Are you excited by the idea of gaining new skills and experiencing a new culture? Do you want to learn a new language while having fun and making a difference to people's lives?
Our international youth volunteering programme (IYVP) offers young people aged 18-30 the opportunity to volunteer overseas in another European country for 8-12 months. We send young people from the UK to projects in Europe and host young people from Europe here in the UK.
What would I be doing?
The community projects you could be volunteering for provide a range of different services, and we'll try to match you to an appropriate placement that fits in with your personal skills and interests. We'll also arrange training, assign a supervisor to look out for your general well-being and provide ongoing confidential support and 24-hour emergency cover. Possible projects include:
- working within Red Cross services
- giving presentations on HIV prevention
- caring for the elderly or for people with disabilities
- working with children and young people.
Living arrangements vary but normally volunteers live in a shared house with other volunteers. Everyone usually has their own bedroom and there will be a shared kitchen and bathroom.
Volunteers are entitled to two days of holiday per month of service. How this is put into practice varies across placements, but every volunteer has a minimum of 16 days holiday during the course of the placement and the remaining eight days after the final seminar.
All international youth volunteers are covered by a group insurance policy provided by AXA. This policy is designed to cover your medical needs during your time abroad and is provided to you free of charge.
This is not a language course and we normally cannot arrange language training. If you want to arrange it yourself, however, we can tell you where to look and you can agree with your supervisor about how to fit English lessons into your weekly timetable.
Every IYVP volunteer will get a Youthpass certificate, which proves your participation in the scheme and highlights your learning and achievements over the year.
Who can participate?
We have partnerships with several Red Cross National Societies in Europe. At the moment, to participate you must be legally resident in one of the following countries: Armenia, Finland, France, Germany, Spain or the UK. Our programme is funded by the European Commission as part of their European Voluntary Service (EVS) scheme. We’re looking for people who:
- are between 18 and 30 years old
- have ideally done some volunteering before
- will bring commitment and initiative to their work
- are friendly, flexible and open to new experiences
- are serious about helping individuals and local communities
- are willing to learn a new language or improve existing language skills
- are keen to spend 8-12 months living and working in another European country.
We are always keen to hear from volunteers who would otherwise not have access to such international volunteering opportunities and particularly recruit volunteers from under-represented groups. If this sounds like you, or someone you know, please get in touch.
What skills do I need?
You do not need any specific skills, as volunteers receive necessary training during the year. All you really need is the motivation and commitment to make the most of this opportunity.
How do I apply?
The programme has two sides: sending and hosting.
If you live in the UK and want to go to another European country, you can find out more about our youth volunteering opportunities abroad and then apply online.
If you live in Armenia, France, or Germany you can find out more about our youth volunteering opportunities in the UK but please apply through your own Red Cross National Society by contacting the people below.
Unfortunately we only currently work with these national societies and cannot accept individual applications from those based in other countries.
Who do I contact with questions?
Please contact the IYVP coordinator at email@example.com
Find out why you should volunteer with us