Wednesday, November 24, 2010
Towards the creation of a European Voluntary Humanitarian Aid Corps
The Lisbon Treaty foresees the establishment of a European Voluntary Humanitarian Aid Corps. On November 23, European Commission adopted a communication which analyzes the situation of volunteerism in Europe and defines the needs in this area. This document also provides a study on how to positively contribute to humanitarian aid operations in Europe.Kristalina Georgieva, European Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response stated that the Corps would enable Europeans to express their commitment to solidarity, and to work together as citizens of the EU. Helping people affected by disasters offers the opportunity to contribute to a more cohesive European society.
The European Voluntary Corps will add value to existing voluntary schemes through selection, training and deployment of volunteers.
It will have strong synergies with existing voluntary organisations and structures. In order to avoid duplication and funding diversion, the Corps will be demand-driven and needs-based, and will support local capacities.
The Commission has already started consultations with stakeholders. An open consultation will formally be launched by the end of the year.
The Commission will continue to analyse the opportunities and the possible forms of cooperation with relevant actors. It will also carry out an impact assessment of the cost-effectiveness and social impact of the areas in which the Corps can act.
In 2011, the European year of volunteering, some of the ideas identified so far will be tested through pilot actions. A legislative proposal is envisaged for the year after.
Source European Commission website
More information Press room - European Commission
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