Sending humanitarian volunteers abroad as a part of HVA (Humanitarian Volunteers in Action) project


On October 2018 a group of ten nongovernmental organizations (including ADRA Slovakia) has launched a new 2-year project called Humanitarian Volunteers in Action (HVA) in French town Roubaix. This project is a continuation of Humanitarian Volunteering Management (HVM) project that took place prior to the HVA. The main priorities of the HVM project were to strengthen and sustain the volunteering management, as well as building capacities of organizations outside of the European Union (EU), which will be hosting new volunteers from the EU.

A preparation to fulfil the conditions in order to gain a certification from the EU was a part of the HVM and it included both, the sending organizations and hosting organizations too. During the summer 2018 ADRA Slovakia (as a well-functioning sending organization) successfully obtained this certificate. In the upcoming months ADRA Slovakia (as the first and only organization from Slovak pool of humanitarian non-governmental bodies) will send its first volunteers under the framework of EU Aid volunteers to their own missions to the low-income countries.


The aim of HVA project:

The aim of the HVA project is to send a number of volunteers to certified organizations in particular regions of the Global South for a period of six to twelve months. Following are three sending organizations from the European Union: ADICE (France), MONDO (Estonia), and ADRA Slovakia (Slovakia). Subsequently, Merkuri (Georgia), AICHA (Morocco), Isaaf Jerada (Morocco), Small projects Istanbul (Turkey), ADRA Albania (Albania), NCCS (Albania) and APCS (Algeria) are the rest of partner organizations who are based outside of the European Union.

Similarly to the HVM project, the HVA has been implemented thanks to the financial support from the biggest European donor – the European Union – the initiator of the EU Aid Volunteers program. Two types of volunteers from the EU will be supported and sent out via the EU Aid Volunteers program: expert volunteers, who possess an expertise in a specific field related to humanitarian aid, as well as “junior” volunteers, whose experience has not reached high level yet. The chosen participants will be selected for the particular volunteer positions – based on the particular needs of the hosting organizations. These volunteers might act in the field, for instance, of psycho-social or medical support of the victims of natural disasters or social conflicts; or in the field of a project management in humanitarian organizations or in a communication with stakeholders; or else in peace-building activities and disaster risks reduction actions; as well as an education and a prevention against the negative impacts of the climate change, etc.

The calls for humanitarian volunteers are available for all citizens of the European Union, as well as for long-term residents in the EU, regardless of the base location of the sending organization. In other words, if the call for the EU Aid volunteers will be announced by a Slovak organization (which is in our case ADRA Slovakia), a candidate from Slovakia, but also, for example, a citizen from Czechia or France is eligible to apply for this opportunity.

At the beginning of year 2019 there will be twelve volunteers sent abroad for their volunteering missions as a part of the HVA project, out of which four of them will be represented from ADRA Slovakia. More information about the desired profiles of volunteers (regarding their skills, the offered positions and the destinations of their volunteer activities) will be soon announced on our website, as well as our Facebook page.

Watch the series of educational videos (created by the leader of HVM and HVA project – ADICE) that would make you better understand the principles of volunteering process in Global South countries. The first video is about ensuring the quality of volunteering management, the second video is about selecting suitable candidates for their volunteering missions. The third video relates directly to the safety of volunteers in the field and the fourth video is about the ensuring volunteering projects’ visibility and responsible communication of volunteer with various target groups of information recipients (donors, family, general public, media, partner NGOs, beneficiaries of development assistance, local people etc.).


Autumn 2018: Kick-off of the project and first training

In fall 2018 a Kick-off seminar of HVA project took place in French town Roubaix. Our organization ADRA Slovakia together with French organization ADICE, Estonian MONDO organization and Italian ASPEm led a training for 47 representatives of non-governmental organizations from 17 countries. Project management was the theme because managing people and projects is the foundation of every well-functioning organization. The aim of the training was to strengthen the capacities of the participating organizations, as well as to develop partnerships in the field of humanitarian aid, global volunteering and development cooperation.

On this page, we have published current calls for humanitarian volunteers will be published and updated. Good luck with an application process!

Spring 2019: Preparatory Visits to Host Organizations, Selection Procedure

At the beginning of the year, the project manager from ADRA Slovakia (together with HVA project partners from MONDO and ADICE) visited two organizations in Albania (ADRA Albania and NCCS) and one in Turkey (Small projects Istanbul). The aim of preparatory visit was to verify the working conditions and other details of the stay of future humanitarian volunteers. They will start compulsory pre-departure training after a successful selection process in February. Their volunteering stay will begin in July.

Currently we are reading all the motivations and cover letters and conducting first interviews with candidates – willing to volunteer abroad. Also second round – new open calls for EU Aid volunteers was published online.

More about the donor and partners of the HVA project here:

You can see project photos here

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