Edinburgh Global Partnerships SCIO

Edinburgh Global Partnerships SCIO

At a glance


  • Education
  • Environment
  • International development
  • Local / community
  • Training / employment support
  • Women
  • Young people

Other details

Geographical remit: 


Founded in 1990, Edinburgh Global Partnerships is the UK's oldest entirely student-run charity with 29 years of experience in delivering sustainable development projects in Africa, Asia and South America.

  • All the money volunteers raise goes directly towards the project. Volunteers pay for their own flights, accommodation, insurance, vaccinations and other required medication, and anything else they might need. Keeping projects costs and personal costs separate ensures transparency in fundraising – people will not feel they are paying for students to go on holiday.
  • We only select projects that are proposed and supported by the host community. By selecting projects that have been conceived by the host community, EGP ensures community support and ownership which is vital for the long-term success of the projects.
  • EGP ensures all volunteers are fully prepared. The training programme is tailored to each project’s needs.
  • EGP is run by a committee whose members have all previously volunteered on an EGP project.
  • We are one of the cheapest ways to volunteer abroad. As EGP is run by student volunteers, there are no hidden administration costs, only our £40 registration fee which covers the basic running of EGP and full First Aid training for volunteers.  

An important aspect of who we are can be seen in our Ethics:

  • We only select projects that are proposed and supported by the host community. It is not for us to decide what is best for a community, but rather the people who live in it, and this drastically reduces the risk of projects being unused or abandoned when volunteers leave. 
  • We only select projects with a clear sustainability plan. There is a huge amount of effort involved in fundraising and project implementation, and we wouldn't like to see that go to waste on a project that has no means of being maintained in the long-term.
  • We aim to maintain our volunteers' environmental awareness. This aspect is highlighted multiple times in our training sessions, from encouraging small actions such as minimising waste to reducing carbon footprints.
  • We respect the privacy of people living in the communities where projects are carried out.  An important focus of our training sessions is the emphasis on gaining consent before taking and sharing photos of both adults and children.
  • All the money volunteers raise goes directly towards the project. It wouldn't be fair to raise money for personal costs such as flights, accommodation and spending money. When an EGP project receives a donation, all of the money will be allocated correctly towards the implementation of the project.



We have successfully completed over 175 projects and worked in 21 countries around the world.

Every year, communities and NGOs from all over the world apply to form a partnership with EGP. Each proposes a small project that will benefit their community for years to come.

Throughout the summer, the Project Researcher & Developer works through each application, whether it's a social or a construction project, to ensure that all the information EGP requires to consider the application has been provided. Once we have everything we need, an informed decision can be made by the committee.

All proposals go through the same rigorous selection process which takes place during September, until the successful projects are chosen.

Once the projects have been chosen, the next job is to recruit volunteers. Predominantly these come from the University of Edinburgh, but anyone can apply to be part of EGP! The volunteers are interviewed, then selected for a project based on their preferences and team dynamics.

Fundraising for the project begins as soon as the team is formed with events ranging from Christmas fundraising at home to events once back in Edinburgh - anything from bake sales to marathons! 

On project, volunteers are fully immersed in the culture of the local community and get to see how the funds raised have been allocated and the effect on the beneficiaries. 

Overall, EGP aims to deliver sustainable projects to the communities that need them most, whilst forming partnerships which we maintain long-term.

No current opportunities

Search for volunteer opportunities with other organisations.