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Australian Volunteers for International Development

Volunteer opportunities

The Australian Volunteers for International Development (AVID) program promotes economic growth and poverty reduction in the Indo-Pacific region by assisting host organisations to deliver effective and sustainable development outcomes.

Through the AVID program, members of the Australian community have the opportunity to share skills and foster linkages with people and organisations in developing countries.

Australian volunteers mobilised through the AVID program work with a range of host organisations including:

  • non-government or civil society organisations (national and local)
  • government agencies (national and local)
  • educational institutions
  • humanitarian organisations
  • private sector enterprise
  • united Nations agencies

Australian volunteers contribute to positive outcomes for the host organisation and play a public diplomacy role by promoting a positive perception of Australia in the region.

The AVID program is delivered by DFAT in partnership with three organisations:

  • Australian Red Cross
  • Austraining International
  • Australian Volunteers International.

Australia’s overseas volunteer program, Australian Volunteers for International Development, has a one-stop entry point to Australian volunteering. See [external link].

Becoming a volunteer

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

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

Australian partner organisations

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

More information for Australian partner organisations [external website]

Host organisations

Volunteers are placed within host organisations in many countries, including NGOs, universities and government departments, multilateral organisations and the private sector. Volunteers work with colleagues in these host organisations throughout their assignment and contribute to building capacity within the organisation.

Host organisations in country provide management and support to Australian volunteers, as well as assist in achieving assignment objectives. Responsibilities of host organisations include:

  • providing supervision
  • identifying counterpart staff
  • providing a safe and secure working environment with adequate workplace facilities and resources
  • committing to sustainable development and capacity building.

More information about host organisations [external website]

Other resources related to volunteering and international development

World Volunteer Web [external website]—Information and resources linked to global volunteerism.

ACFID [external website]—Australian Council for International Development (ACFID), the independent national association of Australian non-government organisations (NGOs) working in the field of international aid and development.

More information




Last reviewed: 18 June, 2014