What are the steps to host a UN Volunteer?
To host an on-site UN Volunteer, the UN partner should contact a UNV representative, ideally at the UNV Field Unit or Regional Office representing the country where the UN Volunteer is expected to serve. The partner must secure funding for the volunteer assignment and participate in interviewing shortlisted candidates. Refer to the steps for how to host a UN Volunteer.
The UN partner may also proceed directly to submit an expression of interest by clicking 'Request UN Volunteers' at the bottom of this page.
→ Enroll in our e-learning course Hosting a UN Volunteer.
What categories of UN Volunteers are available?
UNV offers different categories of UN Volunteers, thus enabling flexible solutions to the needs of UN entities.
- International UN Volunteers are typically professionals with specialized knowledge, bringing five to ten years of experience to their assignments. They come from all walks of life and a wide range of professional backgrounds, and are deployed for a minimum period of 12 months and up to four years.
- National UN Volunteers are nationals of the host country (or refugees and stateless persons with legal status in the country), normally recruited locally. They often live and work in their own communities and have at minimum a high school diploma. Some assignments require national UN volunteers to have professional and technical skills and a bachelor’s degree or equivalent professional experience. Other assignments require UN Volunteers who can bring a strong community connection, local knowledge and networks.
- UN Youth Volunteers are between 18-29 years of age and may be engaged for national and international assignments of up to two years. UN University Volunteers are a special segment of UN Youth Volunteers, and serve on assignments of 3-6 months. UN Youth Volunteers and UN University Volunteers have demonstrated their commitment to global peace and sustainable development through academic, extra-curricular and volunteer activities and/or around two years of remunerated work experience.
- Through the short-term international and expatriate national UN Volunteer categories, volunteers can be contracted for assignments of less than three months. This option may be useful for rapid or time-limited deployment, such as shoring up emergency responses, census activities and for projects that require quick scaling-up or adaptation to changing circumstances.
- Online Volunteering is a rapidly growing service of UNV. Volunteering online allows volunteers to develop their skills and take on new roles that their professional life may not necessarily provide. Organizations collaborate with people of different backgrounds from all over the world who become part of a global online community of peers who all share the goal of advancing human development. UN Online Volunteers conduct assignments via the Internet to bolster the activities of United Nations entities, governments and civil society organizations.
Overview of all UN Volunteer categories
Who pays for the UN Volunteer assignment?
The UN partner hosting an on-site UN Volunteer covers the cost of a UN Volunteer assignment. The cost varies depending on the volunteer category selected, which you can refer to in this overview of all UN Volunteer categories.
UNV also has a limited number of UN Volunteer assignments that are fully funded by donors and allocated in close consultation with the Member State. UNV is the main interlocutor for UN entity partners hosting a UN Volunteer sponsored by a UNV funding partner. The main entry point for UN entities to discuss the possibility to host a sponsored UN Volunteer is the UNV Field Unit, or, for countries without a UNV presence, the respective UNV Regional Office.
What support does UNV give to host UN entities?
UNV offers host organizations support with the recruitment and administration of UN Volunteers. This includes:
- helping identify appropriate volunteer assignments;
- managing the selection process and choosing candidates of the highest caliber that meet the host’s requirements;
- conducting the initial briefing of UN Volunteers and preparing them for travel to their duty stations;
- concluding the contractual arrangements with the volunteers;
- ensuring medical and other clearances are in place;
- training and monitoring the UN Youth Volunteers; and
- providing post-assignment career advice.
The UNV global talent pool contains an active roster of more than 25,000 vetted, well-qualified potential volunteers. A legal and administrative framework is established for engaging volunteers that includes conditions of service, guidance notes and the UNV code of conduct.
How long does the process take?
The recruitment of a national or international UN Volunteer normally ranges from 4-12 weeks from approval of the Description of Assignment until arrival at the duty station. The time between expressing interest in engaging UN Volunteers and their arrival at the designated duty station varies and depends on the urgency of the request, the availability of talents required, the chosen category and the turnaround time on required inputs on the part of the requesting agency.
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Volunteer management – Downloads
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