The EFIL Advocacy Fellowship programme has officially started!

This newly developed 2-year programme is an opportunity for AFS volunteers and staff to improve their knowledge on advocacy and to put it into practice. 12 trainees from 8 different AFS organisations are currently taking part in this programme, supported by their mentors. The trainees have now started learning more about advocacy in AFS and EFIL, through an online training programme, and will soon be meeting up with the leadership of their organisations in order to acquire a better understanding of the current context and advocacy efforts of their organisations.

In addition, the trainees will also be taking part in an in-person training on advocacy organised by EFIL between May 28th and June 2nd this year. In the second year of the programme, the trainees will advocate for improved policies on study abroad, intercultural and global education, voluntarism and other topics of relevance to national AFS organisations, and they will have the possibility to represent EFIL in European conferences and events, share their experiences and coach future trainees. Together with the advocacy fellows from their countries and with the support of their respective mentors, the trainees will also be encouraged to set up a national advocacy working, strengthening the advocacy structure of their AFS organisations. The aim of this project is also to set up the new internal structure for EFIL Advocacy, which replaces the European Pool of Representatives and the EFIL Advocacy Liaisons. The project benefits from funding from the European Youth Foundation of the Council of Europe as part of the annual workplan ‘Social impact – AFS volunteers as educators, changemakers and advocates for a better world’.

The Advocacy Fellowship programme is made possible thanks to a prep team of motivated volunteers and staffs. The prep team met in February in Brussels to set up the programme, and is now ensuring a smooth online learning and getting ready for the in-person training.