EIL volunteers come from a range of different backgrounds. Our volunteers are:
- Students and young people willing to volunteer abroad during their holidays, between jobs or on a year out,
- Office workers, teachers, farmers, nurses, engineers, factory workers, waiters and just about anybody wishing to help, take some time out or just looking for a different experience during their holidays.
- Retired and older people who want to put their time and skills to good use.
- Apprentices and students who need to complete an internship or work experience.
- Youth clubs, family groups, clubs, school groups or groups of friends.
Whatever experience, skills and qualifications you may have there is a programme which will suit you. Our goal is to match your profile, skills and expectations with the needs of a local project. Many projects such as welfare projects do not require any specific qualifications or experience and are open to anyone who meets our basic requirements. Other projects require people with skills in education, health, business, environmental work etc.
Applicants must be aware that volunteering in a developing country can be a challenging experience and may not be for everybody. Successful volunteers are independent, flexible, hard working, patient and willing to adapt to a new culture. It is very important to be open to learning and to have a genuine desire to help others. If you are unsure whether volunteering is for you, please contact us to arrange to get in touch with a previous volunteer who will be happy to talk to you about your concerns.
Before making your decision to volunteer abroad, we strongly recommend that you familiarise yourself with the Volunteer Charter drawn up by Comhlámh, the Irish Association of Development Workers. This charter sets out seven principles that aim to encourage responsible and responsive international volunteering. It will help you to consider your volunteering experience within the wider context of global development. You can download the charter through this this page: Charter
Comhlámh has also set up a website where you can find further information on international volunteering: Volunteering Options
If you are interested in long-term volunteering we recommend VSO, a reputable and well established organisation.
Remember, the most important quality you can bring to a volunteer placement is your enthusiasm and desire to learn.
If you have any doubt about your capacity to participate in volunteer programme, please contact Cliona (021 4551535) our programme officer.
If you would like to receive a free brochure and some country info sheets presenting our programmes, apply here.
If you are interested in volunteering abroad but do not live in Ireland please visit the Volunteers for International Partnership website, our international umbrella organisation.