VOLUNTEERING GROUP PROJECT “COUNT OF MAY: UNITED IN DIVERSITY”

What? Where? The For what?

Who: Volunteering group project “Count of May: united in diversity”

No. 2020-1-LV02-ESC11-002962

When From 01.08.2020 to 07.09.2020. (38 days)

Where: city of Riga, Latvia

Who: a Total of 17 participants between the ages of 18 and 30 years of age,

  • 5 young people from ES countries (Cyprus, Hungary, Estonia, Lithuania, Finland or Greece),
  • 11 youngsters from Latvia,
  • 1 accompanying person for participant with special needs from Latvia

What is the “May Count” festival

For promoting creativity and self-development and promoting European multiculturalism, we have been pursuing our own idea since 2012 – the Festival Count of May is organized every year to promote multiculturalism, preservation and development of cultural traditions, active involvement and participation of the population in social life, interaction of different cultures and unity of society on the basis of ancient Riga medieval cultural tradition.
Every year together with volunteers we organize an event in the Old Riga, which is attended free of charge by 4 to 8
thousand visitors on the day of the event, incl. Riga residents, foreign tourists, are specially invited to 60 children from
several Latvian orphanages.
During the event there will be activities promoting popularity of Latvian culture and traditions of other cultures, getting
acquainted with a wide audience interaction and harmonious combination of different cultures. Volunteers from Riga,
regardless of nationality, religion, age or gender, participate in the project.

Together, the volunteer assistants help organize the project stages from preparation to completion, share their volunteering experience with young people, co-lead community activities during the event, or do other activities related to the event. For them, this event gives them the opportunity to become actively involved in social activities, to benefit society, to focus more deeply and emotionally on the
need to promote multiculturalism and European values and to consolidate society. The volunteers’ attitude towards
charity changes for the better as people see the results of their help in person. Often, after the events, many volunteers
continue to stay in touch and participate in other projects.

Project’s long-term objectives

  • promoting multiculturalism and the interaction of cultural diversity as a European value
  • to promote tolerance and mutual respect between different social and national groups
  • reduce discrimination and xenophobia between different social groups
  • promote community solidarity by attracting a variety of volunteers to the project, irrespective of their origin, social or
    economic status, nationality or religion
  • to promote the promotion of voluntary work and its wider development in Latvian society
  • promote the inclusion of youth from marginalized groups in society
  • Promote volunteers ‘involvement in the project as a socially significant charity activity that positively influences
    volunteers’ perceptions of life and attracts socially relevant topics
  • developing the positive attitude of volunteers towards volunteering and community service
  • Promote the development of competences and knowledge of volunteers

  • Short-term goals:
  • Organize a festival in May 2020 with at least 10 different types of activities with an average attendance of 3,000 visitors,
    at least 60 children from Latvian orphanages or socially vulnerable groups (crisis centers, national minorities,
    disadvantaged families), and at least 150 participants – cultures and minorities
  • attract at least 50 volunteer volunteers at local and international level to organize the festival, incl. at least 10 volunteers
    in the ESC Volunteering Project
  • Develop a scenario of activities, sharing responsibilities between organizers and volunteers with long-term goals and
    principles
  • develop a publicity and project dissemination plan involving volunteers at all stages of the project
    Impact on members:
  • gain in-depth knowledge of Riga culture and history and its interaction with other European cultures
  • learn to accept other cultures in a tolerant way
  • gain in-depth knowledge of volunteering
  • gain experience in active social participation
  • personal development of participants, as many activities involve creative personal solutions
  • For volunteer assistants, participating in project activities will help develop both competencies such as communication mother tongue and a foreign language, entrepreneurship, learning to learn, social and civic skills.

Project partners

Latvia: Cultural Association “Alternativa Realitate”

Ukraine: NGO “CENTER FOR EUROINITIATIVES”

Participants profile

We invite 17 active creative youngsters:

We invite 17 active creative youngsters:

  • young people between the ages of 18 and 30 who are interested in the topic of the project
  • wants to develop communication skills, creativity, entrepreneurship, public speaking and presentation skills,
  • who want to learn to work with the audience, lead events
  • who want to improve and develop foreign language skills
  • who want to develop digital skills
  • interested in charity and participation in socially significant projects
    The project may involve participants with disabilities, as described in the guidelines of the European Solidarity Corps.
    Volunteer tasks The main product of the project “Count of May: United in Diversity” is the organization of the multicultural international festival “Count of May” together with local volunteers from beginning to end. During the project, volunteers will learn to organize and lead big events, promote their campaign in the local community using a variety of tools and methods, learn from peers and also local volunteers, learn about new cultures and learn the basics of language, develop and grow as a person with initiative and compassion.

Volunteer tasks within the project:

  • Develop an action scenario, allocating responsibilities to organizers and volunteers, in line with long-term goals and principles
  • develop and implement a publicity and project dissemination plan
  • help make props, decorations
  • Participate in the organization of the event at all stages according to the responsibilities shared
  • to organize and conduct various workshops and activities for children and adults;
  • to promote European values ​​and active citizenship, civic responsibility, community service,
  • to spread European ideas, friendship between people and peaceful coexistence;
  • lead children’s groups;
  • to teach young people leadership skills and provide them with knowledge about the EU, European integration;
  • promoting cultural diversity and breaking stereotypes about volunteer countries;
  • to explain and work with the basic concepts of tolerance, mutual respect, sense of responsibility, especially in relation to the world, human rights;
  • promoting volunteering among local young people;
  • organize entertainment events;
  • Fill in the organisation’s volunteer blog and FB pages.

Visa procedures

EU citizens do not need a visa to cross the Latvian border and can stay in the country for up to 180 days a year. As the project “May Count” has 38 days, volunteers will need to cross the border:

  • a valid international passport;
  • Invitation from the Cultural Association Alternativa Realitate (volunteers will be provided with an invitation scan);
  • Cigna insurance;
  • good mood and motivation to do something good for the local community

Travel costs and Transfer to Riga

Travel expenses to and from the project site are covered by the European Solidarity Corps program.

Maximum repayable amount for participants from Latvia: 20 EUR

Maximum amount to be reimbursed to participants from Ukraine: EUR 275

Reimbursement of travel expenses takes place after the end of the project activity, only against the submitted travel documents (tickets, invoices, boarding passes). The original documents justifying the travel expenses must be submitted to the participant within 14 days after the end of the project activity, otherwise no compensation will be paid. Electronic documents can be sent by e-mail, paper documents need to be sent by post (postmark). You can get to Riga by plane to Riga Airport (RIX)

As soon as the host organization receives your travel plans, there will be an instruction letter with information on how to get to the venue. BEFORE purchasing any tickets, it is MUST be agreed with the Project Coordinator. In case tickets are purchased without prior agreement with the project coordinator, this may be a reason not to refund the travel expenses. You can reach the center of Riga by bus number 22 from Riga Airport to the center of Riga. The price of city bus tickets is 1.20 EUR with an e-ticket or 2.00 EUR when buying a ticket from the bus driver.

ACCOMMODATION

At the time of project submission, an agreement has been reached with the guest house “Jakobs Lenz” (Riga center) on renting apartments for participants for the duration of the activity. Alternatively, an agreement has been reached on the accommodation of Ukrainian participants in families in Riga. All types of accommodation are fully equipped and 20 minutes from the venue.

Working conditions

Our organization’s office has a separate room where volunteers can prepare for their activities, language clubs, etc. Wireless internet is available there, so if volunteers have the opportunity, we recommend that you bring your own laptop or tablet for personal use. To work from home, it is better if you have your own laptop.

You can use the technical equipment available in our office to prepare for your activities. The activities themselves will take place in different places.

The first week after the arrival of the volunteers will be an adaptation week. Volunteers will see the workplace, get to know people and current volunteers, get to know people from the community.

The work schedule is flexible, but not more than 6.5 – 7 working hours per day. If volunteers are involved on weekends, they will receive holiday compensation during the week.

FINANCIAL ISSUES
According to the Erasmus + program guide, each volunteer will receive travel ticket coverage (or reimbursement) from both parties:

for Ukrainian participants – 275 euros;

for Latvian participants – 20 euros

Volunteers will be paid pocket money (4 euros per day), meals (150 euros) and local transport (35 euros). The volunteer allowance is awarded in the 1st week of each month in EUR.

Volunteers will be assisted by experienced mentors from local volunteers. Our organization will try to select mentors according to your interests and age.

Within the framework of the project, the head of our organization’s office will provide practical support to the volunteers during their stay in Riga.

Want to participate? Fill in the form and we will contact you shortly to evaluate your application!

Application by 10.07.2020.