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  • Green shoots

    Youth voices are leading a global movement today, making urgent calls for action to halt climate change and protect the planet. Check out these ICS volunteers with practical initiatives to make a difference.…

  • Advice from inspiring youth climate activists

    Ready to act on the climate crisis and inspire others to do the same? You’re in luck. We asked two successful young activists what it takes to inspire people to change their attitudes and behaviour towards the…

  • Country offices

    ICS programmes work by pairing UK, EU or EEA volunteers with national volunteers in seven countries around the world. You may be able to take part in ICS if there are programmes running in your country.

  • Our approach to anti-racism

    The ICS programme is based on the evidence that young people, who are embedded in communities and who work together in a cross-cultural context, can achieve great positive outcomes to the people in those…

  • Fighting for water equality in Uganda

    Equal Aqua Uganda, an NGO set up by ICS alumni, is boosting access to clean water in parts of rural Uganda, enabling communities to fight COVID-19.

    COVID-19 has cast a spotlight on the importance of water…

  • Climate justice: What you can do

    The COVID-19 pandemic has caused massive disruption worldwide. Travel has been limited, economic activity has slowed, and the vulnerabilities of our systems and supply chains has been exposed. There have been some positive…

  • Thanks for registering

    Thank you for signing up to take part in our International Youth Day events, bringing young people together to explore climate issues, develop new skills, expand their networks, and challenge the climate crisis.

    We will…

  • International Youth Day Climate Action Events

    Every year, ICS marks International Youth Day (IYD) with a series of global events that empower young people to be active citizens on the issues that they care about.

    Climate change, for many, is the…

  • Anti-racism resources

    It is not enough to be non-racist – we need to be anti-racist. To move from passivity to an active position means calling out and challenging racism everywhere, from the workplace, to schools, to the community.…

  • My story: Six ICS alumni share their experiences of racism

    Six ICS volunteers from around the world share testimonies of their lived experience as Black Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) individuals.

    As anti-racist protests continue worldwide, we are grateful to…

  • Interactive workshops and webinars

    We're running a series of online workshops, webinars and training sessions to support your active citizenship and personal development.

    Identifying your soft skills

    17 August, 4.30 - 6pm


  • The ICS Hub

    Where young people connect, create and discover.

    ICS supports young people to change the world – whether at home, abroad or online.

    Connect with our global network of over 40,000 ICS volunteers,…

  • Opportunities: Get involved

    We're committed to empowering young people to be active citizens and contribute to the UN's Sustainable Development Goals, locally and globally.

    Here you'll find activities and events to develop your…

  • Youth voice matters: Have your say

    Youth voice is important. Young people have the collective power to make positive change and find creative solutions to many of the world’s problems.

    Use this page to find inspiration, share your story,…

  • Resources and research

    Learn about issues that are important to you, and access useful guidance and toolkits.

    We have been supporting young people to make change since 2011 and have created a global community of almost 40,000…

  • Radio shows and resources: Raising COVID-19 awareness in Tanzania

    In Tanzania, ICS alumni and members of the National Youth Engagement Network are finding safe ways to continue their voluntary efforts during the current pandemic. Suma and Paul explain how they are moving their…

  • Watch: The ICS volunteer who’s delivered 1,000 meals since the UK’s ‘lockdown’ began

    When the government began advising people to self-isolate, Molly, 22, immediately started thinking about the impact on those most vulnerable. Inspired by her experience with ICS she set out to do what she could…

  • Here’s how ICS volunteers are tackling coronavirus around the world

    With almost a million recorded cases of the disease worldwide, the COVID-19 pandemic has required action from all corners of the globe. Here’s how ICS volunteers are tackling it. 

  • Join our webinar on how to tackle the coronavirus pandemic

    Tuesday 28 April, 6 - 7.30pm.

    We’ve been inspired by the voluntary actions people are taking in response to the pandemic, and by the stories of ongoing active citizenship shared by ICS…

  • 5 years since the Nepal earthquake: ICS alumni share their stories

    April marks five years since devastating earthquakes hit Nepal, which resulted in 8,790 deaths, 22,300 injuries and 755,549 houses that either damaged or destroyed. 

    We speak to Nepali…

  • Calling all active citizens: Seven ways to help those in need right now

    We’re living in unprecedented times and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed.

    But despite the constant stream of worrying news about the coronavirus pandemic, now is a great time for us to make positive moves to…

  • Find your council's advice on coronavirus

    Your local council is the best source of official advice on local services.

    In this uncertain time, the value of trustworthy advice is so important. Signpost friends, family and colleagues to reliable information and make…

  • Climate Justice: leading the change

    To celebrate International Women’s Day, ICS alumni Hope Carpenter attended the Women of the World Festival in London to hear from Ireland’s first female President and global climate activist, Mary Robinson. After attending panel…

  • Navigating (the lack of) diversity and inclusion in international development

    My ICS placement and introduction into International Development

    My first introduction to the international development sector was in 2014 when I went on a volunteer placement with International Citizen Service (ICS). Fresh out of…

  • Coronavirus statement

    International Citizen Service responded swiftly to the rapid spread of the COVID-19 pandemic and brought home all UK volunteers who were on ICS placements across Asia and Africa. The safety, security and wellbeing of our volunteers…

  • Think equal, build smart, innovate for change: technology innovations creating gender equality

    International Women’s Day at London’s Women of the World festival was filled with talks about how the rise of gender equality is changing the world around us. Carry on reading to explore some of the ways women are using technology…

  • Youth power in Tanzania

    Tanzania is one of the largest countries in East Africa and home to over 120 different tribal groups. ICS volunteers carry out projects on the eastern island of Zanzibar and in rural villages in the central…

  • Our definitive guide on how to find your first job in development

    Whether you’re just back from ICS and want that first job in the sector or already have a career underway – we show you how to make your move into international development.

  • How ICS helps in international development jobs

    After ICS, many volunteers are inspired to pursue a career in international development. We spoke to four alumni who told us what you can expect from those first steps in the sector. 

  • I cannot make the assessment day

    We're sorry you cannot make the assessment day. Please fill in the short form below to alert us of your decision.

    If you cannot make the assessment day because the date or time is not suitable then we will be in touch to…

  • What to bring

    Before the Assessment Day, please ensure you have completed your medical form, and DBS check. 

    You will need to bring a few things with you. These are:

    Your passport


    Driving Licence (if you have one) or…
  • What to expect

    What happens at an Assessment Day?

    The day will be made up of an individual interview and a range of group activities.

    It is important for you to know that you will not be in competition with, or assessed against any of…

  • Sharing information

    Information we ask you for, and why

    As an ICS volunteer, your safety and wellbeing is of the utmost importance to us. To make sure that we can keep you safe, and to ensure you have the best possible ICS experience, we ask you to…

  • Filling in your Disclosure and Barring Service

    You need to complete a DBS check

    The below notes may be useful to you as you complete the form. If you have any questions. Please contact us

    Click on the ORANGE BOX labelled 'CREATE A DBS APPLICATION (Standard DBS or…
  • Filling in your medical form

    You need to fill in the online your medical form 

    The below notes may be useful:

    Choose ‘Employee/volunteer’ on the first screen Your employee number should have been provided on your assessment day confirmation email…
  • What you need to do in advance

    So we can start the process of preparing volunteers for a placement overseas, we need all applicants to begin medical and criminal background checks. This will mean you have to provide some information in advance as well as bring…

  • Claiming expenses for travel and accommodation

    The ICS programme aims to be as inclusive as possible and this is why we reimburse the lowest cost of travel and, where applicable, accommodation expenses.

    Candidates can claim back their expenses after they attend their…

  • Assessment Day location


    VSO holds its Assessment Days its head office:

    100 London Road, Kingston, KT2 6QJ

    If you have any questions, please contact us

  • Organising your travel and accommodation


    VSO holds its Assessment Days at the head office:

    100 London Road, Kingston, KT2 6QJ

    Travel costs 

    We will cover the cost of travel to your Assessment Day.

    You can arrange…

  • Preparing for your Assessment Day

    Everything you need to prepare for your Assessment Day can be found here. 

    You may wish to save this page so you can easily find it again.

    If you have any questions, please contact us


  • Assessment day confirmation

    Congratulations on passing the first phase of your ICS experience. 

    To confirm your place at the upcoming assessment day (date and time are in the email you received), please confirm your name in the fields below and click…

  • You're a wizard Harry... at fundraising!

    When you are right at the start of your ICS journey fundraising can seem like a daunting challenge. Lots of volunteers feel that way, but by the end we find that most volunteers have put in to action some of the most creative and…

  • Take a look back at our 10 favourite moments of 2019

    Last year was big for us. We celebrated the eighth year of ICS, getting more volunteers on placement and making more progress than ever before. Here were our highlights.

    1. We discovered the hidden financial value of…
  • Want to get motivated this January? These alumni tell us how they pushed boundaries with ICS

    To celebrate the start of a new year, we wanted to share some inspiring stories to get us excited for the year ahead and everything we will achieve. We hear from Mahomed and Shanti, two ICS alumni who share their…

  • Want to make a change this year? Here’s 20 things you can do in 2020

    Whether you’re on track with your New Year resolutions or not, here’s 20 things you can do to make the world a better place this year. 

    1. Start volunteering regularly  

    If you’re no longer volunteering…

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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.

Find out more