The Hilary Thompson Scholarship was established in memory of Hilary Thompson, a Director at Earthworm Foundation (EF) for 16 years. The aim is to provide opportunities for young female future leaders to acquire practical, commercial, and international experience in the field of Human Rights and Worker Rights.
One of the core pillars of improved living and working conditions is strengthening awareness of Human Rights and access to remedy. In recognition of this, we are launching a scholarship in partnership with Global Rights Compliance (https://globalrightscompliance.com) to improve awareness and understanding of legal rights and to help build, develop, and support solutions to improve access to remedy.
In 2022 the scholarship will be for a period of 3-6 months, during which two candidates will have the opportunity to attend a 12-day training course, run by the Centre of Social Excellence (CSE) in Yaounde, Cameroon, followed by a placement within the Earthworm Foundation Landscape in Cavally, Ivory Coast. During the scholarship, the candidates will benefit from support and mentoring.
Candidates will be: ● female and in the early stages of their career; ● degree educated with some legal or paralegal experience; ● passionate about business and human rights and improving awareness and understanding within local communities; ● pragmatic and resourceful; ● fluent in English, conversational in French; ● interested in leveraging experience and influence to bring lasting change to commodity supply chains; ● happy to undertake extensive fieldwork in rural conditions; and ● computer literate.
What is included in the scholarship? ● An international trip (visa and round-trip international air ticket from the country of residence to Yaoundé – to the internship location in Côte d’Ivoire) ● The costs of accommodation in Cameroon and during the internship in Zagné (Cavally-Cote d’Ivoire landscape) ● Fixed monthly per diems to cover additional expenses in Cameroon and during the internship in Zagné ● Health and accident insurance during training and internship ● Whilst at CSE – a training room with internet access ● During the placement, the candidates will have access to the shared EF office (internet access)
● Payment of expenses relating to the establishment or renewal of the passport ● Reimbursement of vaccine costs
Accommodation During the CSE course, participants are housed in shared rooms with twin beds (2-4 people per room) within the campus of the Centre for Social Excellence in Yaoundé. Bed linen and towels are provided. The participants are responsible for the cleanliness of their rooms.
Accommodation during the placement in Zangé will be in EF accommodation. Bed linen will be provided Please note that whilst drinking water is provided there is no mains water in the town.
Planning and key dates: ● October 10, 2022 – Start of theoretical training in Cameroon ● October 21, 2022 – End CSE classroom sessions in Cameroon ● October 24 – November 4, 2022 – Orientation in Cavally ● November 7 – December 16, 2022 Scholarship at Earthworm Foundation in the Landscape of Cavally in Ivory Coast ● From the 16th of December – extension of scholarship for candidate 2 to support implementation *Please note that the scholarship may be extended following the winter break. To produce the documents and to support implementation.
Activities & Outputs of Scholarship On-the-ground research in Cavally Landscape on access to remedy and grievance mechanisms:The scholarship candidates during their placement in the Cavally landscape will carry out research on workers’ and communities’ understanding of human rights, the influence of inter-communities’ conflicts on human rights, their grievances and concerns, their understanding of access to remedy and their expectations of remediation. This research will explore workers’ and communities’ needs in the landscape to develop an understanding of what a grievance mechanism would need to consist of in order to effectively benefit workers and communities.
To ensure that the engagement with workers and community members is meaningful, built on trust and facilitated in a safe space, candidates will enter into one-to-one conversations or focal group discussions with the support of Ef field staff or staff of local NGOs with whom workers and communities have engaged before. The candidates will be working within the communities, SODEFOR, local CSOs, local authorities, cooperatives and supply chain actors as opposed to within the forest.
The candidates will be required to present a plan that documents their approach to the scholarship deliverables, including the number of interviews to take place and internal deadlines for delivery of outputs. GRC and EF will provide remote guidance and support to the candidates on topics, the development of flexible adaptable questionnaires that will guide the conversations and overall support. Learnings from the conversations will be documented digitally and on paper in a way that ensures the consent, confidentiality and anonymity of the workers and community members.
White Paper on UNGP Guiding Principle 31 & and its practical implementation in the agricultural commodities sector Guiding Principle 31 of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) sets out criteria that any grievance mechanism should meet: accessibility, legitimacy, predictability, equitability, transparency and facilitation of continuous learning.
On the basis of the research, the candidates will analyse and evaluate their research findings in the Cavally landscape in relation to access to remedy, contextual challenges and elements that pose barriers to workers and communities to effectively make use of any grievance mechanisms and what practical approaches it would take to ensure the proper implementation of a grievance mechanism.
The candidates will distil their analysis into a White paper which will explore how a grievance mechanism in the Cavally landscape could meet the criteria set out in Guiding Principle 31 in practice and ultimately benefit the intended beneficiaries. This will look at each criteria in detail, set out the results of the research as relevant and provide recommendations.
The White Paper will include a draft framework that can be adapted and trialled for other supply chains with similar contexts.
Presentation of Business Briefing to a Company With the support of EF and GRC, the White Paper will be transformed into a public business briefing, including infographics and bite-size material for companies. The target audience will be companies that source from the Cavally landscape who will be subsequently provided with the conclusions and a presentation by the candidates of their experience and research results from the 3-month scholarship. The goal is to pilot the design and implementation of a grievance mechanism with a brand and a buyer, in an informal agricultural supply chain.
Document the development of the project Throughout the placement, candidates will be required to document their progress and discussion with workers and communities. Following completion of the project, this information will be transformed into digital content that will be shared to encourage transparency.
About the Earthworm Foundation The Earthworm Foundation is present in 20 countries including Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Ghana,Indonesia, Malaysia, China, Ecuador, Peru, Brazil, India and several places in Europe. We employ over 200 people worldwide and work with large and small businesses, communities and commodity producers to create compelling cases of social and environmental transformation. With an entrepreneurial and innovative spirit, we work on the ground with people to create inspiring transformation stories. We focus on value creation and engage without judging while carrying hope and a positive vision for the future.
To learn more about the Earthworm Foundation, visit www.earthworm.org.
To learn more about the Centre for Social Excellence (CSE), https://www.earthworm.org/our- work/programmes/cse.
About Global Rights Compliance Global Rights Compliance is an international law and development firm based out of The Hague, Netherlands, with representation in the Netherlands, the UK, Washington D.C., and in the Ukraine. Established by British human rights and criminal law barristers engaged in a number of cases before international courts and tribunals, our work is based on the core pillars of documentation and investigation, conflict-related accountability, rule of law and business and human rights. Our projects span a number of different jurisdictions working with companies, civil society organisations,human rights defenders and state actors to increase the protection and respect for human rights through innovative application of the law. To learn more about Global Rights Compliance, visit our website at www.globalrightscompliance.com.
How to apply
Selection Process Interested candidates are requested to provide a CV and a cover letter. Potential candidates will be invited to an interview and will be kept informed of the final decision before September 25. Applications can be sent to [email protected]. For further information please send your queries to the above address.