Want a deeper insight into what an ICS placement looks like? Read the amazing blogs written by our past and present volunteers. Enjoy the journey!

My host home experience

Before starting your ICS placement, fears of moving in with an entirely new family, with a different and unknown culture to you, definitely crosses your mind. However, three months down the line and you wonder why you was ever concerned, so I am here to reflect and give some tips on host homes regarding my time in Malawi.



From Scotland to Zimbabwe

At the start of the year, I went to Zimbabwe with Progressio ICS for three months. Myself and five other UK volunteers lived in the village surrounding St. Matthias Primary and Secondary Schools in the Mutasa district. While there we not only worked with the students of the schools but with the people in the rest of the Mutasa area, and we did this with the help of the national volunteers, our Zimbabwe counterparts.


Derechos de las mujeres - Women’s rights

During my stay in Santa Catarina Masahuat, my host family owned a dairy farm, with 12 cows, providing their income. My host father tended to the cows, milking them and bringing milk home every morning for my host mother to cook down into a soft, salty cheese. She, and many other female family members then went on to sell the cheese, out around in the town and also inside the house during the day. 

Izzy at host home


Honduras: Changing perspectives

When I did my first ICS cycle as a volunteer, I couldn’t believe how the world could look so different than it had 10 weeks earlier. Simply the process I’d gone through, of arriving from my life in England and starting to work in a rural community in the mountains of Honduras, opened my mind greatly, as it has continued to do each time I’ve come back. 


Honduras: Football coaching

It’s been amazing to experience such a different life. 
Stories I will tell to my future children and wife. 
With time running out and the departure fast approaching. 
What I find interesting is the style of football coaching.

An uneven ground and two rusty goals. 
Made out of a few forgotten poles. 
Five footballs for a group 30 strong. 
When planning sessions it’s hard to go wrong. 


Honduras: International Youth Day - San Benito recycling event

To celebrate International Youth Day, our team in San Benito decided to put on a recycling event for the children in our school. International Youth Day highlights the importance of youth and the essential role they have to shape the future of their communities. We wanted to mark this by holding a fun but educational event, which focused on environmental issues.


Honduras: Mid-term poem

I heard of the ICS programme through a friend, who told me the experience wouldn’t end.
All my friends would fill me with fear, now five weeks in I still can’t believe I’m here.
On the plane games were played, a night in Texas, which Is where we stayed. 
With the day gone and the fast approaching night, a good night sleep for the connecting flight. 


Honduras: Poem - Week Two

In San Antonio we were welcomed with a presentation, soon after we walked around to see what needed decoration. 

ICS is an experience that shall last forever, this week’s task is to bring the community together. 

The day we start at school is fast approaching, can’t wait to start glee and football coaching.

With all the volunteers getting along, the clubs start soon it won’t be long. 

Everyone is excited about the clubs and classes, remember to bring your hat and sunglasses.


Reasons why you should do an ICS placement before university

As I started planning my gap year before university, I stumbled across the International Citizen Service (ICS) programme for 18-25 year olds by chance and I was very lucky that I did. With ICS and the charity Progressio, I spent three months from January 2016 volunteering on a development project with the Midlands AIDS Service Organisation (MASO) in Gweru, Zimbabwe.