Generations that connect and international solidarity as the articulating axis of the Youth Volunteer Program of the Pacific Alliance in Colombia for the year 2022

Since August, 61 young volunteers from different regions of Chile, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru began the training process in several components that strengthened their skills and abilities for volunteering, social action, leadership, international solidarity, and above all, multifunctional monitoring and activation of older people, with or without visual limitations, thus making profitable use of Information and Communication Technologies to reach all corners where the beneficiaries of the program reside.

From Mexico, we have volunteers from Puebla, Jalisco, Hidalgo, Queretaro, and Mexico City; from Chile, volunteers from Temuco, La Araucanía Region, and Santiago de Chile; the volunteers from Peru (the majority of the program) are from Junín, Cajamarca, Callao, Rímac, Sachaca, Huacho, Lima, Chiclayo, and Cusco; also, from Colombia, a broad representation of volunteers from Sucre, Bolivar, Chocó, Atlántico, Antioquia, and Bogotá.

The training process, led by Human Bonds by Versania (now known as Versania Care and Life), included more than 100 hours of intensive training led by experts that involve a deep and emotionally charged understanding of the work of the volunteers to reduce the social gaps in the region; they addressed different dimensions of volunteering, their purpose, the sense and meaning of this action in social transformation, international solidarity, philanthropy and a broad and detailed vision of the challenges we face as a 21st-century society; in addition, the volunteers had complete training on the reality of the elderly in Colombia, the psychology of the elderly, bases for accompaniment, sensitive listening, and the physical, cognitive and occupational activation of the elderly with or without visual limitation. The training process ended on November 16.

Since October 24, with the support of Colpensiones, the UAEOS and the Presidential Council for Youth, the process of accompaniment began for 61 older people from all over Colombia, with or without visual limitations, who were sent to a multifunctional activation analog kit at home to be implemented together with the young volunteers in the distance. This kit was designed by the nursing and neuropsychology team at Human Bonds by Versania and also includes a whole package of activities in digital format that older people will be able to access and continue implementing after the program ends.