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. 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

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.

Germany
SCI Germany official statement in German and English.

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

Norway
ID Norway cancelled all their planned worcamps for the year 2020, due to COVID-19. They also follow the advice for travelling abroad from the Norwegian authorities, therefore they will not send any volunteers to short-term and long-term projects abroad as long as the advice will be valid.

Serbia
Our partner Young Researchers of Serbia – Voluntary Service of Serbia decided to restrict their workcamps to national volunteers, given the worsening health situation in the country and the continually changing travel restrictions.

Spain
SCI Catalunya official statement (in Catalan)

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)