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The other kind of experience

A small warning before we go on: International Voluntary Service has nothing to do with prolonged holidays. You will be living and working for half a year or 12 month in Cologne – like all other citizens. But this is the interesting challenge. You will get to know people and contexts, which tourists normally don’t get to see. You will find new experience, which you won’t have in other circumstances. You will learn to converse fluently in German. And above all, you will do a job, that will fulfil your needs.

What you can expect

Voluntary Service is really voluntary. You may chose where to go and what to do. There is a wide variety of options: we offer social, cultural, ecological projects, which  want your contribution. Your housing and food are free. And on top you receive a monthly allowance. Voluntary Service is also a service. If you have decided to work in some project, then you accept also the responsibility for the job. This can be a very important experience – sometimes even for your future profession, for which you want to prepare yourself.

The partner cities

We prefer applications form residents of cities that are twinned with Cologne. At the moment we cooperate with partner organisations from:

  • Barcelona (Spain)

  • Cluj Napoca (Rumania)

  • Cork (Republic of Ireland)

  • Istanbul (Turkey)

  • Lille (France)

  • Liverpool (Great Britain)

  • Rotterdam (The Netherlands)

  • Thessaloniki (Greece)

  • Tel Aviv (Israel)

The projects

You may chose, in which field you want to work in in Cologne.

There is a variety of  non-for-profit organisations like

  • Social work

  • Youthwork

  • Museum and theatre

  • Care of historical monuments

  • Protection of nature and animals

  • Associations for sportive activities

The duration of the voluntary service
  • 12 months

  • Service starts usually mid September each year.

Prerequisites
  • Stable interest in voluntary service

  • Good German.

  • Some projects require even very good knowledge of German.

  • Interest and curiosity in other people and cultures

  • Age between 18 and 30

What you can expect as a volunteer
  • Free room and board

  • Monthly allowance

  • Health insurance.

  • Insurance for accidents and other required insurances.

  • Two days off per month of service.

  • Certificate of completion of the Voluntary Service

In special casis

  • Travel expenses and local transport expenses are being reimbursed.

  • Language course in Cologne are paid for to a certain extent.

And...
  • You will take part in special trainings which will be arranged during your voluntary service in Cologne

  • A personal mentor will be at your side and support you in whatever you need during your time of voluntary service in Cologne

The Cologne Volunteer Center

The Volunteer Center is a not for profit organisation providing the organisational base for voluntary services. To people of all age groups we offer to find a modern voluntary job. We can offer a wide variety of projects in the cultural, ecological, social and athletic fields. We also coach companies who are interested in local Corporate Volunteering for their staff.

About Cologne

Cologne is a major German city with about 1 million inhabitants. It is located in the federal state of North-Rhine-Westphalia, in the western part of Germany, close to the borders of France, Belgium and The Netherlands.
Every since the Middle Ages Cologne has been and is still a center for international fairs and commerce. 25 of the most important international fairs of the various kinds of commerce are happening every year in Cologne.
Cologne – center of cultural activities with a large number of museums, which in different ways reflect the 2000 years of Cologne history. The music hall Kölner Philharmonie is one of the most famous in Europe. There are more then 100 art galleries. Lots of clubs, cabarets, theatres and opera offer a spectacular culturally diverse programme. There are more bars and restaurants per inhabitant in Cologne then in any other German major city.
Cologne is also the center of media. More than 25 % of the German television programmes are being produced in Cologne. Various communication businesses build up the logistics for an expanding economic service sector and the networks of scientific research.
Cologne University is the largest and oldest university in Germany, very popular for students. The University of Applied Sciences with their focus on Engineering is the largest of its kind in Germany. The University of Physical Education and University of Arts are famous worldwide.
Cologne – center of transport systems. 10 European Freeways are connected to the Cologne Freeway system. The train station is considered one of the main train junctions in Europe. The airports of Köln/Bonn and Düsseldorf are close.

An application form you find here Download


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