EUROPEAN SOLIDARITY CORPS
Volunteering projects take place within the European Solidarity Corps (ESC). ESC is aimed at young people aged 18 to 30 inclusive and enables them non-formal education within an international volunteer project..
Are you interested in human rights? Get involved in an ESC project in Poland, where you can help a human rights NGO fight for their cause! Are you more interested in dolphins and feta cheese? In Kefalonia, you can take part in biological research; you take a boat ride around the island and write down where you spotted dolphins. There are really a lot of projects, but they all have in common that they last from 1 to 12 months. During your stay abroad, you are provided with accommodation, a language course, transport to work, insurance, food and pocket money. Your only cost is the travel costs to the place of the ESC project and back, and that is only if the flat rate for travel costs is not enough.
By participating in European Solidarity Corps projects, you get the opportunity to meet young people from all over Europe, gain invaluable work and volunteer experience, learn or improve a foreign (local) language, and above all, get the opportunity to live independently (abroad). By participating in the ESC project, volunteers get to know other cultures and are involved in the process of global learning, which undoubtedly affects the reduction of their prejudices and personal growth. With the work experience that volunteers gain in such a project, they increase their employment opportunities, which is also one of the main goals of the program. At the end of the project, you obtain an official Youthpass certificate, which, similar to the Europass CV, records the acquired competencies and work achievements. You can attach this to your job application later.
HOW TO APPLY?
I'll choose among existing projects
On the European Youth Portal you can search for a project you like and contact the host organization - agree with them when to start working and how long the work will take. Then email firstname.lastname@example.org with the hosting organization's contact info and a description on your agreement. We will connect with the hosting organization, agree on all the details of the project and sign a partnership agreement (letter of authorization), which obliges us to participate in the project as a sending organization. Then you just have to wait for the start date of the project and set off!
I want a project made especially for me
The first step is to find an organization you like - here are all the ESC accredited organizations with whom you can talk to about a project made just for you. In this case, you talk to them about all the details and email email@example.com with the hosting organization's contact info and a description on your agreement. We'll connect with the hosting organization, agree on all the details of the project and sign a partnership agreement (letter of authorization), which obliges us to participate in the project as a sending organization. The host organization will then apply for the project on one of the deadlines, and then we all cross our fingers and wait to find out if the project has been accepted or not. If the project is accepted, you just have to wait for the start date of the project and set off!
EU Aid Volunteers is an initiative that brings together volunteers and organizations from European Union countries and third countries with a purpose of providing practical support in providing humanitarian assistance, strengthening local capacity and resilience in the event of natural disasters. The volunteering work can last anywhere from 1 to 18 months.
EU Aid Volunteers is available for everyone who is an EU citizen or is living in the EU for a longer period of time and is 18 years or older. There is no upper age limit. The selection of volunteers is in accordance with the humanitarian needs of the countries at risk and is based on the principles of equal opportunities and non-discrimination. The program covers the participant's costs of travel, accomodation and insurance. In addition, volunteers will receive a monthly allowance for food, local transportation and other daily expenses.
For each project separately, it will be expressed what profile of volunteer the organization is looking for. Roughly speaking, volunteers will be divided into those with less than five years of work experience (Junior professionals) and those with more than five years of work experience (Senior professionals).
Volunteers will carry out various activities. These will depend on the specific situation in the country to which the persons will go and on their competencies and past experience. However, we anticipate that most activities will be carried out in areas such as: organizational development, capacity building, project management, support in reducing the risk of natural disasters and providing assistance in dealing with the consequences of disasters.
Volunteers will not be sent to dangerous areas. Also, volunteers will not be sent to areas where a natural disaster has just occurred and a first response is needed. Projects will focus on preparing for a potential disaster in advance or helping to deal with the long-term consequences of natural dissasters.
The preparatory trainingis an important part, which will be done by the volunteers before leaving for the project. It will cover topics such as learning about the European Union, its external relations and crisis response systems, an introduction to humanitarian action programs, volunteer work, project management, global learning, etc. The trainings will be tailored to individual volunteers, their experiences and competencies.
It will also be possible to apply to an online platformwhere volunteers will be able to connect with organizations in third countries that need remote assistance. By registering on the volunteering platform, organizations and volunteers will be given the opportunity to participate online. We'd like to point out that the EUAID project will always be carried out as a consortium of a sending organization from the EU and a hosting organization from a third country. Third countries are those that are neither EU members nor candidates for accession. However, the work of volunteers will always be linked to real problems in local communities in these countries.
The Voluntariat Institute has a certificate for sending volunteers abroad through EU Aid Volunteers, however, you can also apply for any of the projects of other organizations, as they are open to all EU citizens.
HOW TO APPLY?
An international workcamp it is a place where people of any nationality, belief and religion live and work together for two to three weeks on a nonprofit project organized by a local organization.
Most camps are held in the summer months, and each is attended by 6 to 20, sometimes even 50 or more individuals who volunteer and socialize with the local population. Volunteering means work, help or assistance without pay. In a broader sense, it combines the spirit of help, altruism and doing good deeds without expecting a material reward. International workcamps mean selfless giving of help or work that is not paid. They are organized in such a way that a group of volunteers works from six to eight hours a day, and the rest of the time there are study topics, trips, excursions and other leisure activities. Accommodation and meals at the camp are free of charge, and upon registration it is necessary to pay the registration fee, which covers the costs of registration and insurance. In addition to the usual camps, you can also attend special mixed-age camps, family camps, etc.
HOW TO APPLY?
The way to the camp is very simple. First, you click to take a trip to the SCI workcamp search, then register and search among the offered camps until you find a tailor-made one for you and sign up for it. After submitting the electronic application, the Voluntariat team will contact you via email and keep you updated about the process of your application, prepare you and help you all the way till departure.
LTV programs are an upgrade of workcamps where a volunteer over the age of 21 works longer on environmental or social projects. LTV programs are a great opportunity, especially for young people, to gain work experience on international projects on an informal level. Through LTV projects, volunteers are provided with an intensive experience of living and working together within long-term projects lasting from 1 to 12 months, depending on the chosen project and the host country.
Costs vary greatly from project to project so before you make your final decision, it is advisable to inform yourself of the situation in the selected host country. For most exchanges in non-European countries the volunteer covers most of the costs himself / herself. These include:
- an application fee: 115,00 €,
- travel costs to the project country and possible local transport costs to / from work,
- insurance, vaccinations, visa cost,
- usually also the cost of accommodation and meals (listed in the description of the program).
HOW TO APPLY?
- CHOOSE A PROJECT
You can find long-term projects in the SCI partner organization database .
If you have any doubts or questions, you can contact the volunteer coordinator, who is in charge of coordinating long-term (LTV) projects at the Voluntariat Institute. You can find her in our office, or at firstname.lastname@example.org*.
- FILL OUT AN APPLICATION
Fill out an application for long-term volunteering projects , add a motivation letter and send them to email@example.com*. In the application form, express your wishes according to the advertised possibilities.How much time would you like to spend on a volunteer project and when could you start?
You can send an inquiry before completing the application form to check if it is position still available. This saves you any unnecessary effort.
- AGREEMENT WITH THE HOSTING ORGANIZATION
We will forward your application to the hosting organization. On the basis of the wishes expressed in the application form, negotiations will take place with hosting organization. If necessary, we will invite you to a conversation in our office. The meeting is intended to identify expectations and the needs of both the volunteer and the sending organization (the Voluntariat Institute) and the hosting organization.
The final decision on whether to accept you for the selected project is made by the hosting organization. Next step is signing a contract for a long-term project, where the duties and rights of the volunteer and the host organization are clearly defined (which must later be signed by the host organization). The volunteer has to take care of the necessary travel documents and vaccinations. If needed we can give you a guarantee letter for visa purposes.
CLUB OF VOLUNTEERS
The Club of Volunteers is a special networking space created for those, who dedicate their time for building a better local and international community of volunteers from all the corners of the world.
Our aim is to support them in their personal development, create a safe, friendly space for gaining new competences as well as simply having fun among like-minded people.
Being coordinated by international volunteers brings a multicultural dimension for opinion exchanges, ideas, comments, initiatives and opens a substantial discussion about these topics in the framework of Zavod Voluntariat mission: promotion of equality, human rights, sustainable development, global education, volunteering opportunities, cooperation for development.
Our team strives to provide quality activities, among others: workshops, picnics, discussion circles, debates, trainings, networking events designed in line with the needs of locals, who have already participated or want to take part in international volunteering service. Together with Zavod Voluntariat we work on raising awareness about the topics relevant for the modern world and the role of volunteers in helping the most vulnerable target groups: animals, kids, refugees, people endangered with social exclusion but also environment.
We will be happy to welcome you among our members at the upcoming event.
We are always open for your inquiries, ideas and suggestions, feel free to mail us on: firstname.lastname@example.org.
To keep you updated with new activities, please join our FB group (DisCoVer the World).
FEES, DEADLINES, AND COSTS OF THE PROGRAMS?
HOW CAN I GET A DISCOUNT?
International workcamp discounts:
- For every workcamp after the first in the same season you receive a 20% discounted application fee;
- 50% discount for accompanied children under 14.
WHY DO I HAVE TO PAY FOR FOOD AND ACCOMMODATION?
Many of the host organizations in the global south do not have the resources to cover the cost of the volunteer's stay during the project. Typically, projects are implemented in small local initiatives that, in the context of a global partnership, seek to cause change in their environment and spent their money on that. Voluntariat Institute also does not have sufficient resources to cover the volunteer's transport and their stay in the host country, and therefore covers the costs of preparation assistance and mentoring.
HOW CAN I WITHDRAW MY APPLICATION AND WHAT HAPPENS THEN?
If the volunteer wants to withdraw their application to the project, they have to do so in written format (email)!
Voluntariat will reimburse 100% of the application fee in case the volunteer is not accepted to the chosen project or it has been canceled.
Voluntariat will reimburse 75% of the application fee if the volunteer submits a doctor's note excusing them of participation.
Voluntariat will reimburse 50% of the application fee if the volunteer withdraws their application at least 21 days before the start of the project as the hosting organization needs to find a new volunteer.
Voluntariat does not reimburse the application fee if the withdrawal was after the 21 day deadline.
Application fees are reimbursed once a month, in the last working week.