Corona pandemic continuing to cause restrictions
As is the case every year, numerous young people are currently waiting to start their voluntary service with weltwärts. Usually, most of the volunteers going to countries in the Global South leave for their assignment towards the end of summer. However, North-South departures have been suspended for the time being in response to the difficulties the corona pandemic has caused for international volunteering assignments.
The majority of weltwärts volunteers start service in late summer. This year, however, many of the young people who were planning to embark on voluntary service have been faced with uncertainties brought about by the worldwide corona pandemic. These uncertainties have also hit the sending organisations that run the assignments with their partners. As in the past, their shared goal is to ensure that as many young people as possible can volunteer abroad. However, the extent to which volunteer assignments can be carried out continues to depend on the travel advice issued by Germany’s Foreign Office and the partner countries’ immigration rules.
Foreign Office travel warning in place until 31 August 2020
The Foreign Office’s travel warning for countries outside the European Union/Schengen area will remain in place until 31 August 2020. Unfortunately, continued international and regional restrictions are likely after that date.
The question of whether assignments can take place at a later date than originally planned or whether they will be postponed further also depends on the criteria specified by the Foreign Office and the immigration rules implemented by the countries of assignment. With health and safety being a top priority, it will of course also be necessary to assess each individual country’s health and safety situation before volunteers can commence service.
Sending organisations primary source of information
These rules apply to all organisations that offer volunteer assignments in the weltwärts North-South component. For volunteers starting service this year, the primary source of information concerning the start date and specific details for their assignment is their sending organisation.