Work & Volunteer Positions |

Work & Volunteer Positions

timthumb-2Positions for Native English Speakers

Explore the boxes below to see the general positions that we have available for native-English speakers throughout the year. Towards the bottom are descriptions of how these positions can be adapted for multiple programs or for long-term work here.


For children who come to one of our programs, they are divided into different groups and assigned to counselors. Camp counselors are responsible for leading and supervising their group of children. They will accompany their group to their various activities throughout the day, plan group activities during free time, and be responsible for organizing small theatrical performances with their children. Camp counselors should have prior experience working with children. Click here to read a detailed description of a camp counselor’s position and daily responsibilities at one of the English + summer camps, including links to daily blog posts written by our counselors of 2017.

Spencer Terry describes a day as a camp counselor at the Forest Camp during an English Plus summer camp.


English teaching assistants will be responsible for preparing and teaching the programs’ formal English lessons to Russian children with the guidance of IYC’s head English teacher. Teachers will teach approximately four 45 minute/1 hour classes each day for a range of student abilities. On most days, lessons will include both grammar and vocabulary and be based on a theme, i.e nature, holidays, etc. English teachers may also supervise tests for advanced students who wish to evaluate their level of English ability.

Megan Ronk explains the current structure of the formal English lessons at the English Plus summer camp.


Arts and crafts workshops take place in the newly developed Hand-Made Studio. The arts and crafts teacher will organize and lead art projects suitable for a variety of ages, preferably including some that contain an element of Russian or their own country’s culture. Projects include painting, posters, drawing, wood burning, T-shirt painting, sewing/stitching and ceramics. Arts and Crafts teachers should be enthusiastic, friendly and very organised, as the Studio needs to be kept clean and tidy. As with the sports instructor, an arts and crafts instructor will conduct their sessions primarily in English, with some Russian translation. They will also be responsible for advising on the purchasing of new and replacement supplies for the studio.

Kiara brooks explains some of her techniques for helping children to learn English while enjoying arts and crafts in the Hand-Made Studio.


Sports of all kinds are a major component of many of IYC’s programs. A sports instructor will work with their Russian colleague to teach children the basics of volleyball, table tennis, basketball, fitness etc. They may organise water fights, races and competitions during the summer camps. Individuals with experience in coaching winter sports such as ice hockey and/or cross-country skiing would be ideal for these positions during the winter programs. Sports instruction takes places in English and/or Russian.

Long Term Positions

Because IYC runs programs year-round, there is a need for a some long-term staff. Staff can stay for multiple programs, or for 6-24 months. Longer serving members of staff, or those with particular skills or experience can expect a salary or further contribution to travel or visa expenses. During time between programs, long term staff can plan their work or use the time to pursue their own interests in Russia and are welcome to stay at IYC and to use the facilities. Staff who stay for long periods of time will get to know the whole Center inside-out and form close professional and personal relationships all of the other staff. You would be able to work with the managers to plan your own length of stay after you know where your strengths and weaknesses are, and what aspects of the Center you most enjoy.

For example, long-term positions could include an English Language Director. He or she would be responsible for working with the full-time Russian coordinators and administrative staff to organize and implement all programs, coordinating summer volunteers and interns, and developing their own English language programs and activities. We are also keen to hear from photographers or those with marketing and PR experience who are willing to come to IYC for a longer period of time. As ever, those with greater experience and qualifications may be entitled to a salary, stipend or further contributions to their expenses (flights, visa etc).

  • Examples of long-term positions undertaken by international staff/returners:
  • Heidi Erbsen: An American student who began as a volunteer camp counselor at the first English Plus Summer camp. She then returned for another two consecutive summers and now runs the updated English Plus program. She is responsible for coordinating all international volunteers and their Russian colleagues – planning groups and appointing staff positions.
  • Nathan Whitwer: After starting as a volunteer camp counselor at the 2013 English Plus summer camps, he transferred to be an English Teacher, and intends to stay for at least another year. It is likely he will move on to run more of the English-language aspects of the programs in the future: including the Expeditsya Pro winter sports and language camp in Finland in 2014.
  • Kiara Brooks: Kiara is a drama student from America who initially applied for the arts and crafts position in 2013. She worked initially as a camp counselor before becoming an arts and crafts instructor, organising and running a wide variety of exciting art projects for the children at the English Plus summer camps. Kiara hopes to return to the International Youth Center next year for the themed English-language Theater/Film Camp “Sounds of Christmas”.

We hope that these examples will give you an idea of the possibilities open to the right people at the International Youth Center. As ever, please do not hesitate to get in contact to find out more details or the application process. Make sure you take a look at the benefits of working here as we are very proud of the center and are excited to see how it grows in the coming years as we welcome a wider variety of new staff and program participants. Read our Testimonies, explore the photo galleries and the Facebook page for more information.

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