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How can volunteering overseas boost your CV?

Volunteering overseas can help your personal growth, but it has benefits for your CV too! Read on to find out more...

Magda Knight
05th April 2016
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Network on a global and local scale

Meeting new people who share your passions and interests is a great way to network, and when volunteering overseas you’ll meet like minds from all kinds of organisations, companies and networks. As you get to know each other and your past volunteering or career paths, you’ll discover all kinds of organisations you may want to get involved with to boost your experience and skills. Maybe the people you’re volunteering with can give you a contact or put in a good word for you

Explore opportunities for paid employment

Organisations with overseas volunteering programmes have an infrastructure and paid staff. When volunteering, you’ll gain a better understanding of the organisation, its aims and its work culture. You may also get to learn more about its hiring practice and available opportunities. At this stage you might realise that the organisation is one you’d not only like to volunteer with but work for. If so, having volunteered with them directly will help your CV stand out if you apply for paid opportunities. Some organisations may have a regional base, which may not suit you for regular employment if it’s not local to you. However, some will have national and international presences.

Make the most of your achievements

Volunteering overseas is a valuable way to demonstrate achievements and personal successes to employers. Whether it’s a successfully completed building project, or developing leadership skills through teaching and workshops, your overseas experience will help you build up accolades that will help employers browsing your CV see what a great asset you could be to their company or organisation.

Prove you’re proactive

Employers will appreciate a candidate who can demonstrate their energy and passion. They will also love to see that you can contribute to the workplace in a proactive way. Volunteering overseas is a highly proactive step to take in terms of your personal development and career path. After all, you could have spent that time sitting in front of the TV! Instead, you’ve shown your desire to actively support others and help to make a difference. Those are the kinds of qualities that employers could find valuable in any industry or business sector.

Pick up key employability skills

What kind of skills and strengths can you put on your CV and demonstrate to employers once you’ve done volunteering overseas? Here are just a few examples:

  • People skills
  • Communication skills (which can include making use of a foreign language)
  • Teamwork skills
  • Problem solving skills
  • Organisational skills


Student? School-leaver? Graduate? Seeking paid work or ready for some careers inspiration? Visit for help with your next steps. Explore career tips, discover helpful employers/organisations, play the Game for career ideas and apply for apprenticeships, graduate schemes, work experience and full/part-time jobs in your area.

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