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Orchid House


Vacancy for EVS Volunteer in Ireland

Depaul Ireland provides accommodation and key services to people who many others struggle to work with street drinkers, women in prison, families who others have given up on, those with behavioral, self-harm and addiction problems. We work in Dublin and Belfast to provide accommodation, outreach and training services to homeless and disadvantaged people.

One of our host projects is "Orchid House". Orchid house provides emergency accommodation for men and women who have entrenched alcohol issues, complex support needs and a history of extended periods of street homelessness in Dublin. This 24/7 service offers alcohol management support onsite. 
Services offered:
-Private accommodation
-One-to-one professional support
-Practical and holistic assistance
-Harm reduction addiction support
-Referral, advocacy and case management
-Independent living skills development
-Volunteer-led activities
-Resettlement support

Orchid house works within a principle of 'harm reduction' which means that we work with service users at their level to provide the best possible interventions for them. Because of the needs of the service users the project is a “wet hostel” (where service users can consume their own alcohol on site) It provides accommodation to 23 street-homeless men and women over the age of 18. The project especially aims to cater for people with a long history of alcohol misuse and as a result of this have been discriminated from most other projects in the city. Some service users presenting are drug dependent and some drug and alcohol dependent and due to the emergency nature of the project there can be a frequent turnover of service users . Most of our service users would have spent a long time on the streets before arriving at our project. Therefore the support provided for our service users have to be very basic (i.e. a secure place to stay, three meals a day and a friendly environment). 


-Our aim is to open new possibilities for the project and its residents through the inclusion of volunteers. While the project staff often need to focus on the basic service provision (Keyworking), the volunteers can concentrate solely on additional activities which will be of great benefit to the residents. Volunteers are advised not to expect too much from residents in relation to their activities at first. All residents are permitted to drink alcohol on the project in accordance with a low threshold and harm reduction model and it can be difficult to engage them when they are under the influence of alcohol. Getting to know our residents and building a good relationship with them is essential. Volunteers need to be motivated and be inspiring to residents who can be apathetic, resistant to change or simply do not know what interests them. We hope that this can be achieved by volunteers bringing some interests and skills of their own to help inspire our residents. Activities can range from arts & crafts workshops, photography, organising outings, music & singing, health & beauty, storytelling and any group or one to one activity that will be of interest to the residents. Getting to know residents will take time and is key to build good relationships to instill the confidence in them to participate and socialize. Volunteers will have the opportunity to develop a project which is of particular interest to them, such as a cultural project or a basic skills group. We can support the volunteer in developing this, but will allow them to take the lead in it, thereby improving their organisational and development skills. Primarily the volunteer will spend their 30-35 hour working week at activities in the hostel. At the start of the placement the volunteers’ time will be structured around orientating to a new city, living arrangements as well as training and induction. Volunteers will receive a full induction and training course specific to EVS volunteers.


Due to the nature of our work and the client group we work with there will be some specific requirements of the volunteer. We would be looking for volunteers who have: -An understanding of issues around homelessness. -An interest in working with disadvantaged individuals, and can see the positives in them as well as the support they need. - Empathic and non-judgmental. - Ability to use initiative and be flexible and open to new situations - Creative in coming up with and running activities for residents –As a lot of the volunteers' activities will centre on communication it would be favourable if our volunteers had a basic knowledge of English. They should choose the project because of the unique experience and development they will gain.


We select volunteers according to the Youth in Action Guidelines. This means that we look for volunteer candidates aged between 18 and 30 years and who are legally residing in a Programme Country or in a Partner Country. We seek a balance of varied ages, genders and nationalities amongst our EVS volunteers. In order to fairly assess each candidate’s suitability for each project, we ask each candidate to read the Depaul Ireland EVS volunteer information and then complete the Depaul Ireland EVS application form by requesting it at You will find additional info on our website. The deadline for volunteer applications is Friday 31st January 2014. The application materials are sent to the project management teams in order for them to score the applicants and select volunteer candidates. We will then contact the shortlisted applicants by email to organise a time to do a short interview via phone or skype. The Volunteer Coordinator then makes contact with the volunteer candidate and their sending organisation to initiate the grant application process. We will submit our grant application for the 17th March 2014 deadline Volunteers are also required to produce 2 work/study related references, a relevant police clearance from the country that they are travelling from and information relating to medical history if appropriate.

Subdirecció de Cooperació Universitària al Desenvolupament

Universitat d'Alacant
Carretera de Sant Vicent del Raspeig s/n
03690 Sant Vicent del Raspeig
Alacant (Espanya)

Tel: (+34) 96 590 9379

Fax: (+34) 96 590 3464

Per a més informació:, i per a temes relacionats amb aquest servidor web:

Carretera de Sant Vicent del Raspeig, s/n - 03690 Sant Vicent del Raspeig - Alacant - Tel.: 96 590 3400 - Fax: 96 590 3464