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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 skills, connect you with like-minded individuals, and inspire you. This page is updated regularly, so make sure you bookmark it!

Want to see more trainings? More talks? More socials? Tell us in the comments section at the bottom of the page - we’d love to hear from you!

Upcoming events and opportunities:

Global movements

Join the National Youth Engagement Network (NYEN) in your country

Designed and led by ICS volunteers, National Youth Engagement Networks are groups of active citizens who are passionate about leading, and contributing to, social change in their own communities. Supported by the ICS agencies and joined by community youth, each NYEN is unique in its purpose and set-up. If there's a network in your country, get in touch:

Follow the networks' Facebook pages to see some of the amazing work they have been doing in their communities: 

Take climate action with ICS on International Youth Day (IYD)

Every year, ICS marks International Youth Day with a series of global events that empower young people to be active citizens on the issues that they care about. This year, ICS volunteers have decided to focus on climate action – recognising that young people play an important role in taking urgent action to tackle climate change and build a sustainable world for everyone.

Due to COVID-19, this year's IYD events will all be online. Led by groups of ICS volunteers, we’ll bring young people together to explore the issues, develop new skills, expand their networks, and challenge the problem. Find out more and register to join.

ONE Campaign

ONE is a global movement campaigning to end extreme poverty and preventable disease by 2030, so that everyone, everywhere can lead a life of dignity and opportunity. Join the global campaign.

Peacetech Lab

Reducing violent conflict using technology, media and data. Peacetech uses low-cost, easy-to-use tech and local partnerships to put the right tools in the hands of the people best positioned to make a difference: activists, peacebuilders, and NGOs in some of the most violent places on earth. Volunteers can support the Peacetech Lab through mentorship, training, event support, and more. Join the Peacetech Movement and find out about their volunteering opportunities.

Online training and courses

FutureLearn

Is coronavirus affecting your education or work? Explore online courses to continue studying, build professional skills, and connect with experts. Stay connected and keep learning wherever you are, with courses ranging from youth mental health to humanitarian response. Sign up for free courses on FutureLearn

DisasterReady

Develop your skills during lockdown with free online Humanitarian Aid training courses, from safety and security to humanitarian essentials. DisasterReady partners with NGOs, leading agencies, and experts in humanitarian aid and development to make the best online learning available to you anywhere, anytime, for free! Take a look at the courses available

Coursera

Build your skills and learn about something new with interesting and innovative free online courses from experts and world leading organisations. Learn how to teach online from the University of New South, take a Fashion and Design course from The Museum of Modern Art and loads more to suit all different interests! Check out the courses on offer from Coursera

SALTO Youth

Through SALTO you can access advanced e-learning and training opportunities, looking at topics such as upskilling youth trainers and facilitators, making youth participation visible, learning more about how to run campaigns, and discovering how to build awareness and start initiatives in a systematic and strategic way. These training opportunities are aimed at young people across Europe, and the platform also offers toolkits for training in youth work aimed at youth work professionals. Browse the SALTO training calendar.

Global volunteering opportunities

UN online volunteering

The United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme contributes to peace and development through volunteerism worldwide. Online volunteering allows organisations and volunteers to team up to address sustainable development challenges – anywhere in the world, from any device. Online volunteering is fast, easy, and most of all, effective. When skilled, passionate individuals join forces online with great organisations working toward sustainable development goals, everyone wins. Watch this video to learn what it means to be a UN Online Volunteer and sign up to join the UNV programme

Amnesty International

Join a global network of digital volunteers helping Amnesty to research and expose human rights violations. Amnesty Decoders is an innovative platform for volunteers around the world to use their computers or phones to help Amnesty researchers sift through pictures, information and documents. You will need access to a computer or a phone and an internet connection to take part. Find out more about the Amnesty Decoders project.

Global funding opportunities

Peace First

Peace First empowers young people to create a just and peaceful world by providing digital tools. Peace First is launching a rapid response grant to help young people around the world lead projects that address community impacts of COVID-19. These grants are open to young people between the ages of 13-25, anywhere in the world. Learn more about the rapid response grants and apply online.

Global Citizen

Have you been leading positive change in your community and need funding to scale up your project? The Waislitz Global Citizen Awards recognize and support extraordinary individuals around the globe for their work to end extreme poverty - from harnessing mobile telephone technology in South Africa to strengthen democracy, to converting organic waste to fertilizer in Rwanda, to making education more accessible to children orphaned by AIDS in Uganda. Apply now for the 2020 Waislitz Global Citizen Funding Awards.

UK-only opportunities

Interactive workshops and webinars

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

Upcoming sessions:

An introduction to the Sustainable Development Goals during COVID-19

16 July, 4 - 5.30pm

In this first part of a two-part series, we'll explore the SDGs and the impact that COVID-19 is having on achieving them, as well as hearing from programme experts about how they're working throughout the pandemic.

Find out more and register

Making a difference to the Sustainable Development Goals during COVID-19

23 July, 4 - 5.30pm

In the second part of this series, we'll explore how to become an active citizen, and how you can contribute towards the SDGs in your community by creating your own campaigns.

Find out more and register

Become a member of the UK National Youth Engagement Network (NYEN)

Designed and led by a core committee of young people, the network helps to give a voice to young people across the UK. You’ll work with peer networks of ICS returned volunteers to support some of the biggest issues facing young people across the UK, including climate change, mental health and youth employment and advocate for UKAid. If you’re based in the UK and ready to create positive change in your community, sign up to join the NYEN

FareShare

FareShare is the UK's largest charity fighting hunger and food waste by redistributing it to frontline charities. They are offering bespoke ‘office’ (home office) based positions to support the organisation during this period of scaled-up demand and activity.

They are looking for highly motivated volunteers who have skills and experience in the following areas for flexible, part-time volunteer positions starting immediately: administration, monitoring and reporting, copywriting and communications, advocacy and political lobbying, and report analysis and writing.

Applications are open now so send your C.V. and short covering letter direct to volunteering@fareshare.org.uk and let them know if you are an ICS alumnus!

Youth Against Misinformation

Restless Development has partnered with Centre for Countering Digital Hate to tackle the spread of false information and fake news stories during COVID-19: 23 young people have joined the new Youth Against Misinformation initiative to root out COVID-19 misinformation. They have received support and training to build their skills and agency, to identify misinformation and develop strategies to tackle it. Restless want to expand this programme to offer the opportunity to more young people: register your interest in joining

City Year UK

Become a mentor with City Year UK. Mentoring is a great way to gain valuable leadership experience and boost your career prospects. With support and guidance, you will be the change in your community and see the change you can make to young people’s lives. Apply to become a City Year UK mentor

Age UK

Volunteer for the free telephone friendship service, Call in Time, for people 60 and over. Age UK will match you up with a likeminded person who's keen to make a new friend, and every week they'll give you a call. Now more than ever, not having someone to talk to regularly can be lonely. A friendly, 30-minute chat on the phone every week can make all the difference. Register your interest to volunteer with Age UK.

Shout crisis volunteers

Be an online crisis volunteer and have a positive impact on people’s lives, make a difference by resolving crises and learn essential skills in communication, problem solving and crisis management. You need to be resilient and mentally robust to help people in distress and commit to 25 hours of online training and 200 total hours of volunteering: that’s 2 – 4 hours volunteering per week. Sign up to become a crisis volunteer.

WaterAid

Are you a confident speaker, and passionate about transforming lives with clean water? WaterAid is an NGO that focuses on water, sanitation and hygiene. You can support them by becoming a volunteer WaterAid speaker and help inspire others with online talks and workshops.

Youth Employment UK

Become a Youth Ambassador and help to tackle some of the youth employment barriers young people experience. Join a dynamic team of youth volunteers for 10 hours a month and get involved in inspiring projects. Find out how to volunteer as a Youth Ambassador

Zoological Society London

Download ZSL’s Instant Wild App and get involved with something a little unusual! The app empowers you to take part in vital conservation work, bringing you live images and videos from amazing locations all around the world. By identifying the animals in each image, you are contributing to conservation and making a positive impact on the future for wildlife. Find out more about the Instant Wild project.

Get involved with your nearest Foodbank

During this challenging time, food banks in the Trussell Trust network need your help to continue to provide essential community services to people in crisis. Food banks need help with sorting and packing donations in their warehouse, collecting donations from supermarkets, and delivering food to people in greatest need. Sign up to volunteer with the Trussell Trust.

There are lots of exciting activities to get involved with regularly, so check back for updates!

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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