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Safety and security

Volunteer safety and security is our first priority.

Is ICS safe?

Volunteer safety and security is our first priority. Each placement has been rigorously checked using risk assessments led by experienced agencies with years of experience, and backed by the UK government. Before departure, volunteers are given training on precautions they can take while on placement. We constantly monitor our placement countries to keep track of any potentially dangerous situations and with this in mind, evacuation and mitigation plans are in place to ensure our volunteers are safe and secure. On the rare occasions things go wrong we are ready to take appropriate action.

What if I get ill while I’m abroad?

While everything possible is done to try to minimise the risk of you becoming ill, acclimatisation to the local food and water and adapting to a new environment can be physically challenging. Volunteers can and do get ill from time to time. You will learn all about health precautions before you leave, and country office staff and team leaders will be available while you are on placement to help you get medical support should you need it. If appropriate treatment cannot be provided by local medical facilities, you may need to travel to another location where treatment is available. In some cases the required treatment may not be available, and if this is the case arrangements would be made for you to return to your home country.

All our volunteers have medical insurance, pre-departure vaccinations and antimalarials (if required), and necessary medication and access to medical care and treatment paid for by ICS.

Seven quality principles

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

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Funded by the UK Government

ICS is funded by the UK Government's Department for International Development (DFID) which leads the UK’s work to end extreme poverty.

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