AFS volunteers range in age from students to seniors and share a spirit of adventure and a desire to make the world a better place. Volunteering for AFS enables you to build friendships, expand your skill set and given back to your local community. The only qualification required is energy and enthusiasm!

How to become an AFS Volunteer



You will have an amazing time no matter what you do for AFS. You’ll meet interesting students, make friends from around the world, work with passionate volunteers and gain intercultural and other skills that will last a lifetime. 


Is this for you?

Have a look at our website. Does what we do resonate with you? Do you like the idea of working in a diverse cultural environment? Meeting new people? Helping students settle into NZ? Being part of fun events?


Send an inquiry

Email [email protected] and put ‘I’d like  to know more about volunteering with AFS’ in the subject line.


Get trained

Once we’ve received and approved your volunteer application, you’ll be trained via our online modules.

What are the benefits of volunteering for AFS?


You can create change

A single person who decides to stand up and do something, creates a wave and that wave inspires others. You can help make change.


Join a community

AFS is a global community. We have 44,000 active volunteers giving back. 


Improve your CV

Volunteering looks great on your CV. So not only do you feel good, but you’re enabling yourself to move forward.



Volunteering for AFS gives you so many opportunities, you can become a support person, or run fun events, or do online training, or interact with students…. there are loads of ways to get involved.

AFS volunteers get to be involved in lots of exciting projects



  • Match AFS students with host families
  • Help host families get to know their AFS student
  • Be a liaison for host schools
  • Introduce international students to your community
  • Check in with students or host families regularly to monitor programs


  • Organize orientations for study abroad and hosting programs
  • Arrange awesome social events and cultural trips
  • Bring host families together to share experiences
  • Set-up information sessions for students, families or volunteers


  • Guide AFSers and others through intercultural learning journeys
  • Introduce students to your country’s culture
  • Facilitate learning through creative activities
  • Share you own global experience and cultural
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Manage & Lead

  • Launch community projects helping others learn how to respect, appreciate and value other cultures
  • Serve on local AFS groups and boards
  • Learn how to manage local volunteers
  • Inspire others to serve their community

Engaging with my community; meeting people from around the world

“Joining my local group of AFS volunteers gave me the opportunity to develop many skills, such as how to work in a team and interact with people from different backgrounds. As an AFS volunteer, I am more engaged in my community and I meet people from all over the world. Helping students, teachers and families embark on intercultural learning adventures makes me appreciate the importance of world peace and intercultural understanding.”

—Marcela Vazquez, AFS Argentina volunteer 

AFS community changemakers in action

Be inspired by innovative AFS changemaking, social impact and community service projects that use intercultural learning activities to address local challenges and bring diverse communities together. 

Award-winning AFS volunteers and changemaking projects

AFS NZ Mission

AFS Aotearoa New Zealand provides life-long intercultural learning opportunities in local and global communities to foster the aroha, manaakitanga and respect needed for a more just and peaceful world.

AFS supports UN Sustainable Development Goals

AFS believes the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) #4 and #16 provide a roadmap to help make our world a better place for all people.

Global Goal #4:


Ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning

Goal #4 focuses on the knowledge and skills needed to promote “sustainable development” and “sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture’s contribution to sustainable development. 

Learn More

Global Goal #16


Promote just, peaceful and inclusive societies

Goal #16 has three main objectives: Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels.

Learn More

Empowering people of all ages to respect and appreciate differences

AFS is an inclusive community of global citizens committed to fostering intercultural learning as a powerful peace-building tool. Through AFS study abroad and changemaking programs, our volunteers help students, young adults, families and others take their first steps to becoming global citizens. 

Explore the legacy AFS volunteerism

Resources and Good Reads


Volunteer Voices

This volunteer-driven blog is a platform where AFSers exchange ideas about their local and global changemaking and social impact activities. At the start of every dream, change and impact, there is a good story.

Read Blog

Connect: Intercultural Insights for Global Citizens

This digital magazine explores intercultural and global citizenship education, voluntarism and social impact, through articles, interviews, and learning tools created by respected thought leaders and experts.

Read Connect here

AFS Perspectives: Helping the world learn to live together

Written by AFS experts from around the world, this blog champions diverse perspectives about culture and education, inspiring readers to become intercultural leaders of their communities.

Read Blog

Intercultural Learning (ICL) for AFS & Friends

Series of insightful and concise essays on key intercultural concepts based on research and practical experiences. The series is produced by AFS education experts for anyone studying about or working with intercultural topics.

Access the series

The Volunteers: Americans Join World War I, 1914—1919

This Curriculum for secondary school educators takes a unique approach to volunteerism, intercultural competence and global citizenship education, since the volunteer efforts of young people during World War I until today.

Read More