Coral reefs harbour the highest biodiversity of any ecosystem globally, making them one of the most biologically complex and valuable ecosystems on the planet.  Supporting more than one billion people globally, coral reefs provide vital ecosystem services including food security, income from fisheries and tourism, and critical coastal protection from storms and floods. Coral reef and associated ecosystem services are critical to help deliver the nature-dependent United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, especially SDG14 ‘Life Below Water’. Despite their immense value, coral reefs are among Earth’s most endangered ecosystems. It is estimated that more than half of the world’s coral reefs have disappeared due to climate change and a range of local threats and stressors. Although Earth's coral reefs have survived for hundreds of millions of years, scientists now predict that reefs may go extinct in our lifetime.

Launched in September 2020, the Global Fund for Coral Reefs (GFCR) coalition is a finance instrument that blends private and public funding to support businesses and finance mechanisms that improve the health and sustainability of coral reefs and associated ecosystems while empowering local communities and enterprises. The GFCR currently consists of a Grant Fund managed by the United Nations and an Investment Fund, managed by Pegasus Capital Advisors, that operate under a single Theory of Change based on 4 pillars: Protect, Transform, Restore and Recover. The GFCR Grant Fund is administratively hosted by the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF).

The GFCR UN Global Team (UNGT) is an independent structure under the Global Fund for Coral Reefs Executive Board and manages the day-to-day activities and operations of the Grant Fund. While hosted within UNCDF, the Global Team collaborates closely with relevant focal points of the Participating UN Organizations (UNDP, UNEP, UNCDF) and the Investment Fund asset management team.

The UNGT has management, technical, and operational expertise, and one of its primary roles is to develop the Fund investment plans and manage approval of Grant Fund programme proposals in accordance with financial decisions made by the GFCR Executive Board and in collaboration with the Investment Fund partners. The Global Team guarantees that successful innovative blended finance solutions are developed in accordance with agreed-upon objectives and criteria specified in the Terms of Reference.

UNCDF is seeking an intern to be part of the GFCR. Working under the direct oversight of the Deputy Head of the GFCR and day-to-day guidance of GFCR staff, the selected interns will support the ongoing workplan and goals of the unit, according to the four different tracks outlined below. 

Applicants must specify for which track/s they are submitting an application under for consideration.
The internship managers committed to providing the interns with the training, guidance and support necessary to complete the below duties and responsibilities effectively and within the internship period. This will include, but not be limited to, scheduled meetings to assess output progress, systems training (where required) and completion of required university reports for the purpose of meeting any necessary Degree requirements.

Duties and Responsibilities

This internship is specifically intended to support the work of the UNGT with tasks focused on social media, graphic design, and application of the GFCR’s visual identity throughout communications products and activities. The intern role will work with the guidance of the GFCR Strategic Engagement & Partnerships Specialist in performing the following duties and responsibilities:

  • Create and/or apply consistently with graphic design guidelines for external and internal communications and knowledge products, including slide decks, flyers, brochures, publications, reports, briefing documents, etc.;
  • Support the team with graphic design for various internal and external communications activities, including through social media, website presence, and virtual/in-person events, conferences, and meetings;
  • Support the team in developing graphical elements to illustrate portfolio stories and results, including those related to the reef-positive blue economy initiatives, including infographics and other visual elements;
  • Support the team in the design and development of the Global Fund for Coral Reefs website, which includes working closely with the communication, social media, and storytelling colleagues and partners to plan and develop the site based on the updated content requirements;
  • Create and/or apply consistently with design guidelines to develop, edit, and upgrade the front end of websites and landing pages;
  • Create and/or apply consistently with design guidelines to produce informational graphics, presentation materials, and additional create images;
  • Maintain and manage the website, including routine post updates and edits and adding additional content and features;
  • Ensure maintenance of the asset library for the team using existing platforms (UNDP SharePoint platform; Trello);
  • Support the team, under the overall guidance of the communications specialist, in any other tasks related to design work, including supporting online presence; support design of publications, slide decks, brochures, etc.


  • Proficiency in using the Adobe Creative Suite including Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign; Bridge, Acrobat, Flash, Avid, Final Cut Pro, and other graphic design and video editing software;
  • Experienced in website development and high familiarity with WordPress;
  • Proficiency in HTML, CSS, and JavaScript is an asset (portfolio or website demonstrating previous experience is preferred);
  • Extensive knowledge of advancements and trends in web design and development;
  • Familiarity with technical specifications and best practices for Web Accessibility, file sizes and types, image, and video resolution, etc.;
  • Proficiency in using the MS Office Suite, including proficient use of PowerPoint application;
  • Sound computer skills and experience using web-based applications, social media and content management systems;
  • Excellent adaptability and versatility to new design tools, software, and social media platforms;
  • Effective communication skills with staff at all levels and external partners;
  • Initiative taking;
  • Strong organization skills;
  • Great attention to detail and proven experience in proof reading;
  • Ability to work well in a team;
  • Client orientation;
  • Demonstration of cultural sensitivity and appreciation for different cultures and practices.

Required Skills and Experience

Educational Qualification and Work Experience:

  • Be enrolled in a postgraduate degree programme (such as a master’s programme, or higher) in graphic design, computer science, web development, communication or other related field;
  • Be enrolled in the final academic year of a first university degree programme (such as bachelor’s degree or equivalent);
  • Have recently graduated with a university degree (as defined in (a) and (b) above) and, if selected, must start the internship within one-year of graduation;
  • Be enrolled in a postgraduate professional traineeship program and undertake the internship as part of this program.


  • Fluency in English required. Knowledge of other UN languages will be considered a plus.


Although not required, applicants are strongly encouraged to submit additional pages or links that the hiring unit may reference in evaluating skills that are relevant to the Internship.