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International Citizen Service

International Citizen Service (ICS) is a global volunteering experience for young people from all backgrounds to make a real difference to the lives of some of the world’s poorest people. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to work in Africa, Asia or Latin America for up to 3 months on projects to improve people’s lives.

You’ll live in the community, working in small groups or teams, directly alongside volunteers from the country you’re working in. You’ll meet new people, learn a lot about poverty and how to change things for the better. You’ll also develop loads of new skills which will be useful throughout life and may help you get a job, like team work, leadership, and planning. Placements are available from July 2012.

How can I get involved?

If you live in the UK and are aged 18 – 25 (including those with indefinite leave to remain in the UK or EU/EEA citizens currently living in the UK), you’re eligible for the programme. No specific skills or qualifications are needed, but you’ll have to demonstrate motivation and commitment to helping others and aptitudes such as the ability to communicate and work well in team.

The initial application is online and is followed by an assessment day – see the section below for more details. For most volunteers there is no set fee for ICS, although all volunteers will be supported to raise funds towards their placement. For those that pay, or are dependent on others that pay higher rate tax there will be a fee of £1,500. For more information see the Department for International Development (DfID) website.

Where can I find out more?

There’s more information on the programme and application process at:

The National Citizen Service

Still at school? If you’re in Year 11, you could take part in the National Citizen Service, a voluntary programme that includes away-from-home residential experiences and a social action project designed by the young people involved.