Vancouver Association For Restorative Justice Job Opportunity

The Vancouver Association of Restorative Justice (VARJ) is seeking a skilled and energetic individual with experience in project management and event and/or theatre production to coordinate our Restorative Justice Radio Play Project from October 15, 2019 – March 31, 2020. The project coordinator will work collaboratively with the VARJ Board Project Management Committee and the playwright to produce educational resources (published script, radio play performance and online resources) that highlight the process and benefits of restorative justice.

Position Title: VARJ Radio Play Project Coordinator
Start Date: October 15, 2019 (flexible start date)
End Date: March 31, 2020

Hours: Approximately 300 hours total
Compensation: $7,500 (paid in 3 installments)

VARJ works to advance public awareness of the principles, values and practice of restorative justice and to facilitate restorative justice program development in Canada, internationally, and the City of Vancouver (see www.varj.ca). VARJ has commissioned a playwright to write a radio play to educate the public about restorative justice processes. The script will be published in hard copy and online, and will be performed for the public in late March 2020. We seek a coordinator to lead the project logistics, facilitate the production and recording of a public reading of the play, to manage production and publication of the script and coordinate volunteers involved in the project.

Dates and Time
During fall 2019 the Project Coordinator will become familiar with the project, attend monthly project team meetings and begin working on project logistics. The project work will require more time between early January, 2020 to March 31, 2020 when the project coordinator will manage project logistics, including supervising the design and publication of the script, the rehearsal process, and the public radio play performance, performance recording/filming and post performance talkback and follow-up.


  • To coordinate all project logistics with support from VARJ board members
  • To attend meetings with the VARJ Board Project Management Committee, and liaise with the playwright and other project stakeholders
  • To assist with the script development in collaboration with the playwright
  • To oversee the design, production and publication of the script
  • To recruit and supervise volunteers to support the project, including the public reading
  • To facilitate the rehearsals for the public reading
  • To coordinate the public reading event and the post-reading talk back
  • To oversee filming and recording of the event
  • To work within the project budget and track expenses


  • Project management skills
  • Experience implementing community programs
  • Experience with event and/or theatre production
  • Ability to manage a group of volunteers and facilitate a community talkback
  • Excellent organizational and time management skills, able to work within designated timelines
  • Good communication skills for liaising with VARJ board project management team, playwright, stakeholders and volunteers
  • Good written communication skills for script editing, publishing process and project reporting
  • Experience in filming and film editing would be an asset
  • Knowledge of restorative justice would be an asset

Submission of application
Please apply by Email, using the subject line VARJ Project Coordinator Application to marianbeth@gmail.com. Attach a cover letter and resume with the names and contact information for three references We thank all applicants but, due to time constraints, only those shortlisted will be contacted for an interview. Interviews will be scheduled between mid-September and early October.

VARJ Project in Mozambique

Vancouver Association for Restorative Project in Mozambique December 2018

A few stats on Mozambique: By Frank Tester

If you go online you will find plenty of stats to embellish or contextualize what we are doing here.

Mozambique is one of the poorest countries in the world. It has a population of a little over 30 million with half living at or below the poverty line. While the country’s wealth has grown in recent years, this wealth has not benefited people who are poor. The difference between a small wealthy upper class and the 50% living in poverty has grown.

Poverty is prevalent in rural areas where only about 8% of the population has easy access to clean water, any electricity or proper sanitary facilities. Mozambique has one of the highest birth rates in the world. Poverty gives rise to petty crime in cities as people are desperate to survive and feed their kids by any means, the number of people between 20 and 30 who are functionally illiterate is about 50%.

Thanks to a history of being subjected to World Bank and IMF structural adjustment programs, education beyond primary levels is a luxury few can afford. The number of students attending university are few and most universities – thanks to the IMF and World Bank neo-liberal approach to the economy – are private, for-profit institutions only for the rich. The quality of education they offer is a concern. In fairness, under new and enlightened leadership, the World Bank has changed its policies and now recognizes education as essential to developing any meaningful economy. But there is a long way to go.

Half of the country’s budget is in the form of foreign aid.

In this economic and social climate, the country’s justice system is simply overwhelmed. This is the context for the restorative justice pilot project we are undertaking here; to explore the feasibility of doing something substantial to get RJ up and running in the country.

The best to all of you supporting and interested in the Vancouver Association for Restorative Justice.

Frank Tester

Three UBC Articles

Vale (Brazil) Mining and Human Rights in Mozambique

Human Rights and Mining Development in Mozambique

Coal and Conflict in Tete Province

Pictures from Mozambique of Training in Progress: By Trainers, Frank Tester and Evelyn Zellerer on the ground in Mozambique

The first picture (#1) is my flip chart listing of the 5 overarching ‘sensibilities’ guiding restorative practice as I undertake it. It is these sensibilities or concepts that I had subgroups body sculpt in today’s workshop. I previously sent an email showing this.

The second shot is of the agenda (#2) I created for the day. The third (#3) shot is of workshop participants in one of the subgroups I created when I started the day by asking them to tell me what they thought restorative justice ‘was about’. Each group then reported back with 4 concepts or characteristics they believed helped define what restorative justice is.

I used this as the basis for a discussion, as a way of getting the day started.

Participants taking a break in next photo (#4).

The next photo (#5) is down the side of the building we are using for training. It is an old church in the compound of one of the Presbyterian churches of Maputo. It has no power and the windows no longer close properly. When the wind blows, they bang around on the outside of the building. Nevertheless it works for our workshop.

Next photo (#6) of a women from Mozambique washing a large pot in the street.

As you can see in the next photo (#7) of our group in a workshop circle, it is a large and not unpleasant space. It is bright enough so that the absence of lighting is not a problem. I am running everything I need on batteries –  my camera and computer which I recharge in the hotel in the evening.

These are photos of those taking the workshop on peace circles and restorative justice doing ‘body sculptures’. I had them create sculptures to portray what are the 5 key concepts or ‘sensibilities’ relevant to restorative practice. What you see in the next picture (#8) are workshop participants portraying an aspect of the concept of ‘relationship’. In the next photo (#9) we have participants portraying the concept of reintegration. Body sculpting is a popular education technique I use in training.

We have a lively and engaged group, with a majority of women and some men associated in one way or another with the Christian Council of Mozambique.

Vancouver Association of  Restorative Justice

Photos by: Frank Tester

How schools are using restorative justice to remedy racial disparities in discipline


Welcome to the Vancouver Association for Restorative Justice

Our Mission

To advance public awareness of the principles, values and practice of restorative justice and to contribute to restorative justice program development in Canada, internationally and in the City of Vancouver.