VISION 21: Volunteerism and Social Services in the 21st century



Institute for the Development of Social Services (IRSS, ) is a research and vocational training organization established by, but no longer afilliated with, Poland’s Ministry of Economy, Labour and Social Affairs. Drawing on the vast expertise of our research and training staff, which includes former government ministers and high level academics, we provide a range of eduational, consultancy and research services for the social policy sector. From in-service training programmes for social workers, think-tank services for social policy-makers, through specialist journals on various aspects of social and disability policy and a range of research programmes – our Institute provides valued, multidisciplinary contribution to the shaping and anlysis of Poland’s social policy.


Insitut de Recherche et d Information sur le Volontariat (IRIV (Paris, France) created in 1997 by Bendicte Halba, doctor in Economics, the Institute is a permanent structure making studies, providing councils and organising training on volunteering and non profit sector. Works made or being made by IRIV in the volunteering field include :

  • Assessing Voluntary Experiences in a professional perspective (2003-2006), European project under the Leonardo da Vinci Programme, gathering, France, Austria, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland and the United Kingdom ;
  • in the field of migrants volunteering: MEM VOL (2003) European project gathering Denmark, Germany ,Austria, France, the Netherlands, United Kingdom;
  • in the field of training programmes: "Work with volunteers" for social workers, social education workers and familiar professions (2000-2001)
  • European project under the Leonardo da Vinci Programme gathering Austria, France and Germany; "Evaluation of a volunteers network" (2001)

  • Study for a national Training centre for executive volunteers (2000-2001)
  • "Training program for volunteers " (2000); IRIV proposes training programmes for paid staff and volunteers working within the non profit sector (non governmental organisations, public authorities, private firms). The Institute has published 3 books on various aspects of volunteerism.


    Instituto de Educacion Secundaria San Isidro (Azuqueca de Henares, Spain) is a public Secondary and Vocational School located in Azuqueca de Henares, a little town near Madrid (Spain). It offers different courses, one of them related to Social Work. This one is a Ruled Vocational Training course named "Social Integration" addressed to students aged 18 and over. After school, the "Social Integration" students are going to work helping the disabled and disadvantaged people, the immigrants, the elderly, etc. The Institute has developed an extensive network of contacts among both social work agencies and NGOs working with the socially marginalized. These two sectors represent the prospective employers of the course graduates. Both they, and the trainers and the coaches in "Social Integration" will be involved in the Grundtvig Project, in order both to gain a better professional competence and to promote the volunteer engagement.


    Lunaria (Rome, Italy) is an association started in 1992 carrying out research, information, training and action on the social economy, immigration, globalisation, youth programmes and voluntary service. Activities include:

  • campaigns, building coalitions of civil society groups for alternative priorities in public expenditure, expanding the third sector, North-South solidarity, integration of immigrants
  • research, with projects on public expenditure, employment and work in the social economy, ethical finance, immigrants, globalisation
  • communication and information, with the newsletter Infoluna, the website and collaboration to newspapers and magazines
  • services, advising non profit organizations on law, fiscal and financial opportunities training, with courses on the social economy, managing non profit organizations and understanding globalization
  • voluntary service, with activities for the European voluntary service
  • workcamps for youth and solidarity activities
  • Lunaria has just finished to coordinate a Socrates project in the framework of the Grundtvig 1 action titled Mobility 55 aiming at verifying the inclination toward mobility abroad, in voluntary service projects, of people over 55, as a lifelong learning opportunity and now it is co-ordinating another one dealing with training of over 50 y.o international volunteers.