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Seven quality principles

ICS is funded by the Department for International Development (DFID) and delivered by a consortium of organisations led by VSO.

Different ICS agencies work in different ways, but they all work to seven agreed quality principles. 

This means that all ICS projects are based on these principles and are committed to delivering impact in partnership with local communities.

At the end of the first year of ICS (March 2013) we reviewed the whole programme and found:

  • 98.4% of our partner organisations described the ICS programme as useful or very useful
  • Every in-country volunteer and 91% of UK volunteers said they thought participation in the ICS programme had been useful.
  • 95% of in-country volunteers and 83% of UK volunteers said they thought participation in the ICS programme had been useful for professional development.

Seven quality principles


ICS is committed to recruiting a body of UK volunteers representative of the UK's diversity.

Personal development

By stretching yourself and taking on new challenges you can gain confidence and experience.

Project impact

We’ll give you the tools you need to work in partnership with local communities.

Shared working and learning

UK volunteers work alongside volunteers from the host country as equal partners.

Community integration

You will live in the community where you are working and become an active member of that community.

Supported learning

You'll get training to support cross-cultural understanding and learning.

Active citizens

Active citizens bring about positive change in their communities.