Our Volunteers’ Hub plays a vital role at the Ivanaj Foundation Institute in Tirana, working alongside staff members, other volunteers, and the local community to jointly achieve goals of ours and others.
Thanks to our Foundation’s sister organization in New York, we are aware that a National Volunteer Week is celebrated annually in the USA, and this year it falls from April 17 through April 23. This timetable offers us the perfect opportunity to highlight even more the involvement of our Albanian Institute’s large volunteer workforce, whose work is being regularly reported via our blog postings
While we plan to document further online some of the outstanding contribution of the active members that did and continue to come through our open doors, following we like to share some basic and interesting facts of this group of ours, officially named “VOLIF”.
Statistics from our VOLIF’s database:
From the overwhelming number of applications submitted online through our website, we have approved and registered 161 profiles since June 2017.
Some members moved abroad, some others switched priorities, but despite all the changes, currently we have 40+ active, participating, contributing members that work with us in person and online.
Average age & gender:
Age ranges from 15 to 34 years, of which 70% are females. Included are few senior volunteers that provide a great mixture of diversity within the group thanks to their life experiences.
Majority of our members are located in Tirana, but we have representations in Korça and Fier. Some volunteers moved abroad (to Italy, Germany and USA), but did not cut ties, and help remotely when possible. Distance is not a barrier!
We are delighted to count on a variety of different educational backgrounds and expertise: from majors in business, to social/computer sciences, to electrical/agricultural/electronic engineering, to students from completely opposed fields such as biological and biomedical sciences. From fine arts, literature, history, journalism, philosophy majors and architecture, to other professional types of more demanding degrees such as law, nursing, pharmacy, and of course medical students.
Variety & methods of attendance:
The group meets regularly every month to debrief and plan activities and tasks. During the pandemic the meetings and trainings continued online using platforms such as Zoom and Skype.
Outdoor activities and networking events are usually organized during festivities and as part of the teambuilding process.
Types of handled activities (projects implementation & charitable causes):
We have employed and involved skilled volunteers to manage, coordinate, assist in complex projects in educational and environmental fields and programs funded by the US, Western Balkans, Tirana Municipality, private donors etc. Even in extraordinary circumstances caused by the disastrous earthquake and pandemic, the volunteers played an important role in the successful implementation of related projects.
Yearly charitable projects and contributions are handled and coordinated by them from start to end.
Benefits received by VOLIFs:
Gained real-world career prep & experience, a sense of purpose and community, while learning valuable social and soft skills.
Letters of Recommendation and Certificate of Appreciations are granted to accomplished members, to reward their efforts and help them achieve the career path and educational level they seek to accomplish, thus setting the ground to build their future in Albania.