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How much do you earn as a UN Volunteer?

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by Henrik Rydén
COO and Co-founder of Impactpool

In this article, I have studied what an International UN Volunteer Specialist earns. The calculation example is built around a UN volunteer who will serve in Kenya.

Lately, the United Nations Volunteer (UNV) program has made its compensation packages easy to understand. It is based on the same six 'components', irrespective of assignment type.

The compensation package is called “Condition of Service” and consists of below-listed components:

  1. Living Provision

  2. Dependent Policy

  3. Post Service Benefits

  4. Leave entitlements

  5. Health, Safety, and Security

  6. Professional & Career Training Benefits


Further down in this article, we make a calculation example of the compensation to a UN Volunteer Specialist on a 12-month assignment contract based in Nairobi with one accompanying spouse. But first, we will explain the six different components.

Living Provision

The living provision consists of two main parts - Monthly Living Allowance (MLA) and, Entry Lump Sum.

The PAM is calculated by multiplying $1736 with the Post Adjustment Multiplier at the capital of the country you serve (in Nairobi it is 0,342). In our calculation example further down in the article, I will explain where you find that multiplier for other locations too.

The entry Lump sum is $4000 and is a one-time payment at the start of your assignment to cover expenses linked to Visa applications, medical examinations, and similar expenses. 

Dependent Policy

The Dependent policy covers travel expenses and medical coverage for up to 3 dependents under the age of 21. The Volunteer also receives a monthly dependent allowance of $250 for one accompanying dependant or $450 for two or more dependents. 

Post Service Benefits

The Post Service Benefits or the Exit lump sum is a one-time payment of $225 per completed month of service.

Photo by The Tampa Bay Estuary Program

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