Presentation

The France Volontaires platform

The France Volontaires platform was created on 1st of October 2009, based on l’Association Française des Volontaires du Progrès (AFVP - The French Association of Progress Volunteers). It intends to promote and develop different forms of involvement relevant to Volontariats Internationaux d’Echange et de Solidarité (VIES - International Exchange and Solidarity Volunteering) and to contribute to their implementation. This projects voices the values put forward in the common charter (link to the Charter page) to which volunteer-sending organisations and the volunteers adhere. Moreover, it is a member of the Civic Service’s Public Interest Group Agency and contributes to the development of the Civic Service in its international section.

France Volontaires both relies on and supports key in volunteering, candidates and support and sending structures. The missions of the platform are specified in the Means and Objectives Contract signed between France Volontaires and the Secretary of State for Cooperation and Francophonie in January 2010.

  • Promoting commitments
  • Bringing the network to life
  • Being with you everywhere in the world
  • Innovating
  • Advising and guiding
  • Keeping you up to date
  • Making the most of your experience

A "partnership agreement", which defines the involvements of the state and volunteer-sending institutions, as well as an "international volunteering exchange and solidarity charter" detail the principal qualitative commitments to be held by the sending associations and volunteers, having been signed during the launch of France Volontaires.
France Volontaires has had association status since the end of 2009, being an association founded under the law of 1901. See our statutes.

Moreover, France Volontaires remains a sending structure for volontaires de solidarité international (VSI - International Solidarity Volunteers), but in relative terms, it distributes its missions equally to its members (numbering around 20 in 2012).

France Volontaires in French regions

The development of international volunteering relies greatly on local dynamics. A large number of actors (regional groups, youth and/or intentional solidarity networks and associations, etc.) promote, organise or accompany the experiences of international volunteers abroad. France Volontaire’s members are often key players in these dynamics.

The gains of volunteers in the integration process and the construction of new regional and international relations encourage the development of local support policies regarding the involvement of young people abroad. These approaches have also been supported by the state for several years. We are thus seeing a growing demand for support, the volunteering sector still being relatively unknown with policies that are only just beginning to appear.

On the strength of these findings, France Volontaires has deployed its general interest tasks in the regions of France (continental and overseas departments) since 2010. The objective is to improve the mobilisation of the platform’s resources in order to encourage both the quantitative and the qualitative development of volunteering within France.

The France Volontaires network in continental and overseas France is based around :

  • 4 interregional hubs based in Ivry sur Seine (central regions), Nantes (western regions), Lille (northern and eastern regions), Marseille (southern regions)
  • Representatives in La Réunion, New Caledonia and the French Departments of the Americas
  • a network of regional volunteer correspondents
  • partnerships with local organisations

Contact : Thomas Cosse

Our actions focus on four objectives :

  • To make VIES known and valued amongst regional youth networks, international solidarity networks and the general public
  • To involve regional actors in the construction of volunteer missions and means of support for volunteers
  • To develop regional partnerships in order to support the development of local volunteering policies
  • To contribute to a better knowledge of volunteering in these regions

France Volontaires has taken on a determined posture in these regions : responding to demands with intervention ; promotion and mobilisation of the platform’s expertise ; intervention guided by complimentary and unitary principles and action built on a partner-based approach.

France Volontaires in Europe and beyond

Launched in 2011 with the European year of volunteering and the organising of a Conference of the European parliament (here in French) on the role of the European Union in international volunteering, France Volontaire’s European strategy continues to grow and acts in three fields :

To bring a common French voice to a European level

  • Dialogue with European Commission since 2011 over the future implementation of the EU Aid Volunteers programme, through the experimental Eurosha project and lobbying actions.
  • Pass on the recommendations from members of European consultations :
  • In relation to the European Union’s consultation on the entry and duration of stay of non-community students, interns and volunteers in Europe, reaffirming the necessity to make the reciprocity of these exchanges easier.
  • In relation to consultation of Strategic community guidance on 2014 - 2020 scheduling, highlighting how it is essential to take into account the potential of voluntary and solidarity involvement in the Union’s future development aid policy.
  • Active participation in the debate on youth policy, for better articulation between dedicated policies and international solidarity in order to optimise young people’s expression of their European citizenship outside of the confines of the Union.

To strengthen the European dimension of international volunteering in France

  • The signing of an agreement with the AFPEJA in May 2012 providing for joint experimentation, such as :

Implementing a reference document for the training of tutors for Moroccan and European host and sending institutions, in May 2012.

  • CNAJEP’s participation in the ’Europe/international’ group in order to inform on the problems and current news in the sector.

Beyond the European dimension, an international approach

To contribute to the intercultural, Euro-Mediterranean dialogue by investing national representatives and Volunteering Spaces in Morocco, Egypt, Tunisia and The Lebanon, in several actions which link its members with local players :

  • The 2012 work group ’Volunteering schemes for sustainable Mediterranean development’ under Med’Educ
  • The co-organisation of the 2nd Franco-Tunisian civil society forum
  • Participation as a member of the Anna Lindh Foundation at the FAL Forum in 2013 in Marseille.

Integration into the FORUM Board in 2012 as an organising member, thus contributing to the network’s representativeness which is usually under Anglo-Saxon influence. FORUM is a global network of international volunteering organisations which is there to explore pioneering ways of analysing important contemporary problems.

One of FORUM ’s objectives is to promote the benefits of volunteering as part of Millennium Development Goals and RIO + 20, notably at the United Nations. France Volontaires is organising an annual IVCO conference for 2013, relating to the European Year of Citizens.

Contact : Aurélie Chaudieu

Transparency

Institution

Operation

Human Resources

  • Employment and resources (coming soon - April 2013) / highest and lowest average salaries
  • Wage agreement in France for non-community members
  • As of the 30th of June 2011 : the association includes 105 employees, 46 in the headquarters (3 of whom hold professionalization contracts) and 59 in the field (of whom 10 employees are French law students), 5 unpaid workers and 230 volunteers across 55 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America.

Social Utility

Contact : Agnès Golfier