EU Aid Volunteers Technical Assistance project: August update!
With most of Europe away on holiday for August, it’s been a fairly quiet month in the office in Hackney – and the Brussels office too! However, we still have some exciting updates concerning the EU Aid Volunteers Technical Assistance project. One of the most important aspects of the project has been the production of extensive guidelines which cover the route to certification for prospective sending organisations. Produced in conjunction with Alianza por la Solidaridad, GVC Onlus, Hungarian Baptist Aid and Volonteurope, the guidelines help organisations examine their policies and procedures to check if they are in line with the standards required by the certification. Furthermore, the guidelines help the same organisations improve the policies and documentation they already have.
Importantly, these guidelines are available in six languages – English, Spanish, French, Italian, Romanian and Hungarian – in order to better encourage widespread European participation in the programme. These guidelines can be found in the ‘Guidelines on certification process’ section on the EU Aid Volunteers page of the website. If you access the page in the relevant language, the guidelines will appear in the correct translation. These guidelines are a very useful extension of the work the consortium partners were doing when conducting face to face visits with participating organisations; they are very extensive and provide valuable best practice examples and resources for interested organisations.
Furthermore, along with my colleague David Hedges – who accompanied me on the Technical Assistance visit to Tulip Foundation in Bulgaria in May – I am currently preparing Volunteering Matters’ application for certification as a sending organisation under the EU Aid Volunteers programme – using the newly published guidelines. In respect of this, Volunteering Matters invited me to attend their August NNVIA meeting to present a brief overview of the programme and its outcomes thus far. NNVIA, which stands for the Network of National Volunteer-Involving Agencies, brings together more than 100 British charities that recognise the critical importance of volunteers in achieving their mission. While not all of the attending agencies work in the humanitarian sphere, speaking at the meeting was a great opportunity to make the members aware of the programme, and let know them know about our upcoming Info Day for British organisations.
Similar to the Info Days that have already taken place in, Hungary, Romania and Malta, the Info Day in London will be an opportunity to find out more about the project as well as the eligibility requirements for interested British organisations. Furthermore, like the other Info Days, representatives from DG ECHO will be in attendance to answer questions, and there will be presentations from consortium members comprehensively addressing the journey to certification. Stay tuned to find out when the Info Day will take place!