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Corporate Volunteering as a Tool for Connecting Business and Education Worlds
Start date: Sep 1, 2015, End date: Aug 31, 2017 PROJECT  FINISHED 

There is a significant gap between the reality of the workplace and the educational world that need trimming. Collaborations business partnerships with schools and training centers represent a bridge on which to base a relationship that provides benefits to both parties. Corporate Volunteering provides an opportunity to connect both realities so that both centers as businesses see enhanced mutual understanding , promoting the development of specific skills. Corporate volunteering is a strategy linked to the Corporate Social Responsibility, and according to “Business in the Community” (reference organization in Europe in the field) corporate volunteering is ”voluntary activities and personal commitment made by employees in an organized and on a informal , unpaid , and for the benefit of other individuals framework and society as a whole . These activities include: mentoring and coaching, training and knowledge transfer schemes, workplace learning and training, community service, team projects building and conference dedicated to volunteering. There are several reasons that led to design the CV PLUS project, some of the most relevant are: - For the education centers, joint work with companies provides them with a new perspective for the students and teachers as they can help them go into detail about certain knowledge and theoretical aspects through the business reality view. It also provides with a updated vision on the skills and competences that the labour market demands, from a general and specific point of view. - For business, this collaboration contributes to improve participating employees´ competences (those usually linked to volunteering activities, such as: self-management competences, organizational competencies and communication related competences). Just as one of the multiple available examples, experts in the field (P. Cook y N. Jackson, Valuing Volunteering) confirmed that participating in this kind of volunteering activities increase the capacity to work with different cultures for 92% of participants, improve communication skills for a 74%, and increase problem-solving skills for 57%. However, it is important that those responsible for business organizations and centers have resources that enable them to understand what the Corporate Volunteering is, how to integrate it into their strategic plans, how to design joint actions and how to measure the impact of these actions on the competence development of its employees and trainers. For all these reasons the CV PLUS project focuses on the development of: 1. An online platform for open educational resources, which will include - A database of good practices on Corporate Volunteering linking companies and educational centres., - A training course to train managers of companies to design a strategic plan of Corporate Volunteering. - A training course for school and VET centres leaders, trainers and teachers to empower them to organise CV initiatives in their centres. - Tools and resources to measure the impact of actions on corporate volunteer skills and professional development of employees and trainers (and other staff) participating in CV intiatives. - Video testimonials from people who have been involved in corporate volunteering experiences with educational centres that serve as inspiration and example for future actions. 2. A Methodological Guide for companies in which methods and tools for planning , implementation and evaluation of actions of Corporate Volunteering in cooperation between companies and schools will be offered. 3. A Methodological Guide for schools in which methods and tools for planning , implementation and evaluation of actions of Corporate Volunteering in cooperation between companies and schools will be collected. The project draws on previous work developed by the CVE project - The Corporate Volunteering as a Bridge Between the world of work and the school , which collected good practices on this subject and a training course was developed. We aim to further the development of these results , updating and by focusing on the development of skills of the participants. TARGET GROUPS The project proposes the development of results that will be aimed directly at the following groups : - Managers and intermediate leaders of companies . - Responsible for schools and VET centres. - Trainers and teachers. CV PLUS project will contribute to some of the priorites and objectives of the Erasmus + programme, such as: - To promote trans-sectorial cooperation by reinforcing the links between education and busines worlds. - To improve the cooperation between companies and educational sectors. - To promote the application of joint innovative practices in education. - To improve the capacities of the business staff management and talso he organisations active in the fields of education through the implementation of CV practices.

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