ICYE Kenya

ICYE, International Cultural Youth Exchange, is a unique international volunteering organization that both receives and sends volunteers to work in community projects around Africa, Europe, Asia and Latin America. ICYE Kenya is a member of the ICYE International Federation, a partnership of over 30 countries worldwide with 60+ years of experience promoting young peoples’ active global citizenship.

Our vision is to be the premier exchange programme organization in the world.

Our Mission

Our Mission is to provide challenging intercultural learning experiences for young people; to promote their social and personal development through international volunteer; and to promote intercultural understanding, equality of opportunity, tolerance, and peace among people in the world.

We are guided by the core values of commitment to integrity, cultural tolerance, high regard for humanity, a strong sense of personal moral responsibility; and creating a conducive learning environment.

Our Goals

We are committed to, and will work with others committed to justice for all persons who suffer from social, political, economic and personal injustice; committed to breaking through barriers between cultures and peoples; committed to the principles of equality among cultures, nations and sexes; committed to providing experiences that encourage international and intercultural understanding; committed to helping participants become aware of the issues and problems in local and national communities, to better understand worldwide socio-economic political issues and problems; and who are committed to act on these understandings both during and beyond the exchange period.

Our Projects

Environmental Organizations

In response to environmental issues, participants will have the opportunity to work with grassroots environmental organizations working to conserve the environment.

Youth Centres

We work with community-based organizations in Kenya, that help the youth achieve their goals and mobilize communities to utilize local resources for their advancement.

Special-Needs Institutions

Volunteers will get to work at special-needs institutions for the mentally and physically challenged including assisting the staff and organizing activities for children in these institutions.


Volunteers help to teach some subjects in kindergarten, primary and secondary schools, and special units for physically and mentally challenged children in resource-poor environments.

Health Facilities

Volunteers will work in hospitals & health centers assisting the staff in various roles and participating in the efforts to manage common public health challenges in those facilities.


Volunteers will offer guidance, counselling, and teaching support, to orphans and vulnerable children coming from traumatized backgrounds living in orphanages.

Our Story

ICYE was founded in 1949 when 50 German teenagers undertook to cross the Atlantic into the USA. Following this, a reciprocal programme was established with youths from the USA being invited to spend a year with European families. Over time more countries have continued to join the programme. Today, the ICYE Federation is an international, independent, non-profit organization with a significant presence in all continents.  ICYE Kenya is a member of the ICYE Federation and was established in 1994. It is registered as an association with a national office in Nairobi. It has a board of seven members and three members of staff who run the programme.

As a National Committee, ICYE Kenya runs  several programs such as:

Why Volunteer With ICYE Kenya

What distinguishes us from other programme providers?

ICYE works differently from many Gap Year organizations and some of these reasons are listed below.

We offer Reciprocal Exchanges: 

There are many international volunteering organizations that send volunteers worldwide but very few that also host volunteers in community projects in the sending countries. ICYE Kenya strongly believes in the importance of reciprocal exchanges and intercultural learning. The ICYE Federation enables volunteers from developing countries to experience living in another culture as well as facilitating placements for volunteers from other countries abroad.

ICYE Kenya is a federation member of ICYE Organisations:

Volunteers are exchanged only between countries where there is an existing ICYE member or other partner organization. In order to be a member of the Federation, partners have to be a registered charity in their country or a not-for-profit organisation. ICYE partner organizations are run by local staff and volunteers. This helps ensure better project relations and in-country support for volunteers, as well as providing employment and work experience for local young people.

All ICYE members and partners are registered NGOs that are run by volunteers – for volunteers.

Programme Sustainability:

The ICYE Federation was founded in 1949 and has been helping volunteers around then world ever since. The majority of the projects that each ICYE member country works with will host volunteers on a regular basis from one exchange year to the next. This helps provide continuous support for projects and also provides the continuity required to build upon the programmes from one year to the next.

Statement of Quality Assessment and Assurance

In order to safeguard and guarantee the quality of its programmes across the board and in all member and partner countries, ICYE has adopted a set of Programme Minimum Conditions to be met by all National Committees and Partners.

Feedback on the quality and significance of the programme is solicited from ICYE volunteers and hosts through regular evaluation sessions and questionnaires. Risk-prevention and crisis response measures ( i.e. 24/7 emergency numbers) are also an integral part of the ICYE quality management system.

A High Degree of Satisfaction from ICYE Participants

We have received hundreds of volunteers who have expressed their satisfaction with ICYE Kenya and how we run our programs.

ICYE international volunteers can also fill the Evaluation Forms Online – after the on-arrival orientation, mid-term, and final evaluation seminars.

This enables ICYE to gauge themselves and work towards providing a quality and wholesome experience for the volunteers.

Find Us Here

Our Offices: 2F Waumini House off Mpaka Road, Westlands, Nairobi, KENYA

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