• Celebrating Australian volunteers on International Volunteer Day

    We celebrate the contributions of thousands of volunteers who have contributed to international development across the Indo-Pacific region.

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  • Australian Volunteers with the Australian Health Security Corps committed to people-centred public health in Cambodia

    Stephanie Wheeler and Yasmin Lisson reflect upon their assignments in the Cambodian public health system.

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  • Reflections on a volunteer experience in Bhutan

    'I have become more confident, more empathic and much more flexible in my work as a speech pathologist' - Kat Francis’s story.

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  • Innovation award winner attributes volunteer experience to founding idea

    Returned Australian volunteer, Michael Nunan, recently won innovation award for a data visualisation tool for improving health care in the Pacific.

    Read more

Australian Volunteers for International Development

How we are helping

2018-19 Budget Estimate:
$42.6 million

The Australian Volunteers Program provides opportunities for skilled Australians to contribute to the Australian Government's aid program.

In 2018–19, the Australian Volunteers Program will:

  • support more than 1100 volunteers in 29 countries
  • place at least 97 per cent of volunteers in the Indo-Pacific region with 40 per cent of assignments in the Pacific
  • create space to innovate and pilot new approaches to volunteering through the Innovation Fund and strategic partnerships
  • empower volunteers to tell their stories through a range of digital platforms, encouraging a broader group of Australians to volunteer and to raise awareness of the program.

In 2017-18, the Australian Volunteers Program supported 1097 volunteers across 26 countries.

Australian Volunteers Program brochure

To continue to receive monthly updates and job alerts of current volunteer opportunities, please subscribe to the Australian Volunteers Program mailing list.

About the Australian Volunteers Program

The Australian Volunteers Program matches skilled Australians from all walks of life with organisations in developing countries to help these organisations to deliver on their own objectives. The program uses international volunteering as a people-centered approach to capacity development. The Australian Volunteers Program is part of the Australian Government's people-to-people program portfolio, connecting Australians to Australia's aid program and the region.

Over the next five years, the Australian Volunteers Program will aim to achieve the following outcomes:

  • partner organisations are supported by Australia to achieve their own development objectives
  • Australian volunteers gain professionally and personally
  • the public and governments in Australia and overseas better appreciate the value of volunteering.

Volunteering opportunities are currently available in Bhutan, Cambodia, Eswatini, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Kiribati, Indonesia, Laos, Lesotho, Marshall Islands, Mongolia, Myanmar, Palau, Papua New Guinea, The Philippines, Nepal, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Sri Lanka, South Africa, Tanzania, Timor-Leste, Tonga, Tuvalu, Vanuatu and Vietnam.

Are you interested in volunteering? Visit the Australian Volunteers Program website.

Follow the Australian Volunteers Program digital channels:

Becoming a volunteer

A wide range of professional skills are needed to contribute to development. Most volunteer assignments require qualifications and demonstrated professional experience.

The sectors most commonly requested by partner organisations include:

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

Advice on responsible volunteering is available on Smartraveller.

Partner organisations

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

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

More information about partner organisations

Australian partner organisations

To encourage greater community involvement, Australian-based organisations can participate in the Australian Volunteers Program by joining with partner organisations. This is a great way for Australian organisations to develop new relationships with organisations overseas, or to strengthen existing links, while contributing to international development. Australian partner organisations include government departments, educational institutions, NGOs and private sector enterprises.

More information about Australian partner organisations

Smart volunteering

If you are looking to volunteer through other programs, advice is available under Smart Volunteering on our website. Thoroughly research the organisation that you plan to work with, particularly when working with children.

Last Updated: 8 May 2018

Smart volunteering

If you are looking to volunteer through other programs, advice is available on smart volunteering. Thoroughly research the organisation that you plan to work with, particularly when working with children.

Returned Australian Volunteer Network

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