As some of you may already know, the Erasmus+ programme promotes international training courses in partnership with international NGOs, where participants from different countries are invited to go abroad and gather together for 8 – 10 days. During this period the participants learn about a certain topic and improve their skills and competences through a non-formal education approach. Last week, thanks to the support of the Italian National Agency ANG that financed the project, the training course “EVS Project Making” took place in Pesaro, the topic discussed where how to plan and write a quality EVS project, and the promoting association was our own – Vicolocorto! We spoke to a couple of participants about their experience and general impressions of this week.
Gloria is Romanian and currently working for YMCA (Young Men’s Christian Association) as the vice-president at a regional level. When she first heard that her association had two vacancies for this training she instantly wanted to go since Italy has always been her dream country. Nevertheless, once she actually had the time to read through the training description she was even more excited. That is because one day she’d like to have her own NGO so the knowledge acquired at the training could be extremely useful for her. As if it wasn’t enough of a good experience already, by the end of the week Gloria was offered the opportunity to participate in a 10 month EVS project with the Red Cross in Pesaro, starting this December! Hurray!
Florentina is from Romania and she works for Wild Carpathia association. The organization hosts and coordinates EVS volunteers and Florentina is their tutor and mentor. Since she joined the association only this year, it is her first training related to project making. Nevertheless, for Florentina this was a useful experience, she particularly enjoyed the guideline teamwork, as well as sharing experiences with other participants. She also appreciated the final task, which was to create a plan for an EVS project, because she could finally work on her idea for a project focused on relationships between generations in Romania.
Joaquin is from Extremadura, a region located in the west of Spain. He is currently working as a project manager in an NGO, and soon he will start to work as an assistant manager in Portugal. He has decided to come to this training in order to learn how to write EVS/European Solidarity Corps projects and to develop some tools and ideas for future projects in his own organization. Of all the things he has learned here, Joaquin values understanding the context you are living in the most. In his case, the region is not very famous and they don’t have a lot of people working with Erasmus+ programme, so he would like to improve the situation and offer local people more opportunities.
Erell represents Association Gwennili, a sending and hosting association located in Brittany (the West part of France). Currently she is in charge of the coordination of the common activities of the volunteers. In 2013 she participated in an EVS project in Georgia. After she came back to France, she got an offer from her sending organization to participate in a civil service, which meant working part-time in the organization. One of the most important things Erell learned during this training is how to change plans in order to keep up with the ideas you have in mind. In other words: how to be flexible. As there are some changes and unsure aspects within the EVS, the participants, coming from different countries, had to talk about the way they deal with such transformations and share their points of view.
The participants of this training are of different age, come from different countries and cultures, and have different jobs and life experiences. However, all of them were interested in the same thing: acquiring the know-how. For this reason, Erasmus+ trainings are not only a big opportunity to learn in a non-formal way, but, more importantly, to enjoy an international experience.
Demi, Filipa, Isabel & Karolina