The main season of workcamps is here and with it SCI is full of ongoing projects, news and interesting updates. In particular in this newsletter you will find a couple of videos which explain why and how to support SCI'S refugee fund and the Volunteers on the Frontline. Do you know that SCI will turn 100 in 2020? Ok, maybe it's quite far but we already have a team working on it. And if you are interested to volunteer online with SCI we just sent out our first call! And If you want to be more involved in SCI, just check the www.workcamps.info database, and choose a different summer!
May is the month just before the main workcamp season, and we want to share with you three EVS volunteer stories: one from Martina, the current EVS volunteer at the International Secretariat of SCI in Antwerp, and the other two arrive from VSI Ireland; Ruska, an EVS volunteer in Northern Ireland and Shane, who we already met once here, who tells us more about Tirana, where he is doing his EVS with PVN Albania. Get inspired from these stories, and do an EVS with SCI, because it makes your life beautiful! A story from a workcamp in Slovenia, that seems more a fairy tale than a workcamp recently arrived in our mailbox, while GAIA Kosovo’s activities from last summer came to a close they shared with us some of the follow up actions!
Building Bridges updates
For many years SCI branches have been active worldwide on an increasing number of projects dedicated to working with refugees and forced migrants who were displaced within or outside their country, in particular in their new home places. Considering the positive effects of such efforts and their coherence with SCI's mission and history, at SCI's International Committee Meeting 2015 branches proposed and approved providing small and easily accessible funds to SCI groups and branches planning projects and actions with and for refugees, lowering barriers to connect with locals and promoting mutual understanding. 13 projects from 10 different branches were enabled in 2016. Thus, at ICM 2016 it was decided to finance a second round of the Refugee Fund. Watch this video to learn more and how you can support. Your contribution to the fund, however big or small, will be hugely appreciated and will enable volunteers to carry out their projects, impacting directly on those seeking refuge and local communities.
Exciting happenings in Novi Sad, Serbia as the the third main activity of SCI's PATH project, the "One Step Forward, One Step Back" seminar began on 8th of May, hosted by our Serbian branch, Volonterski Centar Vojvodine. Some of the participants shared their thoughts and impressions with us! This week the “A Route to Connect” field study trip is travelling on from Slovenia to Greece. “A Route to Connect” is a project supported by the European Youth Foundation of the Council of Europe. The field study trip is along the so called Balkan route. The team is visiting camps, transit centres, NGOs, volunteer groups, refugee communities and institutions that are situated along the “Balkan route”. The commitment of Service Civil International (SCI) in this area has highly increased in the last two years, a group of volunteers are currently on the front line working together with other international and local teams giving support to those seeking refuge. Most of the volunteers, including all independent and SCI volunteers cover their travel costs and costs of stay in the place where they help. It's not easy. And your help is very much appreciated, watch our video below to learn more. Right now Peers to Peace is in Poland for the Peers University, to collect and share existing knowledge and materials on the key topics relevant such as project, volunteer and knowledge management, fundraising, to assess our strengths and map learning needs, to exchange good practice on the project's topics. Our second EVS for Peers to Peace arrived at SCI Malaysia! Jure from SCI Slovenia. He will be supporting the organization of local activities (among others the famous Penang Peace run in August), the ‘Learning seminar on knowledge management and fundraising’ as well as the implementation of the Peers to Peace online platform. We hope Jure will have a fruitful and unforgettable experience during his 6 months volunteering with us.
100 years of SCI!
It is not that close yet… but preparations have already started. A group of experienced SCI-activists, the so-called 2020 Team gathered in Catalonia to talk about the 100th anniversary of SCI in 2020. Two activists from Malaysia and Indonesia made a long journey just for this purpose. Read here.
Communication? Let's do it!
Did you ever wonder how many people in the world are using You Tube? And how many tweets are being posted every day? And inside SCI, how many branches are active on Instagram? Or who is posting the most? Check it here and don’t forget to have a look at the Voices of Volunteers blog, where you can be inspired and try a different summer with workcamps!
News from CCIVS
SCI was recently in Ghana as part of the CCIVS project ‘Step to Change, Build the Common Path’. The First STEPs Strategic Trainings for Empowerment Processes focused on participatory methodology to assess needs and build strategies for change. SCI activist and CCIVS president Ingrid Danckaerts reported on the training. Different STEPS will take place in Africa, the Americas, Europe and Asia over the next year inviting over 30 IVS organisations to make part of the process. For more information follow the Training on Twitter @ccivs_volunteeror keep up to date on the Blog Page.
From the Archives
Not long ago, I received a request from a European SCI branch, asking me for the "first international constitution (1920)". As everyone is aware that 1920 has been the year in which it all started (therefore we will soon be able to celebrate 2020!) the request somehow seems logical. But on the other hand, Pierre Ceresole and the friends who had organised the first international voluntary service for peace in a devastated French village two years after the end of the First World War surely had other priorities than to draft a constitution before even starting with practical work. Read more here.
Short-term volunteer opportunities
Interesting SCI workcamps are taking place in more than 50 countries! Haven't you joined one yet? Find the project that is most suitable for you on workcamps.info
Long Term Volunteer
You already did the EVS but you want to leave again for a new adventure? Check the SCI database for Long Term volunteering opportunities!
Did you miss the newsletter from the European Youth Forum? Here's a link!
Utilapu new website
Did you see the new website of Utialpu? You should see it, it’s really cool!
European Solidarity Corps
The European Solidarity Corps SCI position paper has been ready for a while, you can read it here. On 7th of June, SCI will be present at the ESC meeting organised by the European Youth Forum.
First call out, check if there is something interesting also for you!
Co-Funded by the Erasmus plus programme of the European Union.
The Association of Service Civil International ivzw receives support from the European Youth Foundation of the Council of Europe.
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