Ascend Afghanistan Program Officer

Academic Credits


Hours per week

Approximately 40 hours a week, for a minimum 4-month period.



Application Deadline


Start Date


End Date





Ascend Internship Opportunity: Program Officer, Ascend Afghanistan. Based in Kabul with occasional travel to other provinces of the country.


About Ascend Afghanistan: Ascend Afghanistan is a women’s leadership program based in Kabul. We conduct comprehensive leadership development through a 5-pillar curriculum covering mountaineering, physical fitness, psychosocial well being, leadership instruction, and community volunteering. We have a small local staff who manage the day-to-day activities of our 18 team members and 4 Program Assistants. Expat volunteer instructors and program staff visit Kabul regularly. Our Program Officer will work with the Afghan team on a daily basis and will oversee activities in cooperation with our local staff.


About the position: Ascend Afghanistan is looking for an independent, dynamic, self starter to work with the organization in the position of Program Officer. The Program Officer is the only expatriate staff position in Afghanistan. With support from headquarters, the Program Officer will be responsible for planning, implementing, and overseeing Ascend’s program in Afghanistan. Duties include, but are not limited to, representing Ascend with donor organizations and partners, contributing to program design and evaluation, tracking finances and maintaining human resources files, building capacity of our local staff, coordinating visits of expatriate volunteers, and collecting data for our monitoring & evaluation efforts. The Program Officer will report to the Executive Director.


This is an excellent opportunity for a person interested in international development, peacebuilding, sociology, or a related field, to acquire meaningful hands-on experience in a challenging environment with a growing program. Ascend provides a modest monthly stipend to assist with living costs, and provides housing, transportation, and some food while in country.


Job location & travel: The position is based largely in Kabul with occasional travel to other locations in Afghanistan. We have several multi-day trips each year to hike and climb in other provinces. The Program Officer need NOT have any special skills or experience with climbing, but that would be a plus. General fitness and an enthusiasm for the outdoors are a must.


To learn more Please contact Marina LeGree at for more information.


Core responsibilities

●    Assist with program design, implementation and evaluation.

●    Oversee core office functions including HR, finance, and gear/equipment inventory.

●    Represent Ascend with partner organizations, donors, and media.

●    Identify funding opportunities for Ascend.

●    Conduct capacity building for Ascend staff and team members.

●    Provide content for Ascend’s social media channels.

●    Compile written reports for headquarters.


Compensation & timeline

●    Ascend provides a modest monthly stipend.

●    Ascend provides: a visa, round-trip ticket from home to Kabul, housing (including laundry, housekeeping and all utilities), local transportation, emergency medical and evacuation coverage, and lunches each workday in the office.

●    Ideal candidate can commit for a minimum of 4 months but preferably for 6 months or longer. The position is available year-round.



●    Undergraduate degree in international development or related field.

●    Passion for the rights of women and girls.

●    Appreciation for the power of sports and outdoor recreation.

●    High degree of independence and problem-solving ability.

●    Ability to be sensitive to local cultural norms.

●    Keen attention to detail.

●    Ability to live in restrictive security environment.

●    Strong communications skills (written and verbal).

●    Good sense of humor.


Due to ongoing insecurity in Afghanistan, the successful candidate must be willing to adapt to restrictive measures as necessary, and to follow all security instructions given by Ascend management. We do our best to mitigate risk to our team and staff, but Afghanistan remains a high-risk environment.


This is an excellent opportunity for those seeking additional field experience to enhance their career prospects. As a young organization, we offer a dynamic work environment with opportunities to help us shape our program and expand out outreach to Afghan youth.

The job involves unique travel opportunities within Afghanistan.

Academic credit can be arranged with your home institution if desired.

How To Apply

Please send an email indicating your interest in the position and including a current resume to