By participating in our courses, you will demonstrate to potential employers that you understand the challenges of international aid work, are highly motivated, and that you have the skills and knowledge needed to be effective in the field.
The most suitable course for you will depend on your interests, career ambitions and level of experience with humanitarian work.
Dates and locations
Courses are held throughout the year in a number of capital cities. Dates and locations are available on each course page and are updated regularly. You can also join our mailing list to receive updates.
The fees for each course are published on the relevant course page. Prices include GST. Individual registration confirmation and receipts will be sent upon payment. Cancellation and transfer deadlines and fees then apply. (See Cancellations and refunds.)
Discount rates are available for students who are registered full time with an Australian institution of vocational or higher education. Current student identification is required to obtain the student discount. Part-time students are not eligible for a discount. No international sponsorships or scholarships are available for these courses. Staff and volunteers of Australian Red Cross are also eligible for a discount. We do not offer discounts for attendance at multiple courses.
Registration can be done at any time but participant instructions are typically sent one to two weeks before the start of each course. Applications are processed on a first-come, first-served basis. You can register via the 'register online' button on each course page.
For individuals, full payment is required at the time of registration. You will be prompted to provide your payment details during online registration. We cannot guarantee a place in a course until payment is made. Organisations can reserve spaces in advance then nominate staff at a later time, and if necessary substitute them at any time. Invoices do not have to be paid before the training commences.
When courses are full we will indicate this on our website and registration form. You can be added to our waiting list without charge by completing the online registration form, including providing your payment details. If a place becomes available, we will contact people who are on the waiting list on a first-come, first-served basis and process payment only after they confirm they still wish to attend.
A 50% penalty applies for cancellation within five business days of the course start. A 20% administration fee is charged for all earlier cancellations and for all changes within five business days of the course start. No refund is given for non-attendance without notification. Red Cross reserves the right to cancel or change dates for any reason and provide full refund.
Travel and accommodation
All courses are non-residential. Participants are responsible for their own travel and accommodation arrangements. You may find it helpful to search for accommodation options close to your training venue. Training locations are listed on each course page under 'course dates and locations'.
The training courses are catered (healthy lunch and refreshments). Special dietary requirements can be catered for. When registering please indicate your special dietary requirements.
Australian Red Cross is recognised by aid agencies internationally and our courses are highly regarded across the aid sector. The courses are not accredited but participants receive a Certificate of Participation.
There is no formal assessment but each course includes activities and discussions that build understanding of the material. These activities will be explained during the course.
We do not offer online courses. Given the highly practical and interactive nature of our courses, they are offered only in face-to-face mode.
Sponsorship or visas
No international sponsorships or scholarships are available for these courses. Australian Red Cross does not offer support for visa applications. Overseas residents should check with their nearest Australian embassy or the Department of Immigration and Border Protection before registering.
Skills and experience needed for humanitarian work
Aid workers are specialists in emergency management, health, engineering, logistics, architecture, disaster law and a wide range of other fields. Aid work is a very competitive field. To be a successful candidate, you will need to demonstrate you have considerable experience in your area of expertise, and that you can succeed in resource-poor environments.
Exposure to a range of technical challenges is ideal preparation. It is important to understand what role you would like to play in the sector, ensure you are recognised by professional bodies, and gain relevant technical skills and qualifications. Our International Humanitarian Action Training can help you discover how your skills can be useful.
Becoming an aid worker with Red Cross
Australian Red Cross maintains a register of specialist aid workers who are sent overseas at various times to support humanitarian field operations. Read about becoming an international aid worker with Red Cross and our recruitment processes.
Working for Red Cross in Australia
Search all career opportunities with Red Cross and learn more about what is involved in working with us.
If you are committed to working in a particular country or region, it is a good idea to base your studies and work experience on the needs of that area and look for opportunities to expand your CV. Our Capacity Development Across Cultures is a great way to hone your cross-cultural communication skills, which are vital to success in aid work. Learning to speak more than one language is also highly regarded and very useful in the humanitarian sector.
Volunteers are an incredible part of the work we do and many people begin their humanitarian careers in these roles.
Volunteering overseas can be a great way to gain international field experience, which is an extremely valuable asset for any aspiring aid worker. Opportunities are available through the Australian Volunteers for International Development (AVID) program. It is a great idea to pursue volunteering opportunities that will allow you to use and develop your specialist skills, as this will build up your credentials if you decide to apply for a posting in aid work.
Volunteering domestically is also a valuable experience. It can boost your skills and experience in preparation for overseas assignments demonstrate your interest in helping people, and your ability to work cross-culturally. Search opportunities to volunteer with Red Cross in Australia.
Still have a question? Phone 03 9345 1800 and ask for the international training team or email us.