COVID-19 updates

As an international peace organisation, SCI has been working on understanding and reacting to the health emergency created by the spread of the COVID-19 virus since the beginning, as the safety and wellbeing of our volunteers is our priority and our branches’ and partners’ work has already been affected to varying degrees.

On the 12th of March, the WHO declared the COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic. This has a direct effect on SCI’s work and activities and it is our priority to keep you informed on changes as they happen.

We would like to gather here the information that we have from the ground, and communicate what action we are taking to do our part in this challenging moment.

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 and will keep working to ensure that our commitment to a more peaceful world does not stop when is most needed, and that our volunteers and local communities are safe in contributing to this vision.

Useful links
  1. Global situation report from WHO. Click here
  2. WHO’s advice for the public (Infographic and Video). Click here
  3. A handbook about COVID-19 virus and how to prevent it. Click here
  4. Expat.com: Update on border control around the world. Click here
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.
Information from organisations
Czech Republic
Our partner INEX-SDA Czech Republic took the difficult decision to cancel at this moment the incoming placement for all their international workcamps for the upcoming summer season. They still accept national volunteers.

Finland
KVT Finland has decided to suspend sending volunteers to projects abroad as well as all projects in Finland that require physical participation until 31 July. 

Germany
SCI Germany official statement in German and English.

Indonesia
Our partner IIWC of PKBI cancelled the workcamps taking place before July 2020. They still accept volunteers for the work camps starting on/after July 2020. 

Italy
SCI Italy official statement (13 March 2020, in Italian). Considering the uncertain situation, especially in Italy, SCI Italy has decided to suspend the workcamps placements (incoming and outgoing) at least until June 15th.

Kosovo
GAIA Kosovo is temporarily suspending all placement on their end (therefore not accept any application from incoming or outgoing volunteers) until 1st June 2020. They will revise this decision on the 1st of June and take measures accordingly. For now, they are not comfortable with accepting any application since the situation with the pandemic has not come to the stage which permits the camps to take place in Kosovo. Their workcamps are not cancelled, only temporarily not available for application.

Spain
SCI Catalunya official statement (in Catalan)

Sweden
SCI Sweden has decided to postpone the beginning of its camp to July 26th in order to follow the Swedish Foreign department advice against international travel until 15th July.

Switzerland
SCI Switzerland official statement in German and in French.

Country information
Terminology

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)