ARGONAUTA PARTICIPATION IN THE ANNUAL VOLUNTEER MEETING AND ORGANIZATION OF EVS IN CROATIA..
Argonauta participated from 03.-04. February 2018 in the Annual Meeting of Volunteers and Organizations of the European Volunteer Service in Croatia. The annual meeting was organized by the Red Cross and the Agency for Mobility and EU Programs. The convention gathered the EVS organisations from Croatia, that have the accreditation for implementation of EVS projects through which youngsters can participate in EVS projects, as well as ex EVS volunteers
The meeting was organized with the aim of exchanging experience of EVS organizations, mutual acquaintance with representatives of organizations, networking of civil society organizations and information on news in the program. In addition, EVS organizations had the opportunity to hear experience, advices and suggestions for better implementation of EVS by volunteers who completed their volunteer service in 2017. The two-day meeting included various topics in the area of preparation and implementation of EVS, such as the role of mentor in the implementation of EVS, volunteer training before and during the service, the role of EVS volunteers in the local community, EVS’s financial impact for civil society organizations. The representatives of the Agency for Mobility and EU Programs have presented new changes to the Volunteering Program e.g. the European Solidarity Force Program (ESS), and announced the deadlines for the new program. This program emphasizes the recognized need for young people’s awareness of mutual solidarity in the field of volunteering.
The Argonauta Association has been accredited for the implementation of the EVS since 2011 and since then has sent 5 volunteers from Croatia to the European Volunteer Service and has hosted 71 EVS volunteers for short (up to 2 months) or long (from 2 months to 12 months ) term from some of the European Union countries. EVS has proved to be a great opportunity for young people who want to develop their personal competences, train for work and life, learn a foreign language, meet culture different from theirs, etc. EVS is a unique opportunity for every young person and many of their EVS services are considered as invaluable experience. EVS also enriches the activities of civil society organizations and the life of the local community.
The annual gathering was very useful and well-organized for all involved parties. The present civil society organizations agreed that such meetings needed more and more to solve certain problems and increase project quality.