The UK’s Global Xchange Service Corps Announces its First U.S. Volunteers

The United Kingdom-based Global Xchange recently announced the selection of its first-ever U.S. participants for a volunteer project.

Global Xchange is an innovative, intercultural service exchange opportunity for young people to work together with people of other countries and to develop shared experiences, skill sets, and values.

A partnership between the British Council and the Volunteer Service Organisation (VSO), Global Xchange teams up groups of 18 young people, ages 18-25, usually from the United Kingdom and a partner country — and volunteers split their time during the service term between the United Kingdom and the partner country.

The U.S. participants will be part of the first multilateral group of volunters, with participants from the United Kingdom, Continue reading

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Australian Volunteers International Offers Opportunities for Australians at Home and Abroad

Thanks to intern Ceyhun Arslan for contributing this post. Ceyhun is researching service opportunities throughout the world open to non-U.S. citizens.

Australian Volunteers International recruits permanent residents of Australia who wish to volunteer overseas or in remote regions of Australia for a variety of projects.

Founded even before the U.S. Peace Corps and the British Volunteer Service Organisation, Australian Volunteers International (AVI) cooperates with local organizations overseas and within remote Australia, which request volunteers from AVI.

Short-listed applicants interview with an AVI representative. Participants can choose among 70 new programs in Asia, the Continue reading

The British Council Creates Global Connections and Impact Through Dialogue and Service

Professor Mike Hardy

Professor Mike Hardy, Photo by Kate Anderson

Amy Potthast first wrote about the British Council’s event and because I live in the nation’s capital, where the event was held, I had the good fortune of attending.

Admittedly, I was still reeling from Michelle Obama’s visit to CNCS — so the British Council event was yet another highlight on my calendar which made that week unforgettable, to say the least.

An impressive crowd gathered—approximately 50 attendants—at the Rayburn House Office Building for what was absolutely a lovely affair.  Lovely is not a word I usually use to describe a professional engagement, but I think this word comes to mind because of my British, or as I say, Bree-teesh, bias. Yes, I’m a sap for their accents and covet their seemingly inborn urbane manner.

Prior to the event, I was only loosely familiar with the work of the British Council—the United Kingdom’s international Continue reading

Citizens Cross Borders to Serve in Diverse Teams with Global Xchange

Global Xchange participantsA partnership between the British Council and the Volunteer Service Organisation (VSO), Global Xchange brings together teams that cross cultures and borders to serve together.

Global Xchange is an innovative, intercultural service exchange opportunity for young people to work together with people of other countries and to develop shared experiences, skill sets, and values.

Every six months, Global Xchange teams up groups of 18 young people, ages 18-25. Nine are from the same overseas partner Continue reading

Diaspora Volunteering

Diaspora volunteering connects Diaspora communities with their countries of origin through strategic volunteer placements.

Many people in Diaspora communities have a passion for helping their communities back home, and Diaspora volunteering is one of many ways they can help. Sometimes Diaspora volunteering can also counter the effects of out-migration of skilled workers and bring entrepreneurial energy to isolated communities.

The Volunteer Service Organisation (VSO, the U.K. counterpart to Peace Corps) is one international volunteer-sending group that offers Diaspora placements for long-term, stipended assignments. For example, VSO Canada—which accepts U.S. citizens—works with partners to match the skills of Canada’s Diaspora communities with the needs of “under-resourced social development sectors in their countries of heritage. VSO Canada (now called CUSO-VSO) works with people of the Guyanese, Filipino, and Ethiopian Diasporas.

African Foundation for Development (AFFORD) partners with VSO in the United Kingdom to harness the knowledge and skills of the African Diaspora to nurture small and medium-sized businesses in Africa through its Supporting Entrepreneurs and Enterprise Development in Africa (SEEDA) Initiative. (Other ways for members of the African Diaspora to contribute to the development of African countries: Project Diaspora, supporting members of the African Diaspora to support African nations through remittances. Mukuru.com specializes in remittances to Zimbabwe.)

Indicorps is a fellowship program that recruits young professionals of the global Indian Diaspora to Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India, to serve for one or two years with a grassroots organization. The program aims to nurture social conscious leaders “to transform India and the world.”

People of the Jewish Diaspora have many opportunities through which to volunteer with communities in Israel. Some places to start are the Jewish Coalition for Service, and also the National Council for Volunteering in Israel which lists volunteer opportunities for residents and non-residents of Israel.

Do you know of other international volunteer-sending organizations that focus on Diaspora volunteering? We’d love to hear!

Today, the first 2009 Idealist.org Global Volunteering Fair takes place in Washington, DC, at Google. Check out other fairs this week in New York and Boston. In honor of the fairs, The New Service blog will feature international service programs all week!

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Applying to U.S. grad schools from abroad

Are you a U.S. citizen working or volunteering abroad? Know someone who is?

Check out the newest article on Idealist.org‘s Public Service Graduate Education Resource Center: Applying to a U.S. Grad School as a U.S. Citizen Living Abroad.

The article offers considerations for working with your local mail system, finding test prep materials and taking tests, and finding good alternatives to the campus visit.

Idealist.org grad fairs are not as useful if you can’t participate, however, you can and should check out the list of registered schools at some of the events (for example the 117 schools at this week’s San Francisco fair and or the 107 schools registered for the Los Angeles event).

Also note that Idealist is still looking for bloggers including current or former term-of-service participants (like Peace Corps and VSO volunteers), and people crossing borders to attend grad school.