Information evening with Projects Abroad at the Irish Aid Volunteering and Information Centre

July 3, 2014

On Tuesday 1st July, at the Irish Aid Volunteering and Information Centre, Projects Abroad held an information evening, which gave an overview of the wide range of projects offered, spread across almost 30 countries around the globe, in Latin America, Africa, Eastern Europe, and the Asia-Pacific region.

Recruitment Manager, and Country Director for Ireland, Anna McCarthy recounted her own experience starting as a young graduate entering Projects Abroad’s volunteering program, through to her current role as a member of the organisation’s over 600 worldwide staff, who provide round-the-clock support, with a heavy emphasis on safety and security for the thousands of volunteers who are sent abroad each year.

medical-electives-abroadMedical outreach

Attendees were then given a brief tour of the diversity of placements offered. These included building projects, where volunteers add to the capacity of the local workforce, International Development including micro-finance projects where they provide assistance to local small business owners, right through to veterinary medicine and animal care, medical electives and teaching, where volunteers support local staff to help deal with large class sizes. Such projects offer the chance for volunteers to travel, experience other cultures, and most importantly make a significant contribution to overseas development: the projects are designed to be as beneficial to local communities as they are to the volunteers themselves. (Although, in addition Projects Abroad also support cultural exchange visits, for those interested.) To support this, volunteers are charged placement fees, which contribute towards support from dedicated in-country staff, local accommodation and sustenance, security, airport transfers, and travel and medical insurance.


Expanding upon the established volunteer userbase of 16-19 year-olds, an increasing number of professionals, such as those on career breaks, or those who are retired, are now giving their time to use their skills volunteering abroad. In recognition of this, Projects Abroad has created a volunteering program for experienced workers: Projects Abroad PRO. Here, each applicant is hand- selected based on their abilities, and assigned to projects where they can create the most impact.


For more information, why not take a look at Projects Abroad’s website, and if you have any questions, you can contact them at You can view photos from Projects Abroad’s many international projects here.


– Stephen Macdonald

– Images courtesy of Projects Abroad





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