Volunteers are the backbone of our organization, understanding international solidarity as one of its main principles. Since the beginning, IAP had the contribution of many men and women who selflessly was willing to give their time, knowledge and energy to this project.
Being a volunteer at IAP, represents a chance for learning and training about the reality of countries in conflict and how people lives in the most affected places.
There are two ways to be a IAP volunteer:
Volunteer with local groups:
Can collaborate in these activities:
- Building networks for the distribution of the Colombian situation
- Support for implementation of presentations and events
- Training of new volunteers
- Support companions on their return
- Translation Castilian to Catalan, English, French, Italian and German
- Support the implementation of audiovisual and photographic material
Companions on the ground:
Can collaborate in these activities:
- Support international social organizations and their leaders
- Analysis and dissemination of human rights situation in Colombia
- Meetings with civil and military authorities, international human rights organizations, to raise awareness of the problems seen in field
- Implementation of audiovisual and photographic material.
IAP Volunteer’s in Colombia:
Applicants who choose to provide on-the-ground support will be trained to become international volunteers. Those volunteers will accompany IAP partnerships, as short-term needs required on-the-ground, as well as other specific tasks related to the work on-the-ground.
Every volunteer, once returned to its home country, pledges to restore and socialize the experience on-the-ground, helping to IAP’s activities local groups according to their means.
“Volunteers must share IAP principles: Nonviolence, international solidarity, gender equality and the construction and culture of peace.
- Knowledge about the political, social and economic reality of the countries we accompany.
- Language skills, especially Spanish.
- Being involved in meetings before and after joining as a volunteer and in training and group processes set by the organization.
- A mood and a physical condition ready to face high emotional impact situations, being able to fix conflicts.
- Minimum experience in other international volunteer groups or experiences with communities and organizations in a situation of vulnerability.
- Availability of at least six months.
Selection and training
Every volunteer must to do a mandatory selection and training process to be held in Europe. It means filling an application form and to do an interview with the head of the volunteers group. If the application is approved, new volunteers will begin the training program in 3 stages, according IAP Training Plan.
IAP tasks and commitments
The main IAP commitment is to use all available mechanisms to ensure volunteer’s security and total safety. We increasingly ensure volunteer’s maximum protection: we believe that only a protected person can provide security to those accompanying.
The protection is based on external mechanisms (network support, advocacy work) as well prior volunteers training. That’s why we consider this second issue as a priority and we invest a great effort.
IAP provides the necessary documents for visa requirements and providing advice on health insurance and any other needs of volunteers. On-the-ground, IAP is responsible on accommodation, local transportation expenses, and food expenses of every volunteer.
Other expenses are borne by the volunteers. If sufficient funds, IAP ensures to volunteers that remains more than three months in Colombia, a economic aid to cover the minimum expenses.
Volunteer’s tasks and commitments
Once in Colombia, volunteers have to perform on-the-ground accompaniment to IAP partnership groups as its main task, according schedule accompaniment plan and situation of the moment. The length of accompaniments changes every time, however volunteers will remain in rural areas approximately 20/22 days each month. The work is made by pairs, and every new volunteers will have the direct support by more experienced volunteers during the initial stage of their stay.
Volunteers benchmark on-the-ground is the head on-the-ground. At the same time every volunteer gonna be in touch permanently with its own national group.
When volunteers no perform on-the-ground, they must to help in IAP operating activities, supporting on-the-ground board office in daily tasks development (drafting reports, updating website, meetings, receiving new volunteers, etc.).
After every performing on-the-ground it will be made a short action report, including expenses, according the IAP standards provided by.
It is important to note that the commitment of every volunteer is not ending when he/she is back to his/her home country: Once’s back to home country is the beginning of a important stage of restitution and socialization experienced on-the-ground. Supporting local groups with outreach and awareness tasks is a tool to raise awareness about the Colombian reality around us, instead of keeping just for us all the knowledge we got on-the-ground.