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Volunteer abroad, Gap year in Valletta


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What is a Volunteer Job?

Volunteer service contributes to the well-being of an individual and the community, and is usually coordinated by a non-profit or public sector organization. These positions rarely offer any salary or wage. Volunteering internationally offers a local's perspective into a country, an opportunity to network with locals, a chance to work with people from around the world, and unparalleled personal growth experiences.

Volunteering in Malta

Voluntary work can be desirable if you are unable to gain legal work in Malta, or wish to gain skills or experience. (However, you would still need an entry visa if you require one). Although unpaid, board and lodging may be provided.

Application procedures for volunteer work depend on the organization. Most groups require a formal application, a personal statement, and some kind of deposit. There are periodic deadlines, so check the organization's sites to find out the deadline.

Programs

Volunteer organizations in Malta include:

The European Voluntary Service (EVS)

The European Voluntary Service is a European Union program that offers young people (between 18 and 30) the opportunity to work as a volunteer for two weeks to 12 months in a non-profit project abroad. Youth aged 16 from challenging physical, educational, social, geographic, financial or cultural backgrounds are also given the opportunity to participate.

Participants engage in voluntary projects in European, African, Asian, Central and South American countries (a separate application process is required for projects outside the EU).

There are three key partners of any EVS project: the volunteer, the sending organization and the host organization.

Malta's EVS System

Maltese sending organizations include, among others, the Employment and Training Corporation (ETC), inYgo Malta Foundation, and the Salesian Pastoral Youth Service. Maltese hosting organizations include, among others, Centru Tbexbix, Inspire, and Nature Trust Malta.

Malta's Youth in Action (YiA) Programme accommodates travel costs and insurance (health, accident, public liability) for participants from Malta. Other EU countries provide participants with an additional monthly allowance from €140 to €220. Consult with your home country's EVS office for details.

How to proceed: Find a sending organization that will assist you individually along the procedure (you can find contacts through you National Agency, your National Coordinator, international volunteer organizations, or through EVS' sending organizations database). Start contacting potential host organizations through your sending organization. Keep your fingers crossed and persevere in your search, as the difficulty is not to find a suitable project, but to find a project ready to host you within the time limit you have planned. Sending and host organizations submit project applications on your behalf to the appropriate National Agency. This National Agency assesses projects on a case-by-case basis five times per year.

Malta's Youth in Action Programme

Established in Malta in 2001, the Youth in Action Programme (YiA) is a voluntary association that facilitates youth exchanges between two or more countries, providing an opportunity to discuss and confront various themes, and learn about each other's cultures and countries in an informal way. Sub-actions created by YiA participants may include voluntary projects in the community or country, training programs, etc.

Insurance Abroad

Many volunteer programs also handle visa arrangements and include insurance coverage in their program fees or as part of their compensation. If they do not, you will need to shop around for rates and coverage. Ask for a letter of introduction and prepare to shop around for best rates and coverage. Consult our section on "International healthcare & Medical Insurance" to find out more about your options.

You might also look at our other articles on Summer Jobs and Internship abroad on the left column of this page.


Update 25/05/2013


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