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Australian Volunteers for International Development

How we are helping

2016-17 Budget Estimate:
$39.6 million

The Australian Volunteers for International Development (AVID) program provides opportunities for skilled Australians to contribute to the Australian Government’s aid program. The AVID program has been allocated a budget of $39.6 million for 2016-17.

In 2016-17 the AVID program will:

  • support approximately 1,200 volunteers in 23 countries
  • place 95 per cent of volunteers in the Indo-Pacific region, and
  • expand the recently launched Returned Australian Volunteer Network (RAVN).

Current volunteering opportunities

The AVID program supports the deployment of Australians to undertake volunteer assignments aimed at improving the capacity of host organisations in sectors of high priority to Australian and partner governments. Volunteers also promote positive people-to-people links between individuals, organisations and communities in developing countries and in Australia.

The goal of the AVID program is to contribute to sustainable economic growth and poverty reduction and advance Australia’s reputation and relationships in partner countries.

The objectives of the AVID program are:

  • to support the capacity of host organisations to deliver effective and sustainable development outcomes focused on economic growth and poverty reduction, and
  • to promote a positive perception of Australia in the Indo-Pacific region.

By the end of 2015-16 it is expected that 1,400 volunteers will have been supported in 29 countries, including 570 new volunteers.

Since 2015-16, the AVID program has had a greater focus on the Indo-Pacific region. Volunteering opportunities are available in Bhutan, Cambodia, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Indonesia, Laos, Marshall Islands, Mongolia, Myanmar, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Nepal, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Tanzania, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Vanuatu and Vietnam.

The AVID program is delivered by DFAT in partnership with Australian Volunteers International (AVI) and Scope Global.

Australian Red Cross (ARC), in close consultation with DFAT, decided to integrate international volunteering within its broader humanitarian and development partnership with the Australian Government. This change will enable the ARC to align its volunteering work directly with the humanitarian and development objectives of the Red Cross movement in the Indo-Pacific region. The ARC will transition out of the AVID program by June 2016. Scope Global and AVI will continue as delivery partners for the AVID program, and Australian Business Volunteers continues to work in consortium with the AVID delivery partners.

Are you interested in volunteering? Visit the Volunteer page.

Becoming a volunteer

A wide range of professional skills are needed to contribute to development. The sectors most commonly requested by overseas partners are listed below, but can change depending on priorities and needs. Most assignments require qualifications and demonstrated professional experience.

  • Agriculture, forestry and fisheries
  • Business, marketing and tourism
  • Communications and media
  • Community and social development
  • Disaster and emergency management
  • Education and training
  • Engineering
  • Health
  • Information technology
  • Law and justice
  • Management, administration and human resources
  • Skilled trades

Host organisations

Volunteers are placed within host organisations and work with counterparts and colleagues to contribute to building capacity within the organisation.

Australian volunteers mobilised through the AVID program work with a range of host organisations including non-government organisations (NGOs), civil society and humanitarian organisations, government agencies, educational institutions, private sector enterprises and United Nations agencies.

Host organisations provide management and support to Australian volunteers and identify the objectives of the volunteer assignment. Host organisations are responsible for:

  • providing supervision
  • identifying opportunities for skill or knowledge transfer by Australian volunteers
  • providing a safe and secure working environment with adequate workplace facilities and resources, and
  • ensuring that the volunteer assignment assists committing to sustainable development and capacity building.

More information about host organisations

Australian partner organisations

To encourage greater community involvement, Australian organisations can partner with host organisations. This is a great way for Australian organisations to develop new relationships with organisations overseas, or to strengthen existing links. Australian partner organisations include government departments, educational institutions, NGOs and private sector enterprises.

More information for Australian partner organisations

Last Updated: 16 May 2016
Returned Australian Volunteer Network

The Returned Australian Volunteer Network brings together Australian Government-funded returned volunteers since the 1960s, providing networking, engagement and professional development opportunities.

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Delivery partners

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