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Trinity Volunteer Fair 2012

November 2011

The annual Volunteer Fair took place on November 22nd as part of College’s ongoing commitment to support and encourage members of College staff and students to volunteer in the local, national and international community (Action 5.2 of the College Strategic Plan 2009-2014). Representatives from 35 different organisations were on hand to discuss a variety of opportunities to get involved. Further details on the opportunties showcased are below

Organisations will not be showcasing pure fundraising opportunities but rather those which offer more programmatic engagement. All organisations showcasing opportunities abroad are not-for profit, have signed Comhlámh’s Code of Good Practice for Sending Organisations and either provide or require appropriate insurance. Sarah Carroll of volunteeringforfree.org prepared an opinion piece on Voluntourism for the fair. Read Sarah's article here.

This fair is organised by the Civic Engagement Officer, Careers Advisory Service in conjunction with the Trinity Volunteer Opportunities Forum. Click on the links below for further details of each organisation. For further information contact volunteer@tcd.ie.

ALONE gets a new volunteer at the fair

Opportunities in Ireland

Local Volunteer Centres
Age Action Ireland    
ALONE
Barretstown    
Camara  
Care Local 
Caring and Sharing Association (CASA)      
Cheeverstown 
Crime Victims Helpline
Dublin Christian Mission
Dublin Simon Community
Fighting Words
Green Sod Ireland
Irish Wheelchair Association
Le Chéile
Marriage Equality
Niteline
Northside Community Law & Mediation Centre
Progressio Ireland 
Solas Project
Spina Bifida Hydrocaphalus Ireland (SHINE)
St. Vincent de Paul: Ozanam and Sunshine House
St. John of Gods: Carmona Services
Victim Support at Court 

Opportunities Abroad

Comhlámh
EIL Intercultural Learning
Global Brigades
Going Brown
Habitat for Humanity
Hope Foundation
Nurture Africa
Outreach Moldova
Viatores Christi
Voluntary Service International
The Volunteer Projects

Local Volunteer Centres

Interested in volunteering but having difficulties finding a suitable volunteering opportunity?  Your local volunteer centre can help!

Dublin City North Volunteer Centre offers a range of supports and services to volunteers and volunteer involving organizations alike at a local level in Dublin 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 17 and parts of Dublin 13. The centre works on the basis that volunteering is essential in developing and maintaining strong communities.  The centre promotes volunteering locally, and provides a placement service helping volunteers find opportunities to get involved in the type of work of their choosing.

Dublin City North Volunteer Centre
Coleraine House, Coleraine St, Dublin 7
Tel. 01 872 2622
Email: info@volunteerdublincitynorth.ie
www.volunteerdublincitynorth.ie

Dublin City South Volunteer Centre provides a list of opportunities for Dublin South city including Dublin 2, 4, 6, 8, 10 & 12. Feel free to drop into 76 Thomas St (10 minutes walk from Trinity) or visit the centre’s website to get an idea of the kinds of things you can do. Once you register and apply for volunteer roles which interest you, staff of the centre will contact the organisation on your behalf and ask them to follow up with you directly.

Dublin City South Volunteer Centre
76 Thomas St, Dublin 8
Tel. 01 473 7482 or 087 752 3693
Email: info@volunteerdublin.ie
www.volunteerdublincitysouth.ie

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Age Action Ireland

Category:                               Older People  
Location:                                Various locations in Dublin
Dates:                                     Ongoing
Application Deadline:            None
Website:                                 www.ageaction.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Age Action is a charity which promotes positive ageing and better policies and services for older people.   Working with, and on behalf of, older people we aim to make Ireland the best place in the world in which to grow older.

What do volunteers do?

Teach older people basic computer skills through our Getting Started Programme. Only 1 in 4 older people are online and this programme helps older people to bridge the digital divide, to beat exclusion and isolation and to increase independence and equality. Volunteers teach either one or two students at a time in small class groups. Classes normally run once a week for 1 to 2 hours for 3 to 6 weeks depending on the location. For the beginners course volunteers will be encouraging and helping older people to learn simple IT tasks (turn computer on/off, use the mouse, keyboard, search the internet, send and receive emails). Older learners may also be interested in learning other skills such as how to use Skype, downloading photos etc. Training will be provided and tutor lesson plans are available on all topics.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?     

Receipted public transport costs are refunded.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

All volunteers are fully supported and trained throughout their volunteering.

Please explain the application process.

All potential volunteers will need to fill out a volunteer application form and the potential volunteer will be reference checked. The potential volunteer will also need to attend a tutor training workshop.  This takes approximately three weeks.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

This is dependant on the location of the computer classes.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Our volunteer policy explains the volunteer’s role and covers recruitment, induction, training and supervision process as well as dealing with concerns and other matters relevant to volunteers.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

All volunteers are covered by our insurance.

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ALONE

Category:                             Older People
Location:                              Dublin
Dates:                                   Ongoing
Application Deadline:          None
Website:                               www.alone.ie

Brief description of organisation:

ALONE is an independent charity that works on behalf of older people in need through a befriending service, long-term housing and crisis support in the community. ALONE believes that every citizen’s dignity and human rights should be honoured. We listen carefully to our service users to understand the world from their perspective and offer them help as required.

What do volunteers do?

We have a variety of roles for volunteers, the main one being befriending.
Befriending Volunteers provide a visitation service to older people in their homes for one hour per week (minimum commitment of one year including summer). Volunteers also lead and deliver a variety of activities including holiday groups, various events, schools talks, community response, accounts and finance, communications, reception and administration and more. We also have office based opportunities in social media, marketing and PR, social work and policy and gathering legal information with our housing and community response teams.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?     

We would reimburse volunteers for mileage expenses or travel expenses incurred whilst working i.e. for home visits.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Volunteers receive full induction and training before they start and ongoing support from the Volunteer Coordinator. Befriending Volunteers will be introduced to their guest by their Volunteer Coordinator before they start visiting. The Volunteer Coordinator will “check-in” with volunteers on a regular basis (more frequently for new volunteers). Volunteers are also assigned a Mentor and are expected to attend two volunteer meetings per year to meet with peers, get support and learn from each other, exchange experiences and link in with the Mentors and Coordinators.

Please explain the application process.

This involves an expression of interest, attendance at Information Session, application form (including vetting and references), interview, training and signing of volunteer agreement. For befriending volunteers it can be up to three months from beginning to end (including a month’s training) whereas office volunteers can start within about two weeks.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?

No.

What volunteer policies are in place?

ALONE has a Volunteer Handbook which all policies (confidentiality, equal opportunities, training and support etc.) We also have Health and Safety and Lone Working policies.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

All volunteers are fully insured under ALONE’s Employer’s Liability insurance.

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Barretstown

Category:                               Children
Location:                                Co. Kildare
Dates:                                     Spring & Summer Camps
Application Deadline:            7th December for Spring Camps and 25th January Summer Camps
Website:                                 www.barretstown.org

Brief description of organisation:

Barretstown is a specially-designed camp that provides Therapeutic Recreation programmes for children with serious illnesses and their families. Barretstown’s mission is to rebuild the lives of children affected by serious illness and their families. We believe that every child with serious illness should enjoy their childhood. All of the children and families come to Barretstown free of charge. Everything, including accommodation, food, medical assistance and round-trip airfares are provided at no cost to the family. Barretstown is supported by donations and the fundraising efforts of corporate supporters, individuals and community groups.

What do volunteers do?

As a volunteer (Cara) you perform a key role in supporting and encouraging each child to take part in all aspects of camp, while making sure they’re safe and supervised at all times. We also require Chaperones to escort the children from their home county to camp and interpreters to translate for the children.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?     

Chaperones and Interpreter expenses only are covered only.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Half day’s training for Family Camp and 1 full days training for Summer Camps at the beginning of each session. All volunteers are supervised, supported and mentored.

Please explain the application process.

Volunteers must be at least 19 years of age, fluent in English and be available to be at camp for the full length of the session.
Volunteers must complete an application form with 2 written references and undergo Garda Vetting (or international equivalent) as part of the application. You will also complete a twenty minute phone interview (15-20 minutes).  It takes between two weeks and a month from the closing date to process applications and notify volunteers.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?

Yes.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Volunteer Agreement, Health and Safety and IT Policy.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

All volunteers are covered while on site volunteering.

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Camara Education

Category:                              Education and Technology Charity
Location:                               Chapelizod, Dublin 20, Ireland
Dates:                                    Ongoing
Application Deadline:           None
Website:                                www.camara.org

Brief description of organisation:

Camara is an International organisation dedicated to using technology to improve education and livelihood skills in disadvantaged communities around the world. With better education we expect these communities to break the cycle of poverty they find themselves in. Founded seven years ago in Dublin, Ireland the organisation has built a proven model of ‘education delivery’ that is both sustainable and highly scalable. Some 340,000 children in poor communities have been made digitally literate by Camara over this period.

To do this, Camara has provided eLearning Centres to 1,650 schools in Africa, Ireland and the Caribbean, installed nearly 30,000 computers, and trained over 5,000 teachers how to use the technology for learning purposes.

What do volunteers do?

Camara offers Dublin based internships and volunteering opportunities throughout the year, our interns and volunteers include college students and recent graduates, amongst others. In return for their time and expertise, Camara offers individuals the opportunity to find out what it’s like to work with a dynamic and innovative organisation and to gain real work experience in their field.
Positions regularly come up in the areas of Media and Communications, Marketing and Fundraising, Administration, Technology and Research.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?                    

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?    

Yes where placement involves travel from the Dublin workshop to another site however this does not include travel to and from the workshop.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Formal and informal training is offered for all internships at the beginning of and throughout the placement.

Please explain the application process.

Simply send your CV and cover letter to hester@camara.org. Volunteer Roles are typically filled within a month.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?

Yes

What volunteer policies are in place?

Dignity at Work Policy, Equal Opportunities Policy, Child Protection Policy, Health and Safety Statement, Ireland, Sale of Computers policy.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

All volunteers are insured on our Public Liability Insurance cover.

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Care Local

Category:                              Older People, Health & Social Care
Location:                               Leeson Street Upper and other locations across Dublin
Dates:                                    One hour a week for 6 months from January
Application Deadline:           November 31st
Website:                                www.carelocal.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Since 1975 Care Local have been providing a diverse range of befriending and support services to older people living in Dublin, relying significantly on hundreds of trained volunteers so that a person centred approach to caring can be achieved.

What do volunteers do?

Plate Pals Mealtime Companionship volunteers are being recruited for nursing homes across Dublin.  Poor appetite and difficulty eating and drinking are problems for many older people in care.  Plate Pals volunteers are there to turn the tide against malnutrition by providing assistance and gentle reminders to eat, for the full hour it can take to finish a full meal. 
This is a wonderful opportunity for those interested in volunteering within a nursing home or for those with an interest in health, social care, nutrition and/or ageing issues.
Volunteers give one hour a week for at least six months. 

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

This is a companionship role, all we ask for is your time.

Are volunteers reimbursed for their out of pocket expenses?

No.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Full training is provided including:  volunteer induction, Nutrition and the Mealtime Experience, Dementia & Communication, Elder Abuse (certified by the HSE) and Bereavement Training.

Please explain the application process.

Volunteers are screened according the HIQA standards for any person giving time in a nursing home: 3 references and Garda Vetting.  Vetting form must be submitted by end November for January start.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?

Yes.

What volunteer policies are in place?

We have a volunteer agreement in place.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Volunteers are covered by our insurance.

CASA (Caring and Sharing Association)

Category:                               Disability
Location:                                Various locations in Dublin.
Dates:                                     4 hours one Sunday a month
Application Deadline:            None
Website:                                 www.casa.ie

Brief description of organisation:

CASA is a voluntary organisation established in 1981, whose goal is to develop friendships and social outlets for people with disabilities through a variety of social activities.  CASA services include regular social events in our network of over 20 branches, respite breaks and pilgrimages to Lourdes.

What do volunteers do?

Volunteers will attend the monthly socials on a one-to-one basis with our members. They will take part in the day’s activities and just have fun with our group. Our volunteers aim to develop friendships and enable our members to participate in all our activities.
We ask volunteers to commit for a minimum of six months.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?                    

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?   

No

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

There is volunteer induction days held twice a year. Induction training will provide you with an opportunity to learn more about the organisation and familiarise you with your volunteer role. During Induction you will have the opportunity to meet with some CASA members, fellow volunteers and staff. There will be some brief training relating to manual handling, communication skills, health and safety and basic first aid. There will also be a chance to ask as many questions as you need to. Further training courses/seminars may be offered from time to time to support you in your role as a volunteer. There is also constant support and supervision at all of the socials and as it is group activities the volunteers will never be left on their own.

Please explain the application process.

Volunteers will need to fill in an application form and Garda vetting. They will then be invited into the office to meet the volunteer coordinator. If they are deemed suitable for the work they can then join in on the next monthly social.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

Yes

What volunteer policies are in place?

There is a comprehensive volunteer handbook which you can find on our website. The handbook gives volunteers a clear picture of what is required of them and also covers health and safety, confidentiality, equal opportunities, the code of conduct and more. There is a also child protection policy.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

All volunteers are fully insured as part of our policies.

Cheeverstown

Category:                               Social care
Location:                                Templeogue, Dublin 6w
Dates:                                     Ongoing
Application Deadline:            None
Website:                                 www.cheeverstown.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Cheeverstown House in Dublin is a voluntary organisation, accredited by the Council on Quality & Leadership providing a wide range of residential, respite and day services to almost 400 children and adults with an intellectual disability and to their families.
Cheeverstown House provides a further 17 respite places as well as flexible in home support; a range of early childhood, education and day care services for children; vocational training and employment programmes for adults. Services are provided to a large extent in the Dublin South West region of the Health Services Executive; mostly in South Dublin Council Area including Tallaght.

What do volunteers do?

We have a range of volunteering opportunities, most of which are about promoting social inclusion. Volunteers help people to get involved or stay involved within the life of the community. It could be supporting friends to meet-up at the weekend, going to the cinema, shopping or the pub. It’s often the opportunity to share in the everyday activities, that makes a difference in people’s lives. Involving volunteers is one way of supporting people to make and keep friendships that are important to them, often it is the relationships we have with others that mean the most and add value to all our own lives.
We ask volunteers to give two or three hours a week for at least six months.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?                                

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?               

Yes.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

All volunteers receive induction and on-going training and support

Please explain the application process.

We have a recruitment process and system for vetting and checking in line with best practice. Applications, interviews, Garda vetting and reference checking can take up to three months.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?

Yes

What volunteer policies are in place?

We have a written volunteer policy, volunteer agreement, safe practice training, child protection policy and expenses policy.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Yes, volunteers are covered by our insurance.

Crime Victims Helpline

Category:                               Supporting Victims Of Crime
Location:                                Harcourt Street
Dates:                                     One year commitment required
Application Deadline:            30 November, 2012
Website:                                 www.crimevictimshelpline.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Crime Victims Helpline is a voluntary organisation which provides support and information to victims of crime and people affected by crime.  The service is free and confidential.  Our volunteers provide emotional support, links to other organisations that support victims of crime, information on the criminal justice system, and liaison with An Garda Síochána and other organisations on behalf of our callers.

What do volunteers do?

Attend at the Helpline office at a time arranged, usually a fixed time each week, answer the phone to callers, respond to each caller in accordance with the ethos of the Helpline, be familiar with the concerns of victims of crime, and know how to respond and carry out administrative tasks in relation to calls.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?                   

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?

Yes, for any transport expenses incurred, on provision of receipts

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Full training is provided prior to becoming a helpline volunteer, ongoing, training provided to all volunteers, ongoing support and supervision is provided and external supervision is available on request, as need arises.

Please explain the application process.

Volunteers complete an application form, and a Garda Vetting form, undertake an Informal interview. Partake in the Monitoring throughout training programme. This process can take up to three months.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

Yes.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Volunteers’ agreement, Equality and Health and Safety Policies are all in place

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Volunteers are covered by our public liability insurance

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Dublin Christian Mission

Category:                               Youth and Community and Homeless
Location:                                5 and 6 Chancery Place, Dublin 7
Dates:                                     Ongoing
Application Deadline:            None
Website:                                 www.dcmlive.ie

Brief description of organisation:

We are a Christian Organisation that works with some of the most vulnerable people in the city of Dublin. We work extensively with youth running youth clubs almost every night of the week plus an afterschool non-evangelical homework club 3 days a week. We work in Drimnagh/ Crumlin, Ballyerfermot and the inner city Markets Area. We also run a homeless shelter on Mountjoy Square four nights a week.

What do volunteers do?

Volunteers will help in our afterschool programme helping the youth with their homework on a Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday afternoon. Or they may help in our many youth clubs which occur in the evenings and generally last for 1-2 hours. Or they may help in the homeless ministry throughout the week.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?                 

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?     

No.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Volunteers operate under the supervision of DCM staff or experienced volunteers

Please explain the application process.

Volunteers need to contact DCM Youth and Community worker of DCM Youth Work Co-ordinator, to determine if DCM Is a good fit for them. Then fill in application form, reference form and Garda vetting form. This is anticipated to take about a week or so.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

No.

What volunteer policies are in place?

We have a full volunteer policy as well as health and safety and child protection procedures

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

They are covered under our public liability policy.

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Dublin Simon Community

Category:                               Homeless Services/Social Care
Location:                                Various sites around Dublin city centre
Dates:                                     Ongoing
Application Deadline:            End of January for Part time volunteers
                                                Full time roles filled as required
Website:                                 www.dubsimon.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Dublin Simon Community works to prevent and address homelessness in Dublin. We provide services at all stages of homelessness and enable people to move to a place they can call home.  The organisation was founded by a group of Trinity and UCD students in 1969, who began by providing soup and sandwiches to people who were sleeping rough in Dublin city centre.  In addition to the Soup Run, Dublin Simon provide many services which aim to help those who are sleeping rough on the streets, people who are in their own accommodation - and those who are at any of the stages in between. We also work to prevent homelessness through early intervention with those at risk.

What do volunteers do?

Part Time Volunteers help run our Soup Run and Social Club services, Charity Shops and assist with programmes in our residential services. 
Full Time Volunteers are an integral part of the running of our 15 diverse services across Dublin.  Volunteers commit 35 hours a week for 9 – 12 months and gain valuable practical experience in the social care field.   Non Social Care specific placements are also available in our support services.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?                    

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?     

Yes. In addition, Full Time Volunteers receive a weekly allowance and accommodation if required.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Induction and Health & Safety training is provided to all Part Time and Full Time Volunteers.  Full Time volunteers also complete a D.I.T. accredited Certificate in Volunteering and receive supervision and mentoring throughout their placement.

Please explain the application process.

The recruitment process includes submission of an application form, assessment by interview, Garda vetting and references. Part time volunteers will be placed by the end of February.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

Yes, we endeavour to make reasonable efforts to enable access to opportunities for persons with disabilities.

What volunteer policies are in place?

We have a volunteer handbook and volunteers are covered by all relevant organisational policies.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Volunteers are covered by the organisations public liability insurance.

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Fighting Words

Category:                               Creative Writing/Education
Location:                                Behan Square, 13 Russell Street, Dublin 1
Dates:                                     Mornings, afternoons and/or weekends
Application Deadline:            None
Website:                                 www.fightingwords.ie

Brief description of organisation:
Fighting Words is a creative writing centre established by Roddy Doyle and Sean Love. Each weekday morning from September to June, 10.00 am to 12.00 noon, a primary school class (1st – 6th class) visits the Fighting Words Centre to write a story. Weekday afternoons are devoted to workshops for secondary students during the academic year.

What do volunteers do?

All tutoring at Fighting Words is free and delivered by teams of volunteer writing tutors.  We have over 400 volunteer tutors - people from all walks of life - including professional writers, aspiring writers, teachers, student teachers, retired teachers, journalists, visual artists, musicians and filmmakers - just to name a few.  You don't need to be a writer or a teacher to be a Fighting Words volunteer, though.  Anyone who enjoys working in a creative environment with the individuals and groups that come to the centre - and is a good listener - is welcome to volunteer.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?                    

Nothing. 

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?

Generally no, but expenses are provided during summer camps.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

All volunteers attend one two-hour training session, which covers our primary and secondary school workshop formats and our volunteering and child protection policies and procedures.  There is a volunteer meeting at the end of each workshop so volunteers can discuss can share experiences and discuss any challenges they experienced during the session.  All volunteers are supervised by Fighting Words staff while they are at the centre.

Please explain the application process.

Volunteers are asked to complete an application form, visit the centre for an informal interview and to attend a Volunteer Training session. References are checked and we also ask volunteers to complete a Garda vetting form. The process takes a maximum of four weeks as the volunteer must attend one of our monthly trainings before getting started.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

Yes.

What volunteer policies are in place?

We have a volunteer policy outlining the volunteer relationship, a comprehensive child protection policy and a tutoring handbook that are provided at training.  We also have a health and safety policy and equal opportunities policy, both posted publicly in the centre.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Volunteers are covered by Fighting Words’ insurance policy.

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Green Sod Ireland

Category:                               Environment, Ecological  Education
Location:                                Dublin
Dates:                                     January – May 2013
Application Deadline:            None
Website:                                 www.greensodlandtrust.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Green Sod Ireland was set up to protect Irish ecosystems and to educate people to be proactive in the preservation of nature.  There are two strands to the work:

  • Establishing Wildlife Corridors in order to create safe habitats and to facilitate the free movement of wildlife, vital for biodiversity.
  • Ecological education promoting a paradigm shift in thinking from Cenozoic to Ecozoic which includes a cross-curricular initiative for Primary School, a Transition year programme, an adult Environmental Studies programme and an on-line biodiversity toolkit.

 What do volunteers do?

We are looking for individuals to help establish a vibrant education team who will deliver our education programme, “The Story of the Universe”, to be delivered in two hour sessions over three days in Primary Schools in Dublin. It is a fun, interactive opportunity to gain teaching experience and improve your CV. This cross-curricular programme includes elements of a number of subjects including English, Geography, Music, Art and Science.  We welcome expressions of interest from enthusiastic, creative people who have an interest in the environment.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?                    

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?     

No.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Our Dublin based Education Officer, will train, supervise and support volunteers.

Please explain the application process.

Once volunteers show an expression of interest, a member of Green Sod Ireland will meet with them informally within two weeks. We then hope to complete the training of the successful volunteers before Christmas and that new volunteers would contact schools with our support after the Christmas break. One of our Education Officers who is based in Dublin and who has experience of delivering the programme will head up the team of Trinity volunteers.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

No.

What volunteer policies are in place?

We have a Volunteer policy, Health & Safety and Child Protection policy

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

We have appropriate Employers and Public Liability cover for our volunteers.

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Irish Wheelchair Association     

Category:                               Integration of people with disability
Location:                                Nationwide
Dates:                                     Ongoing
Application Deadline:            None
Website:                                 www.iwa.ie

Brief description of organisation:

The Irish Wheelchair Association (IWA) is a National Organisation dedicated to the achievement dedicated to full social, economic and educational integration of equal, independent and participative members of the community.

What do volunteers do?

We welcome people interested in volunteering in the following areas:
- Sports programmes                         - SPIRIT [youth] programmes
- Recreational & social activities       - Home visits
- Advocacy and Lobbying                   - Respite and holiday breaks
- Transport

If you have skills in areas not listed here that you think would benefit IWA and further its aims, please feel free to discuss these with us. We aim to ensure that the volunteer’s specific skills, expertise and interests are utilised and matched to the work of the IWA in each region. Volunteers may also identify activities/ programmes that they would like to become involved in as their knowledge and insight into the organisation grows.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?                 

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for their out of pocket expenses?    

If agreed with the line manager and with receipts.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Induction training will provide you with an opportunity to learn more about the organisation and familiarise you with your volunteer role. During your time volunteering with IWA, you may be asked to participate in training relevant to your role, some of which may be mandatory e.g. child protection, manual handling and lifting. Mandatory training will relate to the specific work you are carrying out. Opportunities for optional training may also be provided during your time as a volunteer. One-to-one support sessions will be facilitated by a nominated support person. Support will be provided to a volunteer at least once in the first six weeks of starting and at least once every six months after that.

Please explain the application process.

Volunteers fill out and application form and undergo Garda vetting.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

Yes

What volunteer policies are in place?

A comprehensive volunteering policy, code of conduct and health and safety, child protection and grievance procedures are all in place.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Volunteers are covered by IWA insurance.

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Le Chéile

Category:                               Youth & Parent Mentoring
Location:                                Dublin
Dates:                                     Minimum commitment of one year
Application Deadline:            None
Website:                                 www.lecheile.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Le Chéile, Mentoring and Youth Justice Support Services, recruits and trains volunteers from local communities to work with young people and their families, involved with the Probation Service.

What do volunteers do?

Being a mentor involves meeting a young person or parent for 2-3 hours a week and can include trying new activities, as well as assisting with practical issues such as accessing training or education.  Le Chéile is a child-centred, non-judgemental service which promotes positive change and aims to improve the decision-making and overall well-being of the people we work with.  As a Mentor, your support and guidance can make a real difference in their lives.

Volunteers must be twenty years of age or older and in a position to commit to a minimum of one year’s involvement.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?                   

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?    

Yes.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Le Chéile provides full induction and on-going training to all volunteers.  Mentors will also have the on-going support and supervision of their local coordinator, as well as formal group supervision with fellow mentors.

Please explain the application process.

To apply please complete our application form, which is available on our website or by contacting recruitment@lecheile.ie.
The application process then includes interviews, Garda vetting, reference checks and completion of our mentor induction training. We will be running training in January or February and volunteers will be able to get started after that.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

Yes.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Le Chéile has a full Volunteer Policy and procedures manual which all volunteers are given and asked to read and sign before they start mentoring.  This manual covers child protection, health and safety and all other relevant policies.
All volunteers will be asked to sign a volunteer agreement and confidentiality agreement.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

All Mentors are covered by Le Chéile Accident and Public and Professional Liability Insurance.

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Marriage Equality

Category:                               Equality / Human Rights
Location:                                Parnell Square East, Dublin 1
Dates:                                     Ongoing- minimum commitment of 6 months
Application Deadline:            None
Website:                                 www.marriagequality.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Marriage Equality is a non-profit organisation working to secure equal marriage rights for same-sex couples in Ireland.

What do volunteers do?

Volunteers work on our ‘Out to your TD’ campaign, calling supporters and encouraging them to visit their local TDs about the issue of marriage equality.  Volunteers give supporters more information and support in this process.  Volunteers are required to do one shift every two weeks from 6-8pm on either a Tuesday or Wednesday evening and they are required to attend volunteer meetings, which are held once every two months.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?                                

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?            

No.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Volunteers are provided with full training and receive support from volunteer team leaders as well as the volunteer manager and staff members.

Please explain the application process.

Volunteers complete an application form, meet with the volunteer manager and then attend training.  Training is conducted as needed, however there could be a time gap between receipt of the application form and training. Usually it takes between two weeks and two months.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?       

Yes.

What volunteer policies are in place?
There is a Volunteer Agreement and Volunteer Policy as well as Health & Safety and Dignity at Work Policies in place.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Volunteers are covered under our office insurance policy.

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Niteline

Category:                               Student welfare
Location:                                City centre location & college campuses
Dates:                                     Training is from January - February
Application Deadline:            January 20th
Website:                                 www.niteline.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Niteline is a student-run listening, support and practical information service for the students of TCD, UCD, DCU, RCSI and NCAD. Niteline provides an anonymous, confidential and non-judgmental listening service through two mediums, a freephone line and through an instant messaging program.

What do volunteers do?

Volunteers are trained to listen to whatever the caller wants to say. Volunteers are required to be discreet about their involvement in Niteline and are chosen for their ability to listen and accept rather than for any professional qualifications that they might have.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay? 

Nothing, Niteline is funded by the SUs of the colleges it represents.

Are volunteers reimbursed for their out of pocket expenses?    

Yes.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Volunteers receive over extensive training and are screened before taking a phone call. Once accepted to be a volunteer, volunteers are supported through peer support and also through support meetings with the counselling services of the colleges Niteline represents. Continuous training is received throughout the duration of the volunteering period.

Please explain the application process.

After applying to be a volunteer, an interview is held to determine suitability for training. If successful, the prospective volunteer will be accepted to commence training. A final screening and interview decides if the prospective volunteer is suitable to be a Niteline volunteer.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

We endeavour to be inclusive of volunteers with disabilities and will discuss accessibility matters on an individual basis.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Niteline has an inclusive policy document that ensures volunteer welfare as central to its operations.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Niteline is covered under TCD insurance as a college activity.

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Northside Community Law & Mediation Centre

Category:                               Legal 
Location:                                Main office in Coolock, Dublin 17
Dates:                                     Ongoing
Application Deadline:            None
Website:                                 www.nclc.ie

Brief description of organisation:

We are a non-for-profit independent law centre we offer free legal information, advice and in some cases representation, to people living within our catchment area that otherwise would not be able to afford it. We provide info on: Family Law, Social Welfare, Debt, Consumer Issues, Employment & Equality, Housing & Community Care. We also aim to empower the local community through providing as many educational programmes as possible.  The law centre is a hub of knowledge and we aim to share this with the community in order for them to make informed decisions and to exercise their rights.

What do volunteers do?

All our volunteers have some legal education or background the main work of our volunteers is to assist our solicitors with case work and administration and research.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?                   

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?    

Yes.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

All our volunteers have in house training the same as paid staff. All volunteers are supported and supervised by the Volunteer Manager. 

Please explain the application process.

All volunteers have to complete an application form and are then called for an interview.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?

Yes.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Northside Community Law & Mediation Centre has a full and comprehensive volunteer policy and handbook.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

All volunteers are covered by the Northside Community Law & Mediation Centre company insurance policy.

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Progressio Ireland

Category:        International Development, sustainable environment, water, participation & effective governance
Location:         Ireland
Dates:              Ongoing
Deadline:         None
Website:          www.progressio.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Progressio Ireland is an independent Irish international development organisation that is part of the Progressio family. Through our skill-sharing and development worker programme we work in partnership with local organisations in 11 countries to facilitate people’s active participation in their own development. Contributing to structural policy change at a global level is fundamental to our work. The key areas of our work are sustainable environment and water and participation and effective governance.

What do volunteers do?

There are various opportunities to support Progressio and our “Waterproof Development” campaign all over Ireland, for example by, by organising our yearly water-challenge or by introducing children to water issues and our Zanjero Water Challenge for children.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?

Yes.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

We offer on-going training, support and supervision for all volunteers depending on the specific role the volunteer takes on (i.e. training in working with youth groups for children’s water challenge; logistical support for selling water bottles at festivals etc.).

Please explain the application process.

The positions in Ireland are flexible and volunteers may apply for these at any time during the year. The process includes an informal interview at the Progressio Ireland office in Donnybrook or on the phone. They usually take on the role within 2 weeks of the interview but this is also flexible depending on availability of youth groups and dates of events. Please email Judith@progressio.ie or call 01-644966

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?

Yes.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Volunteer agreement, child protection, grievance, health & safety policies are in place for all staff and volunteers.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Volunteers in Ireland are fully covered under liability insurance.

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Solas Project

Category:                               Community Development / Education  
Location:                                The Liberties, Dublin 8.
Dates:                                     Ongoing
Application Deadline:            None
Website:                                 www.solasproject.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Solas Project is a community development charity (CHY17385) based in Dublin 8 working with children and young people at risk of early school leaving and youth crime due to social and educational disadvantage. Our vision is to see communities rejuvenated through education and sport by equipping and building up young people to overcome all limitations imposed on them by social and educational disadvantage through the adventure of discovering their abilities and self-worth.

What do volunteers do?

Volunteers are essential for the running of each of our programmes.  Currently we need volunteers particularly in the following areas:

College Awareness – Volunteers accompany 6th class children on a trip to Trinity College to open them to the possibility of attending college and to break down any preconceived barriers to college.

After School Clubs – Volunteers help children with homework and fun activities. Minimum commitment of 1 hour a week for one academic term.

Reading Support – a group volunteering opportunity. 1 hour a week for 5 weeks. 10-20 volunteers required per programme.  


How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?

No.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

As well as induction training, volunteers are offered Child Protection training. We also run volunteer training and discussion evenings once a term for those volunteering on a regular basis. If any issues or questions arise the volunteer is welcome to speak to the person running the programme they are involved with or they can approach the Volunteer Coordinator.

Please explain the application process.

Applicants complete an application form and Garda Vetting form (depending on programme applying for), have an informal interview & have references checked, observation of programme takes place if relevant, followed by training/induction. This process usually takes 2-3 weeks during which time both the organisation and volunteer can decide if the opportunity would be a good fit

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?

Yes, our College Awareness and Reading Support Programmes are accessible. However out After School Programme venue is not wheelchair accessible.

What volunteer policies are in place?

There are Child Protection and Volunteer Policies in place.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

All volunteers are covered under our Public Liability Insurance.

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Spina Bifida Hydrocephalus Ireland (SBHI)

Category:                               Social Care, Education, Health, Sports, Arts, Disability, Youth
Location:                                Clondalkin, Dublin 22
Dates:                                     One week in either July or August 2013
Application Deadline:            March 2013
Website:                                 www.sbhi.ie

Brief description of organisation:

SBHI, Spina Bifida Hydrocephalus Ireland, was established in 1968 by a small group of parents whose children had Spina Bifida and/or Hydrocephalus. Today, SBHI has over 1,500 members and has branches in all four provinces, as well as a professionally run National Resource Centre based in Clondalkin, Dublin 22. It was established to promote the care, welfare, interest, treatment, education, advancement and rehabilitation of persons with Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus.

What do volunteers do?

The volunteers take on the role of Care and Activity Volunteer on SHINE 2012 - (Spina Bifida, Hydrocephalus Ireland Nurturing Empowerment), a residential Summer Independence Training Programme for teenagers and young adults with Spina Bifida and/or Hydrocephalus from all around the country.  SHINE gives participants the opportunity to develop their independence, confidence and social skills in a safe, encouraging and fun environment. Care and Activity Volunteers encourage and support participants to take part in a Multi Activity Programme, independence goals and assist participants with personal care where necessary.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

Nothing, SBHI covers the cost of dormitory accommodation, food and activities.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?   

Yes.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Volunteers attend a day and a half of training prior to their week’s involvement - Manual/patient handling training, background to SBHI and services, SHINE, Code of Good Practice, Child/Client and Worker Protection Policy, Disability Awareness, and Personal Care is covered. Volunteers report to a coordinator on the week who is there for support and supervision.

Please explain the application process.

Read role description. Fill in an application form online. Interview. Reference check. Garda vetting process and training. It takes about four weeks to process applications.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

Yes, the Liaison Officer role on SHINE is accessible for persons with disabilities.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Volunteer policy, child/client and worker protection policy, participant care policy, code of ethics and conduct are all in place.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Volunteers are covered under SBHI insurance.

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St John of God, Carmona Services

Category:                               Intellectual Disability
Location:                                DunLaoghaire, Bray, Stillorgan & Glenageary
Dates:                                     Ongoing
Application Deadline:            None
Website:                                 www.carmona.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Saint John of God Carmona Services provides a range of day and residential services and supports for approximately 380 children and adults with an intellectual disability in South Dublin. It seeks to accomplish its mission through a variety of services including early services for children 0-6 years, special school for children with severe/profound intellectual disability, children's outreach service, adult day service, residential and respite services.

What do volunteers do?

Our volunteers take on a myriad of supportive roles from befriending to job support to helping out with sports activities as well as working hand in hand in our day centres alongside the staff.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?                    

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for their out of pocket expenses?
Some expenses are reimbursed.    

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

All volunteers receive training is required to assist our clients and are at all times supported and supervised.

Please explain the application process.

Informal interview, fill out application form, we require two written character reference’s, and everybody must undergo Garda Vetting which, is taking approx 8 weeks at present.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

Yes     

What volunteer policies are in place?

The St John of God policy on Volunteering includes a code of conduct for volunteers, a grievance procedure, health & safety policy’s and protecting vulnerable people policy   
 
What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Volunteers are covered under the St John of God insurance policies.

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Society of St. Vincent de Paul: Ozanam House and Sunshine House

Category:                               Children’s Holidays & Community Programmes
Location:                                Balbriggan, Dublin and 53 Mountjoy Square West, Dublin 1
Dates:                                     May - August
Application Deadline:            As soon as possible
Website:                                 www.sunshinefund.ie / www.ozanamhouse.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Both run by the society of Saint Vincent de Paul, Sunshine house provides week-long Summer holidays for children, aged 7 to 11, from disadvantaged parts areas, whereas Ozanam House is a community resource centre.

What do volunteers do?

Volunteers in Sunshine supervise a holiday for boys and girls, organizing and supervising games, play and fun activities. Volunteers will be with the children full time all week, except at their own mealtimes and breaks. Ozanam has a Youth Group where children undertake classes in drama, dance, cookery, sports, arts & craft and more. The Senior Youth Service works with young people aged 13 to 18 in a youth work setting, the Grinds Club pairs secondary school students with a volunteer who is capable of giving a grind in a certain subject, our Childcare Centre offers pre-school and after school programmes to children aged 2 to 9 years while the Active Retirement offers older members a safe and secure social outlet three times per week.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?     

For Sunshine house, transport costs to and from Balbriggan and the costs of accommodation are covered. Ozanam is not in a position to cover expenses.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Child Protection is organised for volunteers taking part in all SVP activities. In Sunshine, all volunteers are closely observed and supported, particularly new volunteers. Training/induction takes place on the first day of the holiday. Each week of the holiday has an appointed Head Volunteer.  The role of the Head Volunteer is to support and manage new Volunteers. In Ozanam, there is a Coordinator appointed to each programme. All new volunteers go through Induction Training which includes Health & Safety training. 

Please explain the application process.

1) Fill out an application form, 2) Provide references, 3) Clear the Garda Vetting process, 4) Attend an interview, 5) Complete child protection training.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

No

What volunteer policies are in place?

In Sunshine, volunteers promise to strictly follow the code of conduct, childcare policies and other guidelines given by the Sunshine Fund as a condition of providing your services. In Ozanam Health & Safety policies and volunteer policies etc. are in place and discussed at induction stage. 

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Saint Vincent De Paul public liability insurance in place to cover volunteers.

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Victim Support at Court

Category:                             Legal
Location:                              Central Criminal Courts of Justice
Dates:                                   During Court Sittings
Application Deadline:          None
Website:                               www.vsac.ie (under construction)

Brief description of organisation:

Victim Support at Court (V-SAC) is a voluntary organisation that specialises in the provision of court accompaniment by highly trained and skilled volunteers to victims of crime and their families or witnesses while they attend court. 

What do volunteers do?

We are looking for people from all walks of life over the age of 20 that have enthusiasm and are willing to commit to working with a wide range of people. You will be trained to attend trial and to help provide support, information and referral.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?                    

Nothing.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?     

Yes.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Full training is provided to all volunteers and covers topics such as understanding the Irish court system to communication skills. All volunteers attend a monthly group supervision to discuss their case and to get support and advice from other volunteers. The manager is always available to be contacted by telephone.

Please explain the application process.

Volunteers complete an application form, attend an informal interview with the manager of the service. From there it is on to training. However there can be a slight delay between the informal interview and training as we do our best to facilitate volunteers with the scheduling. Hopefully, training will be run in January.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?

Yes

What volunteer policies are in place?

All volunteers sign a volunteeragreement and confidentiality agreement. V-sac has a number of policies to protect both our volunteers and our clients who use the service, including a code of practice, health and saftey, child protection,all of these are   contained in th e Volunteer policy and procedure handbook.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

All volunteers are covered by V-SAC's accident and public and professional liability insurance.

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Comhlámh

Comhlámh is a member and supporter organisation open to anyone interested in social justice, human rights and global development issues. It runs a Volunteering Options programme which aims to promote responsible, responsive international volunteering and to develop good practice standards among volunteer sending organisations. In doing so, the hope is to ensure that overseas volunteering has a positive impact for the volunteer, the sending organisation, and the host project and community.

Comhlámh provides pre-decision and pre-departure training for volunteers as well as training and support upon return home.  Counselling, debriefing and careers signposting services are also available for returning volunteers. Comhlámh encourages returned volunteers to stay engaged and provide opportunities for them to advocate for global justice from Ireland. There are also social events for returned volunteers and Comhlámh members.

The Comhlámh Code of Good Practice for Volunteer Sending Organisations is a self-auditing tool used by sending agencies to ensure that overseas volunteering has a positive impact for the volunteer, the sending organisation and the host project and community. The Comhlámh Volunteer Charter sets out seven best practice principles to be observed by volunteers to encourage responsible, responsive international volunteering.  Both of these documents are widely respected and implemented in the overseas volunteering sector in Ireland and internationally.

Comhlámh
2nd floor, Ballast House, Aston Quay, Dublin 2
Tel. (01) 478 3490
Email: volops@comhlamh.org
www.volunteeringoptions.org

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EIL Intercultural Learning

Category:                               International volunteering
Location:                                Africa, Asia, Latin America
Dates:                                     Placements range from two weeks to one year
Application Deadline:            None
Website:                                 www.volunteerabroad.ie

Brief description of organisation:

EIL Intercultural Learning is an Irish not for profit organisation supporting local projects across the world. Our Volunteer Abroad programme involves living, working and making a difference in a local community while learning about a new culture and gaining a new perspective on global and development issues. We offer flexible and varied voluntary work and internship opportunities all year round. Our volunteers are supported by highly qualified in-country staff with years of experience in intercultural exchanges and in supporting international volunteers.

What do volunteers do?

Volunteers can participate in various projects in the following areas: teaching and education (in schools, care centre), social and welfare (in day care centre, orphanages), environment, community development, human rights etc. Volunteers are allocated a local project overseas. This process takes into account their profile, interest and experience and the needs of the local projects.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

Volunteer pay programme fees and flights. The cost depends on where and how long they are going for. Fees and what they go towards are detailed on the website.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?               

No.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Predeparture support includes a predeparture workshop and ongoing support form EIL staff. Overseas, volunteer get an orientation on arrival and are supported by our local staff all throughout their experience.

Please explain the application process.

Volunteers fill out an application then participate in a one to one interview. The application process takes a maximum of four weeks.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

Yes.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Volunteer predeparture contract and EIL child protection policy are in place.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Travel and health insurance is compulsory, volunteers can either have their own insurance or they can book through EIL.

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Global Brigades Ireland

Category:                               Sustainable Development
Location:                                Ghana, Panama or Honduras
Dates:                                     All year round
Application Deadline:            12 weeks prior to departure  
Website:                                 www.globalbrigades.org

Brief description of organisation:

Global Brigades is the world’s largest student-led sustainable development organisation. Boasting nine unique skills based volunteering programs in which students/professionals can participate, Global Brigades works to empower volunteers to facilitate culturally sensitive and sustainable solutions to issues faced in under resourced communities.

What do volunteers do?

Volunteers or “brigaders” spend ten days in either West Africa or Central America on one of nine skills based brigades. Brigaders work in partnership with local people to provide long-term sustainable solutions to poverty and the range of societal issues caused by poverty. Examples include assisting with the provision of medical care and training medical care workers in our partner communities, building rainwater harvesters and water filtration systems, educating communities on issues such as financial literacy, investments and savings, building eco-stoves, latrines and other household facilities which can drastically improve health and providing free legal aid.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

Brigaders must raise €650 for Ghana, €750 for Honduras and €780 for Panama. This covers brigade logistics (food, accommodation, transport) program specific contributions, insurance, legal fees and taxes, contributions to community programs, education, student leadership development and also goes towards ensuring program sustainability and perpetuation. €40 per volunteer goes towards administration costs in Ireland. In addition brigadiers must cover the costs of flights, vaccinations and visas themselves.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?   
Receipted expenses such as printing may be reimbursed in cases where they were undertaken for fundraising purposes.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Brigadiers participate in an eight week training course before departure. For approximately one hour per week, brigaders take part in informal discussions on international development topics, become familiar with their chosen program, learn about specific development issues being experienced by our partner communities, challenges when fundraising and other issues. While abroad, brigaders are supervised by experienced in-country teams.

Please explain the application process.

In order to apply, students should email sarah.tyrell@globalbrigades.org. An information session is held 6 months prior to departure. The deposit of €200 needs to be paid at least 4 months prior to departure.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

This is considered on a case by case basis. 

What volunteer policies are in place?

We are a signatory to Comhlámh Code of Good Practice for Volunteering Sending Organisations.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Volunteers are covered by Global Brigades’ insurance policy.

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Going Brown

Category:                               International Development
Location:                                South Africa and Kenya
Dates:                                     South Africa: 15 June – 7 July, 2013. Kenya: 3 - 18 August, 2012
Application Deadline:            3 December, 2012
Website:                                 www.tshulutrust.org

Brief description of organisation:

Going Brown is an Irish not-for-profit company formed to support community development initiatives undertaken by its sister organisations: Tshulu Trust in Limpopo Province, South Africa, and the PCCP Initiative in the Tana District, Kenya.  Going Brown aims to fulfil a fund-raising, capacity-building and technical assistance function, with a particular focus on volunteering and the forging of partnerships between Irish tertiary education institutions and rural communities in Limpopo and Tana.

What do volunteers do?

Activities like Building infrastructure, education, livelihood enhancement projects and assistance to micro-enterprises. Each trip has a core project and a number of adjunct initiatives shaped to the interests and capacities of volunteers. In 2013 the core project in South Africa will be an English Language Winter School, and in Kenya the building of a maternity ward for a local clinic.

Are volunteers for out of pocket expenses?     

Yes for activities in Ireland.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

South Africa volunteers raise €2100 and for Kenya volunteers raise €2400. Example budget breakdown: Development Project Costs 25%; Food & Accommodation 18%; In-Country Transport 10%; Flights 29%; Organisation, Administration, Project leadership & Development Education 18%.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

There will be pre-departure briefings on health and safety and logistics as well as development education on South Africa, Kenya and issues relating to international development. Experienced project leaders will be with the group on site throughout, providing practical support and supervision, and offering development education framing of the experience. There will also be a post-trip debriefing.

Please explain the application process.

Volunteers will be asked to submit an application form. They will be informed of the outcome within 2 weeks. We also request Garda vetting.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

Yes.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Volunteers follow Comhlámh’s Volunteer Charter. Going Brown is becoming a signatory of Comhlámh’s Code of Good Practice for Volunteer Sending Organisations. There is also a Health and Safety Policy.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Volunteers are required to take out personal travel & medical insurance for the duration of the project.

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Habitat for Humanity Ireland

Category:                    Addressing poverty housing and homelessness.
Location:                     Ireland and overseas
Dates:                          Various
Application Deadline: Various
Website:                      www.habitatireland.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Habitat for Humanity was founded in 1976 in the United States by Millard and Linda Fuller.  Our mission is to eliminate poverty housing in Ireland and around the world and to make decent housing a matter of conscience and action. Habitat for Humanity operates in over 80 countries around the world. Habitat for Humanity Ireland is an independent, non-profit organisation that operates in partnership with and on behalf of Habitat for Humanity International in Ireland. The Irish office coordinates all aspects of Habitat for Humanity’s programmes in Ireland, including volunteer recruitment (local and overseas), fundraising and local renovation projects

What do volunteers do?

Work in partnership with local Habitat affiliates and partner families to build houses and/ or work on infrastructural projects such as water sanitation projects.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

Amounts vary depending on the cost of flights and in-country budgets but approximately €2500 would be the mean. Fundraised money goes to cover flights, visas, all in-country expenses, emergency funds bursary and a donation to Habitat for Humanity to support its work.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?     

All expenses are covered through fundraising. There is a bursary fund to support volunteers who do not reach their fundraising targets through no fault of their own.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Volunteers must attend 3 training session prior to departure. Team leaders will be fully briefed experienced volunteers. In-country a ‘Global Village’ coordinator will arrange all logistics on the ground and will stay with teams for the full duration of their stay and be available 24 hours a day 7 days a week.

Please explain the application process.

Prospective volunteers must complete a detailed online application form after which they will meet with the Global Village coordinator to discuss what is involved with the trip and to assess fully the suitability of the trip and volunteer.  This process takes approximately two weeks.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

Yes.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Volunteer agreement, Health and Safety, Emergency Procedure and we are signatories to the Comhlámh Volunteer Charter and Code of Good Practice.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

We have comprehensive insurance with Ace assistance which includes full medical insurance and repatriation provisions should they be necessary.

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The Hope Foundation

Category:                               Children, Education, Health, Protection
Location:                                Kolkata, India
Dates:                                     Throughout the year
Website:                                 www.hopefoundation.ie

Brief description of organisation:

The Hope Foundation is a Cork-founded non-governmental organisation, set up in 1999, working to achieve sustainable development among poor communities living in Calcutta (India) and its surrounding areas.  Through its 64 field programmes, training and research, the focus has always been on the education of children, the health of women and children, child nutrition and development, drugs rehabilitation for young people and vocational training for adolescents. The Foundation supports 14 local NGOs working to the same objectives through their various projects.

What do volunteers do?

Upon first arrival in Kolkata, volunteers have the chance to visit the HOPE projects, settle in and meet the HOPE staff and other volunteers.  Volunteers are then placed a number of projects depending on their in skills, interest and project requirements. Placement opportunities are focused in the following areas:
Education:      English & math lessons, coaching centres, grinds support
Protection:      Crises centres, rehabilitation & protection homes
Healthcare:     Mobile clinics, HOPE hospital
Other:             Drug Rehabilitation, Vocational Training and Human Rights.

Within each project, recreational fun and games are encouraged and vary from art to football, baking to computers and even children’s holidays.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

Prices range depending on length of stay, and vary from between €2,000 for two weeks – €5,000 for over 6 months. This goes towards accommodation, bills, monthly stipend (for volunteers over 3months) and HOPE projects.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?

Volunteers working 3+ months receive €200 stipend a month

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Before departure, all volunteers attend an information and training session in the HOPE office, where volunteers receive information about every aspect of HOPE’s volunteer programme and get the opportunity to meet with previous volunteers to ask any questions they may have. During your volunteer experience, support is available from HOPE staff in Kolkata and indeed here in Cork. On arrival home, a de-briefing session is held.

Please explain the application process.

All volunteers must fill out an application form, attain Garda vetting and attend a volunteer interview in the HOPE’s main office, based in Cork City.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?

Unfortunately this volunteer opportunity is not accessible for those with major physical disabilities due to the street conditions of Kolkata.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Volunteers are asked to sign a Volunteer Charter and agree to the terms of the Dóchas Code of Conduct on Images and Messages (don’t worry all will be explained!). Volunteers must also sign e a Child Protection Policy.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Volunteers are required to arrange own insurance for their trip.

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Nurture Africa

Category:                               Healthcare & Education for children
Location:                                Uganda
Dates:                                     3 week placement in July or August 2012
Application Deadline:            1 March 2013
Website:                                 www.nurtureafrica.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Nurture Africa is an Irish-founded, non-profit organisation that was established to provide a better quality of life for orphans and vulnerable children in Uganda.  Through sustainable development projects, we provide access to the healthcare, education and psycho-social support that these children need in order to thrive.  Our mission is to empower vulnerable children to realise their full potential, to become positive influences on society and break free from the poverty cycle.

What do volunteers do?

Nurses work includes community nursing, sharing knowledge and skills with Ugandan clinical staff, teaching First Aid to kids, working in a home for abandoned babies and a building project. Teachers work in a primary school, sharing skills with Ugandan teachers, and work in a home for abandoned babies and on a construction project. General volunteers get involved in a building project, reading & play groups with kids, working in a home for abandoned babies and other community development projects.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?
Volunteers must pay for their own flights and travel vaccinations, plus a one off payment of just €130 to cover accommodation, meals and living expenses in Uganda. Volunteers must raise €2000 which goes directly to Nurture Africa to fund our charitable projects.

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?              

No.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Comprehensive induction and training sessions are held to enable you to prepare for your placement and get to know the team you’ll be travelling and working withThere is a high level of support, as Nurture Africa’s coordination team also travel to Uganda to provide supervision and mentorship for all volunteers during their placement.

Please explain the application process.

Submit an application form. Applicants will be invited to an informal interview and those who are successful will be allocated places on a first come first served basis.  All volunteers must undergo Garda Vetting.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         
It depends on the nature of the disability. If mobility is significantly affected then this placement may be unsuitable.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Volunteer Code of Conduct, Health & Safety Policy, Security Policy, Child Protection Policy and Critical Incident Policy are all in place.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

We provide comprehensive insurance cover for the work placement but volunteers must additionally obtain their own travel insurance.

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Outreach Moldova

Category:                               Children with Special Needs
Location:                                Republic of Moldova
Dates:                                     June - August
Application Deadline:            Three months prior to travel
Website:                                 www.outreachmoldova.org

Brief description of organisation:

Outreach Moldova (ORM)  is an Irish charity working with children that have been orphaned or abandoned, children with special needs and children with terminal illness in the Republic of Moldova.

What do volunteers do?

Volunteers travel to Moldova on short- term placements throughout the summer. They are involved in the official ORM volunteer programme which involves volunteers participating in a range of activities with children & young adults. These activities include children’s games, sports, arts & crafts & sensory activities.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

Volunteers need to raise €1,900. This sponsorship covers the volunteer’s flights, accommodation and board, and also contributes to the cost of care of the children and towards various programmes run for them (medical, educational, social etc.).

Are volunteers reimbursed for their out of pocket expenses?

No.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Outreach Moldova provides full pre-departure training which includes volunteer information sessions, child protection guidelines & team building. Volunteers are supported by our Irish office throughout their preparations to travel and on arrival in Moldova volunteers are supported and supervised by volunteer managers, translators & by our Moldovan office.

Please explain the application process.

All volunteers must complete our application form which includes general information, Garda vetting, our volunteer agreement & two references. All volunteer must attend pre-departure training. ORM will process applications within three weeks but Garda vetting can take up to three months to come through.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

Yes.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Healthy & Safety Guidelines, Volunteer Agreement Form & Children Protection policies are all in place.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Insurance for volunteers is organised by Outreach Moldova & is covered in their volunteer sponsorship.

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Viatores Christi

Category:                               Overseas Volunteering  
Location:                                Africa, Latin America, Asia or Haiti
Dates:                                     At least one year (flexible start date)
Application Deadline:            None
Website:                                 www.viatoreschristi.com

Brief description of organisation:

Viatores Christi, a Catholic volunteer association, recruits, trains and sends volunteers from all backgrounds with transferable skills to work in areas of need overseas for a minimum of 1-2 years. We seek skilled people over 21 who are committed to freedom, peace and justice in the creation of a better world. Volunteers are people who are flexible, use initiative, willing to work under sometimes difficult circumstances, have practical experience of voluntary work at home are  motivated by Christian values. An extensive training programme is provided and funding is usually sought from Misean Cara/Irish Aid Overseas Budget for the project to ensure the volunteer has a living allowance.

What do volunteers do?

Volunteers work on a variety of capacity building projects – training, project management, administration, engineering, child protection, refugee projects, special needs education, etc.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

Volunteers pay €400 (less 20% for students/unwaged) to cover training and this can be paid in instalments. This covers the costs of course facilitators, materials and meals. We also ask for €10 to cover the administration cost associated with processing Garda Vetting forms. Flights, visas, insurance, accommodation, etc., are taken from the Misean Cara (conduit of Irish Aid) funding.  PRSI contributions are paid on behalf of volunteers by the State.

Are volunteers reimbursed for their out of pocket expenses?     

Volunteers normally receive a local living allowance while overseas.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

We provide training, placements, contracts, and full support while overseas and on return.  The training programme consists of six weekend workshops over a six month period covering the following topics: Global Awareness, Community Development, Challenge Commitment & Conflict, Mission, Health and Cultural Adaptation.

Please explain the application process.

We firstly meet with people who are interested and then invite them to join the overseas preparatory programme (explained above). Throughout the training process we get to know people and organise placements for those who wish to go overseas on assignment quite quickly.  Others may wish to wait a while before going overseas.  So the process to go on assignment can be anything from six months +.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?

Our premises are wheelchair accessible. Individual placements depend on the nature of the disability and the country/region of the assignment.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Volunteer and Host Agreements, Insurance, Child and Vulnerable Adult Protection, Health & Safety and Grievance policies are all in place.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Full insurance is provided and PRSI contributions are paid on behalf on the volunteer while overseas.

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Voluntary Service International

Category:                               Peace through International Volunteering
Location:                                Ireland and 70 countries worldwide
Dates:                                     2-3 weeks, 2 months, 6-12 months
Application Deadline:            None
Website:                                 www.vsi.ie

Brief description of organisation:

Voluntary Service International (VSI) is the Irish branch of Service Civil International, a worldwide peace movement which started in 1920. We work to promote peace, social justice, sustainable development and intercultural understanding through volunteering abroad and in Ireland. VSI was founded in 1965 and since then has undertaken a wide variety of voluntary and community work throughout Ireland with local community and environmental organisations and has sent volunteers to many projects in over 60 countries worldwide.

What do volunteers do?

The work varies greatly from country to country. Examples are peace projects, nature conservation work, community projects with children, the elderly, and refugees, community arts projects and restoration of historical monuments; manual projects –classroom building etc. As a volunteer you only need to work as hard as you are able.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

Volunteers pay their travel costs to/from the project. Food and accommodation is provided. They pay a small fee to VSI to cover administration and insurance. (€80 for European projects; €140 for developing countries  and some local charges)

Are volunteers reimbursed for out of pocket expenses?

Yes, if they are helping with projects in Ireland.

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Volunteers must take part in Preparation workshops before taking part. Projects will have trained leaders and local coordinators who will supervise the projects.

Please explain the application process.

Volunteers can complete application forms on line from the VSI website. Projects involving working with children and vulnerable adults will require Garda vetting and references.  The initial processing of applications takes anywhere from a few days to about two weeks.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?         

Yes, iIn principle our volunteering programme are open to people with disabilities and we actively encourage people with disabilities to take part.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Policies include Health and Safety a Volunteer Charter and VSI is a signatory to the Code of Conduct for Sending organisations.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Volunteers in Ireland and developed countries have comprehensive cover; Volunteers in developing countries must take out comprehensive insurance.

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The Volunteer Projects

Category:                               Education, Social/Community Work, Sport, Conservation, HIV/AIDS, Music
Location:                                Moshi, Tanzania, East Africa
Dates:                                     2 weeks – 3 months
Application Deadline:            8 weeks before departure
Website:                                 www.thevolunteerprojects.com

Brief description of organisation:

The Volunteer Projects (TVP) is a registered Irish charity and international Development NGO that strives to address global development issues, promote volunteerism and encourage philanthropy in a way that is beneficial to all involved. We source volunteers for short-term Placements in our partner Projects in Tanzania. We also fund, manage and implement human rights initiatives in these Projects.

What do volunteers do?

Volunteers are needed to share their skills in numerous Projects including Teaching, Orphanage Work, Social Care, Sports Coaching, Environmental Conservation, Music and more. Volunteers can work on a number of Projects to ensure that they utilise their skills as much as possible.

How much do volunteers need to raise/pay?

2 week Placement costs €565. Extra weeks are €95 each. This covers the volunteers accommodation, breakfast, dinner, training, Fundraising Pack, airport pickup, Certificate of Achievement and local staff in the Volunteer House. Proceeds also go towards covering bills in partner Projects such as rent and food.

Are volunteers reimbursed for their out of pocket expenses?     

No

What trainings, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Pre and post-departure support regarding flights, VISAs, general queries and 24 hour in-country support is provided. A comprehensive Training Pack including Swahili lessons, sample lesson plans, practical guide and detailed budget are provided. All volunteers must attend at least one Pre-Departure Training Seminar. In-country orientation is also provided.

Please explain the application process.

Interested parties should complete a Volunteer Profile and return to TVP by post or email before undergoing a telephone interview within a few days. Based on candidate suitability a Placement Offer may be made immediately.

Is this opportunity accessible for persons with disabilities?        

Yes. Individual cases will be assessed based on project, dates, etc.

What volunteer policies are in place?

Both our Volunteer Agreement (Code of Conduct) and Child Protection Policy must be signed pre-departure. The Dóchas Code and Comhlámh Code of Good Practice are also in use.

What are the insurance arrangements for volunteers?

Volunteers must provide proof of insurance prior to departure.

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Volunteering Abroad – Avoiding Pitfalls and Possible Negative Consequences

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the College.

Sarah Carroll has been working in the field of international volunteering for the last number of years. Her experience led her to be concerned about volunteers finding themselves working on “bogus”, pointless and even detrimental projects, particularly those run by profit-making companies that charge significant fees. She now runs the website www.volunteeringforfree.org where she blogs about “Voluntourism” issues and the importance of serving the host community. In this opinion piece she offers food for thought for anyone considering volunteering abroad.

Volunteer Tourism is one of the fastest growing sectors of the tourism industry today. Each year, countless volunteers set off around the world to volunteer in developing countries, with the intention of “making a difference in the lives of those less fortunate”. Without doubt, most volunteers have the best of intentions. However, an unconsidered volunteer placement may cause more harm than good to the host community, ultimately hurting the very people the volunteer set out to help.
As with many aspects of tourism and aid, there are no straight answers. However, volunteers can reduce the potential of impacting negatively on the host community while increasing the benefits by considering the following before committing to a particular program or placement:

  • Does your placement support primarily the host community and economy or an intermediary organisation?
  • Does the project meet the needs of the host community? Be sure to gain a clear understanding of volunteer activities in advance.
  • Can you add value to the project and avoid taking away potential employment from the local community?
  • What are your own expectations and motivations? Comhlámh has extensive resources available online about making a decision to volunteer.
  • Have you familiarised yourself as best you can with the local culture, along with the historical and political factors around the issues your project seeks to address?
  • Are you satisfied that your volunteering does not encourage the potential exploitation of children?

Read on to learn why thorough consideration of these factors is so important...

Volunteering through a profit-focused Volunteer Placement Agency (VPA)

VPAs charge anything from 100 Euro to >3000 Euro to organise a one month volunteer placement. Approaching the higher end of the cost scale, a conflict of interest arises, as profits may well be the primary motivations of the agency. This draws into question the ethics of VPAs. Should these companies, predominantly located in the “West”, be profiteering from poverty? If they are not located “in-country”, might this mean reduced understanding of the needs of the project and/or support available for volunteers?

Is the organisation addressing the needs of the host community?

Critics of VPAs suggest that, due to the profit-focused nature of their businesses, they are more concerned with the needs of their clients than with those of the host community. Projects may be established which do not address the most pressing needs of the host community and/or do not promote community involvement.  Without community ownership and vested interests, project sustainability is drawn into question. Even the extent to which the volunteer is welcomed by the community could be compromised. 

In 2007, Voluntary Service Overseas UK stated that many "voluntourism" trips to developing countries are expensive, poorly planned and unlikely to help local people.  According to former director, Judith Brodie, VSO “are increasingly concerned about the number of badly planned and supported schemes that are spurious. Some [voluntourism trips] ultimately benefit no one apart from the travel companies that organise them.” (Charity Attacks Gap Year Tourism, Reuters, 14 Aug 2007.)

The “Knight in Shining Armour” Complex

Volunteering has been labelled by some as neo-colonialism: unskilled westerners armed with a lack of understanding of local culture sailing off into the sunset to “make a difference” in two weeks. The idea of volunteers “changing the lives of others” may perpetuate the patronising image of those in need as childlike and helpless, waiting to be “saved” by the West. Volunteers should assess their motivations and expectations for volunteering. Undertaking a placement without reflecting on the relationship of the volunteer and host community may well add to a “North/South” divide. Volunteering is primarily a cultural exchange. The volunteer is privileged to be allowed to participate in the activities of the host community and should approach their volunteer placement in the spirit of sharing, not saving.

Local Employment

Volunteers should consider whether they might inadvertently be taking the place of a local who would otherwise be employed to do the work.  For example, are you assisting a teacher or taking their place? A volunteer placement affects not only local economic development but the sustainability of the project. After all, if the volunteer is playing a vital role in the day to day activities of the project, what will happen once the volunteer leaves? The volunteer should be placed in a support role, ensuring they are an asset, not a necessity, to the development of the project.

Volunteer Placement = Exploitation?

As volunteer tourism increases in popularity there is a very real risk that the poor could become exploited to cater for this rising demand. One of the most worrying examples is that of children’s orphanages, particularly those which are unregulated. Oftentimes orphanages allow foreign tourists direct access to vulnerable children. The transitory nature of volunteer trips can add to a vulnerable child’s sense of abandonment and misuse while exposing them to all manner health and safety risks. Ask yourself: would we allow international tourists such access to at-risk Irish children?
These risks are highlighted by the dramatic rise in the numbers of unregulated orphanages in Cambodia in the last ten years.  This increase is in direct proportion to the rise in volunteer tourism, while statistics show that the vast majority of the 12,000 children currently housed in these facilities have at least one parent living. Friends International now run a campaign which is backed by UNICEF to end what they term “orphanage tourism”. See www.thinkchildsafe.org for further information.

Further  Reading and Resources:

  • The EthicalVolunteering.org website offers advice & information for people who are interested in international volunteering and want to make sure that what they do is of value to themselves and the people they work with.
  • GoodIntents.org supports philanthropic donors to make informed funding decisions. The website includes an guest article entitled “Voluntourism: What could go wrong when trying do right”. See tinyurl.com/4yqmyw6.
  • Dr. Anna Mdee of the University Bradford has argued for Fair Trade certification of volunteer tourism. A synopsis of her research is available at online at www.voluntourism.org/news-wisdom53 .
  • The article “Inside the thriving industry of AIDS orphan tourism" by Professor Linda Richter of the South African Human Sciences Research Council looks at the adverse effects of orphanage volunteering. See tinyurl.com/d2sm84g.
  •  “Why you shouldn’t participate in voluntourism” is an article by Richard Stupart that looks at orphanage volunteering, building projects and where the money goes.  See tinyurl.com/3cz87g3 .

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Last updated 29 November 2012 Civic Engagement (Email).