CHAPTER 1: What is SIFF?

Sofia International Film Festival (SIFF) was created in 1997 and, since then, it has attracted 85.000 spectators annually, becoming one of the biggest film festivals in the Balkans.

From that moment, the festival has been growing, including more categories and competitions, and receiving further international recognition. In the year 2003 the festival included the Jameson Short Film Award, a competition for regional films and national short films and the International Competition for first and second films, which is included in the FIPRESCI calendar. In 2009 it also introduced the International documentary competition.
In 2007 Variety placed Sofia IFF among the Top 50 world unmissable film events for the industry. In 2010 Sofia IFF was accredited by FIAPF as a competitive specialized feature film festival and became the only Bulgarian film festival recognized by FIAPF nowadays. SIFF is the only Bulgarian film festival recognized by FIPRESCI.
The purpose of the festival is to show the best contemporary cinema to local audiences, as well as to present regional Bulgarian and Balkan cinema to international audiences, therefore, creating a space that allows and encourages the cooperation between local and international filmmakers.
Despite the fact that the 24th year’s edition of SIFF was scheduled to happen from 12th to 31st of March 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the festival has been put on hold in order to ensure the safety of the audience, participants and organizers, until the outbreak of the virus gets under control. Although the festival is postponed a great job was done by the festival team and volunteers.

Part of SIFF team on the first Press Conference

CHAPTER 2: Who are they?

The volunteer team from previous festival

Sofia Film Festival works with around 100 volunteers to help during the festival. CVS-Bulgaria has been coordinating the volunteer team since 2010 and a lot of young people after the first participation stay in the team for many years. The aim of calling volunteers is to allow young people interested in cinema to participate in the organization of this important event while having access to screenings, master classes, international debates and networking possibilities that the event and the parallel programs offer to industry guests and participants.
Before the starting of the Sofia Film Festival, all volunteers follow a training that basically covers how to handle all of the situations described in the roles. Regarding it, the training is structured by games, introduction and t-shirts and badge distribution.
Unfortunately, because of COVID-19 we couldn’t continue with organizing process, but the volunteers have already managed to contribute a lot to the festival. It’s impossible to underestimate their role in the logistic work. Near 20 of them were involved in a distribution campagne where they picked up different kinds of promotion materials and took them to loads of locations. The most important thing is that they did it very selflessly in spite of the snow, the rain and the wind.


Svetly Damianova, head of the press office

CHAPTER 3: Inner opinion

During the quarantine time everyone has plenty of free time, so we have talked with Svetly Damianova, head of the press office, about the festival in general and the movies included  in the festival.
Sofia Film Festival – it’s really a vocation. Most of my life I’ve been a huge fan of everything about and around Cinema and after 18 years of experience in television, I was fortunate enough to receive an invitation from the founder and director of the biggest and most prestigious festival in Bulgaria. At first Stefan Kitanov offered me to assist their team for distribution of “The World Is Big and Salvation Lurks around the Corner” – the only Bulgarian movie ever to make it to the shortlist for Oscar’s nominations in 2009. The team of Art Fest, which is organising Sofia Film Festival, produced the film and I joined in the last phase – promotion and distribution. After few months Mr. Kitanov offered me the position of Head of Press Office and ever since then, almost 12 years now, I’m responsible for the written materials, distributed and published from our office.
During several month before the start of our festival – each year in March – we deliver different themes and accents from the festival programme almost at daily basis – to the huge mail-list of journalists and personalities that are interested in cultural and cinema events. Plus I’m responsible for the image of the Festival in social media channels – mainly Facebook, but also Instagram, Twitter and Youtube; several months before the start and during the period of the Festival also I have a specially selected team of people that are working on publications, coordination of press-conferences and interviews and the whole tons of work that needs to be done in order to tell the audience what an awesome festival we’re offering to them!
I believe that’s amazing and inspiring because most of the films in our programme are offered with one or two screenings and after that they’re not available; most of the films in the International, Balkan and Documentary competition are presented by members of our press team and by their directors, producers or actors – and that’s a really unique opportunity! I really love my work in spite of the sleepless nights before the start, because we all know why we are doing it – for the love of CINEMA and with one particular mission – to EDUCATE the audience! People need gorgeous, provocative, meaningful, interesting, moving films from all over the world – and we’re ready to show exactly those type of films in our programme. They have awards – Golden Palm (from Cannes), Golden Lion (from Venice), Golden Bear (from Berlinale), Oscars and Golden Globes, awards from Sundance, Toronto and many more international film festivals – you cannot see that type of films in general distribution at cineplexes, because they don’t go well with popcorns and they definitely cannot ‘beat’ the big blockbuster movies. But we – Sofia Film Festival – can ‘beat’ the indifference of the audience when we offer them options to meet with the art of Cinema! And we make that happen every year, with lots of energy and passion. Because we love what we do!
And when the time is changing in a blink of an eye – like this unfortunate situation with the spreading of new COVID-19 virus all over the world, I would definitely recommend the option to stay close to the cinema with the programme of Netflix. They have a great variety of classic, modern, blockbuster titles – most of the great works from 90-s but I would be glad to point out the option to see (almost) all marvelous stories, made by the famous Japanese animation studio Ghibli. They are amazing, fascinating and you’ll be inspired!
In order to be aware about the main news of the festival we recommend you to follow their official website. There you can find all the movies involved in the festival: https://siff.bg/en/movies.
The festival team is trying to move the audience and every day, or almost every day, they publish descriptions and trailers of the best movies on the website. In addition, you will get acquainted with friends of SIFF and you will listen to interesting music. You can join them and take off on a cinema journey.
Further more, Sofia Film Fest together with Cinema house have prepared a gift for their fans – free access for 3 months to the art-movie platform MUBI. In order to get the permission, you should just text about your desire to press@siff.bg, after that you will receive a link to the rich library. Who knows, maybe you will find something incredible and fabulous!

CHAPTER 4: What can we watch?

We also created top movies list from out volunteering team. Hopefully, that list helps you to brighten up gray everyday coronovirus-life.

Warm greetings, CVS-volunteers:
Anna Farriol
Daria Chernyshova
Sara Coll.

 Posted by Daria Chernyshova at 13:45 Volunteer activities Comments Off on VOLUNTEERING AND MOVIES (be careful a surprise is waiting you below)
 

Coming from sunny Madrid with a suitcase full of smiles, optimism, wild hitchhike stories and unceasing excitement, Bea becomes part of the project “Volunteering circles” part of the European Solidarity Corps program, driven by her desire to bring positive impact in refugees’ lives.

For her 25 years she has behind her a BA in Psychology and a Master degree in International Solidarity Action. Being a volunteer supporting women involved in prostitution, she holds the dream to work in the field of gender violence and migration empowering women survivors of trafficking to reclaim control of their lives and  to move on from thеir past.


In today’s interview we are introducing you Bea and her volunteering experience in Sofia – just the way they are.

Hello Bea, will you tell us first how you decided to become a volunteer here?

I wanted to work with refugees. At the time I was looking for a project there weren’t so many options. Apart from the “Volunteering circles” project in Sofia I had selected two more – one in Slovenia – volunteering in a center for mental pathologies and in Stockholm being a social worker for refugees. As I was looking to work with refugees I had to choose between Sweden and Sofia. I didn’t want to freeze so much,  so Sofia felt more appealing to me – easy to travel, not so ordered, strict, a bit chaotic, messy just like me – I am messy and disordered so the project and the city were a good combination for me.

Did you have any challenging moments living and volunteering in Sofia?

Generally no. The biggest challenge for me was to adapt in the office. I came with a lot of energy at the beginning and wanted to start working on things right away, but in the process you come to see that things need time to be planned and delivered, so I had to learn how to be patient. Also what was difficult for me was to see that here at 9-10 o’clock there are not so many people in the streets, in Madrid it’s just the same as it’s a very vibrant city. People are also more open. Here I happened to observe two types of people – cold and suspicious and more welcoming ones. I am a very welcoming person but for me is not easy to bond in the workshops I am attending for example because people prefer to speak in Bulgarian and I don’t really speak the language. But I like Sofia as the atmosphere is more free – the bus driver can stop suddenly and grab a coffee, I have seen this and I really like it.

You have immersed yourself in different initiatives apart from your activities at CVS, can you tell us more about them?

Yes, in the beginning I wanted to support the project of Caritas in Busmantsi. I joined the organization team behind the Feminist march for 8th of March, I am part of an informal group raising the awareness of the refugee situation in the border. A cause that I also want to support more is Fridays for Future.

What about your free time, how do you spend it?

I am a really sociable person. I like to be with people. I hang out with the girls, attend cultural events, bars, I travel, dance – I am going to salsa classes, I cook a lot and I am active in different initiatives regarding gender and equality.

Do you have any plans what you would like to do after finishing your project?

I don’t want to think so much about it.  I want to continue traveling and working in different countries. I’d like to find a project in South America and to explore this part of the world, as well India at some point. I want to combine discovering and traveling with something more organized. But I don’t want a commitment for 1 year.

Are there any tips you would like to give to the future volunteers?

Yes, totally! First of all, to feel what they want to do, to prepare mentally and to set their priorities –language learning, to gain work experience in certain sphere, to meet other people, what they want to develop. Then to find as much as possible information before they decide to apply.

International volunteering is often said to be a life-changing experience. What do you think about it?

In my case, I still don’t have the sensation of “before” and “after”, even though I’m waiting for it or maybe it will happen when I’m back at home, although right now with all the coronavirus crisis I don’t know what is going to happen with the project. Nonetheless, coming to Sofia radically changed my life and my mates’ because we moved to a new country with a new language, started a new project with new people, moved in a new house and a lot more of “new” etceteras.

If you compare yourself before starting your project and now in its middle – do you find any changes in yourself?

I think I have realized through team work and coexistence in the apartment that I am not as flexible as I thought and now I am trying to develop more patience in myself. It’s really easy to blame others before blaming yourself, but this is not a nice trait. I have also learned more things about me through seeing myself in such a new situation. So for the moment, the change would be more in the level of self-perception or self-knowledge. I came to Bulgaria to challenge myself and gain confidence as a professional and that is still in process – I hope to have the chance to develop my ideas, to feel proud of my work and skills.

No doubt you will succeed! And finally can you tell us what are your first associations with these words – volunteering, young people, Bulgarians, kiselo mlyako?

Volunteering: solidarity, empathy, multicultural

Young people: future, opportunities, growth

Bulgarians: roulette

Kiselo mlyako: yogurt haha

Thank you for having you here Bea. From all of us at CVS we wish you good luck and much more colorful volunteering ahead. 🙂

Hitchhike with a happy ending
“Winter kids fest” with fun activities and presents for the kids from the three refugee camps
Human Library “Make food not war”
“DOBROFEST” (11.12.2019)

The project “Volunteering Circles” (2018-2-BG01-KA125-048262) is Co-funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union and Human Resource Development Center (HRDC).

Erasmus+ Programme of the European Union logo with text on the right


ВИДЕО: Разследнане на Васил Иванов: Чудовищни злоупотреби в ...
 Posted by Monika at 14:18 EVS news, Volunteer activities Comments Off on Beatriz Cintas Cantarero – to express your voice boldly
 

The Training Course “Peacebuilding with a Twist” will happen in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina from 23/03 – 31/03/2020. 
This training aims to improve the quality and foster the innovative approaches and development of youth efforts through international cooperation and capacity building of young people in the field of peacebuilding and conflict-transformation and reconciliation.

IN THIS TRAINING YOU WILL:
– improve competences in promoting peacebuilding and reconciliation processes;
– support youth initiatives through different methods of youth work;
– outreach and engage other young people and implementing youth activities with special focus on conflict transformation and peace-component;
– promote intercultural respect and understanding;
– innovate, re-design and develop alternative solutions to issues;
– improve knowledge about reconciliation;
– learn new tailored made methodology on social innovation development in reconciliation;
– create different products/activities/initiatives/ideas on topi;
– practice these competencies at the local level with youth.

IF YOU ARE A YOUNG PERSON
1. who is active in your sending organization;
2. who is between 18 and 30 years old;
3. who is interested in the topics of peacebuilding and youth activism;
4. who will be actively involved in the preparation and leading youth activities in your community;
5. who is able and ready to be involved in all the activities of this project: online learning modules, training course and follow up activities;
6. has some basic understanding of the English language
FILL IN APPLICATION FORM AS SOON AS POSSIBLE!

The deadline is 09.03.2020.
Food (3 meals per day) and accommodation are provided. The total travel costs will be reimbursed.
More details are here

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us
trainings@cvs-bg.org !
We will be glad to help you!

 Posted by Shirin at 11:21 Volunteer activities Comments Off on CALL FOR PARTICIPANTS: Training Course “Peacebuilding with a Twist”
 

What a participant could expect:

  • encounter of creative young adults.
  • participants from three countries: Bulgaria, France, Germany.
  • practical workshops with creative methods from panting, theatre, storytelling and games.
  • meeting inspiring people.
  • make long-lasting international friendships. 
  • possibility to participate in future International Youth Creative Encounters in France and Germany.
  • working language is English, but all other languages are welcome.
  • we welcome participants from all around Bulgaria.
  • to  have fun

The full program of activities and the accommodation and the food are free for the participants.

Conditions for participation:
The ideal participant should

  • be fully available for the period of the encounter. The Bulgarian participants will be accommodated in a hotel together with their German and French partners. The Encounter starts with a meeting and dinner on April 11.
  • be curious and open-minded.
  • be 18 to 30 years old.
  • speak English on a communicational level. Speaking French or German is a bonus but nor a requirement.
  • enjoy meeting new people.
  • bring your good mood and beautiful smile

Apply now: https://forms.gle/1X4R1A8AAdJQn67YA

Organised by Arte Urbana Collectif (Bulgaria), Anatelie & Cie (France), IG Feuerwache (Germany) and  Bezirksjugendring Oberbayern (Germany) with the support of Franco-German Youth Office.

 Posted by Shirin at 10:36 Volunteer activities, Volunteer news Comments Off on INTERNATIONAL YOUTH CREATIVE ENCOUNTER 12-16.04.2020 | Sofia
 

TC “Once upon the time, a Migrant’s journey: Empowerment and Resilience – 1” will take place in Greece from 07th of April till 15th of April 2020.

Background of the training:
The project was born after the meeting of three structures working in complementary fields. SCI Hellas and Concordia Sud- Est are part of the Alliance network. Javali Company is a professional theatrical company working on empowerment through the Theater of the Oppressed (forum theater, image theater, newspaper theater, life stories …). It is part of the French-speaking network of companies practicing the Theater of the Oppressed. These three organizations work on migration issues, whether by raising awareness to the general public, hosting migrants or refugees within the structure, through training projects. A recent training grouped 3 members from these organizations in order to discuss the radicalization of young people and the polarization of our societies. We flew over the tool of the human bookstore and the theater of the oppressed, which we wish to deepen in this training. We want to share our experiences and build the skills of youth workers on migration issues and the building of a global citizenship based on humanistic values by learning and putting into practice two tools: the human library and the theater of the oppressed, which are respectively specialties of SCI Hellas and Compagnie Javali. This real exchange of practice will lead to implementation with a real audience.
More details can be found here

Objectives:
Develop intercultural skills of youth leaders, professionals and migrants
– Experiment two concrete tools of emancipation and sensitization (the Human Library and the Theatre of Oppressed);
– Develop knowledge on the concepts of empowerment, resilience, intersectionality and migrations;
– Exchange good practices of each organization on the different topics of the project.

Methodology:
The training will be based on methods and tools of non-formal education, which will allow the participants to be in the position of actor and animator, to intervene and to bring their experience as much as the trainers in order to stimulate an atmosphere of knowledge sharing and mutual enrichment.

Participant profile:
We are looking for participants who are Youth workers (camp leaders, youth leaders, social workers, teachers …) and migrants or refugees who are leading youth projects or are active in their community.

Financial condition:
– Travel costs will be covered based on the unit costs of the program.
– 100% lodging and food (only vegan) are covered.

Location:
Greece, on the seaside, 3 h away from Athens

If you are interested in this training, please, fill in the application form
Deadline: 13.03.2020

Contact:
If you have any questions regarding the project and your application, don’t hesitate to contact us at  trainings@cvs-bg.org
We are looking forward receiving your application!

 Posted by Shirin at 11:07 Volunteer activities Comments Off on Training course “OMER 1” on the topic of migration is looking for participant!
 

Seminar “Develop or Self-Develop: Who is the Volunteer in Relation to Colonial History?”  will take place from 13-19 March 2020 in Vienna. It is the chance to reflect on the relation between volunteering and colonialism as well as to produce a fourth edition of the “Picturing the Global South” toolkit.

Background of the seminar
Colonialism created the political and economic context, in which we live today: Some countries have accumulated resources and wealth over centuries, while other countries have been colonized, their resources exploited, their cultures destroyed and their people murdered, marginalized and structurally discriminated. Countries of the Global South are still today disadvantaged in their participation in the global economy and in international organisations – and people of colour still face discrimination based on the concept of “race”, which was made up by the colonizers. In order to change the heritage of colonialism, we need to create global justice.
As an outcome, we will create a new 4th version of the toolkit “Picturing the Global South: The Power Behind Good Intentions”, which SCI Austria has been creating with a series of post-colonial seminars in the past few years.

Read more information in the call for participants.

All participants selected for this project must meet the following criteria:

  • be 18 years old or older
  • work with volunteer management or sending volunteering projects abroad
  • be able to work in English
  • be interested in the seminar topics (volunteering in a North-South context, colonialism, global justice) and have a strong motivation to act as a multiplier
  • commit to implement the learned knowledge and skills in practice back home
  • commit to actively participate from the beginning to the end of the seminar

We explicitly encourage participants of all genders, sexual orientations, abilities, races and ethnic backgrounds to apply. The venue is wheelchair-accessible.

How to apply?
Applications should be sent to our email
trainings@cvs-bg.org for the first selection process, after that representatives will be chosen and forward the applications to SCI Austria. All those accepted will later receive a detailed infosheet (incl. info on how to get to the venue, how to book your travels, more info about the agenda of the project).
The application form is here
Pay attention! Please, note your full name and name of training in the subject of the mail.

Deadline: 05.03.2020.

Contact
If you have any questions regarding the project and your application, don’t hesitate to contact us at trainings@cvs-bg.org . Looking forward to working together with you on this project and to hear your input for it!

 Posted by Shirin at 11:05 Volunteer activities Comments Off on Seminar “Develop or Self-Develop: Who is the Volunteer in Relation to Colonial History?” 13-19 March 2020, Vienna.
 

Background of the project 

The aim of the proposed activity is to strengthen the capacities of SCI and youth LGBTIQ+ organizations in order to contribute to more inclusive societies through the struggle for the rights of LGBTIQ+ people and the promotion of volunteering as a tool to erase hate speech towards LGBTIQ+ people.

The Training:

The training course will focus on the following goals:

  • Create a safe space for the participants to strengthen their capacities.
  • Get to know the realities of the different countries (institutional discriminations, violations of rights, LGBTIQ+ movement, resistance, alliances, asylum procedures). 
  • Exchange good practices.
  • Get to know local projects. 
  • Promote volunteerism and active citizenship as tools of social transformation. 
  • Explore topics such as the connection between LGBTIQ+ communities and different groups/movements (feminists, sex workers, refugees/migrants). 
  • Explore the topics from a decolonial, anti racist perspective bringing to light different levels of discrimination and privileges.

PLEASE read here all the detail information about the project.

Participants should have:

  • Basic knowledge of gender and sexuality topics
  • Experience in social participation, especially youth participation

Financial conditions

There will be no participation fee and activities costs, insurance, food, and accommodation will be covered from the project budget, as well as travel costs in lines with rules and conditions of the Eramus+ program. 

Application

If you think this opportunity is for you, please send your CV and short motivation to trainings@cvs-bg.org 

Deadline: 13.03.2020

Contact: If you have any questions regarding the project and your application, don’t hesitate to contact Anna at trainings@cvs-bg.org

We are looking forward to receiving your application. Please note that if you are selected for this training course you would have to complete the following tasks as a preparation to the event and in order for you to take full advantage of this experience:

  • Talk to CVS-Bulgaria team about the local activities done to fight against LGBTIQphobia.
  • Think about one or more methods you would like to focus for a potential activity. 
  • Please think of both good and bad things regarding LGBTIQ+ related events or important moments in your country. Make a list and bring it to Barcelona. 
 Posted by Shirin at 15:26 Trainings, Volunteer activities Comments Off on TRAINING PeaceWeek “Strengthening the youth response against LGBTIQphobia” 10th – 18th May, Barcelona
Dec 202019
 

On the occasion of the International Volunteers Day, CVS-Bulgaria organised DOBROFEST – an event dedicated to the promotion of volunteering. On the 11th of December 2019 more than two hundred people visited the event, which took place in events hall “In the park” in Sofia, a luminous and cosy venue.

In this event, the visitors were able to learn about the activities of 33 different organisations, all of them working with volunteers in the topics of Human Rights, Ecology, Education, Culture, LGBTIQ+, Urban, Social work and Refugees. Check out the full list of the 33 organisations in case you couldn’t visit the event and you want to learn more about them.

Each organisation had a stand and representatives to talk about their projects, receive donations and organise small activities for the visitors.  They were also provided with a vegetarian lunch and a bag with presents from CVS – Bulgaria. As for the visitors, they were handed at the entrance with a volunteering passport which was aiming to motivate them to visit and find out short facts about each stand and organisation. Those who completed all the answers received gifts as mugs and totebags, but the most important gift they received was the interaction with the representatives and learning about the activities of many topics connected with raising awareness on peace.

In a parallel to the stands for two hours both visitors and organisations had the chance to participate in the 100 Workshops corner, where four workshops took place: “100 ways to include volunteers in our projects”, “100 values of volunteering”, “100 peace actions” and “100 ideas to volunteer”. The workshops were constructed in a way to show the versatility of volunteer work and to give construct on the values and motivation on people. To make them feel the personal connection and then the last two on what methods can be used and how to start their own idea.  In this corner DobroFest had the lovely presence of two very vibrant ladies from “500 markers” who made a visual recording poster of the event and the workshops.

Close to the bar visitors could find the Speed dating Corner, where eight CVS-Bulgaria volunteers from different backgrounds and with experiences in different projects at home and abroad could share practicalities, fears, expectations, life stories about volunteering with anyone who sat with them.

During the whole event people could also give live feedback of the event using the  “Mentimeter” application. They could write write up to 3 words to describe the event in their opinion and all was projected on a wall at the entrance of the venue.

Right next to it, there was a Photo Corner set up. In this space people could take pictures with their phones with the photo frame of the event and upload them to Instagram and Facebook using the hashtag #DobrofestBG.

And if you think this was enough for a 6 hours festival, wait to hear more. After 8 pm in the program everyone could enjoy the screening of the documentary “Volunteering vs. Violence” – a video created during a project dedicated to the 100 anniversary of Service Civil International and after that to dance under the sounds of  an ethno latin jazz beats and the energetic performance of Echoo Balkan Samba Band.

This event was part of the 100 Actions for Peace, campaign dedicated to the 100 anniversary of Service Civil International (SCI) and is organised under Volunteering Circles project 2018-2-BG01-KA125-048262, with the support of Erasmus+ programme of EU and Human Resource Development Center (HRDC).

CVS-Bulgaria would like to express gratitude:

  • to the whole team behind the organisation of DobroFest
  • to all the 32 organisations who believed in it and joined with all the colours of their projects and materials
  • to our host Events hall “In the park”
  • to our infopoint hosts at New Bulgarian University (on 3.12.2019), VMWare (on 4.12.2019), A1 Bulgaria (on 5.12.2019) and Sofia University (on 5.12.2019) who let our team in their premisses to personally meet and invite their students and employees
  • to all the media who supported the event and interviewed the team to make it popular
  • to all friends, allies and volunteers at home and all over the world who shared the event with friends and family
  • to all visitors who were at the venue and with dedication and interest were asking for information, talking with everyone, enjoying the cosy atmosphere and making the event a successful one for everybody!

Enjoy more photos in the galery on facebook!

 Posted by Shirin at 14:21 Volunteer activities Comments Off on DOBROFEST
 

After the successful implementation of the Volunteers Managеment training earlier this year, it is time to invite interested participants for the Volunteering Projects Management seminar.  It will take place in Emen village, near Veliko Tarnovo, Bulgaria between 23rd and 29th April 2020 and will gather 32 representatives of organizations from 13 countries – Austria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Germany, Hungary, Italy, North Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Turkey and Bulgaria.

The specific objectives of the Volunteering Projects Management seminar are as follows:

  • raising awareness on the philosophy of volunteering and the opportunity to realize quality and successful volunteer projects
  • providing principal information on volunteer projects, basic documents defining rights, responsibilities and roles of the main stakeholders involved
  • deepening knowledge of the overall process of managing volunteering projects, and acquiring the skills to effectively structure activities throughout the project cycle – needs assessment, preparation, application, implementation, evaluation, follow-up activities, dissemination of results
  • encouraging the use of non-formal learning methods and creativity in the implementation of volunteering projectssharing practical and useful advice from experience in volunteering projectsdeveloping practical skills for managing and implementing quality volunteering projects in view of the risks and changing realities and the challenges we face
  • sharing good and not-so-good volunteering projects practices and stories aimed at improving the quality of future volunteering projects
  • creating a supportive and shared group of organizations for the purpose of future collaboration and assistance in the volunteering projects management 
  • increasing understanding of Erasmus +: Youth and European Solidarity Corps programs and the volunteering opportunities they offer.

Dates and venue of the seminar

The seminar will take place from 23rd (afternoon) till 29th April 2020 (5 full working days and two days – 1 arrival – 23rd April and 1 departure day – 29th April) in Bulgaria, in Imenieto hotel, Emen in the Veliko Tarnovo region. The participants need to arrive in the afternoon on 23rd April and depart on 29th April 2020.

The participants we are looking for are:

  • project managers, coordinators, supervisors and support staff of volunteering projects (short and longterm projects)
  • Age 18+
  • Willing to share knowledge, ideas, useful tips
  • Willing to practise and multiply learning after the seminar
  • Able to understand and express themselves in English
  • Are committed to attend for the full duration of the event
  • Are committed to do a follow-up/dissemination activity to be implemented in their country after the seminar

Travel costs will be reimbursed after the seminar acording to the reimbursement procedure explained in the detailed call for participants. Food and accommodation are covered by the project and additional insurance will be also provided.

All participants will receive Youthpass upon successful completion of the seminar.

Please refer to the detailed Call for participants, which includes the draft program, if you are interested and meet the set in the call criteria, please apply using the online Application form. The deadline for applications is 27.01.2020.

If you have any questions, you can reach us at trainings@cvs-bg.org. 

The final selection will be done by CVS-Bulgaria, giving priority to candidates proposed by the Partner Organisations as long as their application is submitted within the deadline and the candidates profile fits with the participants profile envisaged in this call. All applicants will be informed about the final decision. 

Looking forwatrd to recieve your applications!
CVS-Bulgaria team

The project “Volunteering from A to Z”, 2019-2-BG01-KA105-062812 is supported by Erasmus+ Programme, under KA1, Youth workers mobility.


 Posted by Kathy at 13:34 Volunteer activities Comments Off on Seminar on Volunteering Projects Management is looking for participants
 

32 youth workers from 13 European countries took part in a Training course for Volunteer Management. The training was organized by CVS-Bulgaria, the Bulgarian branch of the international peace movement and volunteer exchange network Service Civil International. The participants from Austria, Bulgaria, Czech republic, Germany, Hungary, Estonia, Italy, North Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, and Turkey arrived on November 11th and left a week later on November 17th with enriched knowledge and skills for working with local and international volunteers.

The international training course is the first activity part of the Volunteering from A to Z project (№2019-2-BG01-KA105-062812) which is supported by the Erasmus+ program and the Human Resources Development Centre in Bulgaria.

The training aimed at raising awareness of the philosophy and values of volunteering with the idea of implementation of more qualitative volunteer projects. The program focused on the volunteering opportunities offered by the European Solidarity Corps that functions since the end of 2016 and until now more than 30 000 young people have participated in ESC projects. The Erasmus+ program and its aims to encourage active citizenship, learning, and volunteering was another aspect in the program.

Workshops

In the six days of the training course the participants got to know the roles, rights, and responsibilities of each stakeholder involved in the volunteering process. Through presentations, theatre performances, discussions in small groups, individual work, and brainstorming in plenary the participants examined step-by-step the 8-stages of volunteer management cycle. The practical work improved their skills in communication, conflict transformation, intercultural learning, motivation, and implementation of online tools for volunteer management work.

The opportunity to exchange ideas and share experiences was an important aspect in the training program. The participants used the specially designed sessions but also the non-formal delicious breaks. For the latter, every one contributed with their favorite snacks and sweets from home. There is no universe in which we can’t say that the Delicious breaks were more colorful and exciting than any usual coffee break.

Delicious Breaks

Since Plovdiv was the town hosting the training, we can’t skip the topic of the European Capital of Culture. Stanislava Tasheva and Kami Clifton from Foudnation Plovdiv 2019, the organization coordinating the European Capital of Culture, were also our guests. They presented their work with focus on the work of Kami with the hundreds of Plovdiv 2019 volunteers. The slogan #Together turned one of the main conversation topics.

Another guest lecturer in the training was Svetla Todorova from Mosaic Training, who introduced us to the secrets of visual facilitation. The awakening of the creativity is as important as our good skills in coordination and mentorship of volunteers. Most of the participants shared that the small and thought-through details are the ones that make an experience more valuable and memorable.

All of the participants are active citizens who work for diverse civil causes in their countries. On November 16th, the International Tolerance Day, the youth workers chose to join a peaceful demonstration for equality “Together is great”. The participants walked through the centre of Plovdiv with messages, music and dances. The organizer was the League for equality – a coalition of organizations, activists and experts who work for equal participation of all in the civil life with a focus on some of the mostly excluded groups (Roma, LGBTI, people with disabilities). The participants stated clearly their support for #tolerance, #respect, #equality with no regard to ethnicity, colour of skin, gender, religion, disability or other identity aspects.

The training finished with summary of tips and tricks for better work with volunteers, as well as inspiring phrases. CVS-Bulgaria will present the collection to the participants of the upcoming seminar for project management of volunteer projects. The seminar will be held in April 2020 in Bulgaria and it aims at upgrading the achievements of the training course as part of the Volunteering from A to Z. We will include all the gathered tips and tricks in an agenda designed to support the work of a volunteer project coordinator.

As the European Capital of Culture for 2019, Plovdiv welcomed us with its autumn colours, changeable weather with lots of sun but also foggy mornings and quiet drizzle. In the free afternoon we had the chance to learn more about the history of Plovdiv with the help of an experienced tour guide. Everybody was impressed by the architecture in the Old town and the lively Kapana neighbourhood despite the rainy weather this day.

Last but not least, we would like to express our gratitude to our hosts from the Youth Centre Plovdiv and the Municipality of Plovdiv who provided us with excellent working conditions!

 Posted by Mira at 19:09 Trainings, Volunteer activities Comments Off on Quality volunteer management work leads to a more tolerant and better world