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What is the VIES Charter?

The International Exchange and Solidarity (VIES – Volontariat International d’Echange et de Solidarité) Charter is the result of a consultation of organisations involved in VIES, led by the France Volontaires platform.


The first Charter was signed on 1 October 2009 between the State and 39 associations, in the presence of then Prime Minister François Fillon. 

Three years after this signature, some thirty representatives of signatory associations took part in a quantitative and qualitative assessment of its application and, on the basis of what they learnt, drew up a reformulated draft Charter, which was better adapted to the evolution of the volunteering ecosystem. 

The VIES Charter was then launched in June 2014, at the Salon des Solidarités, by Annick Girardin, then French Secretary of State for Development and Francophonie.

Charter objectives

The International Exchange and Solidarity Volunteering Charter affirms the common values of the organisations involved in the VIES ecosystem and aims to improve the quality of volunteering abroad. Its objectives are to: 

  • Propose a common reference framework setting out the visions, values and commitments of the associations involved in VIES;  
  • Promote quality practices within the VIES sector: stakeholder synergy, pooling of skills, development of partnerships, improvement of support for volunteering programmes, safety conditions, etc.
  • Draw on the experiences of volunteers, particularly to benefit the general public and the various institutions;  
  • Mobilise all the stakeholders (State, local authorities, associations, companies and foundations, etc.) for the benefit of VIES. 

Who is the Charter for?

The VIES Charter is based on collective work, open to all stakeholders in international volunteering who share the same vision of an ethical and responsible approach: associations, local authorities, ministries and public and private sector stakeholders as well as volunteers and volunteering candidates.