The PartnerVSO Malawi
VSO’s programme concentrates on HIV and AIDS, health and social wellbeing, secure livelihoods (food security) and education in seven rural districts. The districts were chosen due to their excessive poverty levels, high prevalence of HIV and AIDS, and low involvement of other international charities.
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VSO Malawi is a flagship programme with a total budget of more than £5 million, 60 Partner organisations and over 100 international volunteer fieldworkers. It is currently managing and implementing DFID, UNICEF, Irish AID, GORTA, SIDA and various other funded projects. The Programme has increased drastically in size and funds in the last 3 years and some of the finance systems had not been able to keep up with this growth.
A new Finance Manager and Country Director had recently started in the programme office and identified various inherited financial issues, including an urgent need for practical support for all the finance team.
Janet Hunter, an experienced finance director and ACMA accountant with previous experience in the FMCG and NFP sectors was selected to pilot the AfID programme in the VSO Malawi office. Janet worked one to one with all of the management team and their finance teams coaching them on all aspects of finance and accounting, particularly strengthening financial systems by implementing controls and procedures.
VSO were so impressed by the way Janet approached the role and with what had been accomplished in such a short time that they extended her assignment by 2 months - later offering her a permanent role. Janet had quickly come to love the role, her first in the Development sector, so she gratefully accepted.