This initiative is jointly launched by the Fundació Pere Tarrés together with the Spanish Volunteering Platform
It is estimated that in Spain there are around 29,000 non-profit social organisations that host some 2.7 million volunteers in different projects and causes. This figure amounts to 5.8% of Spain’s adult population, and comes with a huge potential for social transformation.
Focusing on this group, on Wednesday 29th June 'La Volunteca' was presented. It is a new on-line resource centre for volunteering and the social non-profit sector and is a tool that aims to “come up with a value proposal that can help manage a growing sense of solidarity”. The centre is launched by the Fundació Pere Tarrés and the Spanish Volunteering Platform.
In a social context of ongoing crises and changes that increase inequalities, 'La Volunteca' aims at providing a space of knowledge and reflexion on volunteering and the Spanish non-profit social sector. This platform intends to provide upskilling and reskilling tools for organisations working with volunteers and also for people who dedicate some of their time to preserve and grow citizens’ rights.
'La Volunteca' is the first resource centre designed for and by Spanish volunteering; it is an on-line platform with practical tools, useful information and logistical and theory-based support to meet the growing needs of the non-profit sector.
It is also useful to connect non-profit organisation and volunteers, to foster better relationships and to incorporate, retain and contribute socially so that social organisations can meet the social challenges brought on by the pandemic with better preparedness.
‘La Volunteca’ brings together the resources in a webpage, www.lavolunteca.com, under different sections such as training materials, latest news from Spanish volunteering associations, a section with tools and resources to improve the daily functioning of organisations or a library with reports, handbooks, studies and other documents.
In the future the aim is also to include a section with information on both public and private calls for funding and also reports and useful tips on international affairs.
This new platform is open to any organisation wishing to sign up: by becoming a collaborator an organisation can actively engage with the platform and post and read documents and training materials.
The initiative launched by Fundació Pere Tarrés and the Spanish Volunteering Platform was presented on 29 June at an event with Sebastián Mora, who holds a PhD in Sociology and is a lecturer at the Universidad Pontifícia Comillas and Begoña Román, doctor in Philosophy, lecturer at the Universitat de Barcelona and chair of the Ethics Committee of the Catalan Social Services.
The session was also attended by Isabel Garceran, the Deputy Vice-Director for the Third Sector and Volunteering at the Ministry of Social Rights and the 2030 Agenda, Luciano Poyato, President of the Spanish Volunteering Platform, and Rafael Ruiz de Gauna, the Deputy Director of the Fundació Pere Tarrés.
Sebastián Mora presented the current overview of volunteering: “Volunteering should act as a firewall against barbarianism, a watchtower for reality”. He gave the example where society didn’t play its part, with the welcoming of Syrian refugees compared to Ukrainian refugees: “There is no such thing as first and second-class lives or dignity. Volunteering should watch out for these realities. Volunteering isn’t just a social actor doing things, it must be a transformative and recreational power”.
Philosopher Begoña Román called to “professionalise volunteering, assess its actions and transfer best practices so that this knowledge isn’t lost when a person leaves”. Román believes we should create spaces for debate and self-reflexion on volunteering. “It’s no good saying ‘It gives me more than what I offer’, she highlighted, saying how important it is to listen to what beneficiaries have to say and applying this to improve the functioning of organisations.
Join us as a collaborator
All organisations that might be interested in joining as a collaborator of La Volunteca may do so by filling in the registration form, that will then be validated by the project coordinator.