We have repeated on many occasions that we want AFS to become the volunteers’ organization of choice. The first step towards our vision is to map our current reality. By doing so, we can gain a thorough understanding of the AFS volunteer experience. Without data, the decisions and strategies we implement will always be based on assumptions and biases.

The VSE is the tool that AFS International provides to help partners map the state of their volunteering

After an extensive literature review, a volunteer qualitative survey, and a feedback round, the current Volunteer Survey & Evaluation came to life. Developed by volunteers, staff, board members, trustees and and external consulting, it’s the biggest survey of its kind in a non-profit.


The goal of the Volunteer Service Evaluation

By gathering relevant data about the Volunteer Experience we will enable AFS organizations to make strategic evidence-based decisions. The answers we receive pave the way to successful volunteer management strategies, and help expand the volunteers’ contribution to the work of the organization.

The data collected enables us to


Design more engaging and effective structures for current and new volunteers.


Increase the effectiveness of our volunteers in delivering our mission.


Boost retention and decrease turnover of volunteers.

2015-2017 Results


Volunteers from 22 countries surveyed

After the pilot on 2015, more Partners decided to conduct the survey to better understand the satisfaction of their volunteer force.


Would recommend volunteering for AFS to family and friends

The joy of bringing intercultural learning, helping students have a positive experience and working with other volunteers are their main reasons.


Are planning to continue volunteering for AFS

Some of the reasons mentioned were the fact that AFS sees volunteers as costumers as well, therefore is more focus on understanding and meeting volunteer’s need.


Are satisfying volunteering for AFS

The opportunity to take on challenging situations, polish practical skills and train to become an intercultural learning facilitator makes our volunteer experience exceptional.


Think their work for AFS is meaningful

The majority of volunteers think they are contributing to the mission of AFS, improving the impact of intercultural experiences in their local communities.


Consider AFS a good learning environment

They learn about other cultures; understand more thoroughly conflict in other countries and giving participants tips and strategies on how to lead and take risks.

Discover more resources of the Toolkit

  1. An experience management tool for volunteer

  2. Read the latest trends on Volunteer Development

  3. Learn how to develop better Local Units