International UN Volunteers serve in countries other than their own. They are recruited for specialized inputs to development programmes, and increasingly, in the areas of peacekeeping, humanitarian assistance and UN-supported electoral processes. The UNV programme maintains a roster of candidates with relevant experience in these sectors. It covers more than 100 professional categories including, for example, programme/project development, administration, communications, community development, demobilization and reintegration, disaster prevention, humanitarian and civil affairs, engineering, environment, HIV/AIDS, medicine, human rights, logistics and election support.



The requirements to become an International UN Volunteer vary depending on the specific assignment. Generally, the following are the minimum requirements:

  • University degree or higher technical diploma
  • At least 25 years old (no upper age limit)
  • Several years of relevant working experience , preferably at least five
  • Good working knowledge of at least one of the three UN working languages English, French and Spanish
  • Strong commitment to the values and principles of volunteerism
  • Ability to work in a multi-cultural environment
  • Ability to adjust to difficult living conditions
  • Strong interpersonal and organizational skills
  • Prior volunteering and/or working experience in a development country


Benefits of being a UN Volunteer:
The benefits of volunteering go beyond income. Foremost is the personal and professional satisfaction that an assignment brings to the UN volunteer. It can be challenging and rewarding and require you to use your skills in a new context. You can transfer useful knowledge while gaining a greater understanding of the issues affecting other people.

The United Nations Volunteer (UNV) programme is unique in that it aims to facilitate technical cooperation between developing countries. The majority of serving UN Volunteers are from developing countries. By sending those UN Volunteers to other developing countries with similar socioeconomic conditions, the volunteers not only share their skills and experience, but they also learn more about the ways in which people in other countries deal with similar development challenges. This knowledge adds to the pool of resources available to their home countries following their return.