Volunteering: what is it?

Volunteering: a development tool

Planète Urgence offers meaningful missions, meeting the needs expressed by local partners. It guaranties quality support, as close as possible to volunteers and the search for a strong impact by strengthening the skills of supported associations.

Volunteering aims to facilitate citizen engagement to provide support to communities that expresses their need and thus contribute to the achievement of the SDGs and encourage exchanges and multicultural openness to build a planet where people understand and help each other.

More than 10,000 volunteers went on a mission

Planète Urgence consolidates projects carried out and implemented by local partners. The association’s action meets the needs and accompanies the autonomy of partners. Planète Urgence’s national delegations present in the countries of intervention identify the needs of partners, which allows a relationship based on proximity.

To be effective, missions are prepared upstream, supervised on site and evaluated when volunteers return. The process of analysing and evaluating the quality and relevance of missions is carried out in real time and allows good practices to capitalize on as well as to take into account areas for improvement if necessary.


Discover the missions

Volontariat Planète Urgence

Volunteering offers

Planète Urgence offers 5 different types of missions:

Congé Solidaire®

2-week mission that allows an employee to share his skills on his leave time, funded by the partner structures.

Solidary Mission

2-week mission for any committed person who wishes to give time individually

Service Civique

Government device for 18–25 years old form 6 months to 1 year old that allows you to carry out an international solidarity mission


100% remote device in which the volunteer’s commitment can range from 2 to more than 12 hours per week for 2 to 10 weeks.


Government system that promotes citizen engagement on missions of general interest of 1 to 2 years.

Security on mission

Countries of intervention deemed stable

  • For Planète Urgence, the safety of volunteers is a priority. Planète Urgence acts only in stable countries according to the Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs.
  • If the countries where we operate do not experience a major political or military crisis, they are generally called “developing”, in other words affected by great poverty, large wealth gaps, and a lack of infrastructures and redistribution. As such, these countries may experience a dangerous road network, poorly controlled delinquency and a justice system lacking resources. We have an inventory of on-site security for each of the countries where we intervene.

An ongoing safety reassessment

  • We continuously monitor and are in regular contact with national and international authorities in the countries .
  • In order to leave on a mission with full knowledge of the facts, Planète Urgence therefore invites you to read the opinion of the French authorities for each of the countries where it operates as well as our own analyses and operating principles.

Volunteers insured on mission

  • Planète Urgence takes out health, repatriation and civil liability insurance for its volunteers over the duration of the mission.
  • In addition, Planète Urgence can be reached 7 days a week and 24 hours a day with the emergency phone that we transmit to volunteers before their departure.

A professional support

Un accompagnement professionnel Planète Urgence

The volunteer is accompanied as much as possible so that he can devote himself entirely to the realisation of his mission. Before the mission, volunteers undertake 2 days of training (Preparation for Departure).

During the mission, follow-up is put in place to ensure the smooth running of the volunteer’s mission. Arrival and departure are covered by the partner.

Once back in France, the volunteer debriefs and carries out a mission report to measure the impact of his mission.

The application steps


Search for a mission and apply by filling a short form for first contact


Your support manager will contact you again. You define your mission together: mission dates, cover letter, etc.


If your mission is validated by the local partner, you will take the steps of departure: plane, visa and vaccination.

Preparation for departure

Mandatory 2-day training to prepare you to leave!

Carbon footprint of an international volunteer mission

International volunteering involves often highly carbon emitting travel. At Planète Urgence, we believe that the impacts of development and biodiversity protection missions are greater than their carbon impact – and that if we had to choose few trips to make in our lives, these trips should be priorities, because they are useful levers for achieving the SDGs. Meetings and understandings of the issue of international solidarity there are also essential to change our practices and perceptions here.

This being said, given the climate emergency, each carbon emission should be accompanied by a reflection on reducing our footprint on the planet. We therefore encourage each volunteer to take a contributory approach, for example by supporting programs to preserve forests and biodiversity.

Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne’s editorial

Edito volontariat Planète Urgence Paris, Quai d’Orsay

Volunteering is precisely a major means of mobilising the driving forces in terms of skills, youth and enthusiasm to serve these objectives. France and its NGOs have unique expertise in this field. To develop this model of French volunteering internationally, I am counting on key players such as Planète Urgence of Groupe SOS, which has already accompanied more than 10,000 volunteers in 20 years! The time is more than ever for international solidarity action. Volunteering is a valuable vector today.

Our duty is therefore to be proactive to develop volunteering.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart to all the volunteers of yesterday, today and tomorrow. Thank you from the bottom of my heart to all those who accompany them for a unique experience in life, and which never leaves totally unscathed.

Long live volunteering and the volunteers!

Secretary of State for Tourism, French Abroad and La Francophonie