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.

– 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.

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

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 !
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:

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

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.

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.

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

If you have any questions regarding the project and your application, don’t hesitate to contact us at
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 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.

If you have any questions regarding the project and your application, don’t hesitate to contact us at . 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. 


If you think this opportunity is for you, please send your CV and short motivation to 

Deadline: 13.03.2020

Contact: If you have any questions regarding the project and your application, don’t hesitate to contact Anna at

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

The past Friday 27th of September CVS-Bulgaria collaborated with the National Agency for Refugees bringing children from the refugee center Ovcha Kupel to Sofia University St. Kliment Ohridski to participate in the program Children’s Day One included in the European Scientist Night 2019. The activities aimed to approach science to kids through different activities devised to promote their participation and have fun. 

The representative of the National Agency for Refugees and our ESC volunteer Hugo went to the center to pick up the kids in the afternoon and take them to the university by minibus. Other ESC volunteers were waiting for them to carry them to the class where the activities were going to be done. The first workshop, related to Mathematics, kept the attention of the kids, who were participative answering the questions of the teacher throughout the lesson. 

Afterwards, they played with small robots experimenting remote control of electronic devices. They could also enjoy a snack with the volunteers while start bonding with them through their usual games. 

The evening continued with a lesson, shared with kids from other families and backgrounds, about astronomy. It was a good opportunity to interact with other kids, especially when the teacher started using virtual reality glasses and all children got excited. They could use them to find different stars, planets and constellations. In a different workshop they could also create their own 3D glasses as well as use the microscope. Some of them gave their first glance to the molecular world.

They received their diplomas for participating in the event as well as two booklets and a bracelet. At 6 pm we took them to the center again, sharing a good time and laughs together on the way back home. This was the first activity with refugee kids carried out by our new wave of ESC volunteers and it was an enriching experience for both the kids and our new team. We will soon collaborate again with the National Agency in our pathway towards the promotion of tolerance, inclusion and peace among people.

 Posted by Shirin at 13:36 Volunteer activities Comments Off on Evening of Science 2019

August 2019

by Carmen Moreno 

Girls and the wild: only four words but combined in such a way that my curiosity didn’t take long to wake up when reading about this project. Being someone who quickly jumps on the wagon of trying new things, the idea of living in nature for one week while sharing ideas about gender equality with people from different backgrounds sounded like an exciting adventure to me.

I have to confess however that during my flight to Sofia, right after the cabin crew gave the security explanation, I couldn’t help but wondering how come I took the decision of spending half of my holidays in a village with a population of eight people surrounded by people I didn’t know in a country I’ve never been to. It was not easy but I tried to remind myself that the  best experiences in life occur when we step out of our comfort zone.Too close to a clich?, not sure if such thought was helpful at all.

What made my fears go instantly away was meeting the rest of volunteers, coordinators and participants once we arrived at the workcamp. From the very first day, one could feel the good vibes, the willingness and passion we shared to build something together. A light sparkled among us and didn’t stop twinkling during the whole week we spent together in Vlahi.

Not everything was a bed of roses though as we all faced some barriers along the way. We learnt about the importance of respecting each other’s own pace when it comes to trying new things as well as to listen to our needs and be able to communicate them assertively. This experience taught me as well the importance of being flexible to respect different points of view. It was also truly enriching to gain insights around topics such as gender roles, self-love or gender stereotyping from different perspectives during the workshops, especially when we shared personal stories among us.

In my flight back home, when the pilot announced we were ready for takeoff, I had very different thoughts. My head was full of fresh energy and new ideas but there was one feeling standing  above all: I felt very grateful (and proud) for having had the chance to contribute to this wonderful project. Clicheing apart, every accomplishment starts with the courage to try.

August 2019

 Posted by Shirin at 14:32 Volunteer activities Comments Off on At least I tried: a volunteer perspective – workcamp in Bulgaria

August 2019

by Ulrike Gansen

Ulli and Lore enjoying the view of Vlahi village

I am in Sofia. I meet two young women from Belgium and Spain for a breakfast together. We are in a really nice caf? with a beautiful, shady backyard, carpets at the wall and the aromatic smell of freshly brewed coffee in the air. How did this happen? What am I doing here? I didn’t know both of them before. And now we are chatting, laughing – and sharing our expectations about our first workcamp. For all of us, it would be our first one. Honestly, we didn’t know what to expect. But we came all to Bulgaria to volunteer in a workcamp on gender equality with people we don’t know in a place we don’t know.

However – we made it to Vlahi, a small, remote village in the Pirin mountains with only 8 human habitants (and some dogs, cats and a lot of goats). For one week, we lived in the Vlahi Nature School – a lovely building made from only natural materials. We shared one big bedroom, used compost toilets and enjoyed refreshing cold showers.

But who is “we”? We were three international volunteers, three coordinators from Bulgaria and Poland and four young women from rural Bulgaria. And although I didn’t know anybody before, I felt quickly almost like home.

During one week, we did workshops on gender roles, gender stereotypes, beauty images and self-love. Although we all were from different countries and cultural backgrounds, we experienced the same expectations and obligations that are connected to being a woman. We hiked, we camped in the wild, we set a fire, laughed and discussed.

Even though the time period we spent together was short, we had language barriers and not everything ended up as planned, the workcamp gave me a lot of valuable insights in the intercultural perspectives of feminism and gender equality. I met wonderful human beings (and animals), challenged myself by adapting a really basic lifestyle, enjoyed the Bulgarian wilderness and night sky and reawakened my love for camping! Thank you really much!

 Posted by Shirin at 14:27 Volunteer activities Comments Off on “Girls and the wild”-Workcamp in Bulgaria

It all started with the Gendered realities project and the call for local activities on gender equality topic by SCI.

The team of three girls Bea from Poland, Vili and Shirin from Bulgaria, who already had organized two workcamps on women empowerment in a small village in Lukovit region in Bulgaria (in 2017 and 2018) embraced the idea to continue their doing in the summer of 2019. They went bold, driven by the need to focus on the potential of the local young girls who they met in the previous years. Their idea was to go out in the nature, meet international volunteers with these girls and challenge the gender roles that are still very present in their own communities. The idea was approved and on 17th of August the team, together with three volunteers from Spain, Belgium and Germany met with 4 young girls from the region of Lukovit. They took the bus from Sofia to Kresna from where the most popular local driver with a minivan suitable for the broken road took them to the distant Vlahi village (population of 8 people).

The accommodation was in Vlahi Nature School a building restored only by natural materials and it provided big kitchen area, nice beds, compost toilets, outside showers with water heated by solar panels, amazing mountain views and a sky full of stars. First touch with the nature was already there! The program was intense from the first meeting, because there were only 7 days to spend together. The coordinators team was very lucky to have volunteers who came prepared with workshops on body image, beauty standards, self love, gender re-presentation in school, media, different job opportunities. The non-formal methods of barometer, taking a step forward, drawing, magazines and photos from internet lead to deeper discussions and sharing of personal stories. This has been the most challenging part for everyone because translation from English to Bulgarian and vice versa were needed for everyone to take part and understand each other’s backgrounds.

After two days of intensive workshops it was time to prepare for the wild camping. It started with watching the movie Wild and preparing the list of things needed for the campsite. Then there was time for the quest to find the best spot to set up the camping. During the hike the amazing sights of Pirin mountain appeared even closer and everyone felt excited of what else is coming. When the perfect spot with flat ground and river nearby appeared, the decision has been made, the group went back to the school for a short rest and packing for the camping part of the week. Workshops on how to open a tent were made, together with building a small table from wood and stones. In the morning some of the girls shared they did not feel very comfortable spending the night in tents, so the group had a session for midterm evaluation and everyone shared if their expectations were met so far. The best outcome of this discussion has been the decision to never give up after the first time, to check what and how it can be improved and at least try one more time (camping or in life situations). The rest of the camping experience has been dedicated to outside games for bonding, first aid in case of emergency, starting a fire, cooking, taking care for each others needs and create a comfort in the wilderness.

The last two days were used for an evening of the talents and cultures, some free time hiking to the nearest waterfall and personal and group reflections, together with evaluation of the overall experience. During this time the moto of the workcamp has been decided and it corresponds to the full experience of every person who took part in it, considering the low and the high moments of it.

With pride we share it with you – At least I tried!

This story might not sound to you as a regular workcamp as we know it in SCI, but it was an effort that the three girls took very boldly and executed successfully, mixing different activities and programs that they know. Lessons are learned, eyes have been opened and fingers are crossed for more action on Gender equality and women empowerment in the future!

All this has been accomplished with the financial support of

And with the support of local organisations

 Posted by Shirin at 15:49 Volunteer activities Comments Off on At least I tried! – our workcamp in the wild