What do you know already about EVS?
Before going further, it might be good to be well infor med about EVS and the possibilities.
What have you heard before about EVS? Are you already well informed, or do you want to collect still a lot of information?
Take enough time to discover all details about EVS! Here we give an introduction in what we call "European Voluntary Service", or in a short way "EVS".
What and for whom?
What is EVS?
Within the European Voluntary Service (EVS) programme, young people can spend up to 12 months abroad as European volunteers helping in local projects in various fields. EVS represents KeyAction 1 and 2 of the Erasmus+ Programme.
Volunteers in EVS projects participate in activities in different fields (like: environment, arts and culture, activities with children, young people or elder ly, heritage, sports, etc.) which comply with the following general principles:
• Take place in a country other than where the volunteer lives;
• Be non-profit-making and unpaid;
• Bring an added value to the host organisation and the local community;
• Not involve job substitution, nor be a substitute for military service or alternative service formulas;
• Last for a limited period, normally between 2 and 12 months.
• Promote universal peace, dialogue, tolerance and solidarity;
• Contribute to building long-lasting and solid partnerships;
• Include exchange of youth work expertise and know-how;
• Give participants a better understanding of their own situations and cultures and help them explore their identities;
• Contribute to developing the voluntary sector and civil society.
EVS IS NOT...
• EVS is not occasional, unstructured, part-time volunteering.
• EVS is not an internship in an enterprise.
• EVS is not a paid job and must not substitute paid jobs.
• EVS is not a recreation or tourist activity.
• EVS is not a language course.
• EVS is not exploitation of cheap work force.
• EVS is not a period of study or vocational training abroad.
• EVS is not simply a funding scheme, but a quality model of transnational voluntary service.
Who can participate?
You can participate in EVS, if you are
Young people aged between 17 and 30, from a Programme Country (except the country where the project is taking place) or from a Partner Country neighbouring the EU. A volunteer can only take part in one large-scale EVS project during the lifetime of the Erasmus+ Programme.
From which countries?
EVS, as the Erasmus+ Programme in general, is aimed mainly at the "Programme countries", but young people from the "Neighbouring Partner countries" can also participate in EVS projects.
Importantly, each EVS project and each EVS activity must involve at least one EU Member State (for example a host organisation from an EU member State, or a sending organisation from an EU member State). More technical information about this you can find on European Commission Page.
Where can you go on EVS?
You can do an EVS project in each "Programme Country" of the Youth in Action Programme.
Belgium Greece Lithuania Portugal
Bulgaria Spain Luxembourg Romania
Czech Republic France Hungary Slovenia
Denmark Croatia Malta Slovakia
Germany Italy Netherlands Finland
Estonia Cyprus Austria Sweden
Ireland Latvia Poland United Kingdom
Non EU Programme Countries
Republic of Macedonia Liechtenstein Switzerland
Iceland Norway Turkey
However some technical procedures are different, you also can go on EVS in a "Neighbouring Partner Country" of the EU. There are 4 regions:
NEIGHBOURING PARTNER COUNTRIES
Eastern Partnership countries: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, Ukraine
Southern Mediterranean countries: Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Palestine, Syria, Tunisia
Western Balkans: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro, Serbia
Other: Russian Federation
OTHER PARTNER COUNTRIES
Some Actions of the Programme are open to any Partner Country of the world. For some other Actions the geographical scope is less broad. For more information, please consult the detailed description of the Actions of the Programme in the Part B of this Guide.
What does it cost?
As volunteer, EVS does not cost you anything! (at least, no money!)
• your sending organisation can receive an amount of money for preparing you in a proper way, for the support they provide, and they get 100% of your travel costs, so they can buy you a plane, bus or train ticket to your host country
• your host organisation can receive an amount of money for accommodating you, for providing you food, language courses, guidance and support, and insurances. They can receive money to pay your travel costs.
• additional, you get some pocket money ("volunteer allowances"), and if you have visa costs or vaccination costs, you can get them for 100% back.
• In case you have special needs, additional costs that you have, can be reimbursed (for example: additional insurances for wheel chairs)