About Catalpa

At Catalpa, we build technology for aid and global development We use design and technology to connect people, make information accessible, and empower people to make informed decisions. Our programs span education, health, social inclusion, environment, aid transparency, labour mobility and more. Check us out at www.catalpa.io

The Project

Our Frontend Engineers have the opportunity to engage in a range of projects, working alongside partners to solve problems in developing countries. You’ll be working at the intersection of technology, design and global development, from concept ideation all the way to prototyping, testing and deployment


The Role

The role works as part of a talent team with a strong creative culture, to help deliver high impact work that addresses international development challenges. This position is ideal for someone who thrives in a creative environment, loves building amazing applications that are simple to use and create impact.

This position requires diverse, hands-on professional experience. We expect colleagues in this role to be quick learners, disciplined, and demonstrate an interest and aptitude in a variety of technologies, tools and languages.


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The Front-End Engineer plays a fundamental role by:

  • Participating in brainstorming sessions and contributing ideas to our technology and products.
  • Building new features and tackling issues across multiple code bases.
  • Helping to improve our code quality through writing unit tests and performing code reviews.
  • Once products are live, iterating based on user feedback and product requirements.
  • Any other work tasks that may be required to assist with meeting the company’s changing needs.

Succeeding in this role requires the following experience & skills:

  • Bachelor’s degree or higher in a related field, or an intriguing reason for not having one.
  • At least four years of experience writing maintainable Javascript applications.
  • Have a deep knowledge of frontend web development from HTML5 / CSS3 /Javascript (ES5/ES6) to service workers and in-browser databases.
  • Enjoy coding/implementing delightful experiences using modern MVC frameworks such as Vue and Riot as well as visualisation libraries like D3.js and Leaflet.
  • Ability and interest in creating beautiful, nuanced browser animations via CSS keyframes and/or other JS libraries.
  • A passion for making great products, and most importantly;
  • You’re fun to work with.

Note: This role is for a fixed term for the length of the project. However, Catalpa regularly has new projects and the successful candidate will be considered for other projects at the end of the fixed term.

It is preferred this role be based at the organisation’s head office in Dili, Timor-Leste but will consider remote work.

The Catalpa Culture

We work in a creative, supportive environment with colleagues who come from diverse walks of life, and we value the perspectives they bring. We learn, we try new things, and we base decisions on merit (not hierarchy). We pay attention to the details, and we work together to achieve the best we can. Importantly, we work here because we love what we do and the impact we can have.


What does Catalpa offer you?

At Catalpa, we know diversity makes us stronger and our workplace is one of equal opportunity. We value people’s perspectives, and people at Catalpa have the opportunity to help shape our future and the way we work towards positive change. As part of a quickly growing organisation, our employees often have opportunities to engage in other new and exciting initiatives.

We believe in a flexible working environment that supports a balanced lifestyle. Many of our staff have families, hobbies and other commitments that matter, and we’re keen to support that. We encourage people to take time off (including parental leave), and we offer learning and development opportunities to grow in your career. If you’re coming from abroad, we’ll provide you with health insurance and help you start your new journey.

Why Timor-Leste

Timor-Leste, also known as East Timor, is not too far from Australia yet feels like a completely different world. Since the country became independent in 2002 it has continued to develop its own unique identity, with its Timorese culture, Portuguese colonial heritage and the resistance history.

The country is in a period of growth and still has its struggles, however the Timorese are friendly, with high family values and are proud of their independence. The children will warm your heart as they greet you with huge smiles. The island is mainly surrounded by tropical water rich in marine life and sandy beaches with the lovely contrast of rugged mountain ranges in the background. It is a great location for work life balance with warm days and evenings year-round, ideal for snorkeling, scuba diving, hiking, outside yoga or relaxing at a beach side cafe. Depending on your lifestyle it is relatively inexpensive to live here.

If you are looking for a change, a new adventure and a role that is making a real difference, look no further.

How to Apply?

If this sounds interesting and you see yourself doing great work with us, we’d love to hear from you. Please send a cover letter and tell us why you think you’d be a good fit for this role. We recommend you submit as soon as possible, as we’ll close the role as soon as we find a great match for it. Applications are to be submitted through our jobs page https://catalpa.io/work-with-us/

For further inquiries or questions regarding this position, send an email to [email protected] with ‘Front-End Developer’ in the subject line of the email, please do not email cv’s as we require them to go through our website, thank you.

We look forward to hearing from you!

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