European Voluntary Service celebrates 20 years!

The European Voluntary Service gives young people the opportunity to volunteer abroad, contributing with their efforts to a cause they believe in – be it solidarity with refugees and migrants, work on environmental issues, activities for children or the elderly, support for non-governmental organisations, work for cultural events or a number of other topics. Anyone between 17 and 30 years old can join and every volunteer receives support to cover travel and living costs, as well as pocket money and insurance.

As an organisation you can get financial support to run a project involving an international volunteer in your activities. EVS volunteers can contribute with their enthusiasm, efforts and background to the work you are doing and add a truly inspiring international dimension to your organisation's environment.

Mina, a young refugee now living in Denmark, tells her story about volunteering in Brussels through European Voluntary Service, and using her experiences to support other refugees.

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Five organisations from the UK, Italy, Romania and Latvia share their experiences of hosting European Voluntary Service volunteers, and explain how organisations can start to host their own EVS volunteers.

Stories from volunteers – make a difference with European Voluntary Service

In March 2007, Victor Serrato Martín boarded a flight from sunny Malaga and touched down in a snowy Czech Republic, unaware of how profound an effect EVS would have on his life. He grew close to the people he supported, and embraced the challenge of working amongst people with a high level of need.

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Stories from volunteers – European Voluntary Service leads to job

Taking part in a European Voluntary Service project changed the career path of Katarzyna Bialkowska. Now, ten years after her volunteering placement, she is head of a Polish organisation running intercultural and multilingual education programmes – and she credits it all to her EVS experience.

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Stories from volunteers – Fresh start with European Voluntary Service

Calum Barron came from a disadvantaged background but volunteering for a European Voluntary Service project made him feel there were more options open to him than before. Following his EVS projects, Calum went on to lead several projects in Wales and he now has an apprenticeship. He also volunteers in a homeless shelter.

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EVS20 events near you

Many countries are holding events to celebrate the 20th anniversary of European Voluntary Service. To find the events closest to you, please select your country below and press "go".

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