More international volunteers come to Germany
As of 2015, considerably more young people from emerging and developing countries can take part in a weltwärts placement in Germany. Engagement Global gGmbH now awards 250 places for these international volunteers. The young men and women coming to Germany this year as weltwärts volunteers hail from 29 different countries.
In an initial pilot phase in 2014, as many as 150 international volunteers began placements in Germany. The experiences were very positive and this has resulted in more and more German organisations wishing to offer volunteer placements. This explains why the number of host organisations rose to 53, which is 18 more than in the previous year. Young people's interest in the partner countries is also growing steadily.
For a long time, only weltwärt volunteers from Germany could support projects in partner countries. The aim of this new programme is to promote political developmental education even more. The idea is for young people to exchange notes on the living circumstances of their respective countries and network with one another.
The young men and women coming to Germany this year as weltwärts volunteers hail from 29 different countries. Volunteers from Peru, India and Ecuador are the most frequently represented. Their volunteer placements are usually in the social sector, the educational profession or in sustainable agriculture. For instance, children in day-care learn a little about the home countries and customs of the volunteers in their daily dealings with them.
Anne Akuété, Referentin at Brot für die Welt (Bread for the World) – Evangelischer Entwicklungsdienst (German Evangelical Development Service), which will host twelve international volunteers this year: "The exchange between young people of different cultures cannot just be a one-way street, it needs to go in both directions. That is why we are very pleased that there are now even more assignment places available with us in Germany for weltwärts volunteers. This cooperative exchange allows both sides to think outside of the box and to further develop shared perspectives."
This so-called weltwärts South-North component is run as part of the cooperation between the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development and the German Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth: international volunteers perform their service at recognised places of assignment of the German Federal Volunteer Service (BFD). The Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development promotes organisations which host these volunteers. Engagement Global coordinates the entire weltwärts programme. As the central agency, the organisation is responsible for managing the assignment quota, passes on funding from the Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), carries out preliminary checks on assignments and advises the organisations which host the volunteers.