Friendship and solidarity are two of our main values that guide the work of IFM-SEI and our member organisations. Our comrades from Nuoret Kotkat already started preparing for the camp in the spirit of solidarity.
We would like to share with you the example of our Finnish comrades who decided to co-operate with our Bolivian friends from Nueva Generacion as Soili, one of their members, tells us:
“We have co-operated with Nueva Generacion before. We decided before our last own international camp in 2013 that we would like to raise funds and support some of our sister organisations outside of Europe to take part in our camp. Back then we selected three organisations (KKSP Indonesia, Chap Peru and Nueva Generacion Bolivia) with whom we have had personal contacts on previous international camps because we have been in the same village etc. Long before the Camp 2013 we started fundraising to support participants to take part. For Latvian and Lithuanian participants we offered a lower camp fee, as we knew that alhthough we were close to them geographically, finances have been difficult.
We started to raise money centrally in 2013, and the ideas for raising money now are the same. We will do fundraising in our own events and in other events where we are promoting our organization. We will tell people that by buying something from us, or taking part in a lottery, they will be supporting participants from Bolivia to take part to an international camp next year. And these participants will camp together with Finnish participants in the same village so that people from both our organisations will get to know each other.
We will also add a small amount to everyone’s camp fee (the fee that the Finnish participants are paying for the travel costs and the camp) that can be paid voluntarily. Most participants pay it, as it it is less than 10 Euro per person.
We co-operate with trade unions in Finland. They are not supporting our regular work, but this kind of solidarity fits to their values, so we ask them for money to support participant from outside Europe. In return they can put promotion material in our magazine or something like that.
We plan to get in contact with Nueva Generacion, so that children can exchange drawings and get to know each other before the camp.
We are also thinking about some new ideas for fundraising, but those are not sure yet. Our idea is to let Nueva Generacion know that we will support them, but they also need to do their own fundraising. We will ask how much they think is possible for them to fundraise before the camp and how many people they are planning to send. As we would like it to be a balanced co-operation, our will is to support many people, so not just paying fully for one participant, but instead partly covering many people’s costs. This kind of co-operation implies that the same efforts are being made on the other side.
Another reason sustaining our partnership is that one of our members, Heidi, volunteers now in Nueva Generacion and can help start the fundraising project in Nueva Generacion. We think this camp is a good opportunity to develop our cooperation, get to know each other better and make new friends, and we encourage everyone to organise similar solidarity projects”.