Long-Term Volunteering (LTV)

Due to our limited resources and in order to ensure good support for the volunteers, we will be able to send a total of 20 volunteers to long-term projects abroad in 2024.

There are still places available. Sign up now!

Long-Term-Volunteering (LTV)

As a volunteer on a long-term assignment, you will contribute to a non-profit project in Asia, Africa, Latin America, North America or Europe.

You will immerse yourself in a different culture and acquire new skills that will enrich you personally and help you move forward after your return to Switzerland.

The duration is 1 – 12 months. From the age of 18.

Your contact person

Unsere Infoveranstaltungen finden aktuell online statt. Freiwilligenarbeit in der Schweiz und im Ausland.

Loretta Scherler

Communication & projects, program manager LTV

Where do you want to go?

Malawi, Nigeria, Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Uganda

Cambodia, Thailand, Indonesia, Taiwan

England, Scotland, Spain, Turkey

Ecuador, El Salvador, Kolumbien



  • Age: 18 to 99 years
  • High level of motivation and initiative, no prior knowledge or professional qualifications are generally required
  • Attendance of a pre-departure training in Switzerland. We organise two pre-departure trainings per calendar year for all long-term volunteers (LTV). These take place in spring (March or April) and autumn (October or November). Please contact us if you would like to do a long-term assignment so that you can be sure of attending a pre-departure training in advance.
  • Learn about concepts like White Saviour Complex and Decolonize
  • Recommendation: +4 weeks in host country or region – think about your ecological footprint!
  • Sufficient language skills to be able to communicate in the project country
  • Writing a report about your assignment
  • Willingness to share your experiences with SCI Switzerland after your return (presentation at a seminar, article, video, etc.)
  • Willingness to continue working for peace and global justice with local projects of various NGOs after your assignment


  • Long-term participation fee: CHF 690.- (a deposit of CHF 290 will be refunded to SCI Switzerland at the beginning of the placement)
  • Pre-departure training participation fee: CHF 60.- (incl. catering)
  • There is a reduction of CHF 30 for those with no or little income
  • Travel costs (you must also organise your own travel)
  • Costs for visa and vaccinations
  • In some long-term projects, programme costs are incurred on site, which you pay directly to the local assignment organisation. You can find the fees in the project description on the international search engine.

What is your participation fee used for?

SCI Switzerland is a certified non-profit organisation. We rely on participation fees, membership fees and donations to organise volunteer engagements, place volunteers and for the preparation and follow-up of volunteers and camp coordinators. The participation fee only covers a small part of the actual costs. SCI Switzerland is mainly supported by its long-standing members and donors as well as government subsidies. The local project partners also contribute a great deal themselves to the realisation of the projects (work camps, long-term engagements, etc.).

Scholarship for young people with vocational training

Do you have a vocational training and are you under 25 years of age? Then you can apply for a scholarship!

SCI Switzerland has a scholarship programme and we can award scholarships for young professionals. Thanks to this, young graduates and young professionals have all programme costs covered 100%, as well as travel costs.



  • Food and lodging on site
  • A moderate amount of pocket money (depending on the location)
  • Support from SCI Switzerland before departure, during the assignment and after your return
  • Invitation letter for visas, if needed
  • Preparation and evaluation of the assignment
  • One-year membership in SCI Switzerland (incl. SCI newsletter, reduction of seminar fees, etc.


What our volunteers say



If you are interested in a long-term assignment, please contact us well in advance. Depending on the country of destination: 2 to 6 months before departure. Short-term registrations are not possible.


  1. Check that you meet the requirements.
  2. Participation in the pre-departure training is mandatory. Learn about concepts such as White Saviour Complex and Decolonize Volunteering
  3. Contact Loretta Scherler for an individual interview (loretta.scherler@scich.org) and for the definitive registration form.
  4. Pay the deposit of CHF 290 to start your placement in a project of your choice.
  5. Fill in the registration form, which will be sent to the project partner by SCI Switzerland. You are now definitely registered.
  6. As soon as you are definitely accepted into the project, you can transfer the remaining amount of the total placement fee (CHF 690) to SCI Switzerland (minus CHF 290 of the deposit).
  7. Your registration is binding. Cancellations will incur cancellation fees (60% up to three weeks before departure, thereafter 80% of the placement fee).
  8. Now you can start planning and booking your trip. Also find out about entry requirements (including visas) and possible vaccinations. We will be on hand to advise you throughout the entire process.
  9. After your return from the long-term assignment, you can expect an individual evaluation meeting. You can also share your experiences with us by writing an article for our member magazine and/or taking part in a preparatory seminar or a public event as a ‘returnee’ and passing on your experiences.

Do you have any questions? Contact Loretta Scherler (loretta.scherler@scich.org) for all questions regarding long-term assignments.

    The Power Behind Good Intentions


    European volunteers often -consciously or subconsciously- have colonial mindsets Many Europeans have good intentions when wanting to participate in volunteering projects in the Global South. They are eager to “help” where they can, they want to get to know “other” cultures and live a different kind of life than the one they are used to. Europeans usually don’t know that these motivations are rooted in centuries of colonial exploitation and oppression of societies and cultures outside of Europe.

    Read more