Vacancy: Global Engagement CATAPA Officer (GECO) at the Chaikuni Institute in Iquitos, Peru

Alberto Vázquez Ruiz | Peru, Peru, Peru, Vacancy, Vacancy, Vacancy | , ,

Vacancy: Global Engagement CATAPA Officer (GECO) at the Chaikuni Institute in Iquitos, Peru

CATAPA and the Chaikuni Institute are looking for a collaborator to work for a year at the Chaikuni Institute in Iquitos, Peru, with two main tasks: 1) Support or set up activities and projects of the Chaikuni Institute, allies and indigenous students related to mineral extractivist activities such as gold mining in rivers and oil extraction in the Peruvian Amazon and 2) support the general operation of the Chaikuni Institute, with a focus on the human and nature rights program.

The Chaikuni Institute

The Chaikuni Institute is a local non-profit organization, based in the city of Iquitos, in the Loreto Region in the Peruvian Amazon.  It’s a grassroots collective which investigates, promotes and protects equitable, inclusive, interrelated and abundant living systems, honoring indigenous knowledge and permaculture principles. We work hand in hand with indigenous people and local communities in the Peruvian Amazon, on three main programs: permaculture, human and nature rights, and intercultural education. For more information, please go to:



CATAPA is short for Comité Académico Técnico de Asesoramiento a Problemas Ambientales. It is an environmental non-profit organization from Ghent who sensibilizes people in Flanders and Brussels about the social and environmental impact of mainly large scale mining in Latin-America and supports organizations and communities in Peru, Colombia and Bolivia in their struggle against big mining projects. More information:


Tasks may be slightly adapted according to the specific strengths and interests of the GECO:


Support the Human and Nature Rights Program of the Chaikuni Institute

  • Organize and accompany all kind of different activities within the Human and Nature Rights program
  • Assist in the formulation, fund-raising and implementation of a new project on indigenous female leadership, human rights (with a specific focus on the right to clean water), and sustainable community solutions in communities affected by oil extraction.
  • Contribute to the environmental monitoring (quality of water, soils, etc.) of the oil-affected communities
  • Participate in workshops and public events concerning relevant topics (Oil and other extractive industries in the region).
  • Support of the intercultural education program when needed. Tasks may include: Organizing and assisting the tutoring and academic training of the indigenous students during their vacations (basic English, Spanish and computer classes), facilitating monthly movie nights for the students, assisting the organization of workshops and events with the students.



Between Catapa and Chaikuni

  • Share knowledge from the Chaikuni Institute with Catapa and the other way around
  • Provide information and material that supports the campaigns of Catapa.
  • External communication about local and (inter)national news concerning mining, extractive industries and social movements. E.g. through blogs, articles and photos on the website of Catapa and social media. Inform CATAPA about recent developments

Within the Chaikuni Institute

  • Preparation of contents for the website of the Chaikuni Institute
  • Support for updating the Chaikuni website
  • Help with the preparation of other communication materials
  • Support the development of advocacy materials (website, Facebook, etc.)
  • Assist with the creation of audio-visual materials
  • Support to advocacy activities in Peru and Belgium (and the world)
  • Translations


Fundraising and development of projects

  • Support any ongoing project of the Chaikuni Institute and/or set up an activity (campaign, documentary, artistic project, investigation etc.) with allied organizations related to mineral resource extraction issues in the Amazon region. Some current issues in the region are illegal gold mining carried out by river dredges and the ongoing conflict regarding the decade-long oil extraction in the region, but also the increased use and improper disposal of electronic devices are growing issues that need to be tackled.
  • Support the elaboration and translation of project proposals to (potential) donors
  • Assist in the process of mapping and identifying potential new donors
  • Promote and help spreading fundraising campaigns of the Chaikuni Institute



  • Assist and/or lead investigation of the Chaikuni Institute into different topics related to mineral extractive industries.


  • You have advanced knowledge in Spanish and English, Dutch is an added value.
  • Prior working experience in foreign countries and/or in social projects is desirable
  • Experience within CATAPA is an advantage
  • You are a creative, flexible, honest and dedicated person
  • You work independently and take your own initiative
  • You have intercultural sensitivity, can adapt easily and have patience
  • You are interested in topics related to indigenous peoples
  • You have the capacity to work in a multi-disciplinary and multicultural team
  • You preferably have a university degree in social or natural sciences, related to environmental and human rights issues.
  • You are interested in volunteering at CATAPA after return
  • You are able to set up projects and find funds/subsidies
  • People with a more technical/natural science background (engineering, biology, chemistry, etc.) are encouraged to apply


We offer:

  • Preparation by CATAPA before departure and following up during the stay
  • A full travel insurance
  • As a contribution to your local living cost, you’ll receive 425 Euros/month (if you don’t have a right to social benefits in Belgium). From this amount you are also expected to cover your phone and local transport expenses for work related activities.
  • We don’t refund the flight ticket or costs involving vaccinations
  • A working experience in a fascinating region with challenging tasks on current issues
  • A professional and multicultural work environment with dedicated colleagues
  • Welcoming, training and continuous follow-up by Chaikuni’s staff
  • An opportunity to learn, grow professionally and contribute to the vision of the Chaikuni Institute working for economic alternatives for the local communities in Loreto and the preservation of the Amazon rainforest



  • Ideally from the 1st of October, with a duration of one year after a positive evaluation after 6 months. (small deviation is possible).



  • City of Iquitos, in the northern Peruvian Amazon region Loreto, with possible travels to communities once in a while.


Send your CV (in English) and a motivation letter (in Spanish) to Charlotte Christiaens ( at the latest on the 31st of August. Interviews are planned in the first week of September.

Vacancy: Global Engagement CATAPA Officer (GECO) in Cajamarca/Ibagué, Colombia

Laura Garcia | Colombia, Colombia, Colombia, Vacancy, Vacancy, Vacancy

Vacancy: Global Engagement CATAPA Officer (GECO) (m/v/x) in Cajamarca/Ibagué, Colombia

CATAPA is een sociale en ecologische beweging die met een participatieve en geïntegreerde aanpak werkt aan duurzame ontwikkeling. CATAPA focust hierbij op de problematiek van mijnbouwconflicten in Latijns Amerika. In Latijns-Amerika ondersteunt CATAPA de lokale gemeenschappen die (potentieel) worden getroffen door de negatieve impact van mijnbouw.

De GECO zal de samenwerking opnemen met CATAPA’s partnerorganisaties in Colombia: het jongerencollectief COSAJUCA (Colectivo SocioAmbiental Juvenil Cajamarcuno) in het dorp Cajamarca (Tolima), het milieucomité in Cajamarca (Tolima) en de milieubeweging Comité Ambiental en Defensa de la Vida in de stad Ibagué (Tolima). Deze partnerorganisaties spelen een centrale rol in het geweldloze verzet tegen het geplande mijnbouwproject La Colosa . De GECO zal met de verschillende partners activiteiten ondernemen in de nasleep van de succesvolle en bindende Consulta Popular in maart 2017 aan de hand waarvan een gemeentelijk verbod op mijnbouw doorgevoerd werd.

Taakomschrijving GECO – vrijwilliger

  • Deelnemen en bijdragen vanuit eigen capaciteiten aan evenementen en activiteiten van de milieubeweging Comité Ambiental en Defensa de la Vida in Ibagué en COSAJUCA in Cajamarca, Colombia.
  • Een ondersteunende, uitvoerende en opvolgende rol opnemen in de lopende projecten, zoals het project rond biolandbouw, die CATAPA samen met haar partnerorganisaties uitvoert. (Thema’s: gemeenschappelijk waterbeheer, organisatie- en netwerkversterking, strategische communicatie en mobilisatie, biolandbouw en korte-keten-handel, jongeren) & nieuwe project(-luiken) schrijven.
  • Ontvangen en opvolgen van medewerkers van CATAPA in Colombia (voornamelijk Stagiairs en Thesisstudenten). Erop toezien dat ze een nuttige bijdrage leveren aan het werk van de partners en hen helpen een netwerk uit te bouwen voor hun werk en/of onderzoek in Colombia.
  • Consultas Populares rond mijnbouw op andere plaatsen in Colombia ondersteunen, en het recht op de Consulta Popular verdedigen tegenover de restricties van de overheid.
  • Opvolging van de case ‘La Colosa’ in Cajamarca en omgeving en beeldmateriaal verzamelen.
  • Kennis en aanpak van CATAPA met COSAJUCA en de milieubeweging in Ibagué delen o.a. via de Colombiawerkgroep en sociale media.
  • Met het lobby team van binnen Colombia (YLNM, Tierra Digna, Agua y Territorio, Cosajuca, Comité Ambiental en Defensa de la Vida) en buiten (vrijwilligers CATAPA Colombia) de nodige informatie verschaffen en de prioriteiten bepalen voor het lobbywerk in de EU door OIDHACO.
  • Overleggen en coördineren binnen de verschillende samenwerkingsverbanden lokaal en internationaal. Ondersteunen van Movimiento Nacional Ambiental, het nationale milieunetwerk, door het werk en verzet van de verschillende leden ervan en het netwerk zelf te visibiliseren, ondersteunen. Ondersteunen van het Netwerk van milieucomités in Tolima door de milieubeweging van Ibagué te helpen om de verschillende gemeenschappen te visibiliseren en de problematieken te registreren.
  • Uitwisseling met andere processen die eenzelfde strijd voeren, het grote plaatje schetsen van de strijd tegen (goud-) mijnbouw in Colombia en afhankelijk van tijd en interesse,  andere minder bekende bewegingen bezoeken om deze in de kijker te zetten en internationaal aandacht te vragen.
  • Externe communicatie over lokaal en (inter)nationaal nieuws over mijnbouw, extractivisme en sociale bewegingen en CATAPA en achterban informeren over recente ontwikkelingen. Dit kan via blogs, video’s, podcasts, artikelen en foto’s op de website, nieuwsbrief en sociale media van CATAPA. Ook schrijft de GECO mee aan het maandelijkse online tijdschrift Mines&Territory en onderhoudt het de CATAPA Colombia Facebook pagina.
  • De strategische relaties tussen CATAPA en andere lokale en nationale organisaties onderhouden, verder uitbouwen, en mogelijkheden aftoetsen voor nieuwe samenwerkingsverbanden.
  • Werking in België: De GECO levert informatie en materiaal ter versterking van onze campagnes in Vlaanderen. Na terugkeer is hij/zij bereid zijn kennis en ervaring intern en extern te delen. De GECO onderhoudt een sterke band met de Colombia werkgroep en levert hen zowel informatie aan als denkt na over mogelijke acties en ondersteuning vanuit België.


  • Je bent minimum 20 jaar
  • Je hebt een zeer goede kennis (gesproken en geschreven) van het Spaans en Nederlands, bij voorkeur ook Engels.
  • Bij voorkeur een band met CATAPA, bv in het verleden een engagement opgenomen, samengewerkt,…
  • Je kunt een kennis van de mijnbouwproblematiek voorleggen.
  • Ervaring in/kennis over de context van Colombia is een pluspunt.
  • Je hebt inzicht in fondsenwerving en projectbeheer.
  • Inzicht in de versterking van lokale economieën, biolandbouw en korte-keten-handel is een pluspunt.
  • Inzicht en ervaring in gender is een pluspunt 
  • Je bent diplomatisch ingesteld en houd je op de achtergrond als de situatie gevaarlijk wordt.
  • Je bent sociaal en communicatief vaardig.
  • Je functioneert zowel zelfstandig als in team goed.
  • Openheid en respect voor culturele verschillen tonen en je kunnen aanpassen aan andere culturen en organisatievormen.
  • Je bent bereid om fondsen te zoeken om de nieuwe samenwerking en je eigen functie en werkingskosten te bekostigen.
  • Het is een pluspunt als je je voordien kan vrijmaken om in te werken.
  • Je bent geïnteresseerd in een engagement binnen CATAPA na terugkeer.


Idealiter vertrek eind augustus 2019. Afhankelijk van de verkregen fondsen gaat het om minstens 6 maanden, bij voorkeur verlengd tot een jaar. Na 6 maanden zal er een evaluatie van de GECO plaatsvinden. Indien deze negatief en niet meer bij te sturen is, bestaat de mogelijkheid dat de samenwerking stopgezet wordt.

Wij bieden:

  • Voorbereiding vóór vertrek en omkadering en opvolging tijdens het verblijf.
  • Een volledige reisbijstandsverzekering..
  • Een bijdrage in de leefkost indien je geen recht hebt op een uitkering in België̈ (375 euro/maand). CATAPA komt niet tussen in de kost van het vliegticket.


Stuur je CV en motivatiebrief naar en dit ten laatste op 31 augustus 2019. We nemen contact op met jou in de loop van de week nadien.

Meer informatie? Neem contact op met ​ of​.

ESC Volunteer Vacancies – Become a Changemaker on Fair ICT

Laura Garcia | Catapa in the spotlight, Catapa in the spotlight, Catapa in the spotlight, News, News, News, Vacancy, Vacancy, Vacancy

ESC Volunteer Vacancies

Changemaker Fair ICT

Campaigning and Education



CATAPA is a volunteer movement which strives for a world in which the extraction of non-renewable resources is no longer necessary. The extraction of such materials always entails major social and environmental impacts and fuels conflict. In working towards global social and environmental justice, we focus on mining issues (ecological disasters, human rights violations, etc.) in Latin America, where we support local communities in Ecuador, Bolivia, Peru and Colombia who are threatened by large-scale mining projects.

Our main activities are:

  • Internationalisation of the struggle of our partners in Latin-America and capacity building
  • Awareness raising on the impact of metal consumption amongst Belgian population
  • Creating a movement for sustainable consumption and production
  • Lobby and research

CATAPA is a grassroots movement, which means that we are mostly dependent on the work of our volunteers – the Catapistas. As a grassroots movement, we also work together with other grassroots movements in our partner countries.


Fair ICT

CATAPA is currently engaged in a European Union campaign called ‘Make ICT Fair’ together with 10 European partners. The goal of this project is to make the entire supply chain of ICT devices (smartphones, laptops, etc.) more sustainable. CATAPA focuses on the very first part of the global ICT supply chain: the extraction of metals and minerals. ICT devices contain a wide range of metals, which are extracted across the globe, causing harm to the environment and human rights.

We aim to achieve this goal through:

  • Awareness raising with the broader public
  • Advocacy towards public institutions for more sustainable ICT procurement
  • Supply chain research
  • Lobby activities for better legislation within the bigger consortium

In addition, the Fair ICT Flanders campaign wants companies, governments and higher education institutions in Flanders to take specific steps to develop a sustainable ICT purchasing and reuse policy. All this with a view to a more sustainable future and the improvement of the working and living conditions of affected communities in the extractivist and ICT production sector.


Who are we looking for?

We are looking for two ESC (European Solidarity Corps) volunteers to support the CATAPA movement, and in particular the campaigns about fair ICT. The volunteer will be trained to think critically and spread knowledge of these issues and to encourage other young people to become active EU citizens. The tasks are flexible depending on your learning goals and the needs of the organisation.

You will mainly be working in our office team (4 part-time staff + 2 ESC volunteers + variable number of interns) which supports the work of the movement. Since CATAPA is a volunteer movement, you will be working in close collaboration with motivated and enthusiastic volunteers.

Possible tasks

Campaigning and Education

  • Take part in our Changemakers programme
  • Organise awareness raising and training activities for a variety of target groups (training weekends, documentary screenings, workshops, info evenings, public actions…)
  • Develop educational tools and manuals
  • Help out with organising our International Speakers Tour: Open Min(e)d
  • Write, revise and proofread articles, educational tools and research reports
  • Participate actively in meetings of the Education working group
  • Possibility to do research linked to mining and/or the ICT supply chain
  • Some administrative tasks related to the daily functioning of our office with the possibility to get an insight in the management of a non-profit organisation
  • Contribute to the functioning of the movement
  • Possibility to develop and implement your own projects


  • Take part in our Changemakers programme
  • Write, review and proofread articles
  • Design promotional material such as flyers and posters
  • Assist in managing CATAPA’s social media channels (Facebook page, Instagram account and Twitter)
  • Assist in managing and keeping CATAPA’s website updated
  • Ensure CATAPA’s house style (layout) is up to date and implemented
  • Participate actively in meetings of the Communication working group
  • Create and lead communication and promotion strategies for events
  • Assist in the organisation of various activities: our International Speakers Tour ‘Open Min(e)d’, training weekends, public actions, info-evenings, documentary festival…
  • Some administrative tasks related to the daily functioning of our office with the possibility to get an insight in the management of a non-profit organisation
  • Contribute to the functioning of the movement
  • Possibility to develop and implement your own projects


Campaigning and Education


  • Interest in learning about the social and environmental movement and mining issues
  • Good command of English
  • Independent, proactive worker
  • Motivated to work with volunteers
  • Take your own initiative
  • Good communication skills
  • Will to contribute to positive change in the world we live in
  • Team player with a flexible attitude and plenty of humour
  • Age: below 31 years


  • Knowledge/experience on or interest to learn about:
    ○ Circular and degrowth economy, environmental movements and/or international development
    ○ Developing educational material (e.g. workshops)
    ○ Organizing events
    ○ Project management and volunteer management
    ○ Designing promotional material
  • Good knowledge of either Dutch or Spanish



  • Interest in learning about the social and environmental movement and mining issues
  • Good command of English
  • Independent, proactive worker
  • Motivated to work with volunteers
  • Take your own initiative
  • Good communication skills
  • Will to contribute to positive change in the world we live in
  • Team player with a flexible attitude and plenty of humour
  • Age: below 31 years


  • Knowledge/experience on or interest to learn about:
    ○ Circular and degrowth economy, environmental movements and/or international development
    ○ Volunteer management
    ○ Communication strategies
    ○ Design and layouting
    ○ Managing social media and websites
  • Good knowledge of either Dutch or Spanish

What do we offer?

● A warm welcome in our movement with plenty of learning opportunities and new connections
● A young, motivated team of employees and volunteers
● A monthly fee of (at least) 707* Euros to cover accommodation and daily expenses
● One language course (Dutch, English or Spanish)

This call is part of the European Solidarity Corps. It’s a European Union initiative which creates opportunities for young people to volunteer in projects abroad. This means Belgian people can’t apply for this vacancy. Expenses of the volunteers are paid. Accommodation, food and daily expenses are covered by a fee of 707* EUR which you can use according to your own needs and wishes. One language course (Dutch, English or Spanish) is covered by CATAPA, as well as work-related transport.


Interested or more information?

Please send your CV and motivation letter to before the 28th of July 2019. If you have any questions concerning this vacancy, don’t hesitate to email or call +32 477845729.

( *: depending on final project grants)