Would you like to promote intercultural learning in your work community in Finland? Welcome a volunteer from abroad in your workplace!
The aim of the voluntary work periods is to, through working and learning together, establish grass-root level connections and deepen understanding between people with different kinds of backgrounds. Volunteers’ contribution to the work community is valuable and often irreplaceable.
”This cooperation has given even more than we had expected. It really feels as if we have opened a new window to the outside world.” – Timo Kotiranta, principal of the school of Kirkonseutu
All kinds of non-profit organizations and institutions can receive foreign volunteers. Most of Maailmanvaihto’s volunteers work in the social or educational field, but any kind of common-good organization can become a voluntary workplace.
The starting point for the co-operation is that the workplace offers meaningful tasks and support for the volunteer in the new environment. It is also important that the whole work community is adhered to welcoming the volunteer into the workplace.
The volunteers stay in Finland from 6 to 12 months so that the volunteer and the workplace have enough time to get to know each other and build cooperation. In case your organization cannot offer accommodation, Maailmanvaihto can look for a host family for the volunteer.
Foreign volunteers come to Finland both from Europe and further regions. All volunteers are 18 years old or older and usually participate either in the International Cultural Youth Exchange program (ICYE) or the European Solidarity Corps Volunteering.
In addition to their work input, the volunteers also cheer up everyday life in the workplace and often teach and learn new skills, such as languages. In addition, Maailmanvaihto’s volunteers have offered a one-of-a-kind opportunity for international experiences for many disabled or down-and-outs.
Most of the ICYE volunteers are between 18 and 30 years of age and arrive from outside of European borders, such as Bolivia, Costa Rica, Honduras, India, Japan, Kenya, Taiwan, and Uganda. Volunteers usually arrive in August.
The volunteers have paid a participation fee, which will cover their insurance, Finnish lessons, training sessions, and other expenses. Small pocket money for the volunteer (110 € per month) is to be paid by the voluntary workplace.
Along with non-profit organizations and institutions, ICYE program participants can also volunteer in private companies as long as their principles are in line with Maailmanvaihto’s values.
In addition, Maailmanvaihto receives volunteers from Germany who participate in a volunteering program supported by the German government. The program is very similar to the ICYE program. If needed, Maailmanvaihto’s programme coordinator will provide more information about this program.
European Solidarity Corps Volunteering is intended for young adults between 18 and 30 years of age from Europe and nearby areas. Most of the program costs are covered by the European Union. However, either the host family or the voluntary workplace is to offer the volunteer food and accommodation.
To receive European Solidarity Corps volunteers, a workplace must apply for a quality label of the European Solidarity Corps. Maailmanvaihto will provide more information on these.
Most of the volunteers arrive in August or September. If you would like to receive a volunteer during autumn, it is best to apply at the beginning of the year. However, we do receive more volunteers throughout the year, so it is possible to apply also later. Interested? Contact us for further information and an application form!
If you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
Programme Coordinator Mari Takalo
+358 (0)44 318 0888