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Volunteering for the UN and UN Internships in the UK

Although most of the work the UN and its agencies do is in areas of need and undeveloped countries, people located in the UK can always find ways to help these missions in their local area. Although the UN receives funding from its member countries, many UN bodies are funded solely by voluntary contributions. There is always the need for fundraising and awareness of UN campaigns.

UNICEF Volunteering

There are several ways to contribute to the efforts of UNICEF in the UK. People of many ages and experience levels can volunteer to help with events or as part of a group or society that assists with fundraising and awareness drives. There are several opportunities every year for volunteers to fundraise for UNICEF by taking part in annual marathons, including the Brighton Marathon, London Marathons and Adidas Silverstone Half Marathon in Northamptonshire.

UNICEF Voluntary Internships

For a more hands-on experience with UNICEF’s work, there are frequently voluntary internships available. Internship positions vary based on what is currently required, so to be chosen for one of these roles is dependent on the applicant's relevant experience. These roles are not simply for students, but open to anyone who thinks they are right for the job and seeks to contribute to the wellbeing of children everywhere. The positions do provide some training and experience, and are located in Islington, London or Billericay, a lovely town between Brentwood and Basildon.

International Maritime Organisation Internships

Graduate-level students taking part in maritime or environmental research can apply for internship at the IMO to gain access to the resources of the Maritime Knowledge Centre from the IMO's location in Lambeth, London. These positions last from 2 to 8 weeks and are not a traditional internship, with the main purpose being for the intern to undertake self-determined research. However there are ample opportunities for students to interact with other students and IMO staff and be exposed to current issues in the maritime industry.

UN Women Volunteering

Individuals can become members of UN Women and attend meetings and key events that provide information and education on the most current Women’s Rights issues, and help define the organisations goals. There are also frequent events and fundraising activities to help finance the grants that UN Women distributes to communities in need of education, training and reform in gender equality. There are UN Women branches located in Cambridge, Wales, Northern Ireland, Edinburgh, London, Yorkshire and many other areas.

UN Refugee Agency Internships

United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees offers a variety of internship positions in the fields of public relations, finance and fundraising organisation. These unpaid positions are fulltime for a period of 6 months, and directly assist in the agency’s programs for refugee protection and support. Aimed at graduate level students looking to gain experience and insight in the role and challenges of humanitarian organisations, internships take place at the UNHCR headquarters in Westminster.