Call for Working Group members: Beyond Chocolate Initiative

In the last Steering Committee meeting of the Beyond Chocolate Initiative, three working groups were agreed to help the initiative faster reach its goals. If you’re an expert in the cocoa sector on living income, deforestation or youth and decent work conditions then get in touch and let us know you’d like to participate. 

1.     Context

The Beyond Chocolate Partnership was signed on December 5, 2018. The Partnership document states clearly that the partners will agree on the measurable indicators for the general commitment regarding living income and deforestation. Three basic indicators are already written down in the document: outcomes in terms of net farmer income increases, reduced forest encroachment in cocoa-growing areas, and more children and young people attending school.

During its first meeting the Beyond Chocolate Partnership’s steering committee decided to form three working groups around the overarching themes ‘Living Income’, ‘Deforestation’ and ‘Youth and Decent Work’. In addition, the steering committee decided to look for intermediate targets toward 2025 and 2030 that will be regularly communicated to the partners and at the Belgium level in particular. The working groups will also be asked to formulate a proposal for these intermediary targets. In the runup to the formal deadline of 5 December 2019 the three working groups will be formed and asked to deliver on time-bound tasks.

2.     Objectives of the working groups

  • Mobilise and map state-of-the-art knowledge, first-hand experiences and best practices around the specific themes. Relevance for the 2025 and 2030 targets of the Beyond Chocolate ambition is a guiding principle in this respect.
  • Create ownership and common understanding of definitions, relevant research and ongoing initiatives among Beyond Chocolate partners.
  • The Beyond Chocolate Partnership text lists several SDGs. The working groups will advise the steering committee on the choice of the relevant SDG targets and indicators linked to their specific theme.
  • Explore possible intermediary targets towards 2025 and 2030 for the common ambition of the Partnership and agree on a proposal for the steering committee.
  • Refine the basic indicators mentioned in the Partnership document and formulate a set of relevant, measurable and time-bound indicators.
  • Draft recommendations on criteria for inclusion in the first call for proposals. The long-term ambition of living income for the producers remains the lighthouse of the partnership. The steering committee decided to launch the first call for proposals centered around the overarching theme living income.
  • Formulate a recommendation for the steering committee on the necessity and possible objectives for each of the working groups to continue their work after December 5th, 2019.

3.     Output and outcome

  • Before the end of October 2019, the working groups will formulate recommendations on criteria for inclusion in the first call for proposals and deliver their input to the Partnership’s Steering Committee.
  • By mid-November, the Steering Committee will receive general recommendations incorporating the different tasks per working group around their theme. This information and proposed actions will be disseminated among the members of the partnership.
  • As a result of the working group’s efforts the partnership members have a better understanding of the three overarching themes and have a clearer view on possible pathways for success in achieving the ambitions around those themes. Intermediary targets are formulated, and clear and measurable indicators are defined.

4.     Pre-reads

  • Beyond Chocolate partnership text

5.     Q&A and practicalities

How can I become part of this working group?

  • Send us your CV (max. 3 pages) in Dutch, French or English by August 19 at the latest.
  • Tell us in a paragraph why you are motivated to join and how your specific expertise will contribute to the expected outcomes.

Will I be remunerated for my hard work? Can I ask for cost reimbursement?

No. Your hard work will be much appreciated and contributes to the success of our Partnership’s ambitions, but remuneration or cost reimbursement is not possible.

What is my deadline?

Please send us your candidacy by August 19, 2019 at the latest.

Who will select the experts?

The Beyond Chocolate Steering Committee will select the members on August 30, 2019. All candidates will be notified personally after this date. Priority is given to members of the Partnership and their in-house expertise, but external experts can be accepted if deemed necessary to complete the working group.

How many members are allowed per group?

We aim to select around 6-7 members per group maximum to ensure productive and effective meetings. Valuable expertise, representation per stakeholder group and gender will to be kept in balance.

When will I have to be available, how many times and where will the working group meet?

A first introductory session is scheduled on September 4th during the general stakeholder meeting of Beyond Chocolate. The working groups will meet a few times in September/October and possibly also in November. Joining the meetings by Zoom/Skype is an option. Written input can also be considered in case you cannot attend all meetings.

Any other questions?

Please contact Els Haelterman (until August 4) or Mark de Waard (from August 5 onwards).