The project

Eight European organisations joined forces for the VolunVET project in order to help with the training of those professionals who work within voluntary organisations to organise and manage the work of dedicated volunteers: Volunteer Coordinators.

During the two years of the project, the partners organised transnational and local activities to learn and better understand the functioning of the voluntary sector in other countries and to define the skills and competences which are more in demand from Volunteer Coordinators.

The outcome of the project was the following results produced by the partnership:

  1. A “Guide of good practices” which includes the good practices of each project partner in recruiting, training and managing Volunteer Coordinators; what skills and competences they expect from Volunteer Coordinators; which of those skills and competences Volunteer Coordinators often lack of.  View Download

  1. The “List of recommendations to better respond to the lack of skills and competences from Volunteer Coordinators” which was elaborated by the participants of the round-tables following the presentations, debate and exchange of opinions on the Good Practices presented during the transnational meetings. View Download

  1. The “Compilation of training materials for Volunteer Coordinators” from all countries represented in the partnership which includes the materials used by project partners within their organisations.

Compilation of training materials for Volunteer Coordinators by Plataforma Andaluza de Voluntariado (ES): View Download

Compilation of training materials for Volunteer Coordinators by Asociación Gantalcalá (ES): View Download

Compilation of training materials for Volunteer Coordinators by SPORTUNION Tirol (AT): View Download

Compilation of training materials for Volunteer Coordinators by Association of Nigerians in Slovenia  (SI): View Download

Compilation of training materials for Volunteer Coordinators by Nëus Jëuni Gherdëina (IT): View Download

Compilation of training materials for Volunteer Coordinators by FireAID (DK): View Download

Compilation of training materials for Volunteer Coordinators by CARDO – Národné dobrovoľnícke centrum (SK): View Download

  1. The study “Establishing a European Framework of Skills for Volunteer Coordinators” which is an analysis and list of the most sought after skills and competences by employers of Volunteer Coordinators and what are the skills and competences Volunteer Coordinators often lack of. View Download

Thanks to the studies carried out and exchange of good practices and opinions, project partners realised that the skills and competences Volunteer Coordinators often lack of are very similar across Europe. As a mean to provide a standard classification of skills and competences for the professional occupation of Volunteer Coordinator, partners grouped the skills and competences as follows:

Group 1: Skills and competences in recruiting, introducing to the organisation, and providing initial training to volunteers.

Group 2: Skills and competences in developing and managing projects involving volunteers.

Group 3: Skills and competences in human resources management in voluntary sector organisations.

Group 4: Skills and competences in organisational management of voluntary sector organisations.

Group 5: Skills and competences in communicating and presenting.

Group 6: Skills and competences in networking and partnership building.

Furthermore, after analysing the training available for Volunteer Coordinators in the seven countries represented in the project, the partners came to the overall conclusion that the training available is insufficient to fully deliver the above-mentioned skills and competences currently requested from Volunteer Coordinators across Europe. Therefore, there is the need to develop high-quality training so Volunteer Coordinators can develop the right skills and competences.

The idea behind the project and its objectives:

The role of Volunteer Coordinators is essential to the work of any organisation relying on volunteers to develop non-profit, social projects or activities. Volunteer Coordinators ensure that volunteers do not work in vain, that the money and time received by the organisation is used efficiently and correctly in order to reach their goals.

The “Plataforma Andaluza de Voluntariado” has faced many years of struggles when recruiting and training Volunteer Coordinators. After researching further on the situation in other countries and when discussing these issues with other organisations, it became clear that such hurdles were shared with many other organisations across Europe. In most European countries there are little training opportunities for Volunteer Coordinators despite the demand from the labour market of the voluntary sector. There are also hardly any educational programmes that can provide training for all the skills a Volunteer Coordinator will need. Therefore, the project enabled the partners to:

- Work on identifying the current struggles and difficulties faced by voluntary sector organisations when recruiting and training Volunteer Coordinators.

- Witness these best practices first hands by working and studying, on location, the situations on each of the countries of the partners, the difficulties they have encountered and the solutions they have put in place.

- Collaborate together on the creation of a framework for the exchange of good practices on the recruitment, training and management of Volunteer Coordinators.

- Have an open discussion about the future skills and competences needed by the Volunteer Coordinators joining the labour market in the voluntary sector at both, local and European level. By working in-situ, participating organisations have the chance to explain what Volunteer Coordinators were lacking in training when they integrated their organisations as well as be able to witness first-hand the reality of the voluntary sector from other European countries and what necessary improvements the training of Volunteer Coordinators needs in order to create better conditions for the transition to working life.

- Bring light to the importance of the role of Volunteer Coordinators and the importance of the professionalism of the voluntary sector in general; encouraging young people to consider working in voluntary organisations as a career opportunity.