10 May 2021 • ACTUALITÉS

COVID-19: how e-volunteering keeps local partners close to volunteers

To ensure its mission “Strengthening People” despite the closing of borders, Planète Urgence has been deploying e-volunteering since this summer. Missions that volunteers carry out remotely, which allow us to ensure the continuity of our commitment to our partners, who have been hard hit in recent months. 

Among the first volunteers engaged remotely, Christophe Bertrand, fraud detection expert from Allianz France. He trained the educators who are members of the local Enda Océan Indien association in Madagascar in PowerPoint from November 10 to December 1, 2020. 

 

Did you know Planète Urgence before you got involved with your employer? 

 

No, however Allianz France being a partner of Planète Urgence, I was able to discover the association after reading a post on the Allianz intranet. Olivier Renard, at the CSR Department of Allianz France, also presented us with the opportunity to do e-volunteering in partnership with Planète Urgence. 

 

What motivated you to get involved as an e-volunteer with Planète Urgence? 

Several years ago now, I had a first experience in volunteering in Senegal, during which I was able to discover the local communities as well as their village and their way of life. Subsequently, I also carried out a few actions (maraudes, commitment day, etc.). All of this strongly motivated me to make my contribution on a more regular basis. 

The “e-volunteering” formula was, therefore, for me a very good opportunity to make this wish come true and to be able to contribute to missions without the logistical constraints linked to the context of COVID-19. Indeed, I chose this mission (Powerpoint training for educators in Madagascar) because I felt legitimate in terms of skills to be able to offer effective and concrete help in connection with my professional career.
 

Do you have any a priori on this mission? Apprehensions? 

 

Absolutely not, it was a discovery from A to Z for me, and that on the whole course of the process and the mission. It was my first experience at Allianz, and I was the first employee to embark on the E-volunteering format. So I discovered everything, a very structured organization of Planète Urgence, a richness and diversity of missions for volunteers, very structured application and training processes, the Country workshop for the discovery and consideration of specificities cultural etc. 

I feel that I have had quality support throughout my mission, whether from Allianz, with my managerial line and the CSR department or Planète Urgence with all my interlocutors. 

Only one question came to my mind: will I live up to the mission entrusted to me? 

This challenged me greatly and took me out of my comfort zone in order to ensure that everything went for the best and while imagining solutions adapted to the situation on the ground and the expectations of the beneficiaries. 

 

What are your impressions now that your mission is complete? 
 

My mission went very well despite some technical problems related to the connection. We managed to put closeness and a lot of human warmth in our exchanges despite the 8700 km distance. 

 

My goal was above all to make myself available to them and to meet their expectations. The beneficiaries at the end of this mission have acquired a lot of knowledge thanks to the concrete implementation of examples in each training session. With these achievements, they are now autonomous, can develop and improve their activities. We have planned a feedback in a few months with concrete examples from them, this moment will be the greatest reward for me because it will mean for me “mission accomplished! » 

 

I really feel that I have contributed to a real experience of international solidarity thanks to this new format. This mission allowed me to approach the intercultural dimension through the discovery and awareness of another culture and its ways of thinking. For me, this is an important component in this kind of experience because we discover and enrich each other.
 

In conclusion, it is a very beautiful personal adventure that I wish to renew in the future.
 

I have only one sentence to add: Dare, take the plunge! By getting involved, you will be the actor of your own development and you will contribute to that of the beneficiaries!                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

Many thanks to Christophe BERTRAND for his commitment to Planète Urgence. 

If you too, like Christophe, would like to carry out an e-volunteering mission or discover all our missions, go to this page. 

 

 

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