European Solidarity Corps
The European Solidarity Corps is a recent programme that replaced the European Voluntary Service and, in addition to including volunteer opportunities, it also offers paid internship and jobs opportunities at national and international levels.
The quality of the projects is very high since the sending and hosting organisation have quality label issued by the National Agency of the country where they operate. The hosting organisations are based in different places, from cities to rural areas, which makes it possible to do a volunteer project in different contexts, such as in farms, schools, homes, refugee centers, associations, among others. These opportunities also allow to improve or learn a new language and develop soft and hard skills.
The European Solidarity Corps volunteering projects are aimed at young people between 18 and 30 years old and are divided into two options – Team Volunteering and Individual Volunteering – both of which can be done only once.
Team Volunteering brings together between 10 to 40 young people from different nationalities in a country where they carry out various volunteer activities. These volunteer projects last between 2 weeks and 2 months and, to a certain extent, are similar to the short-term projects, since volunteers live in an international and very active environment.
Individual Volunteering lasts between 2 and 12 months, that is, it is a long-term project. Although usually there are other volunteers in the hosting organisation, the work developed includes more responsibilities and the possibility of focusing more on acquiring new skills and knowledge.
All costs of the volunteering projects are covered by Erasmus+ funds, such as travels, accommodation, food and pocket money for extra expenses, such as clothing and trips. In addition to having these costs covered for, volunteers also have health insurance that will cover costs related to medical expenses, such as medicines, doctor visits, among others.
ESC Traineeships and Jobs
The European Solidarity Corps traineeships are relatively recent and there are not a lot of opportunities available, yet. The ESC traineeships are aimed at young people between 18 and 30 years and have a duration between 2 to 6 months, however the period can be extended up to 1 year. The European Solidarity Corps jobs last between 3 to 12 months.
Both traineeships and jobs are fairly paid by the host organisation and the payment of social security will be required according to the regulations of the hosting country.
The traineeships and jobs of the European Solidarity Corps can only take place in Member States of the European Union, however to the European Solidarity Corps volunteering programmes are added countries like North Macedonia, Turkey, Liechtenstein, Iceland, Norway, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro, Serbia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine, Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Israel, Lebanon, Morocco, Palestine, Syria, Tunisia and Russia.
To have access to all the information on the European Solidarity Corps platform, it is necessary to create an account and start searching for opportunities. In their platform you can find all the available placements. The hosting organisations also have access to the profile of the registered volunteers and they can contact, if the volunteer’s profile meets the requirements they are seeking for.
On the ESC platform it is also possible to find contests to which all young people can apply even if they are not doing a project, that means everyone can be active in the European Solidarity Corps community. Some of the contest include the following: t-shirt design, photography, poem, among many others!
In case you find an organisation in which you would like to do a ESC volunteer project, but they don’t have placements available, we advise you to contact them, since they can do an application to receive you as a volunteer.