Josceline Cluff: Safeguarding Manager, Better Cotton

Posted: 28 April 2021

Everything about the Round Square IDEALS is about justice and service and helping people who are most in need.

Josceline Cluff is the Safeguarding Manager for Better Cotton, the world’s largest sustainability initiative for cotton.

A former student of the Round Square school Cobham Hall in Kent, England, Josceline travelled to the Indian School Al Ghubra in Oman at the age of 16 on a RS student exchange, an experience that she says “had a massive impact on me in a multitude of different ways… and fuelled what has become an insatiable desire to see more and more of the world.”

Josceline went on from school to the University of Warwick where she spent a year on the Erasmus scheme at the University of Seville in Spain. “The process of getting a place on the Erasmus scheme was very competitive and I believe the main reason why I was successful over other candidates was because I could prove through my exchange to Oman that I could cope with being overseas for an extended period” she says.

The impact of the Round Square philosophies continued to influence Josceline as she pursued a lifelong passion for volunteering alongside a law conversion course and further qualifications in asylum law, refugee protection and forced migration. Josceline travelled to the Philippines, Nepal, and Malawi as a volunteer supporting communities recovering from earthquakes, typhoons and flooding before being employed by All Hands Volunteers for a project in Fiji following a devastating tropical cyclone, in partnership with Habitat for Humanity and UNICEF. She then worked as an Operations Manager in Ecuador, following the 2016 earthquake before becoming a Programme Director for projects in Nepal and Peru.

It was in Peru, whilst managing a team of 80 staff and volunteers for a clean-up operation following widespread flooding that Josceline reconnected with Round Square, inspired by memories of a conference she had attended at Gordonstoun School in Scotland. “When I was hired to work in Peru, I immediately thought of the students I had met all those years ago at the Round Square conference” she says. Round Square re-connected her with Markham College in Peru, whose advice proved invaluable in identifying the most affected areas and schools in need of assistance.

Following her time at All Hands, Josceline joined King’s College London’s global health partnerships, working on health systems strengthening projects in Sierra Leone, before joining Better Cotton as Safeguarding Manager in 2021. “Safeguarding appeals to me because it creates real, long-term systems changes that meaningfully protect children and adults from abuse. The impact of changing processes at even one organisation can lead to safer conditions for hundreds of thousands of people for years to come.” Through her role at Better Cotton, Josceline is working with Better Cotton’s partners across 25 countries to create safe working conditions and reporting processes that ultimately will reach 2.4 million farmers across the world.

Josceline is also on the board of trustees for the Rainforest Foundation where she provides strategic input into the Rainforest Foundation’s mission and vision and pushes for risk based approaches in their work to protect forest communities. Josceline’s goal for the future is to continue to find ways to create long-term positive impacts for vulnerable adults and children, in keeping with the IDEALS that she first became familiar with at Cobham Hall.

“Kurt Hahn’s philosophies are beautiful” she says. “Everything about the Round Square IDEALS is about justice and service and helping people who are most in need. The longer I have spent out of school, the more I have appreciated how fortunate I was to be part of such a wonderful philosophy. It’s quite a rare thing to have received an education that nurtures your desire to explore, learn and care in such an organised and exciting way.”

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