Frequently Asked Questions
Please complete the Membership form and pay the applicable membership fee. If you are applying for Concession or Student Membership please attach evidence at the link provided in the form so that it can be verified. You could also scan and email the evidence to us at email@example.com.
We use an online placement system for the receipt and processing of applications. So once you have selected a workcamp that you would like to volunteer at Project Search , you have to register online and provide all the requested information.
On successfully completing the form you should receive a confirmation email that your form has been received. The next step would be to pay the work camp application fee. This can be done by bank transfer at the Bank account details given below:
Bank: Bendigo Bank
BSB: 633000 Acct No: 156815888
The workcamp application fee is $350 per workcamp and $300 for concession applications (students and concession holders). In case you are concurrently applying for more than one workcamp you should contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to enquire if any discounts are available.
Please note that certain workcamps also require the payment of an additional participation fee. This fee is payable to the host organisation on arrival at the workcamp. Generally, this fee is payable in Euros or $US currency. This information would be clearly specified in the workcamp details provided. Many of our workcamps do not have any additional participation fee.
The workcamp application fees are used not only to help run workcamps but also to develop new projects, pay insurance for volunteers on all workcamps, help towards IVP’s administration costs, undertake evaluation of Australian projects and pay membership fees to SCI annually. The fee also covers your basic food and accommodation costs on many workcamps.
All are staff members are volunteers. We do our best to make your payment go a long way!
Yes. The Project hosts will provide you with food and accommodation while you are taking part in the project. If you want to travel independently before or after the workcamp, then you will need to make your own arrangements and cover your own costs during this time.
Accommodation could be mattresses in a school hall, camping, dormitories in a youth hostel, a residential centre or a historic castle. There will be at least basic washing facilities and cooking facilities.
As you’ll be living in a larger group than usual, you may not have as much privacy as you are used to. The group will usually share cooking and cleaning tasks on a roster basis so bring your favourite recipes with you.
No! Working hours do vary from project to project but generally you will work 30+ hours a week, with evenings and weekends free. An important part of every workcamp is how the group organises social activities. After the day’s work, there will be time to play, listen to music, cook, discuss, sing, write to loved ones, learn local phrases and visit local haunts! Activities are generally decided by the group, so you can have your say.
Speaking other languages always helps when living with an international group and can enrich your experience. Certain workcamps do have specific language requirements (especially some in France, and those in Morocco, Tunisia and Latin America). This will be stated in the workcamp description. For the vast majority of workcamps, the link language is English.
IVP projects are open to everyone between 18 and 70 years of age. A handful of workcamps do have age restrictions on the volunteers they can accept due to the nature of their funding. This information is included in the workcamp description so you will know before you apply for particular workcamp. If the workcamp description don’t state an age threshold (and the vast majority of them don’t) then they are open to all ages.
IVP does not send volunteers to workcamps if there is a clear risk of violence, political uprising or natural disaster. In most cases, the workcamp hosting country will cancel workcamps if such dangers exist.
Some situations are, of course, unavoidable – such as natural disasters (extreme weather, earthquakes, etc) – and you should ensure that you take out your own comprehensive travel insurance to cover such eventualities. You should also check the Australian Government’s travel advisory service:www.smartraveller.gov.au for the latest travel warnings and advice.
No. Once accepted into a workcamp you will receive a detailed Information sheet, which will include instructions on how to get to your workcamp location from the main airport, train station or bus terminal in the country of your project. Some workcamps may ask you to make your own way to your accommodation; others may meet you at the airport or a designated ‘meeting point’.
As a volunteer you are responsible for organising and paying for your own travel individually to and from the workcamp. Please check travel costs before applying for workcamps in far away destinations.
If you cannot afford to get to a workcamp, then please don’t apply for it, but choose one in a country to which travel is more affordable for you.
If you are applying for workcamps in countries for which you need a visa, then you will also have to cover the cost of visa applications.
Some countries require that you have a visa in advance of your travel (e.g. Russia, the Ukraine). In these situations, IVP will provide invitation letters and supporting documentation to help you get your visa for the project dates. In all cases, it is your responsibility to apply for and collect your visa.
It may be necessary for you to make a special journey to a capital city to collect your visa from an embassy in person. You’ll need to make sure that you apply for visas in good time (at least one month before your project start date) and that your passport is valid.
SCI provides some insurance cover. This insurance covers volunteers for the whole time while on the workcamp, unless you are involved in activities organised independent of the workcamp. We strongly recommend that you take out proper private insurance cover before going abroad, and that it include full accident and medical cover for all eventualities.
Standard travel insurance is normally okay. If possible, it should also cover travel cost reimbursement, just in case your workcamp is cancelled at short notice. Unfortunately we can’t recommend any insurance companies to you at the current moment. Volunteers on Australian workcamps are also covered by IVP’s Volunteer Accident Insurance policy.
We welcome applications from volunteers wishing to bring their children, but you will need to be fairly flexible about which workcamp you are willing to do and open to workcamps which may be offered to you. It’s best to check with the office before applying to be sure that the chosen workcamp can accept children. Please note that under 16s are not covered by SCI’s insurance.
No it doesn’t. You will need to tell us about the nature of your disability when applying to do a workcamp. We’ll make every effort to accommodate volunteers on the workcamp of their choice but certain workcamps may not be accessible for certain disabilities.
Conditions do vary from workcamp to workcamp and so you will need to be flexible about the project you are willing to do and be open to workcamps which may be offered to you. Use the additional space on the application form to describe any particular requirements you may have.
IVP is a not-for-profit organisation. It cannot accept any liability for any inconvenience caused or costs incurred, other than the application fee, in the event of cancellation, either by you or of the workcamp itself.
The following Cancellation and Refund Policy applies to all workcamp applications. Please note that these policies are subject to review and change.
Workcamp preferences unavailable:
If IVP cannot place you on any of your workcamp preferences, you are entitled to a full refund of your application fee, minus an administration fee of A$15.
If the volunteer cancels after being accepted into a work camp:
• giving notice more than 4 weeks before the workcamp start date – 50% of the Application Fee will be refunded
• giving notice less than 4 weeks before the workcamp start date – no refund of Application Fee
In all cases IVP will retain your membership fee and you will continue to receive information about events and you will eligible to apply for other workcamps. Situations will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis, if extraordinary circumstances can be established.