AfID celebrates 500 Volunteers 100,000 Hours of priceless support12.06.2014

Retired accountant John Andrew (FCA), recently returned from his second AfID assignment in Laos, where he coached the staff at the Lao Rugby Federation; in doing so he became AfID's 500th volunteer. A remarkable milestone when you consider the organisation was founded in 2009.                                                                
100,000 hours of support
AfID’s volunteer accountants have now provided over 100,000 hours of support more than 300 charities and grassroots community organisations in 37 countries. Key contributions such as internal audits, budget creation, monitoring and evaluation, financial reporting training and the implementation of robust controls and procedures help to increase the financial sustainability of these organisations and allow for the continued financial support from their donors.

AfID’s founder Neil Jennings was quick to pass on his thanks to each one of the 500 volunteers.

 “On behalf of everyone at AfID and all our charity partners we like to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of our volunteers for their tremendous efforts; they have truly made a lasting and positive impact to some of the world’s most worthwhile of organisations.”
AfID’s volunteers continue to represent a diverse demographic in terms of institute membership, nationality, age and gender demonstrating that truly any accountant can make a remarkable and long lasting contribution.

To date the most common age group of an AfID volunteer is between 30 and 45 years, closely followed by the under-30s however the fastest rising demographic is the over 45s. Their oldest volunteer to date is a spritely 73 and he is keen to do it all again at 75.

The gender difference in volunteers is very slight, with men just edging ahead of women at 52 per cent.

35 Worldwide Accounting Institutes
The ICAEW tops the accounting institutes with just over a third of AfID volunteers being members, closely followed by CIMA with 25%. ICAS, ACCA and CIPFA follow, with AICPA (USA), CPA Australia, AAT, CA Ireland and CPA Canada completing the top 10.
Where in the world?
AfID’s volunteers have come from all over the world. The top-five nationalities outside of the UK are Australian, American, Canadian and Irish. German and Polish volunteers are tied in fifth place.

The most sought after country to visit remains Cambodia, visited by nearly 100 volunteers. The rest of the top-five consists of all African countries: Uganda, Zambia, Malawi and Kenya.

One of AfID’s longest serving recipients of pro-bono support is US international NGO Partners in Health (PIH). Ann Quandt, Vice President of Finance, believes the support AfID has provided has been crucial to the development of the organisation.

"PIH has benefited tremendously from AfID volunteers in Haiti, Rwanda, and Malawi. Each volunteer has provided an enormous amount of support, mentorship, and leverage for our employees.  Due to our extremely lean finance and accounting teams, it is extraordinarily helpful to have a trained accountant help with our project "

It is not just the international charities which are benefitting from the support of AfID volunteers, community-based organisations, like Interdependent Society Surket in Nepal, have also reaped the rewards of expert, financial assistance.

Executive Manager, Bibek Kumar Shahi, said: "AfID is the one organisation in the world that is really supporting grassroots organisations’ with their accounting. Im pleased to report that we can now manage our financial systems. Thank you very much AfID!"

With more charities requesting the support of volunteers each week it is clear there is still an enormous need for accountants right across the sector and AfID is keen to hear from any accountants that wish to share their skills and experience in this way.

AfID’s next milestone is 1000 volunteers. If you would like to find out more about volunteering contact AfID on or phone +44 (0)2087417000.