SCI and COVID-19

On 11th March 2020, the WHO declared the COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic. This global situation had a direct effect on SCI’s work as an international peace organisation. Since the beginning, SCI has been working on understanding and reacting to the health emergency created by the spread of the COVID-19 virus, as the safety and wellbeing of our volunteers and local communities is our priority and our branches’ and partners’ work has been affected to varying degrees.

Each SCI branch and organisation closely follows the current measures in their country and informs participants about any COVID-19-related requirements and what precautions will be put in place to create a safe environment.

Some activities allow travel and can take place in person, some others will be fully online, and some will be a combination of online and offline activities. During these years, our organisations developed different creative methodologies to make sure that our activities are safe, engaging and useful.

General advice for travelling to our projects

Workcamps will be confirmed four weeks before their starting date. We ask volunteers who have been accepted to a project to wait to buy any travel tickets until the workcamp is confirmed or to buy a personal travel insurance which covers cancellation, and to keep informed on the recommendations by the health authorities of your country and the country where your project takes place, as restrictions may apply. You can have a look at, and apply to, projects on our search engine and we invite you to get in touch with your sending organisation for more information. You can find your organisation here.

Useful links

  1. WHO’s page on coronavirus desease, including its global situation reports and the advice for the public.
  2. IATA travel: travel restrictions around the world. Click here

How did SCI deal with the pandemic in the beginning?

After consultations with members, SCI made the temporary decision to suspend all placements between 21st March 2020 and 7th May 2020. On 8th May 2020 placements opened again with new online or local opportunities, as well as international workcamps that follow stricter safety measures. We have worked hard to ensure that our commitment to a more peaceful world did not stop when was most needed, and that our volunteers and local communities were safe in contributing to this vision.

Below you can read our statements on the initial situation, and some branches’ statements as well. 

SCI Germany official statement of 2020 in German and English.

SCI Italy official statement (13 March 2020, in Italian).

SCI Catalunya official statement (2020, in Catalan).

SCI Switzerland official statement 2020 in German and in French and the statement about workcamps 2021 for Swiss residents here.


Coronavirus: here we are using the widespread term Coronavirus to indicate what the WHO informally calls COVID-19 virus, whose scientific name is severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2).

COVID-19: the Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) is responsible for the development of the disease called coronavirus disease (COVID-19)