How to talk up your volunteering experience

A youth volunteer in Addis Ababa helps raise COVID–19 awareness in bustling areas around the Ethiopian capital. Photo by: UNICEF Ethiopia / CC BY-NC-ND

BARCELONA — Volunteering experience is important for anyone interested in a career in global development — a sector where employers are looking for people who understand and align with their mission. It’s particularly important for professionals switching roles or sectors, or those who have been out of the job market for some time and need to build skills and networks.

Maria Chaney, a staffing specialist with Tetra Tech, stressed that volunteer work is highly regarded within the international development sector. “It shows a further sense of initiative and drive outside of formal positions,” she said.

About the author

  • Emma Smith

    Emma Smith is a Reporter at Devex. She covers all things related to careers and hiring in the global development community as well as mental health within the sector — from tips on supporting humanitarian staff to designing mental health programs for refugees. Emma has reported from key development hubs in Europe and co-produced Devex’s DevProWomen2030 podcast series. She holds a degree in journalism from Glasgow Caledonian University and a master's in media and international conflict. In addition to writing for regional news publications, she has worked with organizations focused on child and women’s rights.

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