OPEN CALL FOR EVS VOLUNTEERS for Erasmus+ project, European Voluntary Service
Deadline for expressing the interest: 14th of April 2015
Activity period: 12 months (autumn 2015 – autumn 2016)
Host country: Republic of Macedonia
Hosting organization: Centre for improvement of the quality of life of the persons with intellectual disability and their families PORAKA NOVA, Struga, Macedonia
Open for: young people (18-30 years old) from Erasmus+
Activity 1. (2 volunteers) – Day Care Center and Families
Activity 2. (2 volunteers) – Magazine and promotional activities and Youth activities
Activity 3. (1 volunteer) – Fundraising and project design and Training and research
PORAKA NOVA (Centre for improvement the quality of life of the persons with intellectual disability and their families) was legally funded in 1984 by initiative of parents who have child with intellectual disability. The Mission of PORAKA NOVA is to work on effective promotion of the rights of people with intellectual disability and their families, in a way that each citizen, which is any way related to the intellectual disability, will have an opportunity to receive adequate support and resources he/she needs.
The Vision of PORAKA NOVA is improved quality of life of the people with intellectual disability and their families.
The Objectives of PORAKA NOVA for improvement of the quality of life of the people with intellectual disability are:
-Respecting the human rights of the people with intellectual disability
-Nondiscrimination of the people with intellectual disability
-Encouraging the people with intellectual disability to rely on their own strengths and skills
-Autonomy and independence of the people with intellectual disability in the use of services
-Economic, social, health and juridical protection of the people with intellectual disability
-Social justice, social integration and inclusion
The Principles on which is based the work of PORAKA NOVA are: Equal opportunities, Transparency, Responsibility, Partnership, Tolerance, Sustainability, Inclusion, Participation.
MACEDONIA is an independent state on the Balkan peninsula in the heart of southeastern Europe. The country borders Albania to the west, Bulgaria to the east, Greece to the south and Serbia and Kosovo to the north. The capital is Skopje with more than 500,000 inhabitants. It also has a number of other significant cities, notably Bitola, Prilep, Tetovo, Gostivar, Kumanovo, Ohrid, Struga, Veles, Stip, and Strumica. The Republic of Macedonia is often called a land of lakes and mountains. There are more than 50 natural and artificial lakes and sixteen mountain ranges higher than 2,000 m (6,562 ft) above sea level.
STRUGA is a small town (20.000 inhabitants) situated in the south-western region of the Republic of Macedonia, lying on the shore of Lake Ohrid. The town of Struga is the center of the municipality of Struga. Struga is located in an open valley on Lake Ohrid, in the southwest of Macedonia. The Black Drim river starts at the lake and divides the city. Struga is 175 km from Skopje, 14 km from Ohrid, 82 km from Bitola, and 15 km from the Albanian border.
Struga is a multi-ethnic town with 54% Macedonians, 31% Albanians, 7% Turks, 5% Roma, 4% Vlahs and 1% other ethnic groups. Official languages are Macedonian and Albanian (according to the Macedonian constitution, each ethnic group existing in more than 20% of the population can use as official their mother tongue). 63% of the population are orthodox and 37% Muslim. Struga is a multicultural town, and because of this PORAKA is also multicultural. The members of PORAKA have different cultural backgrounds. They speak different languages, listen and sing different music, celebrate different holidays, have different religions, eat different food, and wear different clothes. The diversity is present in their everydayâs life. The different and new things are always interesting and curious.
The climate is mild in spring and autumn, not too cold in winter, but quite hot in the summer. The summer sun is a perfect match with the nearby beaches at the lake. Much of the town’s meager income is through internal tourism. Struga’s location on Lake Ohrid makes it a slightly quieter and more peaceful experience than the more bustling Ohrid. When visiting this quiet town of the Republic of Macedonia, there are a few other places that show the same beauty and culture, like the clay chamberpots at the house of the Miladinov Brothers, the old Struga bazaar, as well as the century old churches and mosques. Before the evenings you can enjoy three kinds of beaches called Male beach (maska plaza), Female beach (zenska) and the most beautiful called Gull (Galeb). Out of the town there is another tourist place near the lake called Pearl (Biser).
Struga is not a big town and local transport is not necessary. PORAKA NOVA is located on the coast of the lake, with 50 meters on the Female beach, only 500 meters from the City centre.
PORAKA NOVA will be the host organisation, offering the volunteers the opportunity of carrying out their service in the Centre managed by the organisation. There will be one person who will the person in charge of mentoring the volunteers. Her responsibilities and tasks will be:
-To be the contact person between the relevant entities involved in the project
-To guarantee the attendance of the volunteers in on-arrival training, Intermediate and Final Evaluations
-To facilitate the adaptation of the volunteers to their activities of their EVS
-To coordinate the preparation and participation of the volunteers in evaluating the project
-To provide accommodation for the volunteers, food, transport, civil responsibility and health insurance coverage, pocket money, language course and free internet.
The volunteers can rely on the support from the staff in PORAKA NOVA. The role of the mentor includes integrating the volunteers successfully to the association and the local community, and preparing them for the activities providing information and support. This will be the person the volunteers refer to in the beginning, in case of doubts and or problems in either the association or the city.
The volunteers will live in Struga, in a shared flat with other volunteers and/or young local people, to help with their integration in the local community. They will be given a monthly living allowence for basic needs. The volunteers will also have language courses customised to their needs, in a frequency no less than 2 hours a week.
Proposed activities for EVS volunteers
PORAKA NOVA wants to offer the EVS volunteer the opportunity to develop their human potential as well as to get to know and accept other realities. The experience of living independently in a foreign environment is also an essential part of the personal and social development of young volunteers.
In the preparation phase, the volunteer will be asked for his/her interests, objectives and expectations for EVS, after what will be introduced to the organizational structure and in which service the volunteer can be involved. Together with the support persons from the hosting and sending organization, the volunteer will decide in which services of the organization he/she will be involved, and will be created his/her responsibilities, tasks and rights.
The objectives, values and philosophy of the hosting organisation can also provide a new way of understanding and carrying out social work for the volunteer. The volunteer will join a team where he/she will have learning models or professionals with experience in work with disabled people. The volunteer will have the opportunity of learning about the different techniques and therapies currently used to work with this group of people. The volunteer will be involved in the rehabilitation processes of these people, and if he/she will also have the opportunity to understand and join the fight against the stigma and social exclusion of people with disabilities. It is also a way of promoting social integration of young people looking for participating mechanisms in the decision making processes that affect underprivileged people for geographic, economic or other reasons.
The volunteers will be in charge of supporting the professionals in the daily activities of each centre, taking part in the planning, execution and evaluation of the activities. As the volunteers get more familiar with the language and the workings of the organisation his/her independence will increase and they will be able to choose the activities they want to get involve with and contribute their own ideas. All the activities in which the volunteer gets involved with will be supervised by a professional staff member from the organisation.
The volunteer can be involved in each od the services mentioned above, or in more in the same tame, and also can be involved in activities as fundraising, project development and public relations.
The main long-term projects we offer to the volunteers are:
1. Day care center – PORAKA NOVA, as one of its most successful projects, points out the social service DAILY CENTRE opened in 2005. The Daily Centre is attended by persons with light, mid-severe and severe intellectual disability. With them, a professional team works on acquisition and development of social, cognitive and practical skills essential for improving their quality of life and their higher inclusion and integration in the society.
2. Resource centre – The Resource Center was established in March 2011 and consists of two offices and a library. It is an ideal place where volunteers can work together with the staff. The sub-projects are:
o Magazine and promotional activities â The role of the volunteers will be connected to the dissemination of activites from the association to the local community, helping in organizing events and taking care of the reporting of those events by taking pictures or creating videos for the web page. The volunteers will have the opportunity to upload some articles online, to add to the PORAKA NOVA facebook profile, webpage, etc. Also there will be a newsletter (hardcopy and electronic) which the volunteers will edit, writing articles, adding galeries and other interesting resources. The volunteers can colaborate with the youngsters from the local community, from both high and primary schools, trying to introduce them as volunteers in the association, especialy in the newsletter editing, motivating them to conduct some interviews and write articles in the newsletter.
o Fundraising and project design â The volunteers will have a chance to learn about organizational management, project design and management, fundraising, budgeting and financial management. Together with the staff responsible for these tasks, they will work on diferent projects and searching funds for those projects. After the end of the EVS project, the volunteers will be able to fund their own NGO or company, and to work ond different projetcs.
o Families support: One of the main tasks of PORAKA NOVA is working with the families and offering them appropriate support how to deal with the condition of their child, and what services they can use. There are groups for mutual support of families, and also Center for information, counceling and guidance of families, in which the volunteers will be involved, helping the staff that works there. The volunteers will learn how to offer support, how to lead a group, how to work in team, how to initiate activities, how to lead a training, how to organize conference, etc. The families are dificult group to work with, so for this service we would require more skills and education from the volunteer.
o Youth activites: PORAKA NOVA works with local and international volunteers motivating them to initiate and participate in projects related to the youth and social inclusion. We organize trainings, workshops, conferences, trainings, exchanges, where we train and motivate the volunteers to work on topics as community building, social inovation, European awareness, diversity, equal opportunities, human rights, anti-discrimination, etc. The volunteer will take active participation in planing and implementation of those activities.
o Training and research: PORAKA NOVA organizes various trainings for diferent target groups in collaboration with the local NGO Center for training, education, action and mobility TEAM. The training are aimed to diferent target groups, mainly related to solving social problems. The association provides more than 5 researches per year, which are needed for improvement of the work, for understanding the local opinion and awareness, researches related to education, etc. The volunteer will take part of the trainings and the researches, and will get rich knowledge and skills in providing them.
As the volunteers get more familiar with the language and the workings of the organisation his/her independence will increase and they will be able to contribute with their own ideas. All the activities in which the volunteer gets involved with will be supervised by a professional staff member from the organisation.
The volunteers will have 35-40 weekly hours of activity, which will include time dedicated for language training. They will also have two free days a week which will be Saturday and Sunday.
They will have periodic meetings to have a continuous assessment of EVS, and they will take part in community activities (Volunteers Week, Disability week, and different acts and celebrations organised by PORAKA NOVA).
VOLUNTEERS: must be between the age of 18 and 30.
The volunteers are not required to have any particular degree or formal education. This project aims to provide a non-formal learning experience for them. It is preferable that they have motivation in the social field: social work, special education, psychology, etc. The volunteers have to be interested in working with people with special needs (intellectual disability) and motivated to do so. Training in the field of social and health sciences will be an asset. We would like to host volunteers with positive attitudes, tolerance, flexiblity, creativivity, enthusiam, curiousity, open mindedness and an eagerness to learn of new cultures and lifestyles.
It is desirable, however that they have good knowledge of English and are willing to learn Macedonian. It would be consider as asset some previous experience in the respective field, also knowledge in use of digital devices and programs.
Also the volunteers need to be a communicative person which will make it possible to promote and diseminate the activites and events on the local community using all the comunication channels: televison, radio, social networks, web page, newspaper.
For the selection of the volunteers we will need:
– Europass CV with picture (made in the last month)
– Motivational letter, writing that your sending organisation will be “Building Bridges”. We ask all candidates to send a specific letter of motivation – why they want to volunteer with us rather than just a general EVS one.
Remember to write in the motivation letter that your sending institution is “Asociación Building Bridges”.
All documents written in english you can send to: firstname.lastname@example.org with subject “EVS Macedonia Poraka Nova”
The deadline to apply is on 14th of April.