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Community Solutions Program

The Community Solutions Program (CSP) is a program of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State, implemented by IREX. This will be the sixth round of the Community Solutions Program, a professional development program for the best and brightest global community leaders working in Transparency and Accountability, Tolerance and Conflict Resolution, Environmental Issues, and Women and Gender Issues. Selected candidates will participate in a four month U.S. fellowship with a local nonprofit organization or government agency, and will also enjoy structured virtual learning and networking via the Online Community Leadership Institute.  In addition, they will design and implement follow-on projects in their home countries.  The program will also include a small outbound component that will allow up to five U.S. host representatives to travel overseas for approximately two weeks on projects related to the program themes. 

Program Goals
The goal of CSP is for global community leaders to improve their capacity for local community development and serve as ambassadors for increased mutual understanding. CSP leaders:

  • Build and strengthen sustainable professional networks with international colleagues and institutions
  • Increase their understanding of strategies to address challenges in their community
  • Strengthen their management, leadership, and problem-solving skills

Eligibility
Candidates will be considered regardless of race, color, religion, national origin, or gender. Persons with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply. Competition for the Community Solutions Program is merit-based and open to community leaders, ages 25-38 at the time of application, who meet the following criteria:

  • From a participating country (U.S. citizens, permanent residents of the U.S., and individuals who have applied for U.S. permanent residency in the past three years are not eligible for this program)
  • Currently living and working in his/her home country (Individuals participating in academic, training or research programs in the United States at the time of application and individuals residing or working outside their home countries at the time of application are not eligible for this program)
  • Currently working on a community project or initiative in his/her home country; and, has at least 2 years of professional experience in this capacity at the time of application
  • Able to begin the program in the United States in 2016, and is committed to returning to his/her home country after completion of the program
  • Able to receive a U.S. J-1 visa (Individuals who have participated in an exchange visitor program sponsored or funded by the U.S. Government who have not fulfilled their two-year home residency requirement by the time of application are not eligible for this program)
  • Proficient in spoken and written English at the time of application

Financial Provisions of the Grant

  • J-1 visa support
  • Round-trip travel from participant’s home city to the U.S.
  • Accident and sickness insurance
  • Living Allowance to cover housing, meals and incidentals

Application Submission Guidelines
The application deadline is 12 p.m. at noon Washington, D.C. time on Friday, October 30, 2015. The application and additional information for the 2016 Community Solutions Program can be read on CSP Recruitment Flyer 2016. It is available online at: http://www.irex.org/application/community-solutions-information-applicants

Applications should be submitted ONLINE ONLY at:https://oas.irex.org/csp
 
Do not send applications to the U.S. Embassy, US Consulate, IREX office in Washington, DC or any of IREX’s representative offices. Mailed, faxed or e-mailed applications will not be accepted.  Should applicants have questions about the application process please email communitysolutions@irex.org.