aerial view of the pamunda island, Zanzibar
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Struggles in paradise: Do the world’s poorest actually benefit from tourism?

Around the world, tourism is on the rise, but local people often don’t see the benefit. Our work in Zanzibar is a great example of how simple changes could make a world of difference to farmers trying to earn a living.

Zambia street scene

"A year I'll never forget"

Eileen’s year spent in Zambia was unforgettable. Not just because it was the first year of married life with her husband, but also for the extreme highs and lows of her stint volunteering in the children’s ward of a small rural hospital.

Fiona Kirby VSO education volunteer
VSO/Abir Abdullah

Meet the teacher volunteering in the Rohingya refugee camps

Thousands of Rohingya children are living in the refugee camps. They’re out of school and risk being left behind for good, but VSO education volunteer Fiona Kirby is working to help them

VSO volunteer and Rohingya children
VSO/Abir Abdullah

Helping Rohingya children get their childhoods back

About half a million children are living in refugee camps in Bangladesh. We're working together to help them.

An ICS volunteer in Battambang, Cambodia
VSO/ Cesar Balan

Dieng’s story: Fighting polio gave me a passion for education

Rem Dieng, 26, was born with polio. It affects the way she walks – and her chances of getting work. Now a volunteer on VSO’s International Citizen Service (ICS) programme, she’s using her story to inspire youth club members to continue into higher education and better job prospects. 

VSO volunteers discuss solutions in Sierra Leone
VSO/ Evelyn Fey

Volunteers: Our not-so-secret weapon in creating resilient communities

A billion people in the world are volunteers. A new UN report rightly recognises their vital role combatting the growing global threat of natural and man-made disasters, writes VSO’s Chief Executive Philip Goodwin. 

An empty field in Cambodia

The fields are empty: Why thousands of Cambodian farmers are disappearing

In Cambodia, rice farmers are struggling with growing costs and stagnant markets. They are taking out loans to cope in the difficult months and when they cannot repay them they're forced to migrate towards cities or overseas in search of work, leaving behind children and aged parents to care for the rice fields.

VSO staff in nigeria

We have the UK’s most diverse charity leadership. But it shouldn’t stop at the top

This week we received one of our proudest accolades to date– to be named the UK’s most diverse charity in terms of senior leadership.

A VSO volunteer and a child share a moment

60 years in 60 photos

As the world has changed, VSO has changed with it. To date over 76,000 people have volunteered with VSO. Watch this video showing six decades of fighting poverty in under a minute.


60 years in Nigeria

60 years ago VSO set out to fight poverty globally. Today, the work of volunteers means there is much to celebrate in Nigeria. VSO CEO Philip Goodwin joins in.

At Gulu Hospital, here looking after a baby, nurse Gerieke is desperately trying to save babies’ lives.
VSO/Georgie Scott

A matter of life and death for one nurse in Uganda

Gerieke Zandberg, a paediatric nurse from the Netherlands, is working to save babies’ lives at Gulu Hospital in Uganda.

Pakistani couple at wedding, close-up of them holding hands
©Syed Ali Ashraf/Shutterstock

This Pakistan shelter is helping women escape violence and rebuild their lives

In Pakistan, nearly one in three married women aged 15-49 reports experiencing physical violence at the hands of their husbands. Panah shelter in Karachi, Pakistan, is offering hope to these women facing domestic abuse, giving not just refuge but rehabilitation.