International Development Fellows Program

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Catholic Relief Services' International Development Fellows Program prepares dedicated global citizens to pursue a career in international relief & development work. CRS empowers Fellows to hone their skills and gain practical field experience while contributing to impactful work. Each Fellow works alongside experienced CRS staff to address critical issues facing developing countries today. CRS invites applicants of diverse backgrounds who are committed to our agency mission and strategy to join our global team.

Develop Critical Project & Management Skills

Designed To Prepare Fellows For Success

The CRS Fellowship is a unique 12-month professional development opportunity, designed to prepare Fellows for success in a range of onward positions with CRS. By completing this training program, Fellows are competitive candidates for a wide range of positions with CRS. The Fellowship is centered upon skill building in the following four areas:

Project Management

  • Activity planning & implementation
  • Monitoring, evaluation, accountability & learning
  • Resource/budget management
  • Reporting

Project Design

  • Research, assessments, analysis
  • Participatory design
  • Results framework & theory of change
  • Proposal development

Systems & Operations

  • Supply chain and logistics
  • Human Resources
  • Finance & compliance
  • Safety, security, risk mitigation

Partnership

  • Project planning
  • Program implementation
  • Capacity strengthening
  • Reflection & assessment
Mercy Anguah (left) screening infants for acute malnutrition during her Fellowship in Niger.

Engage In Impactful Work

Make A Difference

CRS works with a vast network of partners to engender sustainable change and provide lifesaving help when emergencies arise. Fellows support CRS' impactful work in a wide variety of sectors and assume varying levels of responsibility.

Common Fellowship Tasks

  • Lead new emergency response projects
  • Serve as interim project manager
  • Participate in the design of new projects
  • Oversee assessments and data collection
  • Develop accountability frameworks
  • Write reports and proposals

Prepare For Future Career Opportunities

Realize Your Potential

Many Fellows build a career with CRS after completing the Fellowship. Each year, nearly all graduating Fellows apply and accept offers for onward positions with CRS. Fellows usually transition directly to positions in program management, program quality, business development, or monitoring, evaluation, accountability and learning. Former-Fellows typically move between different regions and roles as they assume positions of greater responsibility with CRS. Hover over the pictures below to view some of the positions that Fellows have held since their Fellowship year.

Enjoy Comprehensive Benefits

A Partnership For Health & Success

At CRS, we value employee health and well-being and provide comprehensive benefits to meet your needs and those of your family. Benefits include an international PPO medical plan, dental and vision insurance, generous leave, a highly competitive retirement program, and family-friendly allowances for overseas staff. CRS also prioritizes and invests in staff safety and security and provides travel and property insurance, disability coverage and Employee Assistance Programs.

Medical/Dental/Vision

Fellows enjoy an international PPO medical plan as well as vision coverage with zero deductible for in-network providers and low coinsurance and copayments.

Safe Furnished Housing

CRS provides each Fellow with basic furnished housing, which includes electricity, running water, internet and security services (if necessary). The Fellow's housing is usually an apartment or house near the CRS office.

Paid Time Off (vacation, sick, & personal)

CRS provides Fellows 20 days of paid vacation along with 12 days of sick leave annually. In addition, we offer 4 personal days to attend to emergency or non-emergency situations occurring during a normally scheduled work day.

Travel & Medical Evacuation

CRS covers relocation costs such as transportation to and from the country of assignment, visas, inoculations, etc. Additionally, CRS provides 100% employer-funded medical evacuation coverage for the Fellow and their dependents.

Retirement Benefits (403B)

CRS offers a 50% match on the first 6% of contributions as well as a contribution of 7% of pay regardless of employee contributions, after six months of service. (Note: Employees without a social security number are eligible to participate in an offshore retirement fund with the same contribution calculation.)

Continued Education

Upon hire, Fellows have access to CRS' robust online learning platform. Additionally, CRS will reimburse up to $5,200 per year for employees pursuing degrees and professional certifications, after one year of employment.

Explore more benefits in detail on the CRS benefits page.

Review Program Requirements

Candidate Profile

We seek diverse and aligned candidates, and welcome people of all faiths and secular traditions who share our values and our commitment to serving those in need.

Minimum Fellowship Requirements

  • Graduate degree in a relevant field
  • At least six months work or volunteer experience in a developing country
  • Fluency in English with strong oral and written commmunication skills
  • Professional proficiency in a second language (preference given to French, Arabic and Portuguese)
  • Willingness to work in locations with tropical and infectious diseases and limited access to medical facilities.
Current Country Representative in Uganda and former Fellow Niek de Goeij (right) supporting a food distribution.

Please visit the FAQs to review the cover letter requirements.

Apply To Fellowship

Three Simple Steps

Prepare a cover letter

Please see FAQs for requirements.

Prepare your resume or CV

Apply online

Selection Process & Timeline

The IDFP application closed on November 1, 2020.

Due to the high volume of applications and rolling basis of the review, candidates will only be contacted if and when they advance to the next stage of the selection process.

The annual IDFP application will re-open in the Fall of 2021.

Pat Williams (right) with colleagues in Laos, where he served as Monitoring, Evaluation, Learning and Accountability Manager after his Fellowship in Senegal.

Engage With Us

Let's Talk

We encourage you to join us for a webinar on the CRS Fellowship. Our webinars are an opportunity for you to informally exchange with our team—learn more about the Fellowship program, ask your questions, etc. We offer webinars at the times listed below. Simply click on this link to join any session. You may also call in at +1 443-290-6516, conference ID: 434 856 257#

Information Sessions

Monday, October 4, 2021
8:00am–9:00am EST

Thursday, October 14, 2021
9:00am–10:00am EST

Wednesday, October 20, 2021
2:00pm–3:00pm EST

Friday, October 22, 2021
5:00pm–6:00pm EST

Tuesday, October 26, 2021
12:00pm–1:00pm EST

Meagan Gunning (left) leading an emergency response program in Uganda during her Fellowship.

Learn More

Frequently Asked Questions

We are glad you are interested in learning more about IDFP. In our FAQs, we strive to answer questions you may have around the application and selection process, overseas assignments and travel, housing and family, career and more. For additional information, follow the IDFP Facebook page or email us at [email protected].

VIEW FAQs >

More Opportunities

Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer

CRS is proud to be an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. Selection and hiring decisions are made without regard to sex, gender identity, race, age, disability, religion, national origin, color, veteran status or any other protected area.

We are committed to working with and providing reasonable accommodation to individuals with disabilities. If, due to a medical condition or disability, you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the employment process, please email [email protected].

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