The number of people affected by natural disasters worldwide every year is on the rise. The greatest impact is on already-vulnerable regions containing great numbers of people living in poverty.
VSO helped deliver a pilot of the EU Aid Volunteers initiative, a scheme that aims to deliver 4,000 European humanitarian aid volunteers by 2020 to placements where they can contribute to humanitarian work and express European solidarity by helping people caught up in crises.
The number of natural and man-made disasters in the world has significantly increased over the last decades and this trend is unfortunately likely to continue.
Organisations who aim to help people at risk of being struck by disasters need more well prepared people to help them support these communities.
EU Aid Volunteers (EUAV) is a new initiative that has been delivered by the European Union's Humanitarian Office, DG ECHO.
The scheme contributes to the EU's humanitarian efforts by supporting communities in reducing the impact of disasters by increasing preparedness, as well as reducing the risk of disasters occurring in the first place. It also gives opportunities to Europeans eager to help practically where help is most urgently needed.
EU Aid Volunteers pilot and VSO
From 2011-2015, DG ECHO piloted the EUAV initiative through three consecutive rounds of projects.
VSO delivered volunteers to placements during two of these pilots.
In the first pilot, we recruited 31 volunteers from 9 European countries to work on projects in Bangladesh, Pakistan and South Sudan.
The second pilot involved 17 volunteers of 5 European nationalities working on preparing for disasters and minimising their risk in India, Pakistan and the Philippines.
Find out more and learn more about the volunteers' impact so far by downloading VSO’s EU Aid Volunteers in Action brochure [PDF].