EU-VOICE European Volunteering and Integration through cultural experience

Citizenship and democratic participation

Culture

Inclusion

EU-VOICE project aims to promote cultural volunteering as a mean of active citizen participation and dialogue between TCNs and host-country nationals through a 25-days volunteering experience in the cultural sector for 320 people, mainly TCNs, in 5 EU countries affected by high migration rates (IT,GR,IE,UK,AT). The frame of such volunteering experience is provided by the European Year of Cultural Heritage which is a good opportunity to reinforce a sense of belonging to a common European space. The project is in line with the EU’s Action Plan on the Integration of Third-Country Nationals (7/06/2016) that promotes an inclusive and prosperous society through the integration of 20 million non-EU nationals residing legally in the EU and according to many studies volunteering contributes significantly to social inclusion. The project develops a multidisciplinary approach as a result of the exchange of best practices and tools related to social inclusion of the target group tested by the partnership, as well as other EU materials on migrant volunteering in the cultural sector.

Cesvot

Cesvot – acronym for Volunteering Service Center in Tuscany - was established in January 1997 as a volunteering association by 11 regional associations.

Currently there are 36 regional associations that participate in the management of the Center. On the territory, Cesvot is present with 11 Delegations and a team of operators offering guidance and services to associations, local authorities and citizens.

All services offered by Cesvot are free and can be accessed via the organisation website in the “MyCesvot” area. In particular, Cesvot offers consulting, training, information, promotion, research and documentation services to all the Third Sector organisations in Tuscany.

Italy

via Ricasoli, 9 - 50122 Firenze

Partner 1

Volunteering Matters

Volunteering Matters, formerl known as CSV, is a national charity leading UK volunteering in policy and practice. The organisation, aware of the fact that people are experiencing social isolation and huge inequalities in their communities, focuses in investing in people through volunteering in order to reduce inequalities and isolation, thus building stronger, more inclusive communities. By focusing primarily on the needs of four beneficiary groups, disabled people, older people, young people and families, Volunteering Matters inspires its committed and ambitious volunteers to power change in their communities. This is done by delivering targeted, innovative and professional programmes nationwide. The vision of Volunteering Matters is of a society where everyone can participate to build strong and inclusive communities, while its mission is to enable people to take an active role in their communities.

Volunteering Matters is also an experienced NGO at European level, having been a member and host of the Secretariat for Volonteurope since the early 1990s. Volonteurope, a key partner in this project proposal, is a leading European network promoting volunteering, active citizenship and social justice. Its core activities are funded through a strategic operating grant from the European Commission “Europe for Citizens” Programme. Volonteurope, established in the Netherlands in 1981, comprises over 50 member and associate organisations in over 20 European countries, thus has a strong dissemination and multiplier capability to work on diverse issues around volunteering, active citizenship and social justice, and how these can effectuate positive changes in European communities. Volonteurope works with other networks and platforms in Europe, as well as directly with various European institutions, as well as EU Member State governments. It has a strong reputation as an experienced international organisation which actively cooperates with various stakeholders on issues which affect the people of Europe and beyond. Volonteurope’s vision is one in which the principles of inclusiveness, collaboration, sustainability and fairness guide thinking, behaviour and practice in Europe, resulting in genuine social justice for all. The network’s mission is to work collaboratively with its members and partners to champion the role of volunteering and active citizenship as pathways for social justice in Europe and beyond.
olunteering Matters, formerly known as CSV, is a national charity leading UK volunteering in policy and practice. The organisation, aware of the fact that people are experiencing social isolation and huge inequalities in their communities, focuses in investing in people through volunteering in order to reduce inequalities and isolation, thus building stronger, more inclusive communities. By focusing primarily on the needs of four beneficiary groups, disabled people, older people, young people and families, Volunteering Matters inspires its committed and ambitious volunteers to power change in their communities. This is done by delivering targeted, innovative and professional programmes nationwide. The vision of Volunteering Matters is of a society where everyone can participate to build strong and inclusive communities, while its mission is to enable people to take an active role in their communities.

Volunteering Matters is also an experienced NGO at European level, having been a member and host of the Secretariat for Volonteurope since the early 1990s. Volonteurope, a key partner in this project proposal, is a leading European network promoting volunteering, active citizenship and social justice. Its core activities are funded through a strategic operating grant from the European Commission “Europe for Citizens” Programme. Volonteurope, established in the Netherlands in 1981, comprises over 50 member and associate organisations in over 20 European countries, thus has a strong dissemination and multiplier capability to work on diverse issues around volunteering, active citizenship and social justice, and how these can effectuate positive changes in European communities. Volonteurope works with other networks and platforms in Europe, as well as directly with various European institutions, as well as EU Member State governments. It has a strong reputation as an experienced international organisation which actively cooperates with various stakeholders on issues which affect the people of Europe and beyond. Volonteurope’s vision is one in which the principles of inclusiveness, collaboration, sustainability and fairness guide thinking, behaviour and practice in Europe, resulting in genuine social justice for all. The network’s mission is to work collaboratively with its members and partners to champion the role of volunteering and active citizenship as pathways for social justice in Europe and beyond.
olunteering Matters, formerly known as CSV, is a national charity leading UK volunteering in policy and practice.

United Kingdom

18-24 Lower Clapton Rd,
London E5 0PD, UK

Partner 2

Meath Partnership

Meath Partnership is a dynamic partnership company established in 2006 to deliver a range of rural, social and economic programmes at local level across County Meath.

Through these programmes, MP provide support and assistance to private individuals and community groups active at local level through capital grant aid, technical assistance, guidance and mentoring, information and support, training opportunities and development initiatives.

Meath Partnership is a dynamic partnership company established in 2006 to deliver a range of rural, social and economic programmes at local level across County Meath.

Through these programmes, MP provides support and assistance to private individuals and community groups active at local level through capital grant aid, technical assistance, guidance and mentoring, information and support, training opportunities and development initiatives.

Ireland

Cavan Road Unit 7, Kells Business Park - Kells, Ireland

Partner 3

United Societie of Balkans Astiki Etaireia

The organization was created as a respond to the pressure of constant changes in the Balkan and Eastern European region and under the need for the creation of a better social environment. Key areas of the organization's activities concern the defense of human rights, the organization of youth exchanges and training courses, which will bring young people from Balkans and Europe together, the organization of local educational seminars and multimedia production, as well as promotion of volunteerism at local and international level. In addition, the design and implementation of research and new methods and tools related to education and action, cooperation with other civil society actors, as well as the involvement with state organizations to achieve the objectives of the organization are key goals of United Societies of Balkans. Finally, a crucial aim is to inform and raise awareness among young people on various social issues, as well as to strengthen and support them in the creation of a healthier and more integrated, thinking and active citizen.

Greece

Alamanas 9 Agios Pavlos, Thessaloniki 55438

Partner 4

E.N.T.E.R. GMBH

E.N.T.E.R. is a versatile and highly motivated networking company, specialising in the dissemination and implementation of EU projects. We are located in Graz, Austria, but we work on an international level. Our team participates in several EU projects and manages this networking platform

Austria

Geidorfplatz, 2 Graz 8010 Austria

Partner 5

Co&So

Co&So is a consortium of cooperatives located in Tuscany region which includes 40 social and not social cooperatives working in the social, cultural and educational fields. Co&So consists of 29 employees who provide services to the associated.
The main services are administration, monitoring and submitting the calls most on public procurement, offering European opportunities to promote innovation in the cooperatives in terms of improving employees’ competences and services, quality certification, communication. All together the staff working in the associated cooperatives is 3,000 professionals.
Taking only into consideration the support services for migrants, refugees and asylum seekers there are 7 cooperatives working all over Tuscany, managing around 122 services such as reception centers and integration services on behalf of the Public Authorities.

Italy

via Valdipesa, 1 - 5017 Firenze

The EU-VOICE main objective is to promote active inclusion of third country nationals and exchanges between TCNs and host-country nationals through a volunteering experience in public and private cultural institutions in partner countries.
With the EU-VOICE project the partners, that are key actors in the frame of Volunteering and integration of migrants, concentrate their efforts to develop a comprehensive approach to prepare TCNs and host-country nationals for a Cultural Volunteering Experience in the frame of the European Year of Cultural Heritage and replicable in other countries.
The expected impact will be 1) on TCNs in terms of empowerment and better integration 2) on local communities more aware on intercultural issues 3) on volunteer organisations, associations and communities of migrants, private and public cultural institutions who will have access to innovative EU tools and methodologies.
Such impact will have a long term effect, thanks to the partners that work with the target, to the cascade-effect on other TCNs and to the European cooperation network that will be built during the project with other organisations in the field of integration, volunteering and culture. To ensure a wide impact the last 4 months of the project will be entirely dedicated to a series of dissemination and exploitation activities in partner countries and other EU countries.
Furthermore, the EU-VOICE project is also in line with the Europe 2020 strategy, through:
-Social inclusion–Voluntary activities involve the promotion of social inclusion and integration,which are in turn important elements of European social policy;
-Education and Training–Volunteering can provide unemployed individuals with the experience needed to integrate into the labour market. Skills and competences gained through volunteering can be transferred into professional contexts.
-Active Citizenship–Volunteering leads to the involvement of citizens in local development and plays an important role in the fostering of civil society and democracy.

The expected impact will be 1) on TCNs in terms of empowerment and better integration 2) on local communities more aware on intercultural issues 3) on volunteer organisations, associations and networks of migrants, private and public cultural institutions who will have access to innovative EU tools and methodologies.
Such impact will have a long term effect, thanks to the partners that work with the target, to the cascade-effect on other TCNs and to the European cooperation network that will be built during the project with other organisations in the field of integration, volunteering and culture. To ensure a wide impact the last 4 months of the project will be entirely dedicated to a series of dissemination and exploitation activities in partner countries and other EU countries.
Furthermore, the EU-VOICE project is also in line with the Europe 2020 strategy, through:
-Social inclusion–Voluntary activities involve the promotion of social inclusion and integration,which are in turn important elements of European social policy;
-Education and Training–Volunteering can provide unemployed individuals with the experience needed to integrate into the labour market. Skills and competences gained through volunteering can be transferred into professional contexts.
-Active Citizenship–Volunteering leads to the involvement of citizens in local development and plays an important role in the fostering of civil society and democracy.

Roles of the volunteers

50%

Have been involved in the implementation

Eu program

In the beginning, I was not interested in the activities since I thought it would not be useful for me and that I was wasting my time. However, I continued to participate, and suddenly, I realized that I was learning new things such as taking pictures, writing articles and working together with other young people. I would like to be involved again in future programs since during the project I have been very busy, and for the first time since I am here, I felt I was doing something good for myself and the community.

Active citzenship, cultural volunteering, immigration.

Quality Standards of project with volunteers

I declare that my project meets all the quality requirements here listed

  • There are clear, planned outcomes for the local community based on identified needs.
  • Volunteers bring added value to the project and don’t replace paid staff.
  • Volunteers are recruited, trained and managed according to the quality volunteer management cycle.
  • The conditions of the opportunity are inline with the relevant legal framework in the country/ region concerned. Eg regarding insurance, expenses payments, agreements/contracts etc.
  • The volunteers are celebrated and thanked for their time and commitment.

YES

  • The organization providing the volunteer opportunity demonstrates an inclusive approach. Volunteers from all backgrounds and situations are welcome.

YES

  • There is the opportunity for the learning acquired through volunteering to be validated, if the volunteer desires it.

NO