Decolonise IVS


Tools development Laboratory

Over the course of the project, the participating organisations will develop several tools that should encourage organisations to look at their own functioning with the aim to question their organisation’s values, behaviours and structures.  A self-assessment tool in being developed with the aim to guide organisations in going through this process of self-reflection.  

At the same time some other tools are being developed to improve certain aspects of the International Voluntary Service programmes from a decolonised perspective: 

An online preparation module for long term volunteers taking into account an intersectional approach; 
Revised guidelines for long term exchanges;
Revised environmental sustainability guidelines.

The team working on the development of the tools met in October in Vienna to work on the prototypes of the self-assessment tool and the online preparation module for long term volunteers. While we are still in the middle of our ongoing process of defining what decolonisation means for IVS organisations we are trying to bring together some key issues in these tools but it stays a very difficult process to pinpoint the things we have to change in our organisations and to create the change we want to see.

During the Tools Lab, the participants visited the Weltmuseum where a local guide gave a tour of the temporary exhibition “Extinctions!?” . A good reflection moment on the connection between climate change and colonisation but also on our colonial past and  how culture and musea are testimonies of this colonial past and keep a certain colonised narrative alive.  

“ I have had the privilege of being included in the project almost since the beginning and I’ve seen all its phases, which makes me feel sort of an insider in a way that I’ve seen lots of struggles along the way already. But I’m definitely learning from these tools’ creation process. Hopefully, we will keep modifying our tool kit continuously and it will evolve according to the inputs of organizations who will use it.”