Communication Intern (UNCDF)

Advertised on behalf of :

Application Deadline :03-Jun-13 (Midnight New York, USA)
Additional Category :Sustainable Development and Poverty Reduction
Type of Contract :Internship
Post Level :Intern
Languages Required :
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
Duration of Initial Contract :3 months
Expected Duration of Assignment :Posibility of extension for another 3 months


UNCDF is the UN’s capital investment agency for the world’s 48 least developed countries. It creates new opportunities for poor people and their communities by increasing access to   microfinance and investment capital.  UNCDF focuses on Africa and the poorest countries of Asia, with a special commitment to countries emerging from conflict or crisis. It provides seed capital – grants and loans – and technical support to help microfinance institutions reach more poor households and small businesses, and local governments finance the capital investments – water systems, feeder roads, schools, irrigation schemes – that will improve poor peoples’ lives.  UNCDF programmes help to empower women, and are designed to catalyze larger capital flows from the private sector, national governments and development partners, for maximum impact toward the Millennium Development Goals. 

The Better Than Cash Alliance is an alliance of governments, private sector and development organizations committed to accelerating the shift from cash to electronic payments.
Billions of dollars in cash payments are made daily in emerging and developing economies, including payment of salaries, social welfare and relief, payments to suppliers, etc. The problems with these cash payments include a lack of transparency, accountability and security, as well as inefficiency. Furthermore, the individuals who receive the cash are excluded from the formal financial sector. There were approximately 2.5 billion people excluded from the formal financial sector in 2012.
Shifting these payments from cash to electronic has the potential to improve the livelihoods of low-income people by advancing financial inclusion and enabling people to save, while giving governments, the development community and the private sector a more efficient, transparent and often safer means of disbursing payments
The Better Than Cash Alliance seeks to leverage the leadership of governments, the networks of development organizations and the expertise of the private sector in payment technologies to replace the use of cash in their programming and payment streams with electronic payments, where appropriate. It also seeks to build the financial capability of low-income clients who will benefit from electronic payments and a wider range of financial services.

The Better Than Cash Alliance:

  • Advocates for the use of all forms of electronic payments where they provide a preferable payment option to cash;
  • Collaborates with program partners to mobilize available technical expertise and resources to identify and implement the most effective approach to make the transition from cash to electronic payments;  and
  • Conducts research, documents good practices and produces knowledge products to address the barriers to adoption and drive the effective shift from cash to electronic payments globally.

The Better Than Cash Alliance is founded by Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Citi, Ford Foundation, Omidyar Network, USAID, and Visa Inc. and launched in September 2012. The UN Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) serves as secretariat for the BTCA. 

The Better Than Cash Alliance is looking to recruit an intern to support the implementation of the advocacy strategy primarily through media and communications. For more information please visit the website:

Duties and Responsibilities

The key result expected is to support Better Than Cash Alliance’s Advocacy and Communication strategy, as directed by the Managing Director, through research, analysis, and writing and other support as needed. Specifically, the key activities of the intern will likely include but not limited the following:

Develop a media contact database tailored for Better Than Cash Alliance needs

  • In collaboration with the Communications consultant, conduct background research on media of interests to priority members.
  • Identify media contacts that have a potential interest for The Better Than Cash Alliance through carrying out desk research (including specialized media focusing on mobile money, electronic payments, technology and development, and taking into consideration different channels such as blogs, newsletters, web-based, print, etc.) and leveraging existing information from PMC and Alliance members.
  • In collaboration with the Communications consultant, create a media database in Mailchimp

Support the weekly production of Better Than Cash Alliance blog

  • Prepare information digest from key financial incluslion and other blogs, partners’ information and Google search to identify key trends and resources and distribute as agreed with Managing Director
  • Draft a weekly paragraph for the Better Than Cash Alliance blog (announcing news from the members, new resources available for the sector and linking up with articles/videos posted in other channels)
  • Support cross posting on the Better Than Cash Alliance blog, identify blog posts from key influencers from the sector that might deserve commentaries from us.
Support the monthly production of the Better Than Cash Alliance newsletter
  • In collaboration with the Communications consultant, identify key contacts (Alliance members, strategic partners, communication officers through the Better Than Cash Alliance network, key stakeholders) who can provide regular updates on the area of electronic payments and contact this network to request input for the Newsletter (events, opportunities, resources, etc.)
  • Put together a first draft for the Newsletter (including Updates from the Alliance, new resources, events, trainings, etc.) to be revised by the Communication consultant and the Managing Director, lay out the Newsletter in Mailchimp and send it in a timely manner

Support the promotion of the Better Than Cash Alliance activities

  • Prepare as needed short texts to promote programs, activities and/or knowledge products and post them on a variety of platforms to raise awareness on the Better Than Cash Alliance
  • Contribute as needed to promotional documents such as brochure, flyers, member’s profiles and support their active dissemination

Support the Better Than Cash Alliance advocacy strategy

  • Research information on meetings where the Better Than Cash Alliance should have a presence, prepare basic information sheet to support decision making process (goal of the meeting, audience, contacts, etc.) and to inform travel decisions of the Alliance
  • Prepare information packages on the meetings for spokesperson (e.g. provide relevant information on the participants, goal of the event, format of the presentation, etc.)
  • Maintain and update an events tracker
  • In collaboration with the Communications consultant, conduct background research to support the preparation of Power point presentations and talking points tailoring messages for specific audiences for the Better Than Cash Alliance spokespersons

Monitoring communication activities

  • Collect on a monthly basis key statistics regarding the Better Than Cash Alliance communication channels (from website, social media, Mailchimp and UNDP server) and populate a dashboard
  • Prepare a quarterly report for the Managing Director on the Better Than Cash Alliance communication channels performance

Work Arrangements

The intern will work full-time, and may work in the UNCDF office or telecommute as agreed with supervisor.  In the office, work space will be provided, and the intern will have access to a desktop computer whenever possible.  While telecommuting, the intern will be responsible for using her own computer.  The intern will not be provided with a corporate email. 


  • Research experience and ability to synthesis information using a variety of information sources.
  • Excellent organizational, inter-personal, communication and administrative skills.
  • Experience in coordinating tasks with diversified teams is an advantage.
  • Good computer skills.
  • Strong communication skills, both oral and written.

Required Skills and Experience

  • Enrolled in Masters programme in communication, knowledge management, journalism, economics, finance, business or public administration or related field.
  • Knowledge of financial inclusion and/or payments desirable.
  • Demonstrated research and analytical capacity. 
  • Excellent organizational, inter-personal, communication and administrative skills.
  • Able to take initiative and work independently.
  • Proven ability to manage diverse and complex tasks.
  • Excellent computer capabilities.
  • Strong writing and speaking abilities in English.
  • Proficiency in French or Spanish desirable.
UNCDF may accept interns providing the following conditions are met:

Enrolled in a master’s programme in a graduate school (second university degree or higher) at the time of application and during the internship (if a candidate is graduating before the internship period begins, they are no longer eligible); or
Pursuing their university/college studies, having completed at least four years of full-time studies at a university or equivalent institution towards the completion of a degree, if pursuing their studies in countries where higher education is not divided into undergraduate and graduate stages;
Not have graduated prior to the beginning of the internship. 

Interns are not financially remunerated by UNCDF. The costs associated with the latter must be borne by the nominating institution, related institution or government, which may provide the required financial assistance to its students; or by the student, who will have to obtain financing for subsistence and make his or her own arrangements for travel, accommodation, etc.
Proof of medical and life/accident insurance valid for the location in which the internship will be carried out (i.e. New York, USA).
Have medical and life insurance. 
The purpose of the Internship Programme is not to lead to further employment with UNCDF but to complement an intern’s studies. Therefore, there should be no expectation of employment at the end of an internship.
Please submit your application using the UNCDF Internship Application form:

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