Join the Ongoing VSO International Citizen Service (ICS) Volunteering Program 2019-2020 ( Funded )
International Citizen Service (ICS) is a UK Government funded programme providing volunteer placements to 18-25 year olds, and Team Leader placements to 23-35 year olds in a number of countries around the world.
ICS makes the most of the unique contribution young people can bring to development – passion, energy and the ability to reach other young people. Our programmes are in Livelihoods, Health and Education.
Every ICS team is made up of volunteers from the country where the project is running, and volunteers from the United Kingdom and European Union.
ICS is currently active in eight countries in Africa and Asia:
How it works
Volunteers work side-by-side with partners from the UK, staying with local families in the community and working on community development projects.
ICS is demanding but hugely rewarding. It’s a great opportunity for personal development, a stepping stone to future careers and a chance to make your world a better place.
Placements are 10-12 weeks in length, and you will receive structured training and support throughout.
Placements are unpaid, but you will receive all travel, food and accommodation, as well as a small living allowance. There is no cost to you to volunteer.
You don’t need any special skills to take part in ICS, but you must:
- be aged 18-25
- be committed to living and volunteering away from home for 10-12 weeks
- be willing to live in a family in the local community whilst on placement
- be committed to continuing your work in your home community after your placement
- not have taken part in ICS before – if you have, you can apply to be a Team Leader
- be resident in the country you’re applying from
Spending between three and eight months on placement, you’ll support and manage a diverse group of young people working together to benefit your host community. Team Leaders work in pairs, so you will have a counterpart volunteer from the UK.
In order to volunteer as a Team Leader, you must meet the same criteria as for Team Members. In addition, you must:
- be aged 23 – 35
- have strong facilitation skills to help teams overcome challenges and achieve results
- be able to build trust to support individuals through difficult times
- be able to take an organised approach to project planning
- have communication skills to maintain effective relationships with stakeholders
- bring a mature and positive approach to challenges and realities of volunteering on ICS.
As part of your preparation you will be invited to a residential training session. This will include:
- an introduction to ICS and the agency you will be working with
- an introduction to international development
- an introduction to how the project works and how it contributes to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
On placement: orientation
At the start of your placement you will take part in a residential training and meet the rest of your team.
You will attend together with your volunteer counterparts from the UK, and further prepare for the duties of your specific placement.
This training will also include:
- an introduction to local staff and your country office,
- living with families in the local community,
- cross-cultural working,
- community development.
On placement: mid-phase
Halfway through your placement, you will spend time with your team to review how the placement is going and to develop plans for the second half of your placement. It is important to have this period to reflect on your work and how you are finding volunteering.
At the end of your placement: debrief
At the end of your placement your team will have a debrief to help you reflect on your team’s achievements and the progress you’ve made. It also enables you to put any necessary plans together to ensure the next team can continue your good work.
At the debrief you will also start planning the next steps such as your Action at Home.
How to apply VSO International Citizen Service (ICS) Volunteering Program 2019-2020
Your application should take about 20 minutes to complete, and you can save your progress and return later if needed.
You will need to submit details of two referees and two emergency contacts, so please have them ready before you start your application.
Before you start, let’s just check you are:
aware this is a voluntary placement, not a paid job
willing to volunteer and live away from home for 10-12 weeks
willing to live in a host home in another community
willing to do an Action at Home after your ICS placement has finished.
Alternatively, you can also apply using this Word version of the ICS Application Form, which is compatible with screen readers. Once you’ve completed the form, save it and email it to email@example.com.
Visit the Official Webpage of the ICS Volunteering Program 2019