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Young people on the move: A study about young Europeans who participate in European Voluntary Service.
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Social Work.
2013 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesisAlternative title
Unga människor i rörelse; En uppsats om unga Européer som deltar i Europeisk volontärtjänst. (Swedish)
Abstract [en]

The primary aim of this study is to investigate young people´s motives and expectations for participating in the action two “European Voluntary Service” (EVS) under the Youth In Action programme supported by the European Commission at the youth center Villa Elba in Finland. The study also aims to identify which competences the young people think they have developed through EVS. The study consists of one group interview and one focus group interview with ten EVS volunteers in total who accomplish short-term EVS and long term EVS during one month respectively nine months. The methodology is based upon a qualitative research approach and in order to reach a better understanding of the respondents’ motives for participating in EVS, the theories modernity, reflexive project of the self and the individualized society were chosen. The study is also based upon background information about EVS and earlier research. The results indicate that the EVS volunteers’ main motives for participating in EVS were: acquiring new skills, meet new people, and experience an adventure in another country. The most common competence developments turned out to be in the areas of language, social and initiative skills. Moreover, the study demonstrates that many young people in Europe face difficulties in getting into the labour market and becoming independent. The main reason is the economic recession which has severely affected the situation for young people in Europe and this is also confirmed by earlier research. Even though the respondents had positive opinions about their EVS project, criticism was raised towards the European Union´s ideas of creating a feeling of European Citizenship through programmes such as EVS.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2013. , 32 p.
Keyword [en]
international volunteering, competence development, non-formal learning, European Voluntary Service
National Category
Social Work
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-87004OAI: diva2:705745
External cooperation
European volontary service
Educational program
Study Programme for Social Work
Available from: 2014-03-21 Created: 2014-03-17 Last updated: 2016-03-10Bibliographically approved

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