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President Jacques Van Egten elected board member of the Centre for European Volunteering (CEV)

CESES President Jacques Van Egten has been elected as a board member of CEV! After nearly two decades contributing to the lives of senior volunteers, our president Jacques Van Egten decided to run for board member of the Centre of European Volunteering during the Autumn general assembly, held in Dubrovnik, Croatia. Our president Jacques got an overwhelming majority of votes from the CEV membership and we cannot be happier for him. A big congratulations to him for this important step, bringing more visibility to the work of senior expert volunteers on a broader European level.

Article by VSP ODV in Corriere della Sera

Last year, Gianmaria Scapin from VSP ODV (Italy) had his article published in the Italian newspaper "Corriere della Sera"  concerning the role of the Mentor. We believe it is the first time that there has been an explicit mention of CESES in the Italian news. 

Today's mentors, the nonprofit's bet

"A word and a figure that seem a bit self-serving: Mentor, who was he? It all comes to a head on the shores of Ithaca, when the wily Odysseus embarks for Troy, entrusting his son Telemachus to the care of Mentor. A task that Mentor handles so well that even the Goddess Athena takes her likeness to come to his aid, and which ends with her providing Odysseus with crucial help in the final battle against the usurping Proci. But today? Who is the mentor and what can he do?
Exactly as in the myth, mentor is a guide - linking the young to the expert, the junior to the senior - capable of making himself present, if and when needed, to help evaluate choices and take the right path. This is the concrete project that non-profit organisations such as our Vsp - Senior Professional Volunteers - have chosen to develop with the support of the European Community to accompany, in Italy and abroad, young people who are about to enter new geographies, physical, professional and otherwise. How? By supporting them in their educational, training and personal development through the instrument of mentoring provided by elderly persons, still active in their field of work or already retired, distinguished by a rich professional background.

Today, 13 associations - three of them Italian - from 9 European countries, led by the European Confederation of Senior Expert Services, participate in the ambitious project, which stems from the idea contained in Erasmus+ Est - European Senior Together, in support of active ageing. The objectives are twofold and at the same time the advantages: to draw on the wealth of knowledge and experience of the over 50s for the benefit of society and the economy, putting this precious baggage back into play; and, on the other hand, to guide younger professionals and those at risk of marginalisation in the 18-30 age group, to enhance their professional and personal skills, in particular by supporting civic participation. 
Experience teaches us how strengthening mutual understanding and solidarity between generations through cooperation is the best possible bridge to contribute to the well-being of both the younger generation through their voluntary contribution to society and the younger generation through their supported involvement in the so-called system.
A role, therefore, that takes its cue from intergenerational relations to bring into the world - and it has to be said - tangible contributions of optimal integration between past, present and especially future as Germany and France already successfully apply this methodology in government programmes using non-profit associations."

Attracting qualified international skilled workers is a key challenge for Germany as a business location. In view of the already glaring shortage and the forecast development in the coming years, this issue is receiving increasing political attention and requires concrete implementation measures based on the Skilled Workers Immigration Act. Well-organised support for interested companies and institutions, concerned administrations as well as individual integration guidance according to linguistic and cultural specifics are needed to welcome skilled workers interested in immigration.

Securing the demand for skilled workers

Successful integration and retention, which encompass both the business and private side of life in the new place of residence and work, are the most important prerequisites for achieving the long-term political goals of the Skilled Workers Immigration Act.

SES can play a central role here. Its strengths:

  • International orientation;

  • Intercultural experience;

  • Professional expertise of about 13,000 registered experts; 

  • Extensive experience in economic guidance and the more than 21,000 individual guidance cases within the VerA initiative (prevention of training drop-outs).

Concrete support offers could be, for example:

  • Support with the recognition procedure;

  • Support in finding accommodation and dealing with the authorities;

  • Networking of the employee and, if applicable, the new employee's partner and children;

  • Support in further education and training and in everyday life.

After a number of successful pilot projects, SES is confident to further expand this initiative and thus contribute to a welcoming culture in Germany. For example, two SES experts, a retired medical couple from Bonn accompanied six young Indian doctors for three months and prepared them for their exams. In another case, SES experts have taken care of foreign senior staff of a construction company.

A new SES initiative - Creating a welcoming structure for international skilled workers
A ‘Silver Guide’ to promote age-friendly Tourism in Greece

CESES Greek member 50plus Hellas has been involved in a three-year EU-funded project ‘Silver Guide’. The project, which is coming to an end in mid-June, aims to promote age-friendly tourism and attract older travelers with tailored made products. The project outcomes were presented at a final event on June 9 in Athens, Greece.

Α Silver Guide for Silver Tourism

On Friday, June 9, 2023, the research project “Silver Guide” results were presented in Athens, Greece. The Silver Guide tourism multi-tool, developed by the project team, consists of:

  • the SilverGuide Platform (including a Knowledge Base, a self-evaluation Tool for Age-Friendly Tourism, and an Interactive Video-Editor) and 

  • the SilverGuide App to be used by older travelers while traveling to Greece. 

Both tools are based on the results of the SilverGuide Survey conducted with older tourists in Greece.

The innovative platform "SilverGuide", presented for the first time in the Greek market, is a multi-functional and easy-to-use tool, consisting of mutually supported subsystems and applications that provide specialized information, knowledge, education, and services for silver tourism.

The use of the platform, as a tool to support the tourism industry, tourism operators, local authorities, and individual users active in the tourism sector, will lead to the attraction of older travelers in Greece, to more quality service, and to the extension of the tourist season.

The development of the platform reflects real data, desires, needs, and expectations of foreign and Greek silver tourists because it was based on thorough social research conducted for the first time in Greece by the project team, in cooperation with specialized institutions abroad (BAGSO - Germany, WiseAge - UK, 50plus Hellas - Greece, Elephant Learning in Diversity - The Netherlands).

Following the presentation of the innovative products and services offered through the "SilverGuide" platform, a discussion took place with important representatives of the tourism ecosystem, on the possibilities and ways of their utilization in decision-making, in raising awareness among professionals, and in optimizing the infrastructure and development prospects of the untapped, but promising, Silver Tourism in Greece.

A new President for ECTI the French Senior Experts Association 

ECTI, French Senior Experts Association has elected its new president in the person of Louis Laurent-Mazerolles, on Wednesday May 31, 2023. He succeeds Etienne Hoepffner at the head of this organization of 2,000 former executives and managers who work on a voluntary basis to support the projects of SME’s, companies, Public and private collectivities and institutions, education and coaching or mentoring organisations in France and in some emerging countries.

With a Sales & Marketing background (Essec 73), Louis Laurent-Mazerolle worked for several large groups: Thomson, Richemont (Dunhill Montblanc) and Bang & Olufsen, before creating his own communication and distribution structure. He joined the ECTI association in 2012 within the regional delegation of the Paris area before leading it for three years, then managing the “skills and expertise” delegation as Vice-President.

“After two difficult years due to the Covid crisis, ECTI has regained a positive dynamic in 2022, says Louis Laurent-Mazerolle. We are going to reinforce this momentum with the help of our fiftieth anniversary, which will give rise to multiple initiatives in 2024.”

ECTI has returned to a more sustained level of activity in 2022. Its members have carried out more than 23,000 mission days for the benefit of nearly 700 beneficiaries in France and abroad. Among the areas of development for the years to come the priorities are to assist beneficiaries in the implementation of CSR (Corporate & Social Responsibility) and Digital and Energy transitions and also mentoring young people and students.

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