Flag of Nigeria
Secure livelihoodsEducation iconHIV and AIDS icon

Nigeria is one of VSO’s longest running programmes. Nigeria is the most populous nation in Africa and a vibrant country with huge potential. The current areas of VSO Nigeria’s work are HIV and AIDS, education, secure livelihoods and national volunteering. In recent years, VSO’s involvement in Nigeria has also extended to six successful Global Xchange programmes for Nigerian and British youths.

163 000 000
Capital city
GDP per capita
US$2 289
HDI ranking
156 out of 187
Life expectancy
52 years


Nigeria is now the country with the second highest number of people infected with HIV and AIDS. More effort is required in the prevention of further infection, and the treatment and care of the estimated three million Nigerians between the ages of 15-49 living with HIV and AIDS. To address the need for greater awareness about prevention and to reduce the spread of HIV and AIDS, volunteers are working with the government, international and local non-governmental organisations and community-based organisations.

Volunteers with backgrounds in areas such as organisational development, communications and advocacy are:

  • developing management structures

  • facilitating networking among different agencies

  • developing public communications strategies

  • promoting the inclusion of HIV and AIDS awareness activities in schools.


Like many developing countries, Nigeria’s education system faces the challenges of strengthening teachers qualifications, and improving education management. VSO’s education activities in Nigeria have sought to meet these challenges by shifting from providing classroom-based teaching positions to successfully placing volunteers in management and training roles. Volunteers are working to improve the quality and relevance of education with education managers strengthening the management systems of government institutions in the primary sector and teacher trainers upgrading primary teachers’ qualifications.

Secure livelihoods

It is often said that it is a paradox that Nigeria is a country rich in oil, yet with a high level of poverty, and it is believed that there has been a loss of technical and business skills, particularly among young people. VSO’s volunteers in the secure livelihoods programme area have worked alongside Nigerian civil society agencies to improve access to employment and food production opportunities for poor communities. Activities of these agencies include promoting small-scale entrepreneurship, encouraging young people and women to take up vocational skills training and raising awareness of ways to increase food production.

VSO believes that people working together out of a sense of community responsibility and shared commitment are a powerful force that can make a major contribution to reducing poverty and promoting development. National volunteering will enhance the activities being carried out in VSO Nigeria’s three programme areas.

Youth volunteering in Nigeria

People aged 18-25 can apply to do fully-funded placements lasting three months in a number of developing countries, including Nigeria, through the International Citizen Service (ICS) programme.

We have ICS projects in the south, west and central parts of Nigeria. In Kwara volunteers from Nigeria and the UK work closely with schools to engage children in extra-curricular activities. They also work with nomadic communities to improve adult literacy. In Kwali volunteers work with the local education authority to help teachers make maths and science more accessible to young people. All activities aim to develop Nigeria’s active youth network

Find out about International Citizen Sevice.

Contact us

Get in touch with VSO Nigeria at:
PO Box 2452, Garki, Abuja, Nigeria

Find out about volunteering

By volunteering abroad with VSO you get to put your skills, energy and personal qualities to work helping people break out of poverty. Interested in volunteering abroad?