In a classic European Solidarity Corps, it is up to the volunteer wishing to do a civic service in another Member State of the European Union, to apply, sometimes in a foreign language, and to find a sending and receiving organization. This requires a lot of work in terms of canvassing and searching for mission opportunities and destinations for the volunteer, in order to find those that are suitable for his/her needs.
Our approach, in order to facilitate the departure for everyone, is to require the simple manifestation of volunteering. You will be able then, once integrated into the program, to choose your mobility of 6 months in another country, among the destinations and missions proposed within our network of partners. Moreover, the fact that you start with 6 months of civic service in your own country, allows you to prepare yourself progressively, by benefiting from language courses throughout, while already carrying out missions alongside young people from all over Europe, who are themselves engaged in their mobility phase.
The European Civic Service is simply 6 months of national civic service in your country, to prepare you, followed by 6 months of civic service, thanks to the European Solidarity Corps, in another Member State, with missions of your choice. The first period prepares you to leave because you will be working alongside young people from all over Europe who are involved in this second phase of mobility. This takes place in the homes of the partners we have gathered around this project, who will welcome you and supervise you on a daily basis.
As in a classic civic service, you will receive during the first 6 months at home, an allowance of 580 € per month, and once you have left for another country, as in any European Solidarity Corps, you will be housed, fed and have access to transportation and an allowance of less than 200 €, for your “pocket money”. And all along, you will have access to language courses.
Discovering yourself, others and the world around you, while being fully supported, allows you to commit yourself to missions of general interest that seem important to you, that is the European civic service.
The European Civic Service (ECS) takes the best of the national civic service, to improve it even more, and make it a European experience all the way. During the first 6 months of your civic service in France, unlike any other civic service, you are never alone, but permanently in missions with other volunteers, coming from all over Europe, and followed by a supervisor who will be your reference for you and all your friends. You are also prepared throughout your 6-month mobility abroad, with pedagogical support and, above all, language courses that allow you to make the most of this experience in another country.
The European Civic Service was initiated by young committed volunteers, gathered in an association – the Collective for a European Civic Service – which coordinates and develops the project throughout Europe.
On the ground, other associations with proven experience in civic service and in the supervision of young volunteers are leading the project, managing your missions, accompanying you on a daily basis, and meeting all your needs. At the forefront is Unis-Cité, a major civic service association in France (10,000 young people per year) which initiated the national civic service system in the country, and alongside us launched the first experimentation of the European Civic Service.
Your national civic service phase, which you complete at home, is financed by your country of origin, like any other civic service. Your European Solidarity Corps, which allows you to go to another country, is financed by the European Union.
The Collective for a European Civic Service, with all the partners who will welcome you on the field and allow you to live your experience, are then in charge of finding other funds, from public and private partners, to finance your whole experience.
There are two different ways of accessing the program, in all cases without any pre-requisite in terms of schooling, skills or language proficiency, it’s quite the contrary!
The first one is a new scheme for 17-25 year olds, who will carry out the whole ECS program, with 6 months of civic service in their country and then 6 months in another Member State with the European Solidarity Corps.
The second one concerns young people between 18-30 years old who have already, or are in the process of doing a civic service in their country, and who can then directly do a 6-month European Solidarity Corps with one of our partners in another country of their choice, after a preparation.
The application process consists of two steps :
– A registration stage: you express to our partners or to us your wish to benefit from the program, no prerequisites are required.
– A face-to-face and telephone recruitment stage: you exchange with the partner organization that will supervise you during your mission. This is the opportunity to explain your motivation and show that you will go through with your project. But hurry up, as our project is still in its infancy and has a limited number of places: first come, first served.
There are no selection criteria, the whole idea of the program is to be as open as possible to allow everyone to access mobility. This is why the interviews carried out aim first of all to determine the volunteers’ desires for missions and destinations and then to measure their motivation.
To live a unique human adventure during 6 months, by accomplishing missions of general interest of your choice, by participating in the reception of your comrades who have come from all over Europe to work with you, before benefiting from this reception yourself for your 6-month mission in another country.
For now the program is deployed over France, Germany, and Italy but step by step all the EU will be covered. It is already possible to do your own mobility part in all member countries however guaranteed placements and missions are about countries mentioned above.
All the biggest themes (environment, elderly accompaniment, social, educational, cultural development, ect) are accessible in each promotion of operational partners. The precise missions will be determined with the volunteers once they are taken care of by the program. Each partner who can welcome you during your experience will give you the details of their own missions.
All paid work is strictly forbidden for volunteers, and it is not allowed to sign any contract, even a short one, even during your free time (holidays, etc.). Civic service is a full-time activity and the volunteer is required to devote himself entirely to this task and no other. However, volunteering in other entities is authorized and even encouraged.
All public organisations or associations used to work in coordinating youth are actively researched to join our program. We are looking to offer the best experience to the volunteers, it is very important that they are monitored and coordinated in their daily activities and life. It is also possible to be an organization with the capacity of taking part of this program researching help for your general interest missions.
The fact of being listed, and hosting volunteers oftenly in the frame of the national volunteer program and/or European Solidarity Corps, is a plus, but we also can accompany you toward those mechanisms.
You can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and a meeting with our board members will be planned as soon as possible. We will explain to you the details of the project and, if needed, help you to start your application to get the ESC label in order to receive funds and then, to host volunteers. If you are interested, and have a ECS label, you can also contact us to join our project network.
You can send an email here → email@example.com to get all project details and we will explain to you what kind of activities (General funds, volunteers languages classes funds, hosting volunteers within your organization, public event/activities of a conference funds, ect.) you can help for in the project in order to push forward your commitment along our sides.