Volunteering opportunities in Iceland

Are you 18 – 30 years old, coming from Denmark, Finland, Italy or Spain? This might be your chance to take part in a life-changing programme such as the European Solidarity Corps (previously European Voluntary Service)!

If you feel like it´s the time to do something in the benefit of others, to give back, and to make a positive change in someone´s life – including your own – read further, this is for you!

This could be your opportunity to enrich the communities around some amazing organizations with your unique presence, by contributing your time and skills towards something great. While doing this, you will break out of your comfort zone, develop valuable competences, AND experience living in a country as gorgeous and unique as Iceland, in an intercultural environment full of awesome people (such as yourself). All these will help you grow as a person in ways you never even knew you could. 🙂

Sounds good so far? Let´s get to the specifics!

We are looking for motivated, passionate, open-minded, flexible, and easy-going young people to participate in volunteering projects at 6 different hosting organizations in Iceland. No specific educational background is required, but you should be willing to learn and able to take on various tasks and initiatives. Having good communication skills is a plus, since human interaction is very important in these projects.

The projects are expected to start in the middle of March 2020 and will have a duration of 12 months. To find out which project would suit you best, take a look at the descriptions below!


Projects 1 and 2:

15 January 2020

Project 3:

22 March 2020

To apply, please send us your CV and a Letter of Motivation to evs@aus.is, mentioning the name of the project you’re applying for in the subject of your email.

Any applications sent after the deadline will not be taken into consideration. Please note that at the moment we can only accept the application of candidates coming from the countries mentioned above – Denmark, Finland, Italy and Spain

PROJECT 1: Geysir

Location: Reykjavík

Activity duration: 12 months (12 Mar 2020 – 11 Mar 2021)

Hosting organization:  Geysir Clubhouse


Geysir Clubhouse is a place where people with mental illness come to rebuild their lives. The participants are called members, not patients, and the focus is on their strengths, not their illness. Work in the clubhouse provides the core healing process. Every opportunity provided is the result of the efforts of the members and staff who work side by side in unique partnership. One of the most important steps members take toward greater independence is transitional employment where they work in the community in real jobs. Members also receive assistance in securing housing, advancing their education, obtaining good psychiatric and medical care as well as maintaining public benefits.

Volunteers’ tasks

The volunteer will be asked to assist the staff and members of the Clubhouse to carry on various tasks within the organization. The role of the EVS volunteer will be based on his/her strength and interest.

There is a lot of variety in the work at Geysir Clubhouse and the possibilities for the volunteer to bring in his/her ideas and abilities. He/she will be asked to work alongside the staff and members, give a helping hand and be a caring friend. It is important to bear in mind that he/she will be working with people who have struggled with mental illnesses and want to partake in society in a constructive way. Having every year someone from a different culture with whom the members can exchange experiences, talk, work alongside and break the monotony and giving young European volunteers the opportunity to work with less fortunate people is the essence of hosting a volunteer at the Geysir Clubhouse. These are the greatest learning opportunities for the volunteer: To interact with people with mental illness, support them, share their own life and background and create friendships. This, in itself, is a real opportunity as there is not often a possibility to be around and experience the life of those suffering from mental illnesses on a daily basis.

Everybody shares responsibility for the activity in the Clubhouse. The Clubhouse routine is based on a work-ordered day. All the work is done for the Clubhouse and the Clubhouse Community. Members and staff divide tasks between themselves and decide together what tasks need to be carried out. Activities at the Clubhouse are divided into two units: Kitchen and Maintenance Unit and Administration, Education and Employment Unit.

Further description of the responsibilities:
Unit meetings are held each day at 9:30 and 13:15 where each unit goes over the tasks that need to be done. We encourage all members to attend these meetings.
Administration, Education and Employment Unit
In the office unit we have computers for members and staff to carry out different tasks that are connected with the clubhouse and its goals. Tasks in the office include publishing of newsletters, flyers, correspondence, promoting the clubhouse, communication with other clubhouses and the CI (CLUBHOUSE INTERNATIONAL), working with statistics, maintaining the homepage, making applications for grants and translations. In the office unit there is an employment section where members and staff look for jobs and build relationships with employers. The club offers part-time TE (Transitional Employment) for its members for a period of 6 to 9 months. There is also an education section for those who are looking for suitable education opportunities. For those who are already studying there is space reserved to do homework. Computers and wireless internet are available in the education section.
Kitchen and Maintenance Unit
The kitchen unit prepares breakfast and lunch for members and staff. The menus are decided by members and staff together, and all preparations (including shopping, cooking, baking and clean-up) are done by the kitchen unit. The kitchen unit is also responsible for the reception where the telephone service is located and where people who come into the Clubhouse are greeted.
The maintenance unit is in charge of all minor repairs and renovations, as well as the computer system. This unit is also responsible for all security and safety.

House meetings are held on Wednesdays between 14:30 and 15:30. During these, members and staff can discuss matters that concern the Clubhouse. Everyone has the opportunity to have their voice heard and to influence the Clubhouse, therefore the house meetings play a very important role.

Social Activities
In the Clubhouse, there are also social activities program after the work-ordered day. Social activities take place every Thursday afternoon and one Saturday every month. They include open house, going to the movies, dining out, going to a café, going to a swimming pool, visiting museums, going for day trips to the countryside, etc. The volunteer can be creative in his or her work in the Clubhouse. For example, one of volunteers in Geysir was particularly interested in walks and well-being, and so organized daily group walks in the area close to Geysir. Another volunteer was interested in arts and crafts, and enjoyed sitting and chatting with the members while learning how to knit Icelandic wool patterns. Yet another volunteer taught German in exchange for Icelandic with members of the Clubhouse. As can be seen, there are many opportunities to influence the activity in the Clubhouse and Geysir welcomes any initiative put forth by volunteers, ast they believe in the enrichment of the volunteers’ experience as well as in the positive effect on members and staff.

Practical arrangements:

Working hours: The volunteer is expected to work from 9-16 from Monday to Friday. The volunteer will have some flexibility in the hours they put in. Saturdays and Sundays are off.

Accommodation: The volunteer will live in a flat in Reykjavík with other AUS volunteers.

Food: The volunteer will have breakfast and lunch in the project, and get additional food allowance to cover the rest of his/her meals.

Allowance: The volunteer will get a certain amount of pocket money, every month.


Location: Reykjavík

Activity duration: 12 months (12 Mar 2020 – 11 Mar 2021)

Hosting organization:  AUS – ICYE Iceland


AUS-ICYE Iceland is an international non-profit youth exchange organization promoting youth mobility, intercultural learning and international voluntary service. AUS has more than 50 years of experience of organising long and short-term exchanges combining home stays with voluntary service in a variety of community service projects around the world. AUS is run by homecoming volunteers, and the staff and board members. AUS is a member of The National Youth Council of Iceland, and a part of The ICYE Federation which has national offices in over 34 countries. Our organization has been giving the chance for many years to youngsters from Iceland or abroad to volunteer in various projects, improving their skills and meeting new cultures and people. Since its establishment in Iceland, AUS has organized various actions to raise awareness about human rights, promote young people’s social inclusion and well-being, and offer volunteering opportunities.

Volunteers’ tasks

The volunteer will be working at our office, assisting the board and staff in the daily tasks. He/she will be in charge of activities regarding the ESC and ICYE volunteering programmes that AUS is involved in, help promote AUS´s activities, organise and/or assisting with events etc. He/she is also expected to bring his/her own ideas and contribute with personal projects he/she may be interested in.

AUS will be focusing on variety of activities that emphasise the values of the experience behind exploring new cultures through volunteering. Tasks and duties of a volunteer depend on their preferences, skills and abilities, but those who choose a more pro-active attitude may get the opportunity to be involved in various activities.

The volunteer’s day-to-day activities will include:
– Answering inquiries/communicating by phone and e-mail
– Compiling data, editing and changing layout of activity reports

– Assisting in all aspects of ESC process such as: going over CV’s, motivation letters, assisting with paperwork, keeping all parties informed about status of grant applications, matching volunteers with projects, and etc.

– Assist with project management tasks
– Updating AUS Homepage and Social Media accounts.
– Gathering information to publish an article or a newsletter;
– Performing general office tasks (filing and archiving, data entry and database maintenance);
– Any other ad-hoc tasks as determined by the staff.
– Participating in activities regarding publicity such as: writing articles and assisting volunteers in setting up art and picture show.

The volunteer will also be encouraged to:
– choose and work on a personal project according to his/her own interest
– bring forward ideas, and, if applicable, these ideas can have an impact on how things are done in the office
– participate, prepare and possibly contribute to AUS’s conferences and seminars held each year

Practical arrangements:

Working hours: From 10:00 to 16:00 on weekdays (flexible), weekends off.

Accommodation: The volunteer will live in a flat in Reykjavík with other  AUS volunteers.

Food: The volunteer will receive food allowance to cover his/her meals.

Allowance: The volunteer will get a certain amount of pocket money, every month.

PROJECT 3: Ásgarður

Location: Mosfellsbær (Suburb of Reykjavík)

Activity duration: 12 months (30 Aug 2020 – 29 Aug 2021)

Hosting organization:  Ásgarður


The project involves working with people with disabilities. Ásgarður is a protected working place where the workers face various difficulties in life. All of the clients have certain disabilities and all of them face limited options in other working places and in life in general. The mission of Ásgarður is to give each and every client the opportunity for personal growth in a creative working environment. Ásgarður is located in Mosfellsbær, a neighboring suburb of the city of Reykjavík – the capital of Iceland. There are approximately 7000 people that live in Mosfellsbær, and it is still growing. All services are provided, including medical services. Reykjavik is 20 minutes away by bus.

Volunteers’ tasks

The role of the volunteer will be based on his/her strength and interest. There is variety in the work at Ásgarður and the possibilities for the volunteer to contribute ideas and abilities. The aim is for them to blend well into the environment and the good atmosphere in Ásgarður and to improve it by additional creative work. The volunteers should provide input, have initiative, as well as to be supportive of the workers of Ásgarður. Their role is to provide assistance in the wood workshop where the daily work of Ásgarður is done. Using the daily environment, it is possible to develop new things in the wood production, and art. Also the volunteer will participate in theatre work and preparations of the theatre workshops with the theatre-group in Ásgarður and other creations, involving the rest of the workers in the job. There is also hiking club that goes out regularly to enjoy the scenery and relax outdoors, so the volunteer will be welcome to participate in it.

There will always be another volunteer or staff member from Ásgarður who is responsible for the activities proposed but the volunteer will have an opportunity to shape the work considerably.

Tasks in the Art Workshop include assisting the workers to weave rugs, tablecloths and other hand-woven products. Working with leather, wool, stones, bones, horns and other materials. Tasks in the Wood Workshop include assisting the workers to make items or toys from models or own design, and to polish, oil and paint items. In the workshops the volunteer is free to use his/her own creativity and they are welcome to bring their own ideas.

The learning opportunities are many, such as working with, relating to and socializing with the guests who live with mental disabilities. Through this, one can acquire or improve traits such as humility, patience, friendship beyond conventions, and also learn how to allow the mentally disabled person to maintain their respect and pride. The volunteers also learn many things in regards to the work done in Ásgarður, such as woodwork, and they can bring in their own ideas and designs and implement them at the wood shop. The volunteer will have the possibility to learn how to see a theatre show set up and from start to end and participate in the project with the workers and staff at Ásgarður.

Practical arrangements:

Working hours: The working hours are from 8:00 – 16:00 every weekday except Fridays, when the work is finished at 12:00 noon.

Accommodation: The volunteer will live in a flat in Mosfellsbæer close to the project, and will have a private room.

Food: The volunteer will have breakfast and lunch in the project, and get additional food allowance to cover the rest of his/her meals.

Allowance: The volunteer will get a certain amount of pocket money, every month.