European Voluntary Service (EVS)

 What is  European Voluntary Service (EVS)?

The European Voluntary Service (EVS) is Action 2 of the Community YOUTH IN ACTION Programme.
It helps young people participate in various forms of voluntary activities, both within and outside the European Union.

The European Voluntary Service is a ‘learning’ service: through non-formal learning experiences young volunteers will improve and acquire skills for their personal, educational and professional development, and add to their general socail integration.


Who can participate in the EVS?

EVS is open to all young people between the age of 18 and 30, regardless of their background, who are legally resident in a Programme or in a Partner Country.

Each EVS project is based on a partnership made up of:

• One or more volunteers
• Sending organisation, which helps volunteer to prepare before leaving the country.
• Host organisation, where the young person spends the voluntary service working.
• Coordinating Organisation, which applies on behalf of the partners. This can be a sending or a host organisation.

Each EVS project and activity must involve at least one EU Member State.


What do volunteers on European Voluntary Service do?    

This depends on the organisation the volunteer is hosted in. A young person can volunteer in a particular field that they find interesting, or relevant to their future. Areas include Social Care, Arts, Horticultue, Sports and Environmental projects.


An outline of expected tasks and outcomes for the EVS project is agreed on by all parties prior to the start of the experience.


As well as the project related tasks and regular meetings with their mentors, volunteers are encouraged to reflect on their experience as a learning opportunity. They can gain a Youthpass certificate, which is a confirmation of participation and an individualised descriuption of the experience and learning outcomes. To find out more about Youthpass visit


How much do volunteers need to pay?

EVS does not cost thevolunteer any money either before or during their experience. The funding from the national agency is used to cover travel and accomodation costs for the volunteer as well as a small monthly allowance for the volunteer.


What is the duration of Voluntary Service?

The voluntary service may last from 2 months to 1 year. EVS can also be carried out as a group project with young people volunteering together.


What training, support and supervision are provided for volunteers?

Pre-departure trianing will be organised for volunteers by the national agency. All volunteers are given training on-arrival or shortly after arrival in the country of their service. Mid-way through their experience, training will be offered with other EVS volunteers in that country. Every EVS host organisation should have a mentor for the volunteer who is there to support the volunteer andhis/her learning. There should also be a supervisor in place to oversee and monitor the volunteer’s work.

For more detailed information visit

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