Tourism Development Adviser

Closing Date: 09 December 2020

Location: Timor-Leste

Category: Tourism

The Organisation
The Asia Foundation (TAF) is a non-profit international development organisation committed to improving lives across a dynamic and developing Asia. Informed by six decades of local expertise, and headquartered in San Francisco, The Asia Foundation works through a network of offices in 18 Asian countries and in Washington, DC.

The Assignment
The  Asia Foundation is looking for a volunteer to implement and develop strategies that will promote tourism in Maubisse, a historic town situated in the country’s mountainous interior, approximately two hours drive from  Dili. The development of the tourism industry is a strategic priority for the Timorese government as income and activity generated from this will diversify the economy and provide employment opportunities. A vital aspect of the national strategy is tourism development that respects the country’s natural and cultural environment with an “ethos of small, gradual and sustainable”. 

The Volunteer
This assignment will suit someone who is interested in getting involved at the grass-roots level and has experience with new or emerging tourism destinations. Additionally, we are looking for a volunteer with:
  • Extensive experience in destination management and/or product development
  • Experience providing training, mentoring and business development support to tourism providers
  • Experience creating tourism packages and taking these to market
Why you'll love it
This assignment offers the unique opportunity to assist Maubisse implement  sustainable tourism management from the beginning. Maubisse and its surrounds offer attractive mountain vistas, organic coffee, sacred sites and mountain hikes (including the islands’ highest peak – Mt Ramelau at almost 3000m). Timor Leste has been described as a quirky, unspoilt, relaxed island nation which boasts some of the most bio-diverse sea life in the world. A young nation with a tumultuous history, our volunteers are often amazed at the unflappable resilience of the East Timorese, and the warmth and hospitality displayed to them on a daily basis. 

Apply Now
If you are a results focused person who is excited by the opportunity to make a tangible difference in Maubisse through tourism, we'd love to hear from you. Apply now through our website or email

VSA volunteers receive a living allowance and accommodation, insurance, and medical costs are provided. Travel arrangements are organised and funded by VSA along with other costs.

VSA's response to COVID-19

Although we have temporarily put our deployment of volunteers on hold due to COVID-19 restrictions and uncertainties both within New Zealand and across the wider Pacific, we’re continuing to recruit and build our talent pool of prospective volunteers so we can return to supporting our partner organisations and communities in the wider Pacific as soon as we can.
The Volunteer Recruitment team is continuing to work through all our current applications and keep in touch with applicants.

Recruitment will continue although our usual processes will be amended where necessary to ensure social distancing requirements are maintained, such as a greater emphasis on carrying out interviews remotely.
Meanwhile, Programme Managers are working with partner organisations and on updating assignment descriptions. This work will help us determine which skills and experience our volunteers will need once we begin to redeploy people in the Pacific.

VSA covers flights, accommodation, insurance and some expenses. A living allowance is also provided.