EmpowerYOU.com: Global Action Corner > Volunteer Resources: Disaster Relief and Development.

Disaster Relief and Development

Disaster Relief

American Red Cross - Since its founding in 1881 the American Red Cross has been the nation's premier emergency response organization. As part of a worldwide movement that offers neutral humanitarian care to the victims of war, the American Red Cross distinguishes itself by also aiding victims of devastating natural disasters. Over the years, the organization has expanded its services, always with the aim of preventing and relieving suffering. In addition to domestic disaster relief, the American Red Cross offers compassionate services in five other areas: community services that help the needy; support and comfort for military members and their families; the collection, processing and distribution of lifesaving blood and blood products; educational programs that promote health and safety; and international relief and development programs.

AmeriCares - AmeriCares is an international relief organization. Whether for disaster relief or a daily struggle for survival, AmeriCares ensures that medicines, medical supplies and aid reaches individuals in need. In a quarter of a century, they have delivered more than $8 Billion of aid to 137 countries.

Convoy of Hope - Convoy of Hope mobilizes, resources, and trains churches and other groups to conduct community outreaches, respond to disasters, and direct other compassion initiatives in the United States and around the world.

International Rescue Committee - The International Rescue Committee is a critical global network of first responders, humanitarian relief workers, healthcare providers, educators, community leaders, activists, and volunteers. Working together, they provide access to safety, sanctuary, and sustainable change for millions of people whose lives have been shattered by violence and oppression.

LIFE for Relief and Development - LIFE dedicates itself to alleviating human suffering around the world regardless of race, color, religion, or cultural background. Their global organization strives to offer a variety of humanitarian, health, and educational services and programs to aid refugees and victims of natural or man-made disasters

Medicins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) - Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is an international humanitarian aid organisation that provides emergency medical assistance to populations in danger in more than 70 countries.

Oxfam International - Oxfam International is a confederation of 13 organizations working with over 3,000 partners in more than 100 countries to find lasting solutions to poverty and injustice. The Oxfam International Secretariat leads, facilitates, and supports collaboration between the Oxfam affiliates to increase Oxfam International's impact on poverty and injustice through advocacy campaigns, development programs and emergency response.

Relief International - Founded in 1990, Relief International provides emergency, rehabilitation and development services that empower beneficiaries in the process. RI's programs include health, shelter construction, education, community development, agriculture, food, income-generation, and conflict resolution. RI offers opportunities to volunteer and intern both in the United States and internationally and in both development as well as emergency response capacities.

United Methodist Committee on Relief - The United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) is the not-for-profit global humanitarian aid organization of the United Methodist Church. UMCOR works in more than 80 countries worldwide, including the United States. Their mission is to alleviate human suffering—whether caused by war, conflict or natural disaster. There are three ways you can volunteer to assist with UMCOR's work. Disaster response volunteers help in the recovery efforts following a disaster in the United States. UMCOR Sager Brown volunteers go to Baldwin, Louisana, to help with the work of sorting and shipping relief supplies to locations in the U.S. and around the world. Volunteers can also go overseas with UMVIM to support the work of UMCOR field offices through the UMCOR Non Governmental Organization.


ACDI VOCA - ACDI/VOCA is an economic development organization that fosters broad-based economic growth, raises living standards and creates vibrant communities. Its practice areas are agribusiness systems, enterprise development, financial services and community development. ACDI/VOCA is always looking for expert volunteers to support their international development activities. They have ongoing needs for candidates with ten years of experience in business, agriculture, banking and financial services, marketing, cooperative and association development, food processing, community development and other areas. To volunteer, create an e-profile including a current resume, which will give you instant access to current volunteer opportunities and enable them to contact you regarding future opportunities that match your experience and skills.

Engineers Without Borders, USA - Engineers Without Borders USA supports community-driven development programs worldwide through the design and implementation of sustainable engineering projects, while fostering responsible leadership. Their vision is a world in which all communities have the capacity to meet their basic human needs. They have a network of over 12,000 members and 300 chapters worldwide. Volunteer and job opportunities available.

International Executive Service Corps (IESC) - International Executive Service Corps is an American private not-for-profit organization. IESC was founded in 1964 by David Rockefeller and other prominent Americans. IESC's mission focuses on improving the lives of people throughout the world by strengthening private enterprise. Through its worldwide programs and more than 25,000 assistance assignments, IESC has brought positive change to more than 130 countries. Volunteers in the following areas are particularly encouraged to apply: Financial Services, Information Technology, Tourism/Hospitality, Textiles/Apparel, Agribusiness/Food processing, Arts & Handicrafts, Leather Production, Local Government, Trade and Export Development/Trade Policy, Legal and Regulatory Reform, MSME Development/Competitiveness, Business Support Organization Capacity Building, Association Management, Natural Resource Management/Biodiversity/Conservation, and Monitoring and Evaluation. They also offer paid positions.

United Nations Volunteers (UNV) - UNV recruits a great diversity of talents and offers a variety of volunteer opportunities in the areas of development assistance and humanitarian and peacekeeping operations. Every year, close to 8,000 qualified and experienced women and men of 160 nationalities serve as UNV volunteers in 130 countries. They are professionals who play key roles contributing to peace and making an impact on development results. UNV also offers an Online Volunteering service which connects volunteers with organizations working for sustainable human development. Volunteers contribute their skills online to help organizations address development challenges. Organizations collaborate with online volunteers over the Internet to strengthen the impact of their development work.

Village Volunteers - Village Volunteers is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that works in partnership with rural village and capacity-building programs to support the development of sustainable solutions for community survival, education, and growth. Their volunteer program offers volunteer opportunities for students, professionals, and anyone with the desire to serve in a rural village in Africa or Asia. Those interested in participating complete an application process, and upon acceptance, are matched with one of their partner NGOs in Kenya, Ghana, India, or Nepal.

WorldTeach - WorldTeach volunteers come from diverse backgrounds throughout the U.S. and abroad. Volunteers include recent college graduates, current college students, working professionals, married couples, retirees, or anyone else who is committed to international service and education. To volunteer with their organization you are not required to have previous teaching or foreign language experience. There is a monthly stipend for WorldTeach volunteers engaged in a year-long program.