THE SILESIAN VOLUNTARY LABOUR CORPS HEADQUARTERS
The Silesian Voluntary Labour Corps Headquarters in Katowice by means of its rich programme offer attempts to reach the widest possible group of young people who need state support, particularly those in danger of social exclusion.
Basic areas of the undertaken operations include the following tasks:
- education of young people,- counteracting marginalization and social exclusion of young people, - employment agency and vocational counselling for young people, - initiation of international cooperation and young people exchange,
- refunding costs incurred by an employer for remuneration and social insurance premiums of juvenile workers employed on employment contract basis for vocational training.
EDUCATIONAL ACTIVITY AND GENERAL AND VOCATIONAL EDUCATION IN SILESIAN VOIVODSHIP
Neglected young people, with decreased life opportunities, originating from socially maladjusted environments , mainly pathological ones – from dysfunctional families – not complete, impoverished, searching for institutional support and care, requiring educational influence and vocational education which conditions an independent start in adult life, is recruited to 15 organizational units of care-educational character, i.e. labour corps, environmental labour corps, and training and education centres. For this young people we have been conducting for three years and are still modifying an efficient programme of education and socialization. Adequately to the acquired knowledge the OHP participants supplement their general education on the following levels: primary school, junior secondary school, basic vocational school and training courses. Within the frames of vocational preparation the OHP participants are employed on the basis of employment contracts on principles for juvenile workers. Therefore, they receive remuneration for the time of work and learning, they take advantage of due social benefits, and the period of vocational preparation is included in their length of service.
ACTIVITY IN THE FIELD OF EMPLOYMENT MARKET
Tasks in the field of employment market performed by Education and Youth Labour Centres, Mobile Centres of Vocational Information, Youth Career Centres, Labour Clubs, Youth Employment Agencies and their branches are addressed to:
- graduates of secondary schools, graduates of higher universities (educated young people and with certain vocational qualifications), however endangered by unemployment and unemployed,
- students of secondary schools and university students who in the time off school want to work by OHP, gain vocational experience and by the way improve their material situation.
Youth Employment Agencies run employment agency free of charge, they organize employment fairs and markets, as well as short-term employment of secondary school students, holiday labour corps and other forms of active entertainment and work.
Labour Clubs run trainings on active behaviour on the employment market. Within the frames of their operations classes on active methods of looking for a job and planning professional career are organized for students of junior secondary schools, secondary schools, higher schools and unemployed people.
Mobile Centres of Vocational Information are a modern net offering high quality information and vocational counselling on the territory of the whole country. They provide services in stationary and mobile forms. Vocational counsellors reach young people in especially marked buses, equipped with modern multimedia equipment and information resources. They provide assistance to young people in taking important educational and vocational decisions.
Youth Career Centres provide young people with professional assistance in creating their own fortune, and their offer includes mainly information and counselling in the scope of modern employment market and entrepreneurship. They develop a wide network of employment agencies addressed to young people and the diagnostic methods for testing their predispositions for participation on the employment market.
The accession of Poland to the European Union created an opportunity for Voluntary Labour Corps to use structural funds, and particularly the European Social Fund. Taking this opportunity the Voluntary Labour Corps in 2004 started realization of projects co-financed from the European Structural Fund.
The young people participating in the projects is given psychological support, advice in health and legal matters, use collective and individual vocational counselling, take part in computing and multi media techniques classes (including ECDL) and vocational, foreign languages, driving classes, during the programmes the young people receive material support in the form of subsidised costs of transport to classes and meals.
The Silesian Voluntary Labour Corps Headquarters also undertakes multilateral cooperation with numerous European organizations acting for the benefit of young people – both within the frames of bilateral cooperation as well as by partnerships created to realize these community programmes and initiatives. They are, among others, programmes realized by Polish – German Youth Cooperation, and Programme “Youth in Action”, from which an international youth exchange on a wide scale is supported. The international cooperation is directed to develop contacts and improve the quality of the services provided for the benefit of young people.