@ SIW Internationale Vrijwilligersprojecten
Willemstraat 7 (see X on map)
3511 RJ Utrecht The Netherlands
Participating volunteers should be at least 18 years old.
++31 (0) 30-2343465
We do not process any applications before the first of April. Please contact us if you need more information about our projects or the Netherlands or if we can help you with anything else.
index important information our projects in short SIW in short
page 3 3 10
our projects in 2011: (letter = map) nature purpuse of our nat. pr. 4 Oudemolen 5 (A) Bakkeveen 5 (A) Twijzel 5 (A) construction Ermelo 7 (B) social Winterswijk 8 (C) Kanaleneiland 9 (D) Parkwijk 10 (D)
our projects in short Each year, SIW organizes around ten international voluntary projects in the Netherlands. These projects last two weeks, and take place during the summer (from May until September). The number of volunteers in a project varies from 6 to 20. English is the spoken language in all of the work camps. work The volunteers are required to work 30 hours a week, spread over 4 or 5 days. We offer various types of work. In 2011 that will be natureprojects, construction, and social projects. thematic programme The volunteers are engaged in a thematic background programme. This programme is closely related to the locals where the projects takes place. As part of the get out of the project-bubble initiative, the goal of the thematic program is to improve contact between participants and locals. recreational program Besides work-related activities SIW also organizes a recreational program. For both the theme and recreational program, there are enough opportunities for ideas and initiatives from the volunteers themselves. project leaders SIW projects are organized in cooperation with the partner organization who supervises the work. There are two SIW coordinators in each work camp: two SIW volunteers who carry out all practical preparatory work and arrange daily matters during the project. They will be living and working along with the participants, and are responsible during the project. The participants, the group of international volunteers, are also responsible for the success of the project.
Their tasks include organizing trips, buying food and cooking in shifts. They are expec-ted to help in solving any occurring problems, to take on an active attitude towards any of the activities, to show initiative and a sense of responsibility towards the work, the theme, and above all towards each other. conditions for participation The projects are accessible to volunteers between 18 and 99 years old (unless stated differently). We try to avoid having more than two people from the same nationality in one project. SIW is committed to providing opportunities for all people, also for volunteers with disabilities. We prefer to deal with each application individually to meet different needs. Please contact us (see page 3). bikes In most cases the volunteers use bikes (like the rest of the Dutch). It is easy to bike in the Netherlands due to its flat surface. And camp leaders or other volunteers are often prepared to help you learn how to ride a bike. insurance SIW provides all volunteers on SIW projects with insurance cover for accidents, illness and third party injury, only in case personal insurances don't cover the costs. Volunteers are expected to bring proof of their health/ travel insurance if they have one. Travel arrangements and theft of personal property are not covered. Therefore, all participants are advised to make their own arrangements for this purpose. no drugs in our work camps! The fact that soft drugs are (almost) legal in The Netherlands is for some participants an incentive to smoke drugs whenever they want. However, in the past years this has caused many problems at work camps for the other participants, the camp leaders and the partner organization as well. Since 2000 we have adopted the rule for all our work camps that during the whole work camp, it is strictly forbidden to use drugs. Participants
In this booklet youâ€™ll only find very little and short information about our projects, as we are still improving them for you and the participants. Please contact us if you need more information about our projects or general information about the Netherlands or anything else.
Karin van Mullem
who use drugs at any time during the work camp, will be sent away !! social work is interesting, but not always easy Some of our work camps are in refugee centres or in institutes for mentally and/or physically disabled persons. These kind of work camps can be a very interesting experience. However, participants should realize beforehand what it means for the kind of holiday they will have. Some people find the atmosphere in this kind of institutions very sad and hopeless. It can be difficult to be confronted with the lives of disabled people in mental hospitals and with the uncertain future refugees often have. Participants should ask themselves beforehand whether they will be able to deal with this and whether they want to participate in this type of work camps.
There is a saying that ‘God created the world and the Dutch the Netherlands’. This is exactly why we need volunteers to help with nature projects in the Netherlands. The Netherlands doesn’t have nature but they created it. First the land itself, by building dikes it’s now possible to live beneath sea level. And later the landscapes were formed and maintained by the economical use it had. Thousands of sheep would maintain the heath. Roof hatchers maintained our grass swamps and the use of peat for the ovens used to make that small drenched were made in the peat lands. The most beautiful natural areas in the Netherlands can therefore be considered as cultural landscapes.
motivation letter We ask volunteers to write a motivation letter of about half a page long, in which they can explain why they want to participate in a particular project, what kind of projects they have participated in before or experiences that fit the project. SIW and partner organizations for whom the work is done, really appreciate it if participants are motivated. A motivation letter is always appreciated, but look for special notes in the project descriptions for which projects we require a motivation letter.
The problem nowadays is that there are barely any sheep’s left, it’s cheaper to have tiles on our roofs instead of thatched roof and electricity is a lot simpler than burning peat. The loss of these habits means that these very unique landscapes which are so typical for the Netherlands will disappear if not maintained. If nothing would be done to preserve our cultural landscapes they would disappear as well as some unique plants and animals and ecosystems, leaving a forest behind.
more general information More detailed information about The Netherlands, travel information and general SIW information can be send to you on request. This is meant as additional information besides the infosheet and can be send to everyone who is participating in a SIW project.
Dutch nature organizations therefore still help nature by maintaining some old uses. Nowadays they do receive any profit from the work they do, but it helps to preserve our cultural landscapes with its unique plants and animals and ecosystems. In some areas however it is hard to get there with machines, and things have to be done the same way our ancestors did them; by hand.
infosheets More detailed information about the project (info sheets) will be sent to the exchange partners. Last minute participants will directly receive the info sheets by mail with a cc to the organization.
Dutch nature organizations cannot handle all this laborintensive work. And some unique natural areas would disappear if not hundreds of volunteers would yearly help out with the maintaining of the Dutch cultural landscape. In the summer SIW groups help out as well.
welcome letter Volunteers will receive a letter from their camp leader. It is either sent with the info sheet to the exchange partners or directly to the volunteer. Last minute participants will receive the welcome letter directly by mail with a cc to the organization.
purpose of our nature projects
23-07-2011 / 06-08-2011
27-08-2011 / 10-09-2011
work This project is set in the beautiful village of Bakkeveen, situated in the north and right at the border of where the provinces Friesland, Groningen and Drenthe come together. An untained part of Fries land, known for its woods, heathland and dunes. A great place to take long walks, ride a bike and enjoy the scenery. The participants will do different activities. During this project there will also be room for recreational and cultural activities with the inhabitants of the village.
work A small village in Friesland, known for its culturalhistoric and blooming blue-grass landscapes and swamp forests. The participants will play an important role in the preservation of the flora and fauna of the area. Together with the state forest rangers participants will do different activities such as cutting, dredging and pilling up the paths. accommodation In-house sleeping places with beds will be provided for.
accommodation Tents will be provided, please bring your own sleeping mattress and towels.
terminal Not known yet.
terminal Not known yet.
Oudemolen 20-08-2011 / 03-09-2011 work Drentsche Aa offers a various landscape of woods, heathland and meadows together with old villages. It is a perfect area to walk through so you can see the various landscapes. There is also a lot of water in the north of Drenthe. This part is called the â€˜stroomdallenlandschapâ€™ which you can reach by bike approximately 30 minutes from Assen and Groningen. The participants will do different activities like; cutting, dredging, pilling up the paths and haymaking. accommodation Volunteers are expected to bring their own tents and sleeping materials. Minimal sanitary facilities: primitive. location Oudemolen, situated in the province of Drenthe. terminal Assen, volunteers will be picked up.
03-09-2011 / 17-03-2011
exact date yet unknown
work The KNHS (Dutch Royal Sport Federation), situated in Ermelo is one of the biggest sport federations of the Netherlands. 8 disciplines of the horse riding sport are connected to the KNHS. The volunteers will stay at the KNHS and they will renovate the materials which are used at competitions for example beams, they will also help with construction of the competitions and they will do some work in the garden.
work In Utrecht there are three Emmaus location. Already for the third time in a row, we organize this project, which is situated in the city center, in the part called Parkwijk. Emmaus is a living - work community which also accommodates people, who need it, regardless of their reasons. All the people who are living at the Emmaus work at the second hand store which also includes recycling. The volunteers will help out at the second hand store which includes for example picking up second hand goods.
accommodation You will stay in the hippique center itself. There is a big cafeteria were you will eat together with employees during the day and with your group during the evening. location Ermelo. It is situated in the center of the Netherlands in a natural area called â€˜de Veluwenâ€™. terminal Ermelo (station) special notes Volunteers should not expect to work with horses.
accommodation Volunteers will sleep in tents of the big garden of Emmaus. They have to bring their own tents to the project. They will cook and eat together with the inhabitants of Emmaus. location Parkwijk is an area in the city of Utrecht. terminal Trainstation Utrecht Centraal, +/- 40 minutes from national Airport Schiphol.
exact date yet unknown
exact date yet unknown
work In the Netherlands we have a lot of asylum seeker centers. These locations are the living areas for migrants and refugees who want to apply for Dutch citizenship, because they cannot live in their own country anymore. Sometimes these persons live for several years in these centers and every half a year they have to move from one center to the other. The centers try their hardest to make their stay as pleasant as possible: they organize activities and Dutch language classes and they learn them about many aspects of the Dutch society. The center in Winterswijk is one of the biggest in the Netherlands and looks like a small village on its own. In the summer holiday some of the children can spend time with family on other locations, but the children that stay in the accommodation are bored, because there is no school and they are not going on holiday. Our participants will organize recreational (such as creativity classes and theatre) and sports activities for and with refugee children and youngsters of 4-18 years old, during their summer holiday.
work This project will take place in Kanaleneiland, situated in the heart of The Netherlands in the city of Utrecht, and well-known for its multicultural inhabitants. A area that has seen a big growth of social housing in the 60s and has therefore attracted a huge number of people from different cultural backgrounds. This has made Kanaleneiland into a melting pot of cultures and a very interesting and characteristic part of Utrecht. Volunteers will do a variety of jobs in this area. accommodation A in-house place to sleep, in the middle of the area, will be provided. Participants are asked to bring their own sleeping mattress and towels. location The city of Utrecht, in the very heart of the Netherlands. terminal Trainstation Utrecht Centraal, +/- 40 minutes from national Airport Schiphol.
accommodation You will stay in a scout center near the asylum seeker center. Participants need to bring sleeping bag and mattress. You will cook together with the other participants. location Winterswijk terminal Trainstation Winterswijk
SIW in short SIW is a non-governmental, non-profit voluntary service organization that was founded in 1953. our objectives • stimulate the personal growth and development of young people; • encourage international contact and understanding; • carry out social, cultural and environmental work. our activities These objectives are realized by the following activities: • sending young people (16 to 35 years old) from the Netherlands to projects abroad • welcoming young people from abroad in international volunteer projects in the Netherlands; • organizing trainings for people of SIW and camp leaders. our organization In the Netherlands, SIW is one of the largest organiza-
tions running projects and sending volunteers abroad on this scale. The activities of SIW, based in the city Utrecht, are organized by volunteers. SIW employs three persons for the administrative and financial work concerning the exchange and the Dutch projects. Each year, a general assembly decides on policies for the coming year. An executive board is responsible for executing the assembly's decisions. Besides the board there is a supporting group which exist out of two committees, the incoming and the outgoing committee. Our 70 volunteers are divided into subgroups who each deal with a specific area such as the Publicity Group, Asia Group and Dutch Projects Group. Each group has various tasks, such as organizing the voluntary work camps in the Netherlands. our sources of income SIW's income largely consists of contributions and subscription fees from the project participants, and funds for projects in the Netherlands. These subsidies come from different sources. The foundation does not receive any regular grants.