erasmus_banerThe project entitled “Promote diversity, promote human rights” which was realized with the partners from Poland (Bona Fides Civic Activity Association) and Great Britain (The English Law Students’ Association ELSA) in the European Foundation of Human Rights (EFHR) is about to end.

The aim of the project, realized within the Erasmus + program, was improving the level of education concerning the human rights and tolerance, as well as reducing the scale of prejudice among the Lithuanian society. We pursued those goals together with our volunteers: Leah from the UK and Aneta from Poland.

Within the project, we have realized i.a. workshops in the Adam Mickiewicz Junior High School in Vilnius concerning the human rights, a seminar in the Mykolas Romeris University on the occasion of the International Human Rights Day, celebration of the European Week Against Racism, contests for children and screening movies. About other activities undertaken within the project, one can read in the section dedicated to the European Voluntary Service.

The team of EFHR wanted their volunteers to know the history and culture of Lithuania, including the multicultural Vilnius. Therefore, we have visited together i.a. the editors of the newspaper “Kurier Wileński”, The Local Government of Vilnius, the Parliament of Lithuania, the Money Museum of Lithuania, the European Park in Lithuania, and also, we have admired the Vilnius Old Town from the campanile of St John’s Church.

EFHR is pleased that the volunteers realized many interesting initiatives and that Aneta and Leah enjoyed their stay in this city. In their spare time, they volunteered at festivals and visited other organizations which hosted other EVS volunteers in Lithuania.

As Aneta says: “In spite of spending a large amount of time in the Foundation (our working hours are 9 AM – 5 PM) I am trying to spend the free time in active ways. Actually, on each day something interesting happens – free film shows, pub quiz, exhibitions, concerts, evenings with traditional Lithuanian dances. Other volunteers and I are using all of the possibilities offered by the capital. On weekends, I usually travel. I am visiting the EVS volunteers in other cities, together with the Touristic Club of the Vilnius University while hiking I am discovering the most beautiful places of Lithuania – its wonderful natural world, forests and lakes – or I am using cheap buses and flights (a minimum MUST SEE of an EVS who came to Lithuania – Riga, Tallinn, Copenhagen). One of the most exciting experiences so far was the 50-kilometer walk along the coast, from the border with Latvia up to Klaipėda!”. The rest of Aneta’s experiences is here.

The EFHR team would like to thank Aneta and Leah for the cooperation and the time which we pleasantly spent together!

What is the purpose of the European Voluntary Service?

The goal of the European Voluntary Service within the Erasmus + program is to enable the young people, aged 17-30 years old, to take up a social job abroad. The trip can last from 2 up to 12 months and the expenses are covered from the funds of the European Commission (read more about the program here). A stay abroad is a great opportunity to develop personally, acquire a new language and culture of another country, gain experience and new skills.

The sending and the receiving organizations are involved in the whole process. Both of the organizations are responsible for the preparation of the volunteer to leave and for the reintegration after they come back. The European Commission will defray the costs of travel, catering, accommodation, public transportation and will give pocket money to the volunteer. In addition, the volunteer is offered language support online or language courses.

To take part in the program you need to contact the sending organization in your country (see the database of the accredited organizations), which will offer you available projects, or you can find a project abroad by yourself and apply through the sending institution.

The list of accredited sending organizations in Lithuania can be found here.