Spanish cuisine is worldwide recognized and Spain is the perfect destination for gastronomy lovers. It is included within the Mediterranean cuisine and the so-called Mediterranean diet, said to be healthy and varied. 

The fact is that our cuisine converges techniques and ingredients from many different parts of the world, since it has been heavily influenced by the historical processes given in the Peninsula, as well as by the geography and the climate. It is the result of a complex history of conquests that has modified traditions and incorporated new ones. All Celts, Iberians, Tartessos, Romans, Visigoths, Berbers and Arabs brought new ingredients to current Spain, and the discovery of America also allowed us to import products that are a strong basis in our gastronomy nowadays. Actually, we owe to America three of the four recipes proposed below, since they include tomatoes and potatoes.

You have probably heard that Spanish meal schedules are a bit crazy, and I have to confirm it. Breakfast hours vary depending on the wake-up hour, but lunch, consisting of one or two courses plus dessert, is usually from 2 to 4 pm, and dinner from 9 to 11 pm. It is common to have some snacks in between, and we love food so much that we can even have appetizers right before lunch or dinner in the form of tapas (tiny rations). In our culture it is also common to have meals, especially lunch, followed by sobremesa, tabletalk that can last hours.

Even though there are a lot of variety among regions, most Spanish recipes include some sort of animal or animal-derived product, no matter if meat, fish, eggs. We also use a lot of vegetables to combine with them or just to eat as a main dish or side dish. In this case, since the writer is vegetarian, the proposals are meat-free.

Our trio of cold soups (perfect for spring and summer!)

Salmorejo: a delicious thick cream

Ingredients for six: 1kg of tomatoes; 200 gr loaf of bread (the proportion of bread can vary depending on the water that tomatoes have and how consistent the crumb is); 150 ml extra virgin olive oil; 1 garlic clove; salt to taste.

Instructions: Wash the tomatoes, crush them, and pass them through a fine strainer. In a bowl, place the bread and cover it with the tomato puree, leaving it to soak for about ten minutes. Incorporate the garlic and crash with a mixer or Thermomix. Add the extra virgin olive oil to achieve the perfect emulsion and a thick and creamy result. Whip again until the salmorejo is uniform, with a nice orange color and compact enough to bear on its surface the traditional tripping pieces: Serrano ham and hard-boiled egg.

Gazpacho: in every family there is an infallible recipe

Ingredients for six: 1 kg pear tomato; 1 Italian green pepper; 1 cucumber; 2 cloves of garlic; 50 ml extra virgin olive oil; 50 gr loaf of hard bread; 250 ml water; 5 g salt; 30 ml sherry vinegar. Some people also use onion or red pepper.

Instructions: Chop all the solid ingredients and add the liquids, crushing everything in the glass blender. It is not necessary to peel because everything is passed through the fine strainer. Put in the fridge a couple of hours before consuming (never add ice!)

Ajoblanco: no two ajoblanco alike

Ingredients for 1L: 100 gr. unroasted almond; 2 cloves of garlic; 1L fresh water; 150 gr. of breadcrumb; 100 ml. extra virgin olive oil; 30 ml. white wine vinegar; a pinch of salt.

Instructions: Soak the bread if it is hard so that the crumb softens. Remove from the scab and reserve it. Meanwhile, boil a pot with water. When it boils, put the almonds in a strainer and give a couple of blanches with a ladle: pour two or three tablespoons of boiling water over it. Chill for a few minutes and peel them. The traditional way of making ajoblanco is to crush the garlic and almonds in a mortar, but it can be done with a mixer. Add the crumb, oil and vinegar and beat. Add water and chill in the fridge.

Perfect ending: the incomparable Spanish omelette

Ingredients for four: 700 gr potatoes; 300 gr onion; 6 eggs; salt; olive oil

Instructions: Peel the onion and cut into julienne strips. Put in a frying pan over very low heat, cook very slowly, stirring occasionally so that it is poached. Meanwhile, peel and cut the potatoes into thin slices, uniform in size. Leave in water for 15 minutes and warm up a pan with abundant olive oil. Add the potatoes and fry (you can choose to confit them, cooking slowly over low heat, or brown them over high heat). Remove the potatoes and drain in a large bowl. Drain the onion when it is done, and put on the potatoes. Beat the eggs and add to the bowl, stirring with a fork so that the three ingredients are mixed well. Curdle omelette in a pan with a tablespoon of oil for about three or four minutes and turn (with the help of a flat plate).

That’s all! I hope you enjoy these delights that are so cheap and easy to make!

Author: Beatriz Cintaz Cantarero, volunteer in the project “Volunteering circles”

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).

 Posted by Monika at 16:16 Volunteer activities Comments Off on Travel to Spain with your stomach

Under the occasion of the International Book Day the members of CVS-Bulgaria have gathered the books that they are reading at the moment or planning to read next to offer to the reader delightful alternatives in these times of staying at home. Do you know why the World Book Day is celebrated on this day? Well, at first this celebration was dated on the 7th October, the birth date of Miguel de Cervantes. Nonetheless, it was shifted to the 23rd of April since it is the death date not only of Cervantes, but also the anniversary of the death of the worldwide known William Shakespeare and Inca Garcilaso de la Vega. We also want to take the chance to introduce you to a centurial tradition happening this day in the region of two of our long-term volunteers, the famous Catalonia, named Sant Jordi’s Day. Whereas Saint George is the patron saint of many countries, including Bulgaria itself, in Catalonia it became really especial from the XV century and until nowadays through the exchange of books and roses among couples and loved ones. Currently, it has claiming nature of Catalan culture and many balconies display the Catalan flag on this day. Enjoy the day and do not hesitate on sharing with us which book you are reading at the moment!

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).

 Posted by Daria Chernyshova at 17:02 Volunteer activities Comments Off on International Book Day

She is natural, forthright, warm and colorful, coming from the historical lands of Santa Maria da Feira, Portugal with a background of Anthropology and on-going master course in African studies. Bianca decides to take a gap year from her studies to chill a bit the pace of her life and to do something meaningful. She is just 22, but you can hardly guess so, as she already has firm political views and is an active member of a party, standing behind the defense of human rights.

In today’s interview we are introducing you Bianca, her inspirations and volunteering experience so far in Sofia.

Hello Bianca, will you tell us first was it difficult to choose this project, did you have any other options in mind?

Yes. Of course, when I was looking I saw other projects, but when I saw refugees I was like – “there is something calling me and I need to answer this”. I remember that I applied after time because the deadline had already passed and I was – “okay, maybe I will still try, I don’t have nothing to lose”.  It was funny because Kat said: “Okay, but do it today, we don’t have time” and here I am. (laugh)

Nice! So, you were interested in working with refugees?

Yes, yes, maybe because I knew that in Bulgaria the refugees that we have are from other countries not so much from Africa but still I was doing my Master and I was really reading a lot about it, about the refugees’ situation. And I wanted to do something about this, I wanted to make a change for them. Of course, a small change because I am not capable of doing much now, but yes, when I saw the project with refugees I was – “okay, I am going to try”.

Was it easy for you to accommodate to the work and the life in Sofia, was this your first time coming here?

Yes, it was my first time coming to the Balkans. (laugh) Yes, of course I had some kind of shocks, cultural shocks, not big ones, but still small things that you are always “Oh my God….” In the beginning I didn’t know how to approach so much people in the streets, if it is the same. I mean, Portuguese are kind of people that are more, I don’t know, like super nice, we talk a lot with others we don’t know so much and here in Bulgaria I saw some differences, maybe in Sofia, because outside in other villages in Bulgaria I saw people more receptive, let’s say. So yes, in the beginning it was a bit complicated but I had our, my friends, my peers and I think it was pretty much okay. We were helping each other – “Don’t do this, do this”. (laugh)

Did you have chance to make friends apart from the CVS team?

Yes, I made a lot of friends, but not so many out of the volunteer atmosphere.

What is the most inspiring thing for you in the work you are doing?

To be honest – going to the camps. I really appreciate going even with the language barriers. I am really grateful to have the opportunity to talk with them to make their days at least a little bit better, I am hoping so. And I don’t know – just communicating, trying to give them a bit of myself and receive as well. So, more in that sense, but of course the other type of work –  I know it is also needed and I really have good time preparing our events and being  there. It is nice when the event we are talking about for so many days becomes real. It’s super nice.

You are also passionate to launch a youth magazine during your project here giving voice to the young people to share themselves and their position. And you are just 22, you had decided to come to a completely different country with a new language to help other people that you don’t know. You certainly have a great motivation behind all of this, would you share a bit more about it with us?

Okay, so I will try to do my best. (laugh) Yes, I don’t know, maybe more or less from the time I entered university I started to become more politically conscious about the world, in general human rights. So I got involved in some collectives for discussions and I did even small volunteering. Of course small, I can not say so big like CVS or EVS. But small events about Palestine and the situation there, to talk to people from there, because one thing is to read from magazines, another is to understand it from the people that live in that context. I was really passionate to do something for the others. I don’t know, that’s everything I can say (smiling)

Thank you. Do you already have any plans what you want to do after your project?

Yes, after this project I was planning to (it is not a big plan) but I was thinking to finish my master because it’s something that I really want to do. I am writing my dissertation and right now I am more inspired. I have my time just to be a good person, to chill a bit. I want to do volunteering as well but I will need to divide my time with the writing of the dissertation and maybe working and volunteering. I also want to apply for other projects, maybe less formal volunteering – just going and helping with whatever I can. I really like, for example to work with communities in the way I gather fund raising and organizing events bringing people to discussion. I think that is more my field, let’s say.

That’s wonderful! And would you tell someone who has never been a volunteer before.? What are the benefits of being a volunteer according to you?

I think the benefits are a lot and sometimes we don’t have the time to think about the benefits when we are there, because there are so much things going on and it’s stressful sometimes to be in these kind of areas and to try to make a change in the world, because it’s not easy, but I think in the end it’s amazing. We met a lot of people from different realities, backgrounds, cultures. It’s amazing the sharing of ideas and other things like plans, dreams, ambitions, it’s really amazing. If a person is thinking should I become a volunteer, I think yes, they should for sure and they should overcome the fear of going out of their comfort zone because it’s amazing – yeah and in the end we will be missing it so much.

Was there anything really challenging for you during these 8 months since your coming here?

Maybe the colds. That was something extra for me (laugh) I never saw so snow before so. It was super funny the first day of the snow we were like kids “Oh my God that’s snow”. But after some days we were more I don’t have clothes prepared for these colds. (laugh) Of course, sometimes we need to become more  flexible, I talk for myself of course.  I think sometimes  we have different kind of expectations  and ways of communicating that cannot be the proper ways to talk in a group  and when we don’t see the things that we expect we can become a bit sad, maybe a bit more stressed, not so happy  but I think the communication is always the answer. If we communicate, if we try to be understanding – I think that’s the answer for everything.

This is a nice message. Are there any other tips you would like to share to the future volunteers?

,I’d tell them not to be sad if they see sometimes that the things they imagine don’t happen but on the other hand for them to try to make some things happen, things that can see – this I can do, this I can talk with my mates in the organization and I can make it happen even if it takes me two, three or four months to happening. Communication is always the answer to tell your superior others how do you feel, how do you like to do these things . And to take initiative is always a good idea because if we sit and wait for someone to bring us the things that we want that might never happen.

Thank you Bianca for your time and sharings. It’s been a pleasure. We wish you many more inspirations and fulfillment.

Enjoying Rila’s lakes
At the party of Open Space Foundation, gathering all the volunteers in Sofia
Under the Sun of Istanbul, a spontaneous hitch-hike trip with my mate Bea
Discovering Bulgaria 🙂

Проект “Доброволчески кръгове” (2018-2-BG01-KA125-048262) е финансиран по програма Еразъм + на ЕС и Център за развитие на човешките ресурси

 Posted by Monika at 16:26 Volunteer activities Comments Off on Bianca de Almeida – to act from your heart

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:
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, 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

  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).

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

 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.

– 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