Volunteers in Action!
Volunteers in action is a high-value-added service whose aim is to identify young professionals that can carry out a hands-on transfers of applied practical know how and a wide variety of specialized tasks related to the sustainable development of tourism.
The participation of Volunteers directly contributes to sustainable development through tourism. They can significantly expand the scope of often badly needed direct guidance and support local stakeholders in implementing sustainable development programmes and projects, working for the technical team in charge of carrying out these initiatives. Volunteers play a crucial role through their specialist knowledge and expertise.
The Volunteer Corps is composed of young professionals who have received training in development and poverty reduction through the University Course Tourism and International Cooperation for Development, and who are dedicated to service, commitment and solidarity.
Currently, this corps is composed of over 160 professionals, many of whom have a consolidated career, from around the world, ranging from between 22 and 50 years old, and belonging to such diverse disciplines as:
• business administration
• training and capacity building in tourism
• architecture and urbanism
• tourism (food services, hotel management, travel agencies, public management of tourism)
The members of the Volunteers Corps can contribute to a wide variety of activities, carrying out:
• Tourism products design;
• Business incubation for microbusiness;
• Design, evaluation and follow-up of projects;
• Diagnostic assessments and resource evaluation;
• Tourism inventories;
• Setting up a tourism information systems;
• Tourism promotion actions: website development, promotional materials;
• Development and implementation of tourism signposting;
• Value chain analyses;
• Improvement of urban image and territorial planning of tourism;
• Support to small hotel and restaurant establishments in customer service techniques, image, hygiene, products, marketing.
Bringing Volunteers into projects
Entities that wish to bring Volunteers into their development programmes/projects can contact the UNWTO.Themis Foundation indicating:
• Description of the programme/project, including references to the country/region where it is being carried out, counterparties and the technical team managing the programme/project.
• Needs that they wish to cover through the involvement of a UNWTO volunteer
• An approximate description of the profile and number of Volunteers needed for action.
The UNWTO.Themis Foundation carries out a pre-selection of candidates that it finalizes with the requesting entity, in order to proceed with the integration of the Volunteer(s) in the programme/project. The Foundation subsequently carries out a follow-up evaluation of the performance of the Volunteer in conjunction with the requesting entity.
Volunteers are motivated by a spirit of service and solidarity, which they seek to consolidate through a highly enriching professional and personal experience, without receiving any salary for their work.
However, the following should be provided for their participation: transport from their place of residence, internal transport, a monthly allowance based on the cost of living.
The resources necessary to cover these costs can be drawn from:
• Own resources of the requesting entity
• Facilities provided by the host country of the Project
• Resources from funds for international cooperation