This letter is directed at organisations involved in promoting the alternative economy, an important yet little discussed topic, particularly in Poland. If you are such an organisation, we are keen to make use of your knowledge and experience. A perfect opportunity enabling us to do this is the „European Volunteer” initiative, run as part of the „Youth” program, which is financed by the European Commission. The program is based on the exchange of youth (18 – 25 years old) between EU and candidate countries.
As part of this program we would be able to send young Poles to work for your organisation (for 6 to 12 months), during this time they would be able to assist in the work of your organisation and at the same time develop a knowledge of the workings of your organisation. This would provide an excellent training opportunity and with certainty, some individuals, after returning to Poland, would be able to propogate and help realise your organisations aims and ideals while working with us or by themselves. Volunteers participating in this program will receive approximately 300 Euro per month to contribute to accomodation costs, living costs, local travel costs, language courses (costs which will be reimbursed upon the production of appropriate invoices) and pocket money (about 105 Euro). The program requires no financial commitment on the part of your organisation as you will receive money to cover costs related to supporting the volunteer while they are with your organisation. This opportunity will also benefit your organisation as you will obtain the services of an extra employee and perhaps even the possibility of extending your activity into Poland.
The details of this program are available on the website
and http://europa.eu.int/comm/education/youth/youthprogram.html (on this website you can choose what language you view it in)
On the website you will find the address of the agency which you should contact if you would like to become a participant in the program. After you have done this, we kindly ask you to contact us, as the deadline for submitting applications to the European Commission for the first intake of volunteers is April 2003, subsequent deadlines for additional intakes are every two months. We would be prepared to send a volunteer to your organisation in August 2003, as part of the first intake. If you intend to participate in this program, please inform us of how many volunteers you are prepared to accept and what you skills and qualifications you require them to have.
Another possibility involved you sending volunteers to us. Whilst participating in our work promoting the alternative economy, they would also be able to assist us with our publication work (graphic design, page setup, web publishing) and our internet work (internet server administration). Other examples of ways that volunteers can assist us are available on the website http://www.zb.eco.pl/native.htm