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Federated States of Micronesia

Federated States of Micronesia
A breathtaking sunset in Chuuk, FSM. Photo: AVI

AVI in Federated States of Micronesia

AVI has placed more than 70 skilled Australians in the FSM since 1990. They have been placed through AVI’s two main programs:

Program history
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Both AVID and PACTAM programs support the Australian Government’s joint undertaking with Australia’s Partnership for Development Program and the Government of the FSM.

Since 1990, the Volunteer Program (now called AVID) has been sending skilled volunteers on assignments with various government and non-government organisations. Along with this, PACTAM has been providing continued high-level assistance in the priority areas identified by the partnership between the two countries. This is done by sending highly skilled Technical Advisors to support government institutions.

Main focus areas
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Improving overseas development assistance coordination

AVI assignments support the activities of the Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) division within the National Office of Statistics in FSM. These assignments focus on increasing and maximising access to available external development assistance to the FSM.

Strengthening environmental management and conservation

AVI assignments support the protection and sustainable management of FSM’s natural resources and environment. The volunteers assist in the development and enforcement of local policies, laws and regulations including water and sanitation management.

Where we work
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  • Pohnpei
  • Yap
  • Kosrae
  • Chuuk
Host organisation examples
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About Federated States of Micronesia

Spread across 2,500 kilometres of the Western Central Pacific Ocean, just north of the equator, FSM is made up of four island states. The four states of Chuuk, Kosrae, Pohnpei and Yap each have their own unique culture and identity.

Development challenges
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FSM receives a large amount of assistance from the US, Japan, Australia, the European Union and China. Despite this, the country suffers from relatively high unemployment, compounded by increasing numbers of migrant workers. Extreme poverty and hunger are not major issues in the FSM, however poverty still remains in the form of deteriorating access to essential social services, such as primary education, health, and potable water, and also a lack of jobs and markets.


Primary school education is compulsory up until the age of 14. Each state has at least one high school, though the percentage of high-school-aged students who complete their secondary schooling varies widely from island to island. The school system also suffers from a lack of relevant resources and trained teachers.


While FSM has achieved significant improvements in its health system in recent years a number of concerns still remain. Although the infant mortality rate in FSM has reduced significantly in recent years, it is still high at 23.51 per 1,000 births[1]. These statistics are higher than some of the other Pacific states; with only six doctors for every 10,000 people and just fewer than four nurses for every 1,000[2]. The situation is made more difficult by the fact that the population is spread out over a vast area of 65 islands.


FSM faces the continuing problem of solid waste disposal in some urban areas. This is illustrated by the fact that only 61 per cent of the urban population and 14 per cent of those in rural communities have access to sanitation systems[3]. The fish population is also endangered by waterborne toxins and explosives used in commercial fishing. Global warming also poses a threat to FSM. United Nations research shows that global warming and the rise of sea levels are continuing threat to Micronesia's forests, agricultural areas, and fresh-water supply[4].

[1] WHO
[2] WHO
[3] The World Bank, FSM Environment Stats
[4] Encyclopedia of the Nations, Micronesia Environment

Volunteer profile

Federated States of Micronesia

It is no simple task to move a family of five to a remote island in Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) for a 24 months volunteer assignment, and yet, Sian and Dougal Nivison did exactly that.

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Host organisation profile

Federated States of Micronesia

Yap EPA was established in 1986 under the Yap Environmental Quality Protection Act. Its mission is environmental protection of natural resources from human and chemical pollution through enforcement of regulations and other measures.

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Latest assignments available

Assignment title Closing date
Finance Specialist - Conservation and Climate Change 01 Dec 2014
Watershed (catchment) and Fire Planning Officer NRM 01 Dec 2014
Education Specialist - ESL Teacher 01 Dec 2014

Search all available assignments here

Fast facts

Population: 106,104
Official Language: English
Capital: Palikir
Adult literacy rate: 89%
HDI index: 117
Life expectancy: 71.8 years
Adult HIV prevalence rate: NA
GDP per capita: $7,200
Unemployment rate: 22%
Maternal mortality rate: 100/100,000 live births
Child mortality rate under 5: 42/1000 live births
AVI placements: 66 (as of December 2012)
Last updated: 02-08-2013


More information

Contact our Federated States of Micronesia office

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