date: February 1, 2023

Dates of positions on site in Ecuador:
3-month position: January 2023- April 2023
5-month position: July 2023-December 2023
7-month position: January 2023-August 2023
12-month position: January 2023-December 2023

During your time with Manna Project International you will experience life and work alongside other young leaders and community members. At our site in Ecuador, you will direct a variety of impactful programs designed to meet the specific needs and opportunities of the community. These include long-standing and established programs. You will also have the flexibility to create new programs where the community's vision intersect with your own education, passions and interests.

This unique model creates the most impactful experience for you and the communities you'll be serving, and is designed to fulfill our mission: To foster communities of talented young leaders to become the next generation of social change agents by engaging in collaborative, on-the-ground service with international communities in need.

Manna Project International (MPI) is a U.S.-based 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that operates international sites in Nicaragua and Ecuador where groups of volunteers live and work together to implement a variety of community development programs focused on improving health, education and livelihoods.

Program Directors run the day-to-day operations of MPI’s community programs on the grounds in Ecuador. Program Directors live and work together with a team of 6-12 other individuals. Program Directors contribute to the organization’s program design, implementation of new projects, monitoring and evaluation, short-term volunteer oversight, recruitment, financial oversight, grant writing, fundraising, social media, public relations, and donor relations. Program Directors become part of the communities they serve and make new connections while building upon established relationships and partnerships. Program Directors report to the Assistant Director or Country Director.

Improve your Spanish!
As a Program Director, you will have a unique opportunity to improve your Spanish language skills through:
  • Directing community programs and teaching in Spanish. 
  • Taking Spanish classes through a reputable Ecuadorian Spanish school. 
  • Immersing in cross-cultural teamwork with local Ecuadorian partner organizations and community members.
  • Participating in language exchanges with Ecuadorian community members. 

There are 5 primary roles for Program Directors:
1. Developing and running community programs
2. Managing organizational operations
3. Raising awareness in the U.S. of international issues
4. Hosting short-term volunteers & training incoming Program Directors
5. Building relationships with local organizations and community members

The responsibilities of Program Directors include any and all tasks necessary to maintaining and improving the day-to-day operations of MPI. This includes but is not limited to:
  • Maintaining current community development programs, and designing and implementing new initiatives;
  • Building and deepening MPI’s local and international partnerships
  • Collaborating regularly with fellow Program Directors and the Country Director to improve the reach and effectiveness of MPI’s programs;
  • Submitting programmatic reports to the Country Director and regularly tracking metrics to assess the impact of MPI’s programs;
  • Collaborating regularly with fellow Program Directors and the Country Director to improve the reach and effectiveness of MPI’s programs;
  • Training the incoming group of Program Directors, with an eye to efficient, effective, and sustainable progress and programming;
  • Fundraising for on-site programmatic and operational development, room and board, and a weekly stipend; and
  • Participating in organization-wide planning and development, including recruitment, finances, grant writing, fundraising, social media, public relations, and donor relations.

  • Extensive ongoing leadership experience and preparation for many professional fields including but not limited to: International Development, International Business, Latin American Studies, Nonprofit, Education, Healthcare, Law, Communication, Foreign Relations
  • 5-10 personal days (depending on length of commitment); 10 national holidays annually
  • MEDEX international travel insurance
  • Valuable workforce and life skills
  • A visa to live in-country for the duration of your work with MPI
  • Professional development including language training, mentorship, quarterly retreats
  • Access to a growing and very distinguished Alumni Network of 2,000+ and resources to help with your future
  • A communal experience of a lifetime
  • Lifelong friendships

  • A willingness to commit to MPI’s principles and approach to community development
  • Strong collaboration skills and ability to work in a team, professionally and personally, as Program Directors both live and work together
  • enthusiasm to experience a new culture and customs and to step outside your comfort zone
  • High level of patience and flexibility, as living and working in a developing country is often unpredictable and moves at a different pace than in the U.S.
  • Self-starter, able to succeed in an environment with a high level of autonomy
  • Excellent communication and interpersonal skills
  • Spanish skills preferred but not required

What Manna Project Alumni are saying:
"Manna was an integral part of getting me to where I am now. Without the experience I got abroad, I can't imagine getting the job I have now or getting into grad school. It taught me so much about putting what I had studied in undergrad into practice, and gave me real life experience. I talk about it all the time in interviews, as "fun facts" when you have to do those lame introduce yourself games, and just in every day conversation." - Liz Rosenbaum, 5-month Program Director

"As a Program Director in Ecuador, I developed confidence in ways that have helped me continue to grow personally and professionally. Some examples:
-In Ecuador we were consistently adapting to challenges in order to find success.
-We were presented with multiple opportunities to step up and gain experience leading program, group or class.
-We learned firsthand the power and impact of building strong community alliances." - Evan Quinell, 11-month Program Director