LT EN
VŠĮ "Actio Catholica Patria"
Smalininkų g. 9
LT-44295 Kaunas
info@patria.lt
+370 600 19550

About us

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“A.C. Patria” volunteer’s center is helping young people and organizations find volunteering opportunities in Lithuania and foreign counties, is consulting on local and international volunteering questions.

 

Voluntary work in “A.C. Patria” has deep roots and is considered to be an effective tool in expressing active citizenship.

Volunteers’ center is developing two areas: local and international voluntary services.

 

The goal of a local voluntary service – to make advantageous conditions for volunteering in Lithuania. Local voluntary service is for students of all ages who are willing to volunteer in Kaunas’ organizations and initiate voluntary movements. Once a week local volunteers have a meeting, also they are provided with preparation and evaluation seminars where young people share their experiences, evaluate the tasks they’ve accomplished, learn and make future plans.

 

If you want to become a local volunteer- send an email to jst.patria@gmail.com (Birutė) or just come to Patria: Smalininkų g. 9, Kaunas.

Other part of the local voluntary service is an internet database www.buksavanoriu.lt . The aim of this website – to create a web between volunteers and organizations which would host volunteers. In this database you can find information about volunteering, organizations which are looking for volunteers and young people who want to become volunteers. We invite you to visit this database! Here you will find a catalogue with organizations, which are looking for volunteers.

 

International voluntary programme – EUROPEAN SOLIDARITY CORPS – coordinates volunteers from abroad who are doing their volunteering activity in Lithuania and prepares Lithuanians for their service abroad in foreign counties. It also consults the organizations which want to host  or are already are hosting volunteers from abroad.

If you are interested in volunteering abroad write an e-mail to esk.patria@gmail.com  (Indre).

If you are interested in hosting international volunteers in Lithuania or want to do your volunteering activity in Lithuania write to solidarity.patria@gmail.com (Marija).  

If you have questions or think that activities of this center are relevant to you, our friendly collegues will provide you all the information you want!

Interesting and useful information about European Solidarity Corps – look forward ;)

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How we work

“A.C. Patria” gives importance to the working methods in job with volunteers.

When we are accepting volunteers from foreign countries, we make sure that they would feel physically and mentally safe and at the same time would learn autonomy during their EVS in Lithuania. Each volunteer has a mentor, with which he/she has regular meetings. During these meetings volunteer shares his/her apprehensions, actual problems, works on “Youthpass” competences, in this way volunteer identifies his/her learning outcomes, gained skills, changed perceptions. Mentors are also help to form a constructive approach to conflict situations or help if it’s needed in a case of illness.

 

Hosting organizations are also closely cooperating with mentors – they discuss various situations, help volunteer to integrate, consult mentors when/if difficult situations occur and look for constructive outcomes, compromises.

 

Although this individual volunteers’ training takes additional time, our experience shows that this investment is worthwhile. The effect of “A.C. Patria’s” methods is visible on volunteers we coordinate, they are finishing their EVS with a clear view on themselves and others. Termination of EVS is never spontaneous in our organization: if any difficulties with a volunteer occur we debate if further activities are going to be fruitful  for hosting organization and volunteer.

 

We are solving problems in levels - giving feedback, informing the volunteer how we see the situation and what the perspectives are.

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European Voluntary Service

Wouldn’t it be interesting to live in another country with multinational group of people, encounter absolutely different behavior and culture? You are inspired by an idea that you could impact the development of community and grow as a personality? Then just read forward!


What is European Voluntary Service (EVS)?

It is international volunteering projects (from 2 weeks to 12 months) for young people. These projects are aimed to raise a sense of citizenship, solidarity, promote cultural awareness, strengthen mutual understanding and tolerance.

 

There are less short- term projects (2 weeks-2 months) than long-term projects (3 months-12 months). Short-term projects are usually aimed to Lesser Opportunities youngsters and “A.C. Patria” gives special attention to this social group by searching for reliable projects partners and developing working methodology oriented specially to Lesser Opportunities youngsters.

During EVS, the volunteer is going to another country of his/her choosing, lives and works in non-profit organization doing useful voluntary work in social, cultural, ecological, youth or any other area and enjoys the variety of emotions and experiences witch come along with it.

European Voluntary Service is “learning” service. While participating in EVS projects young people develop their skills - gain knowledge, experience and competences. You don’t have to be experienced, but you must convince hosting organization that you want to jump into the “non-formal education train” and learn all there is to learn while giving a piece of yourself by volunteering!

 

Projects topics:

-          Antidiscrimination;

-          Anti-drugs/substance abuse;

-          Antiracism/ xenophobia;

-          Art and culture;

-          Civil protection;

-          Collaboration for development;

-          Disabilities;

-          Learning through sports and physical activities;

-          Environmental protection;

-          Equal opportunities;

-          European awareness;

-          Gender equality;

-          Health;

-          Heritage protection;

-          Interreligious dialogue;

-          Measures against crime;

-          Media and communication/ youth information;

-          Minority rights;

-          Rehabilitation after disasters of conflicts;

-          Rural development;

-          Social integration;

-          Social exclusion;

-          Urban development;

-          Youth leisure;

-          Youth politics;

-          Others…

 

If you want to become an EVS volunteer:

You must be between 17 and 30 years old (with some exceptions) and have substantial amount of MOTIVATION. It means that you have to be decided about the project, evaluate your strength and possibilities to commit for the period of the project. EVS is a serious commitment, so look at it responsibly. If you are not sure or don’t know – write (est.patria@gmail.com), call, ask, visit us! We will make an appointment, have a cup of tea and try to clarify every single detail.

 

How much does it cost? – almost NOTHING! All that we might ask from you is to cover a small part of your travel to the project expenses (if the dotation of the travel funds is not enough). It would be the only financial investment to your EVS project.

 

Important question: “How will I support myself during EVS?” – accommodation, bills for water, electricity and heating, food, local transport, language courses, trainings and seminars and health insurance is all taken care of by the project. If you don’t get food in your voluntary service you will get money to buy food. Also you will be provided with pocket money which varies from country to country. It is usually not much, but you get an opportunity develop a financial competence and have a great life with what you have. To sum up, you get all you need!

 

So what do you do next if you decide to become an EVS volunteer?

First of all you contact “A.C. Patria’s” EVS sending coordinator Indre (est.patria@gmail.com) and inform her that you would like to become an EVS volunteer. Then Indre is inviting you to EVS presentation or personal meeting after which you receive an “Info pack” in which you will find “A.C. Patria’s” volunteer questionnaire, CV form, Motivation letter form and some other useful documents which will help you look for a dream project.

 

What are the roles of the organizations in EVS?

Sending organization (SO) (in this case “A.C.Patria”) helps the volunteer to find a project he/she would be interested in, organizes pre-departure training, takes care of EVS related formalities (such as health insurance, project related documents preparation), sends volunteer to National Agency’s trainings, provides support during the EVS period and organizes evaluation meeting after the return.

Hosting organization (HO) is a place where the volunteer makes his/her service or in other words – where he/she will work during the EVS. This organization makes sure of the volunteer’s tasks, gives work related support, provides with tutor (work related guide) and mentor (emotional guide).

Coordinating organization (CO) is applying the EVS project for the National Agency in the name of all parties included. If project’s application is approved (it is clear after 6-8 weeks after the application deadline), gets the finances (the subsidy), administrates the project, takes care of volunteer’s living conditions (accommodation, food, local transport and etc.) also CO is responsible for coordination of SO and HO.

Projects applications are accepted 3 times per year:

Deadline

Start of the project

February 4th

From 01/05 to 30/09

April 3oth

From 01/08 to 31/01

October 1st

From 01/01 to 30/06

 

If you want to leave on 1st of September, it is best to start looking for the project in the winter/early spring. Because it will take time to go through all of the application and selection processes (meetings with SO and interviews with HO). Deadlines above are for the CO to apply projects to National Agencies. Organizations receive endless list of candidates so they have to select a volunteer before applying the EVS project.  There are always exceptions of the rule, but the sooner you start looking for the project, the less stress you will experience in this process, having in mind that you have to be convinced about your choice, because that project will become the unforgettable life experience. Even though HO selects you as an EVS volunteer, it doesn’t give the green light. It is just the first step towards your goal. Then the waiting starts (6-8 weeks) till National Agency informs CO about the application results. If the project has been approved you can start dancing and cheering and if not, you immediately start looking for another opportunity.

If you have questions, you need help filling documents, you need an advice or you would like us to contact your HO, because for some reason they are not replying – don’t be shy – we are here for you, write us, call or simply come over! We will talk it over a cup of tea and solve all the problems together!

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Lesser Opportunities youngsters (LO), what does it mean?

LO youngsters – young people who have less opportunities than their peers, because they live in inadequate conditions or experience some sort of difficulties (mentioned in the list below). These conditions or difficulties are obstacles for young people, they don’t let effectively participate in formal and non-formal education, seize opportunities to participate in international mobility, be active citizens, integrate to the society in general.

 

Social difficulties: young people who are being discriminated because of their gender, religion, sexual orientation, disability and etc.; young people with limited social skills, antisocial or risky sexual behavior; young people in unsafe conditions; ex-cons, ex-drug addicts or alcoholics; young and/or single parents; orphans; young people from separated families.

 

Economic difficulties: young people with low living costs, low income, dependent on welfare system; unemployed for a long time or poor; young homeless, young people who have debts or financial problems.

 

Disability: young people with mental (intellectual, recognition, studying), physical, sensorial or other disability.

 

Education difficulties: young people faced with studying difficulties; early school leavers or expelled; low qualification individuals; young people showing poor performance at school and skipping classes.

 

Cultural differences: young immigrants or refugees/ youngsters from immigrant/refugees family; young people from national or ethnical minority; young people with linguistic adaptation and cultural involvement problems.

 

Health problems: young people with chronical health problems, difficult illnesses or psychiatric disorders; young people with psychiatric health problems.

 

Geographical difficulties: young people from distant or rural territories; young people from islands or periphery regions; youngsters from problematic urban areas; young people from areas with poorly developed services (limited public transportation, poor infrastructure, abandoned territories).

 

ERASMUS+ programme action “Mobility for studying purpose” is for everyone so we are working to involve young people with less opportunities. Programme is not only open for everyone, but also wants to become a tool to increase Lesser Opportunities youngsters social inclusion, their active citizenship and employment opportunities, also to take part in social cohesion.

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Volunteers’ center NEWSLETTER

NGO “A.C. Patria” volunteers center creates the NEWSLETTER each month.

 

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