MIDDLE- AND LONG-TERM VOLUNTEERING
A middle term project usually lasts from 3 to 6 months, and a long term project – a year or longer. It’s a non-formal international learning experience developing volunteer’s sensitivity towards social and cultural differences, self-confidence and problem solving ability. Middle and long-term volunteering is individual rather than in groups. Often there are 2-3 volunteers working on a certain project. Note that it is not a workcamp environment and if there is a group, it will be smaller and the work and the everyday life is not group-oriented.
Usually a short training or orientation session is given to the volunteers in
the very beging of the project, to help them get acquainted with the project
aims, the host organization, the local customs and culture. This may include
also a basic training in the local language.
Middle and long term volunteers are immersed in the local culture to a much greater extent allowing them to integrate better with the local community and actually become part of it. Over time volunteers can learn the local language, make friends and better understand the needs and problems of the locals. This enables them to take more active role in the running of the project by implementing their own ideas for accomplishment of better outcomes.