Management and Intercultural Relations
Volunteering Management Expedition

ll around Europe, both at a national level and in European projects, education and volunteering professionals design every year an array of highly useful tools and methods for volunteer management. However, many of them are underused despite heavy dissemination efforts. At the same time, European volunteer managers and coordinators lack opportunities for professional development, as this consortium's prior project FUTUR3 has discovered.

The Volunteering Management Expedition (VolExpo) aims to improve the methodological competences of volunteer managers and coordinators (both paid and unpaid, i.e. volunteers) by collecting methods and tools that correspond to their skills needs from at least 9 European countries, sharing them during virtual 'expeditions'. i.e. webinars, web clinics and online discussions, testing them in partners' countries and selecting the most useful ones for translation.

The main objectives of the VolExpo project are:
1. To increase the managerial and supervision competences of European volunteer managers and coordinators on issues on which they have expressed future skills needs (4 skills groups: 1.managerial - project skills, time management etc.; 2. supervision - leadership coordinating people, conflict resolution etc.), 3. communication (including social media and ITs for volunteer management); 4. cooperation (with volunteers, colleagues, other organisations, media etc.).
2. To improve the volunteering experience for volunteers across Europe through their managers' increased competences; indirectly the project also aims at creating new learning opportunities for volunteers through improved management.
3. To make better use of existing tools and methods for volunteer management by selecting suitable ones for presentations and virtual workshops and translating/localising the ones most suitable for use in partners' countries.
Learning important digital skills / LIDS

Adult education is an essential component of the Commission's policy on lifelong learning.
The Council of the European Union "recognizes the key role that adult education can play in achieving the goals of the Lisbon strategy, promoting social cohesion, providing citizens the skills necessary to find new jobs and helping Europe to better respond to the challenges of globalization "(Council conclusions 22 May 2008).

A recent international survey on adult skills reveals in fact that the results of Europe are worse than those of many of its competitors.
• One-fifth of adults in the EU have very low levels of literacy and numerical calculation, while a quarter are not able to use digital technologies effectively.
• So, one adult in four is lacking in the digital skills necessary for a satisfactory participation in social and economic life, as well as in everyday life.

In November 2011 the Council "The renewed European agenda for adult learning" (EAAL) was adopted by the Council which recognizes the need for all adults to regularly strengthen their personal and professional skills through flexible and high-quality learning at any time of life focusing on results. Therefore, we need training aimed at educators for effective adult integration.

The project aims are:
• Achievement of relevant and high-quality skills and competences
• Implement and transfer innovative practices at local, regional, national and European level
• Support positive and long-lasting effects on the participating organizations, systems and individuals directly and indirectly involved.
• Improve and expand the offer of personalized quality learning opportunities based on the needs of individual learners with low skills and less qualified in the digital environment through informal and nonformal learning.
• Provide everybody adult with the possibility of widening their competencies and developing their skills throughout life increased life quality for the individual and value creation and flexibility in working life.
• Train qualified educators who can help adults excluded or at risk of exclusion.
More info:
Be Your Boss! - European Connections 4 Entrepreneurship Development

The problem faced by the project is the difficulty of young graduates in humanities to find a job and the poor predisposition to create an entrepreneurial activity.
The target group tends to stay out of the labor market and cannot walk the entrepreneurial road for:
- lack of scientific-economic and IT skills;
- lack of entrepreneurial skills;
- distance from the world of entrepreneurship from that of education and training;
- lack of support from trade associations;
- absence of a specific national strategy on entrepreneurship education. In the absence of coordination and formal recognition, as well as dedicated funds, the initiatives are often entrusted to the will of the individual schools. The role of an innovative school manager and motivated teachers therefore becomes essential. Teachers are not always available to introduce entrepreneurship projects and, in the absence of adequate awareness and information, often exchange these projects with initiatives related to technical and management disciplines. Doing business is considered a course / project that ends with a vote or a result, rather than acquiring a new way of thinking or a key competence.
The specific objective is to provide support to young graduates (23-35 years) in humanities in the acquisition of entrepreneurial skills useful to encourage the creation of new businesses.
Needs identified:
• support of participants in training activities, use of knowledge, skills and qualifications to facilitate personal development, employability and participation in the European labor market;
• promotion of entrepreneurship education to develop active citizenship, employability and the creation of new businesses;
• development of interdisciplinary and international cooperation of organizations in different sectors;
• abatement of low-skills equilibrium, low level of skills in adults from southern Europe through the improvement of the key competences of the target group;
• strengthening relations between the subjects responsible for adult education and the world of entrepreneurs.
R.E.NewAL. SKILLS - Real Estate New Alternative Skills

Sector Skills Alliances in vocational education and training - Cooperation and Innovation for Good Practices

Tackling skills gaps in Real Estate activities, with special regards to Facility Management and Workplace Management, for the development of innovative solutions inspired by Health & Wellbeing in workplace, in a perspective of convergence between Facility Management, Property Management and Asset Management.
Promoting new skills and competencies in Real Estate occupations, integrating the knowledge transfer on Health  & Wellbeing in the Vocational Education and Training of Real Estate Managers for the development of innovative solutions in Workplace Management.
A European VET Programme for  Real Estate Managers, integrating Health knowledge transfer for the development of innovative solutions in the workplace management, in a perspective of convergence between Facility Management, Property Management and Asset Management, for the promotion of new skills and competencies in Real Estate Occupations.
Erasmus + Programme - Call for proposals  - EACEA 04/2017
“Expertise: Exchange of practices to educate, recognise and train inclusive skills for employment”

“EXPERTISE: Exchange of practices to educate, recognise and train inclusive skills for employment” is a 24-month strategicpartnership at international level that will be implemented between the 01/09/2017 and the 31/08/2019 thanks to the support of the Key Action 2 of the European Commission and its Erasmus+ programme. This initiative aims to overcome the needs that trainers and educators of young people with fewer opportunities currently face to provide them those interpersonal skills and intrapersonal competences required to guarantee their social inclusion and facilitatetheir jump from the training and education field to the labour market.

The project will also make possible to test, improve and present the final product of EXPERTISE: a manual about the training of young people with fewer opportunities on interpersonal and intrapersonal skills to promote their social inclusion and facilitate their access to the labour market.
Future Skills for Volunteering

The consortium’s prior Erasmus+ project FUTUR3 has in its study identified 4 scenarios affecting voluntary and other third sector organisations: digital, growing inequality, loose communities and the status quo. With implications on skills needs, all these scenarios play a part in shaping the future. This trickles down to staff and volunteers alike, leaving both in a need to acquire skills to manage the future. This project focuses on volunteers in both formal and informal volunteering and acknowledges trends such as episodic and micro volunteering.
Following the European Year of Volunteers in 2011, the working group EYV Alliance made the following policy recommendations for volunteering: creating an enabling environment, enhancing quality, recognition of volunteering, and acknowledging its value ) At the same time,  the European Commission’s recommendation on the validation of non-formal and informal learning (2012/C 398/01) calls on civil society actors like voluntary organisations to provide individuals with documentation of their informally acquired learning outcomes for validation. So far, these recommendations have been partially met, and set a challenge for the European third sector.
Through this project we can help realise these policy targets at both an individual and institutional level by taking a future-oriented approach. To do so, the “Future Skills for Volunteering” project shall:
- develop and test a design thinking based ( peer learning model to help volunteers acquire what are defined in this project as ‘future skills’
- design a tool for volunteers to observe and manage change in their everyday work using e.g. weak signal detection methods
- a future skills in volunteering skills concept with validation tools for the learning outcomes
- publish a publication ‘Future Skills Guide to Volunteering.
a new paradigm through IVET curricula innovation

To contribute to affirm the Social and Solidarity Economy in Europe through IVET curricula innovation of existing professional profiles (particularly in economics, management, financial and social fields) is the main outline of the project. The project aims to contribute to a more complete and inclusive training and professional development of new generations, integrating alternative socio-economic models and paradigms such as ESS in their framework of ideas and attitudes. The idea is that SSE becomes a familiar concept to new generations who will be entering the labour market.

Mapping opportunities and constraints
for affirming Social Solidarity Economy
(SSE) in Initial Vocational Education
and Training (IVET) curricula - more info

The main objective of the project is to promote close, well-defined and long-term partnerships between: organizations, adult education centres, environmental associations, local authorities and civil society cooperating on projects that promote creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship. One example of such partnership is the creation of Destination Management Organization.
The transnational implementation of this project will enhance the exchange of knowledge, ideas and good practices for the adult education in activities which might be developed in the traditional settlements-villages, all over Europe, providing professional solutions to the relevant with this field jobs.
The objectives and targets set in European legislation are key drivers to improve the protection of the cultural heritage. Starting from the fact that culture is not static but it results as an output of mixing populations, the political evolutions worldwide and the issue of identities and differences motivates us to reclaim tradition as an active factor in the procedure of the identity designation.
Хлябът ни събира

Through this project ASPECT-MIR addresses the genuine need for a structured approach to systematic promotion of the values of volunteering and helps third-sector employers, employees and educational organizations that train professionals in the field to identify future skills needs in the sector and to prepare for them.
Here the third sector refers to civil society organizations like associations, NGOs, trusts or foundations that are non-profit. This project focuses on organizations with volunteering activities, and the main target group is professionals working with volunteers: volunteer managers, coordinators and so on.
As a partner we cover Peer learning concept for third-sector professionals, including training concept and materials, which will help volunteer managers and other professionals to identify skills gaps and needs, identify future needs and ways to address them, methods to encourage collaboration and joint capacity-building.

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Strategic Partnership projects as new opportunities for innovation in the youth field within Erasmus+: Youth in Action course was the outline of the training course organized by German National Agency Youth in Action, which take place in Bonn, Germany, on April 2016.
ASPECT-MIR took part in this training with an aim to increase competences for development of quality Strategic Partnership projects (within Key Action 2 of Erasmus+ Youth in Action), aiming for innovation in the field of youth, boost opportunities for the development of international Strategic Partnership projects and networks.

With the motto “Religion Could be Unifying’’ we start three years project (CoReVAX) to identify the common merits/values of Islam, Christianity, and Judaism in order to prevent racial segregation, xenophobia and related violence; and introduce the contributions of these values to universal culture, cultural pluralism and EU harmonization process.
We try to make a parallel between them, putting the human in the centre and showing that the moral messages the sacred writings have a universal character. The most important contribution to culture of living together and universal value can be managed with common religious values. Each religion exists to add meaning to the human life. It is not easy to bring about peace in social, political, and cultural domains without establishing the peace in religious field. The project aims to achieve result for the efforts on actual peace settlement and show the possibility of polishing off racism, xenophobia, and violence.
The International Symposium “Effects of Common Values on European Peace” as one of the major outputs of our Project will be organized on March, 25-26  2017, in Ankara, Turkey.
The symposium rules and more information for participation are published at .
The aim of this symposium is to analyze the racism and xenophobia, which has been on the ascendancy in a salient manner during the past quarter century, especially in our geography, as well as the factors that trigger them and offer solutions.
It further seeks to contribute to peace by extracting common values and verses related to racism and xenophobia from the Qur'an, the Bible and the Torah, as the holy books of three leading divine religions with promises of peace, salvation, security, love, tolerance and enlightenment.
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Krasimira Bakardzhieva took part in the Study Visit 2014_253 in Berne, Switzerland, 05-09 May 2014, organized by CH-Foundation.
The Study Visit offered an overview of important features of recognizing learning achievements and acquisition of key competences in lessons and in practice.
Related processes and procedures and the responsible players and their roles and competence-oriented projects and learning methods in validation processes were also observed.  The visit highlighted the challenges of putting this into practice and participation in discussions with experts on education and the labour market.
Berne 2014

Together with our partner, EUROCONTO - Sofia, we have started realization of two year project designed to identify core and innovative learning and delivery components of a service/programme/community that best encourages, inspires, supports and enables successful start-ups and entrepreneurs through life-long learning relevant and desirable for employability, enterprise and collaboration.
STUPCOM Partners

Guidance for the evaluation system and an acquisition framework for the eight basic competences will be created for daily life and work. It will help stakeholders to better understand their own competences and systematically use them. This project is focussing especially in disadvantaged young people. The project involves partners from 5 European countries - Spain, Germany, Turkey, Cyprus and Bulgaria.

Visit our website:
Basic Competences
Guidance for Basic Competences
„Plasma and Nano for New Age “soft” conservation”/PANNA

A three-year European Collaborative Project coordinated by Veneto Nanotech (Italy) with partnership of Centre for Restoration of Art Works (Bulgaria) and 7 other partners from Italy, Germany and Belgium, started on 1st November 2011.
The project is elaborated to design a novel atmospheric plasma torch for surface cleaning and coating deposition, and to develop two innovative coatings: a self-diagnostic protective coating and an identification marker.
Role: External Financial Consultant and LEAR
Learning and facilitating techniques in professional life / Learnshop on learning
by doing/doing by learning

The role of the ‘facilitator’, a professional engaged in assisting people in learning processes through Action learning methods was the main outline in the learnshop organized by Team Srl - Genova, Italy, 26 February - 3 March 2012.
ASPECT-MIR took part in the learnshop projects  with an aim to enhance Action Learning techniques in Bulgaria and  help people learn most effectively when working on real-life problems occurring in their own workplaces.
Threads of Life connect in felt

The workshop was organized in partnership with the Omse e.V. - Dresden, Germany, 30 June - 07 July 2011.
Workshop offered an unique opportunity to join in culture and traditions of other participants using wool-an enjoyable learning experience in an informal and supportive atmosphere.
The workshop was also enhanced intercultural skills thanks to the exchanging of the traditions and background linked to each participants.
Increasing Adult Education

Krasimira Bakardzhieva took part in the Study Visit 2010_109 in Brussels, 22-26 November 2010, organized by Flemish Department of Education and Training.
The theme of the Study visit was the Flemish structure of adult education. This includes formal, non-formal and informal ways of lifelong learning. There was special focus on the consortium model demonstrates an efficient use of resources (staff, locations, courses) highlighting how effective communication and negotiation can improve the facilitation of adult education.
It generates an exchange of experience; good practice and learning tool between participating countries form Belgium, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Turkey, Czech Republic and Bulgaria.
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