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European Youth Portal

Information and opportunities for young people across Europe.


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AKB, Blåkildegård


EVS Accreditation Details
EVS accreditation type
organisation_acctype: 
Sending
Receiving
Coordinating
EVS accreditation expiry date 29/08/2015
Location Taastrup, Denmark
Organisation topics
organisation_theme: 
European awareness
Development cooperation
Inclusion topics
organisation_inclusion: 
Educational difficulties
Social difficulties
Cultural differences
Economic difficulties

EVS accreditation number

2012-DK-12

For more information about volunteering and European Voluntary Service in particular, visit the Voluntary Activities section of this website.

Please note, information about organisations and projects is only available in English.
Project Environment

Project environment:
The area has not been renovated since the construction and looks somewhat grey, but the interior is of modern design and combined with a low rent, Blåkildegård is a relatively attractive social housing area, with a waiting list up to twenty years. 25 % of the tenants are allocated by the local municipality, and many of these have special social needs. Blåkildegård has a strong tradition of involvement among the tenants in numerous clubs and activities. Tenants moving in also express a wide spread motivation to get involved. In the last few years Blåkildegård has seen a boost of volunteering in the social housing area with annual festivals, tenants clubs and various committees. At this point we have the following voluntary activities.

- A Recycling station collects renewable waste.
- A Second hand clothes shop
- An IT club learns tenants about IT and fix broken computers.
- A Ceramics and painters club.
- A senior network arranging coffee sessions every month, monthly dinners and patchwork 2 times a week.
- A library where tenants can bring and take books, magazines cd's and dvd's.
- A Billiard club.
- A Petangue club.
- A Bingo club.
- A child friendly Food club.
- A Party committee.
- A youth CLUB (BLING – Better Lives in New Generations)
- A Childrens club (PANGÆA – Ancient Greek word for a supercontinent).
- A Facebookgroup.
- A Neighborhood magazine.
- A homework café.
- A bike and metal workshop.
- A tenants board.

Our core competences are:
- Community building with an “ABCD-“ and “TRIM”- approach
- Mentoring and coaching.
- Strategies of non-exclusion.
AKB, Blåkildegård cooperates with and is managed by the non-profit manager of social housing associations, KAB. KAB is a customer owned non-profit manager of non-profit housing associations. A defining feature of the Danish social housing model is the principle of tenants’ democracy and involvement. The tenants in KAB have extended rights to make decisions regarding all aspects of the estate in which they live. Furthermore, the tenants are represented at all levels of the housing association.
KAB is the largest administrator of non-profit affordable housing in Denmark with housing units exclusively in Greater Copenhagen managing approximately 50.000 housing units.
In recent years KAB has increased the social work in the local housing associations and in corporation with local agents such as municipalities, institutions, NGOs and private enterprises we have implemented more than 20 social community building programmes in the last five years. For more about the organisation KAB see:
http://www.kab-bolig.dk/Default.aspx?ID=4963

Proposed activities for EVS volunteers:
Learning opportunities
- Basic social project management: The volunteers will be involved in the planning and implementation, monitoring and evaluation of projects. It is the aim that each of the volunteers plan and implement one minor project as project coordinator and experience how it is to coordinate the language cycle.
- Language training will be obvious part of the stay. Many of the tennants do not feel confident in english, so in order to make them open up it is important the the intern shows a lack of language skill and a desire to learn by trying to learn some Danish words and sentences. In this way language learning will be an integrated part of the social interaction during the internship.
- Community building in neighoods: Community building is a special way of social work involving a range of tools from theories of recognition, community psychology and ressource oriented approaches. Depending on the volunteers these approches will be applied and reflected on during the internship.
- An important part of the community work in Blåkilde is to make the neighbourhood a part of a European context. We a grudually developing building up our capacity and ideas to expand and deepen our international work. The interns are a natural part of this proces as they will inspire young people from the neighbourhood to become EVS interns themselves and they will contribute to the neighbourhood as “ambassadors” with special knowledge and acces to information about relevant projects and partners in the country they are from.
Services
As a hosting organization within the EVS framework we offer the following services:
- Experience with planning and implementation of European projects.
- Mentoring by professional staff in working areas of the EVS volunteers.
- Help to settle in and feel at home.
- A lot of motivated tenants who wants to make a difference in their neighborhood.
- A fixed workstation a good working environment and an engaged and pleasant atmosphere at our neighborhood office.
- Legal status as an “intern” with the benefits and rights it includes.

Role of volunteers
- “Assistants/trainees” (mainly connected to the neighbourhood office): They will follow/assist the work of the staff in the neighbourhood office. They will have workstations at the neighbourhood office, have regular meetings with the staff and receive more coaching than volunteers normally do. They will also work more hours per week than volunteers in the neighbourhood normally does.
- Volunteers (mainly working in the clubs and tennants projects in the neighbourhood): Whereas the interns in some ways serve as interns, they will also blend in with the other volunteers as “supervolunteers” in the various clubs and help out once a week and get to know people in the neighbourhood through social interation.
- Ambassadors from their countries: The interns also have a function as mentors as they have special acces to information about the country they are from. They may have experience from organisations, that might be relevant as future partneres, or due to their knowledge of the language in their country, they will be able to perform research about projects and partners in the country they are from. Finally they can some parts of their culture of such as rituals, food or other cultural ressources.
Activities
The activies of the EVS interns corresponds with the roles and learning possibilities described above, such as:
- Participating in, developing and planning international projects.
- Support the activities in the various tennants clubs.
- Support the planning and implementation of larger local events and festivals.
- Admistrative work such as translating texts, ressearch for relevant partners/projects in countries where they come from.
- Training in language and other relevant skills.

Volunteer profiles and recruitment process:
We have made the following profile, that we will use to recruit volunteers we have already distributed in our networks and on relevant forums on linked in and facebook:
The social housing area of Blåkildegård is an area 20 km outside Copenhagen. We have some social problems, but also a lot of resources among the tenants in the area. We have worked with Internships for 4 years and we are increasingly involved in European projects and thus we are seeking a sort of internship who can assist us in the work with one or more of the following working areas:

• Writing English texts to our homepage.
• Taking pictures for our local magazine.
• Participating in local activities and add “European spice” to our local projects.
• Assist in the implementation of our EU current and projects.
• Assist in fundraising and networking for future projects.


It will be an advantage if you:

• Speak and write English or Danish.
• Have a relevant theoretical or practical background (e.g. Voluntary work, social work, social sciences and/or communication).
• Are committed to an internship for at least six months.
• Feel good about travelling and is confident to ask for help when you need it.
• Have Experience in volunteering, a feeling for project work and an ability to cooperate with many different kinds of people.
• Can see your self and your contribution to our work in Blåkildegård.

Number of volunteers hosted: 2

Risk prevention, protection and safety:
Safe living and working environment

- We will have weekly briefings and monthly status meetings. The briefings will be short overview of the tasks in the week to come. The monthly meetings will be a more in depth conversation about how the work and the well being of the interns.
- An action and learning plan for each intern will be monitored and followed. Usually the work plan will include 4-6 “tracks” such as: Learning activities, assisting activities, project development, research activities, communication activities and communication activities.
- The EVS-students will live together or with a “host” in a flat in Copenhagen. We believe that it is best to live another place than in the neighbourhood, so the interns have a possibility to “get away” from their work in their free time.
- The EVS students will be introduced to the Danish ”EVS network” as well as to other social networks depending on their hobbies and other leisure activities.

We will collect best practices and experiences from our partner organisations and from our national agency, and we are prepared to take more measures than the ones listed above if relevant.

Risks and crisis

- We are in daily contact with the volunteers.
- We have a clear agreement with the sending organisation about supportive measures.
- We do not expose the volunteers to projects where they get in “too deep”.
- The volunteers will be trained on risk prevention in Blåkildegård and Denmark.
- We will actively support the volunteers’ creation of a Danish network.
- We will appoint local friend families in the neighbourhood.
- The volunteers will not live in the same place where they work.

We will collect best practices and experiences from our partner organisations and from our national agency, and we are prepared to take more measures than the ones listed above if relevant.

We do not plan to recruit EVS students under 18 at this point.

Motivation and EVS experience

We, AKB, Blåkildegård - a social housing agency in Taastrup – have worked with different kinds of internships for the past three years. Internships are a good way of providing social oxygen to the neighbourhood, to try out new approaches and to learn new things from the volunteers according to their personal resources and skills. We have had many Danish internships and volunteers over the years, and we generally get good feedback.
In the last two years the neighbourhood has cooporated with other European Partners in a Grundtvig project and we just received a grant for a new Grundtvig Learning Partnership. We find it important not only to engage the adults, but also the young people in the neighbourhood in European project work. We have received support from the Youth in Action programme, but only to local initaitives. One way to strengthen the European dimension in our local work is to start to receive and send European Volunteers, so they can meet, learn from each other – and take part in the development project ideas.

Description of the organisation

AKB, Blåkildegård is a local social housing association 20 km west of Copenhagen inhabiting app. 1.000 tenants. The area was constructed in the 70's and consists of two storeyed terrace houses.

Our main aim is to provide good and affordable houses for all. We do this in several ways:
- Efficient, cheap and good maintenance work.
- Support of the governing body of tenants in decision making and democratic processes.
- Establishing and strengthening local, national and international partnerships and networks.
- Strengthening of social resources through voluntary work, social projects and counselling.

The staff in Blåkildegård consists of:
A Social housing manager.
A Secretary.
A Social coordinator.
A communication consultant.
A Maintenance teamleader
5 Maintenance workers.
Varying number of interns and students.

The centre for community work in the municipality of Høje Taastrup with to coordinators is situated next to and the neighbourhood office and lead by the social housing manager.

Contact details
Organisation name AKB, Blåkildegård
Street Femkanten J1
Postal code 2630
Town/city Taastrup
Country Denmark
Email address evsblaakildegaard@gmail.com
Website www.blaakildegaard.net
Telephone number 77994801
Fax number

Last update: 29/08/2012