Our mission is 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. At Manna Project International, communities are everything. Whether serving communities in need or fostering our own communities of volunteers, we believe that the best experiences, projects and solutions are the ones that we create together.
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 fosters
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.
Operating an international site in Ecuador, MPI enlists groups of 5- to 13-month volunteers who live and work together to implement a variety of community development
programs focused on improving health, education and livelihoods.
Program Director Job Description:
Program Directors run the day-to-day operations of MPI's community programs on the ground
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 Site
Coordinator or Country Director.
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;
- Organizing and leading short-term groups of spring break volunteers and summer interns, ensuring that volunteers conduct themselves in a goal-oriented, culturally sensitive way, and that they are in line with the mission and vision of MPI's holistic approach;
- 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
- Willingness to commit to MPI's principles and approach to community development
- Strong relationship-building skills
- Strong collaboration skills and ability to work in a team, professionally and personally, as Program Directors both live and work together
- Desire to experience a new culture, foods, and customs
- Enthusiasm for life 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
Language Level: Beginning level or Higher level Spanish is helpful, but not at all required. You will take Spanish classes once you arrive on site.
Each Program Director pays $900 per month for a 6 month position; this will cover absoultely everything except for your flight. From the moment you are with us in Ecuador everything is arranged and taken care of for you. This includes room and board, med ex traveler's insurance, transportation, $20USD/week stipend, excursions to explore Ecuador, visa, security at the house, among other things.
From flight attendants to doctors to CEOs and everywhere in-between, Manna Project's alumni network is comprised of over 2,000 exceptional individuals who continue to leave their mark on the world.
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, 2015
"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, 2014
ecuador, travel, volunteer