Today I was in Porto Santo, but it wasn´t an enjoyable trip along the island, even I shouldn’t be there, I just was there because the turbulence in a trip with Madeira island as the destiny.
This happened as the end of my holidays and basically it was one of the three things that makes me think about my project (because I had too much time to think about it as the pilot was trying to land).
The first the time was when I arrived at Spain and after eating Paella (my favorite Spanish plate) I told my family the history of my experience. It wasn’t just a tell, it was a complete presentation about all my project with pictures, histories and printed feelings.
The second time was when I saw the principal of my sending organization, he was happy to see me and he also asked me lots of questions about my project. Suddenly he requested me to print all my experience in a document (or at least a big part of this). After that I made a power point document with lots of pictures of the places that I visited, the people that I met and the events that I participated.
In each case I thought the same, I thought that Madeira has become in another home to me, I thought that this experience has been very useful to me, I thought that I had made new special friends, I thought that I have learnt how to enjoy and love your job even when you have some difficulties and also, I thought that I can make more of my experience every single day because Madeira has much more to offer me and I’m ready to get it.
Andrés Espinosa, volunteer from Spain.
Erasmus+ is a programme of the European Commission embracing the fields of education, training, youth and sports during the period 2014-2020. One of the major aspects is the cooperation between the different fields where the programme acts, hence contributing for a diverse and rich Europe.
Amongst the several goals of the programme, the following are prioritised: the objectives of the Europe 2020 Strategy, including the headline education target; the aims of the strategic framework for European cooperation in education and training (ET 2020), including the corresponding benchmarks; the sustainable development of Partner Countries in the field of higher education; the overall goals of the renewed framework for European cooperation in the youth field (2010-2018); the objective of developing the European dimension in sport, in particular grassroots sport, in line with the EU work plan for sport and the promotion of European values in accordance with Article 2 of the Treaty on the European Union.
In order to achieve these goals, the Erasmus+ has several action policies. The Key Action 1 (KA1) is directed towards the mobility of people; Key Action 2 (KA2) for the cooperation for innovation and the interchange of good experiences; and Key Action 3, which is for the support of reformation policies.
Since 1991 the University of Madeira Students’ Union has developed a wide incentive policy for voluntary work. In 2013 the Students’ Union started the process to receive, send and coordinate Erasmus+ projects of the European Voluntary Service, in order to have a larger influence in the volunteering field. The Union received its first volunteer withing the ambit of a KA1 project in 2014. Many efforts have been done to allow young people from Madeira to take part in several initiatives in Europe, as well as propose several projects allowing young people from several countries to work in the projects of the Students’ Union of the University of Madeira. The main goal of the voluntary work is the contribution of the volunteers to the communities and places they will be staying, being their work not rewarded with payment.
We believe that the European Voluntary Service is a mechanism full of experiences, allowing the approved candidates to have the privilege of taking part in these projects and benefit the places and communities where these volunteers will be staying.
Since 2013, the University of Madeira Students’ Union has received volunteers that have collaborated in several activities and initiatives. Besides being able to enjoy a wonderful experience which will contribute to their personal and professional growth, they are able to contribute in a unique way to the community in which they are inserted and to join dozens of volunteers from the University of Madeira.