International Citizen Service (ICS) is a UK government funded programme that brings together young people to make a difference in some of the poorest countries across the world.

ICS aims to bring about three things: project impact, volunteer personal development, and the creation of active citizens. By August 2015 ICS will create 7000 active citizens in the UK and 7000 in the developing countries where we work.

UKaid logoICS is funded by the Department for International Development (DFID)and is run by a consortium of charities, led by VSO in partnership with Progressio, International Service, Lattitude, Raleigh, Restless Development, Skillshare International and Tearfund. You can read more about the ICS partners, and the countries and focus of their ICS programme, on the ICS website.

Why choose Progressio ICS?

Volunteers in Zimbabwe hills

Because we are Progressio

Progressio has 70 years of experience as a development organisation. Our whole way of working is about sharing skills with people in poor communities so they can overcome the problems they face. It's the perfect approach for making the most of your time overseas - and we have the experience, the know-how, and the relationships on the ground to make it happen.

We call it people powered development - people empowered to overcome the barriers that keep them poor. And you can be a part of it.

Because of what you will do

You will work for 10 weeks in a group of about six UK volunteers and a similar number of local volunteers, with a UK group leader and a local group leader. You will work on community projects, responding to local communities' needs.

Progressio ICS projects are designed to meet specific local needs in three broad areas of work:

promoting a sustainable environment and improving living standards

supporting people to respond to HIV and AIDS 

enabling people to have a say in the decisions and policies that affect their lives.

Progressio ICS volunteers also have specific roles to help support the team, such as blogging, collating photos, monitoring and evaluation or helping the group to intergrate with the community.

Because of what you will learn

ICS isn't just about what you can do during your placement, it's about what you can learn. If you want to really understand the context and challenges of tackling poverty in developing countries, you need to be able to learn and reflect on relevant issues such as gender and faith and the role they play in the lives of people and communities around the world.

In addition to the practical development impact you will make through the projects you can help to inspire and run, as a Progressio ICS volunteer you will also be able to explore and discuss these issues with other young people from the UK and your placement country.

You don't need to be religious yourself to engage in these discussions: we welcome applications from people of all faiths and none. For Progressio, development is about inclusivity, openness and tolerance. So all you will need is an open mind, and respect for the views of others. For more, see our Faith FAQs.

Because change starts with you