India: Himalayan Adventure Program Leader 2017-2018






$2000 CAD stipend

Hours per week

Approximately 5-10 hours per week remotely until May, when program leader will be on the ground in India leading programs full time




205 Church St. Suite 200
M5B 1Y7


Do you have a passion for and experience in India?


Want to share that passion while leading a team of 18-30 year olds, from bus to hostel, to boat to beach? Want to grow as an individual and as a leader? To do it in a cool, critical way, and learn and teach modes of ethical, responsible travel? We are a small non-profit organization looking for experienced leaders, enthusiastic facilitators, passionate storytellers, and badass backpackers to lead our Himalayan Adventure programs in 2018!

To understand exactly who we are, check out:

Job Purpose:

Program leaders are the pillars of our organization. OG program leaders are educators, logistics gurus, and local experts for groups of 8-13 people on a trip of a lifetime! They work with our local partners, facilitate educational activities over a variety of pertinent topics in ethical travel and development, help lead treks and hikes, and organize bin bag fashion shows and city-wide scavenger hunts!

All of our Program Leaders work in teams of two. You and your Co-leader will be responsible for managing the program budget, organizing all program logistics on the ground (hostel reservations, planning transportation, etc.) and for facilitating OG’s Core Curriculum throughout the program.

Note: This is a full time position! Everywhere the program goes, you go! There will be preparatory work in advance of each program, and reporting to be completed upon completion – but the road will be your office!

Duties and Responsibilities:

1) Training and Planning (March - April):

Starting in March, program leaders begin their training remotely and, in teams of two, begin to prepare for their upcoming programs. As long as you have internet access, this can be done from anywhere!

As an OG PL you will:

●     Attend weekly training meetings with the Regional Director (online)

●     Make any necessary preliminary plans for the program (including activities, reservations, transportation, as applicable)

●     Plan and submit a budget and itinerary (adapted from last year's) for each program on provided due dates

●     Maintain regular communication with participants via email and Facebook, and answer any questions they pose.

●     Run at least 2 online group meetings per program in contract

●     Attend a four-day leadership retreat outside of Toronto, ON in April 2018.

* Workload is 5-10 hours/week on your own time.

2) On Program (May – August):

PLs begin their in-country work a minimum of three weeks prior to the first scheduled program to conduct "preconnaissance" (PreCon) before participant arrivals. During PreCon PLs will work full-time to plan and prepare on the ground details for their program. Following PreCon, PLs will be responsible for the effective execution of their programs with their Co-Leader, and for navigating all of the other awesome, crazy things that come up while backpacking abroad!

As an OG PL you will:

●     Perform Risk Assessments and Regular Safety Checks

●     Organize logistics for your teams (accommodation, transportation, food, etc.)

●     Plan and implement program budgets

●     Delegate Community Contribution donations

●     Organize volunteer projects or program support with local partners

●     Positively and actively facilitate discussions and organized learning

●     Run group activities and multi-day trips & treks

●     Communicate regularly with OGHQ (blogs, regular check-ins, final reports, etc.)

●     Show your team a side of the city/village/bus system that they'd never see without you!

Programs included in the contract:

● India: Himalayan Adventure 1                    (40 days, around May 20th - June 28th 2018)

● India: Himalayan Adventure 2                    (40 days, around July 10th - August 18th 2018)

*Program Leaders will need to conduct a two week in country PreCon before each program in the contract. After each program you will be responsible for reporting on the previous program, and maintaining necessary communications and completing preparatory work for all subsequent programs. 

**The program dates and details are tentative. Certain programs may need to be changed or canceled.

What's In It For You?

Operation Groundswell program leaders will:

●     Gain crucial and marketable leadership skills from our PL Training Program

●     Receive training in the experiential education model.

●     Receive training in marketing, group management, program planning and coordination, partner relations, facilitation, project management, budgeting, and how to make pooping your pants cool.

●     Receive experienced support in all of the above while on the ground

●     Have access to OG’s partners and partnerships worldwide

●     Receive a $2000 Stipend*.

●     Receive Wilderness First Aid Training (up to $250 CAD)

●     Have costs covered to and from the starting point of your program (round-trip flights if you don’t live in India)

●     Have in-country costs covered during PreCon, and while running programs

●     Eat unlimited daal

●     Experience an opportunity of a lifetime and see the country in a whole new light

●     Guide a team of amazing people into the world of ethical travel!

●     Grow within the Operation Groundswell organization

Program Leader Qualifications:

The following criteria must be met before being considered for this position. As an OG program leader, you must:

●     Be over 18 years of age

●     Have a passion for social change and desire to work with international service organizations

●     Have intimate knowledge of your region (i.e. have traveled and/or lived there)

●     Have experience and/or competency dealing with emergency (medical and emotional/mental) situations

●     Display strong written and verbal communication skills (English)

●     Have sufficient local language skills to: hustle for group transportation, bargain for sweet deals, meet with our partners and planning/budgeting projects, translate in community meetings or guided excursions (if applicable), deal with any medical or general emergency

●     Have a range of group leadership experience and ability to:

●     Facilitate meaningful discussions and group activities, integrating OG's Core Curriculum and region-specific activities

●     Create planned and spontaneous opportunities for learning experience

●     Support conflict resolution and group cohesion

●     Be a badass traveler, think on the fly, and get into the local scene with ease


  • Receive Wilderness First Aid Training (up to $250 CAD)
  • Have costs covered to and from the starting point of your program (round-trip flights if you don’t live in India)
  • Have in-country costs covered during PreCon and while running programs (food, accommodation, etc.)
  • Eat unlimited daal

How To Apply

How to Apply:

First-round applications close on March 13th!

NOTE: You will not be considered as an applicant unless you have completed all these steps! This is your first test!

1)   Fill out the Application Form here:

2)   Send an email with the following subject line: “FirstLastName”_PLAPP. The email should contain:

a.    Cover Letter: Titled: FirstLast_LETTER. Why Operation Groundswell? Why are you interested in leading a program? What leadership experience do you have? What else would you like us to know about you? Please keep cover letters to one (1) page and, for the love of Pete, don't just reiterate your entire resume!

b.    Resume: Titled: FirstLast_RESUME. List your recent and applicable work/volunteer experiences.

c.    One of your favourite travel photos of yourself. (No, this isn’t a part of our screening process! We get A LOT of applicants and literally need to keep faces to names! We also just love seeing you having fun!)

Please address all emails to: