ready to help transform lives?

You may help a malnourished baby born with cleft palate, an individual struggling with a disfiguring tumor, or a crippled child. You might train farmers on how to increase crop and food production. Or you may be onboard to support those doing this lifesaving work. Are you ready? Then join us for a life-changing experience on the other side of the world.

find an opportunity

Mercy Ships needs volunteer surgeons, nurses, administrative assistants, accountants, cooks, teachers, deck & engineering officers, and more. Find your place on board one of our ships.

financial obligation

All applicants are required to provide or raise their own funds to cover crew fees, health insurance, transportation to and from the ship, and personal expenses. After acceptance, you will be contacted by our FinACE (Financial Accountability, Coaching & Encouragement) department, which will assist you in developing your budget and support raising. All volunteers must have a minimum of 75% of the necessary funds pledged at least 30 days before their start date. Learn more.

health and age requirements

A Physical Evaluation and certain immunizations are required for all applicants. Due to maritime medical regulations and other circumstances, those with certain disabilities and/or health histories may not be eligible to serve with Mercy Ships. All applicants must be at least 18 years old at time of service.

positions, time availabilities & expertise

A variety of positions are available, including several that may not require any previous experience. Medical professionals are required to be licensed and most require a minimum of two years’ experience. Medical and mariner applicants should be ready to provide copies of current, relevant licenses and certificates.

For all positions, Mercy Ships has set a minimum and maximum commitment, ranging from two weeks to three years.


Foundations of Mercy Ships is a 3-day course held at the Mercy Ships International Support Center in Texas three times per year.

Introduction to Mercy Ships is a weekend course held in the Netherlands 2-3 times per year.

Offered four times a year, On Boarding is a 5-week training program followed by a 3-week practicum to prepare new crew and staff for their time of service with Mercy Ships. Completion is required for all crew serving 12 or more months on board, but is open to all volunteers.

Through our Maritime Training Center (MTC), we are pleased to offer Basic Training (including Security Awareness for All Seafarers), Crowd Management, and Crisis Management and Human Behavior to applicants needing to fulfill these requirements for a position. The MTC team may also facilitate the outsourcing of courses if our offerings do not align with the availability of the applicant.

apply online

Applying to be a volunteer with Mercy Ships is easy and secure. Get started now.

Have questions?

Our Human Resources Team is available to help you along the way, and answer any questions you may have. Just email us at [email protected] or check out the Volunteer FAQs.