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FAQ for University and College Staff

Does IVHQ hold liability and indemnity insurance?

Yes, IVHQ carries general liability insurance of over US$3million. It is mandatory for every volunteer to acquire their own travel insurance that is appropriate to their intended travel period and the type of activities they’ll be undertaking. IVHQ has partnered with an insurance provider called World Nomads. They have particular expertise in insuring volunteer travelers and they have policies that cover everything IVHQ volunteers need, plus their premiums are very low. Visit our insurance pages to learn more.

Are risk assessments available for all IVHQ volunteer programs?

IVHQ has a detailed set of requirements that all of our programs need to meet when it comes to health, safety and risk management. These are outlined on our health and safety pages, and they include the expectation that every partner we work maintains a live and up-to-date risk assessment of their program. IVHQ staff monitor and audit these risk assessments at least annually and the risk profile of a program is discussed in detail with volunteers, as part of the orientation at the very beginning of the program.

What happens in the event of an emergency or serious incident?

All volunteers are required to provide contact details of someone IVHQ can contact in the event of an emergency or serious incident. This is typically a member of the volunteer’s family, but with a student’s permission, a University or College can also be contacted in the event that something goes wrong. We understand the duty of care that tertiary institutions have towards their students and we have processes in place to ensure timely communication of information regarding incidents. For more details about how IVHQ manages emergencies, visit our health and safety pages.

Does IVHQ provide supervision and in-country assessments for students?

Students on an IVHQ volunteer program are supervised by our local team. This supervision is focused on ensuring they have the information and local knowledge they need to complete their placement effectively while staying safe, and acting as a responsible volunteer. Supervision does not extend to providing a daily assessment of the student’s work, however a short written report of the student’s performance can be provided upon completion of the placement, when requested.

Does IVHQ support internship placements?

Yes, internship placements can be supported by IVHQ volunteer programs. We’ve developed a series of internship offerings relevant to a wide range of study areas. Visit our University pagesto learn more and to contact our dedicated Campus Support team.

Can students conduct research or journalistic interviews while on an IVHQ volunteer program?

No, this isn’t something IVHQ allows to take place on programs. Volunteers join our programs to make a meaningful contribution to community projects and conducting research or producing journalistic content can be distracting and disruptive to placements, communities, and to fellow volunteers. As a blanket rule we don’t allow this type of activity on any IVHQ program.

Can I interview someone at IVHQ for a research paper or article that I’m writing?

We’re grateful for the opportunity to be interviewed, but unfortunately we have an organization-wide approach of not participating in any academic or journalistic research. This is because we receive a large number of interview requests and know that we could never participate in them all.

Is IVHQ a for-profit business? How is it ethical to make money when people volunteer with you to make a difference in a community?

Yes, IVHQ is a business, but it’s a social enterprise because we define our success on the basis of the social outcomes as well as economic ones.

IVHQ is a Certified B Corporation and that means we think differently about how we define success. It means we operate transparently and it also acknowledges that we meet the highest overall standards of social and environmental performance.

Certified B Corps are celebrated for using entrepreneurialism to help solve a range of global social and environmental problems. Just like a FairTrade label, the B Corp certification is about identifying and recognising ethical organizations that have a positive social purpose and use business as a force for good.

People choose to pay to volunteer abroad with IVHQ because they want the security of knowing we have set up sustainable programs with local teams, with safe housing and local on the ground to provide support and guidance. Being a for-profit business and doing social good should not be mutually exclusive and we’re a for-profit business with a focus on doing good in communities all over the world.

How to get started

Pick a destination + project and apply for free
Meet your personal volunteer travel expert
Pay the registration fee to secure your place and upgrade your MyIVHQ account
Get ready to volunteer abroad, we’ll support you every step of the way!