Every day in Belgium, hundreds of volunteers are working hard to help asylum seekers and refugees: in local volunteer groups, in reception centres, with activities for refugees, as guardians for minors, etc. Volunteers not only provide indispensable support for the work that numerous organisations are carrying out. Voluntary work is also a way to create broad public support for asylum seekers and reception centres.
Would you like to give us a hand and become a volunteer? Here are a few ideas to get started:
- In a reception centre or local reception project: Volunteers in the reception centres help to organise and support group activities, they give language and IT courses, accompany asylum seekers on excursions or training camps, offer support for sports and cultural activities and provide entertainment for the children. At times they may simply offer a sympathetic ear.Would you be interested in helping out a few hours per week? Get in touch with a reception centre in your area or with the OCMW (Public Centre for Social Welfare) to find a local reception project.
The Red Cross has some job descriptions for voluntary work, which you can find here.
- With a local volunteer group: Throughout Flanders, local volunteers are actively engaged in giving refugees practical information, with welcoming and supporting them, etc. You can join an existing volunteer project in your neighbourhood or set up a new group yourself. New groups can affiliate with the Gastvrij Netwerk (Hospitable Network) of the Flemish Refugee Action. Gastvrij Netwerk vzw is an association that brings volunteer groups together, arranges exchanges, etc. You can contact it by sending an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org.