Frequently Asked Questions

Here you’ll find some materials that might be helpful, as well as answers to doubts you may have and Frequently Asked Questions.

Volunteering

Why does FCV promote volunteering? Because there are thousands of reasons for promoting voluntary work. Keep reading…

Is it worth working as a volunteer? Being a volunteer is an opportunity to socialize and make friends, to develop new interests and concerns and to gain useful experience for a future career. Keep reading…

Why is FCV’s priority promoting youth volunteering? Because we reckon that the voluntary work performed by young people has always an added value: for the institutions, for young people and for the whole society. Keep reading…

What are the success elements of educational volunteering? FCV carries out its volunteering programs and services in a dimension of learning, using non-formal education methodologies. Keep reading…

You want to take part in a Voluntary Service but you don’t know where to start? Because everyone can have the opportunity to be a volunteer and realize actions that positively affect their surroundings. Keep reading…

Non-formal education

What are the differences between formal and non-formal education? A definition of the concept of non-formal learning – NFL: “Every king of organized and systematic learning activity, realized outside the official context, aimed at facilitating some particular learning classes to particular subgroups of the population. Keep reading…

Youth Exchanges and Training Courses

What are youth exchanges? A youth exchange is a period of mobility that can last between 5 and 21 days and which focalize on a cultural subject through non-formal learning activities (workshops, games, simulations, etc…). The exchanges can take place in any country that is part of the Erasmus+ program and they are attended by people from various country.

Who can participate? Youth exchanges are directed to young people between 18 and 25 years of age (except the group leader, for whom the age limit is 35 years) who are interested in the subject of the exchange. A basic level of English is required. Further information here.

What are training courses? A training course is a period of mobility that can last between 2 days and 2 months. The training courses focalize on a subject of professional training through non-formal learning activities (workshops, games, simulations, etc…). The courses can take place in any country that is part of the Erasmus+ program and they are attended by people from various country. An advanced level of English is required.

Who can participate? Training courses are directed to young people between 18 and 25 years of age who presently are or in the past have been active members of non-profit organizations of the third sector, volunteers or employees interested in challenging their work and lifestyle. Further information here.

Why should I participate in a mobility program? • It’s an experience of non-formal, intercultural learning through which you can grow as a person • It contributes to your personal development both on a personal and a professional level • It promotes the establishment of new partners and the exchange of experiences.

What are the conditions for participating? For participating you need to look among the projects that are open and chose one in which you are really interested. At this point, you can send to our contact person for the mobility an email where you explain why you want to participate. All the expenses for your participation are covered by the European Commission and they include: the transports, the materials used during the activities, the accommodation, the meals and the international travel.
*The international travel (outbound and return tickets) will be covered depending on the kilometers of distance and according to the distance calculator of the Program. The participant will have to cover the expenses only partially, and only if they exceed the established budget.

What is the difference between exchanges and training courses? The main difference between the two programs is that the exchanges are about cultural exchange subjects, whereas the training courses focalize mostly on professional development subjects. The exchanges can be attended only by young people between 13 and 30 years of age, while in the training courses there are no age limits. Furthermore, the youth exchanges are open to a wide variety of young people, whereas the training courses are mainly directed to people who work in organizations of the third sector.

European Voluntary Service

What is the European Voluntary Service (EVS)? The European Voluntary Service (EVS) is a program of the European Commission in the framework of the Erasmus+ program. The EVS offers the opportunity of getting to know other lifestyles, cultures, languages as well as the chance of training in a European country organization, through non-formal learning. It is a long term mobility, though which you are supposed to a period of voluntary work that lasts between 2 weeks (minimum) and 12 months (maximum).

Who can participate? The European Voluntary Service (EVS) is directed to all young people between 17 and 30 years of age.

Can I do more than one EVS? You can do one long-term EVS (between 2 and 12 months) in your life. Nevertheless, you can do a short-term EVS (2 months) first, and then another long-term one, on the condition that the two don’t exceed a 12-month length, in total.

What is offered to the volunteer? • Personal support: in order to prevent and overcome any difficulty that may arise in the volunteer’s personal life • EVS training (before departure, on arrival, mid-term and final evaluation) • Linguistic training (in the official language of the destination country). The new Erasmus+ program will also include: • Accommodation • Provision • Travel to the destination country (outbound and return tickets) • Local transport • Pocket money • Visa (if necessary) • Certificate (Youthpass)
*The international travel (outbound and return tickets) will be covered depending on the kilometres of distance and according to the distance calculator of the Program. The volunteer will have to cover the expenses only partially, and just in case they exceed the established budget.

What do I have to consider before applying? Before applying for any kind of mobility you need to consider how much you’re interested in the project, your availability and your desire of participating. One you have been selected and you have confirmed your participation, you need to respect your engagement.

What is the first step? The first step towards your EVS is finding a project that you like. When you are sure you want to take part in this project you can start the application process. Important! Don’t look for just one project that you like, but various. There are many people interested in doing an EVS and sometimes is difficult to find available projects. Make a list for having under control all the projects with which you’ve gotten in touch.

Where can I find an EVS project?
*Official database of the Program – Authorized organizations

In which fields can I do a project? • Environment • Art and Culture • Children’s, youth’s or elderly people’s entertainment • Sport • Free time activities • Civil Protection • Others

I found various projects that I like, now what? Now you need to get in touch with the hosting organizations of the projects you are interested in and just ask them information such as: if they are looking for volunteers (or when will the selection process begin), when will the project start, for how long, etc. You also need to attach your CV and motivational letter.

What do I need to prepare for the application? YOU NEED TO PREPARE YOU CV AND MOTIVATIONAL LETTER, in which you will explain why it is important for you doing this experience, what expectations, interests and competences related to the project you have etc. Since it is a European opportunity, we advise you to prepare your CV in the Europass format and a creative motivational letter. They both need to be in English (or in the language spoken in the country where the project will take place).

How do I prepare a good CV? For a good CV, we advise you to: remember to underline all the voluntary work you have done previously. Don’t worry about the language level, generally the projects do not require a certain previous language level. *europass.cedefop *cv-resume.org Keep in mind! For both the CV and the motivational letter, Fundació Catalunya Voluntària organizes Europass training sessions. Keep updated in the news webpage and sign up!

How do I prepare a good motivational letter? For a good motivational letter we advise you to: think about the people who are choosing the volunteers. What makes you different from the others? Why are you the one who deserves to be selected? We recommend you to write a different motivational letter for each project. You can have a model, but make sure that readers can notice that you have at least read what the project is about. Keep in mind! Be more creative! Write a motivational letter in an informal format: use colours, add photos, divide the text into sections putting some questions (i.e. Who am I?, What are my motivations?, My experience as a volunteer!, etc.).

How long is the selection process? It depends. Sometimes it lasts longer, sometimes it is shorter. In some cases, all the formality are processed in a month and you are ready to go (generally, if the project for which you have been selected has already been approved). Other times, the process lasts for more than 6 months (if the organization selected you before knowing whether the project had been approved). It depends on the candidate’s commitment, the one of the sending and hosting organizations and the dates of the project.

How many calls are there in a year? Generally there are 3 calls. The calls are (they close): on the 17th of March (for projects that start between the 17th of June and the 31st of December) • 30th of April (for projects that start between the 1st of August and the 28th of February) • 1st of October (for projects that start between the 1st of January and the 30th of September). This means that at least two weeks before the call (sometimes is one week, sometimes is just a few days) some organization must have chosen you as the volunteer for their project (you should have found your hosting organization).

The hosting organization is not giving me an answer, what does it mean? If the hosting organizations are not responding to your application, it is time to call them and ask for the EVS responsible person, so as to know if the project is available. If neither the email nor the phone-call work, forget about the project, it doesn’t exist.

What is the next step, after having being accepted for a project? When you get accepted for a project, get in touch with us so that we can prepare all the paperwork. From this moment, the hosting organization will be able to present the project to its National Agency/European Commission (which will decide whether or not to give the grant) with your name and our information as sending organization.

What is the info of Fundació Catalunya Voluntària as sending organization? The info of Fundació Catalunya Voluntaria as sending organization is:
*Contact Person: Lorena Gaona 
*Email: comunicacio@catalunyavoluntaria.cat
*IE Ref: 2013-ES-41
*PIC: 948208272

More information

How can I get more information? You can get more information about these programs attending to the Wednesdays’ training sessions (generally from 5pm to 6 pm), that are organized in Fundació Catalunya Voluntària offices, in “Casa del Mar”, Albareda street 1-13, 2nd floor, Barcelona. You need to confirm you participation. You can also send an email to: comunicacio@catalunyavoluntaria.cat and we will try to get back to you as soon as possible.