Sharing an ambitious dream is a nice thing to do, but dreaming alone does not change the world - and it is certainly not enough when it comes to creating a project, working together, supporting volunteer teams and individuals and realizing all the great ideas we receive from our members and friends. The success of BeVolunteer as an international organisation will strongly depend on how well we manage to work together and how much "fun" and enrichment it is to be part of this organisation and the project BeWelcome.
Our organisational values are a guideline for every single volunteer to contribute to our success. We don't ask you to sign this but we ask you to have a close look at each of our values and find out how you can live them - be it as a member or as a volunteer of this ambitious project and organisation.
Goodwill is the precondition for any cooperative work. It enables us to face some minor/medium problems between each other without getting under pressure or questioning our common goals. We are all here with the same aim: to make a difference in working together as volunteers of BeVolunteer and BeWelcome.
Goodwill, however, is not to be misunderstood as a free ticket for the refusal to learn and improve. Even if you do things with your best intention, they might still be bad for others. So we will need to understand goodwill as a necessary condition, but not a sufficient one.
We are not working in BeVolunteer for personal glory or enrichment, but to spread the words of hospitality as a great idea, and to provide the tools to help this idea come true all around the world. Our highest goal is the welfare of the whole community, not personal benefits. And the other way round, according to our statutes, money can never give any privilege in BeVolunteer.
Still, it is up to us to enjoy our own-enrichment we gain through the network - be it experience, new friends and connections or simply the fun to work together...
Trust and courage
Trust starts within ourselves. We believe in ourselves, our values, our community and our goals. We are not afraid of other people and communities but curious to get to know them. We trust our future because it is us who create it! The trust in ourselves is the basis for courage. There is no reason to hide or to be afraid, we are here to bring light into our lives.
Ambition and excellence
Ambition is mainly not a negative thing. We have big goals and are impatient to turn them into reality. We are not dreaming as if we would live forever, and do not live as if we would die today. We are here to live our dreams! This is our ambition, we are not afraid of big ideas, but greedy to make them come true.
In contrast to businesses, we do not require commitments. Our enthusiasm for hospitality is a higher guarantor than any commitment. We work voluntarily, that is why we love it so much.
Trust and transparency condition each other. No trust without transparency, no transparency without trust. Transparency is a joy for the sincere, and the ruin for the malicious.
We are here to reduce distances, to cross borders and to unify people who share our values. However, we are not here to equalize and standardize people and cultures. We appreciate the precious value of variety, the right of being different and how diversity is able to freshen up and open our minds.
Participative, well-fortified democracy
As an organization, we have a democratic structure. Democracy guarantees many of our values, and in particular prevents the abuse by a few mighty individuals.
At the same time, we are not naive but aware of the drawbacks of an exaggerated interpretation of democracy that undermines the functioning of its elements. A democracy deserves its name only as long as it is capable of acting for the welfare of its individuals. A good way of keeping a democracy working well is to enforce the principle of subsidiarity: Discussions, decisions and actions are done on organizational levels only as high as necessary but as low as possible, i.e. individuals first, then teams, then Board of Directors (BoD)
, then General Assembly (GA).
So the best way to describe our structure is neither a representative nor a basic democracy, but a participative one.
Friendship is not something that obeys to any rules or statutes: friendship results from the delight you have while spending time with other people. We hope you find a lot of them in BeVolunteer!