La Giruadière is re-opening but requires proof from volunteers and interns.
Following the present vaccine program and the controls which have been put in place for international travel Paul as made the decision to open doors again starting from May 2021. You can read full information upon the respective websites; for volunteering visit Volunteering In France and to apply for an internship visit Internship In France
As regards International travel – Read the Press release from the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs (30 January 2021) visit website You should also see updates at this location and I will try to update this blog on a regular basis as regards corona-virus news and travel.
Vaccinated against Corona Virus Covid and it’s different variants
No matter what travel requirements are required by the French ministry as part of your acceptance to take part in any programs, or projects, at La Giraudiere then you will be required to present proof that you have been vaccinated against Corona Virus Covid-19 and it’s different variants and that your were tested 72 hours prior to arriving at La Giraudiere
2020 looks like it is a lost cause as the virus continues to attack the human race on all continents. The scenario this end is imagine if La Giraudiere, via it’s volunteers or its interns programs, was responsible for introducing the virus into our village, yes the Brossac community, with just over 500 habitats. This cannot happen and this is why we are not hosting any volunteers or interns for 2020. ~~ We are confident that a vaccination will be found as all ready different medications exist which help or relieve the symptoms so, with this in mind, we now concentrate our efforts in preparing for hosting a bumper 2021 season.
La Giraudière fights the Virus
Not all is lost for 2020 as we are in the process of preparing a virtual La Giraudiere project yes an online volunteers program which will be open to all. Those that have either been to La Giraudiere or have applied before will receive an invitation via email. ~~ The invites will be sent once the funding is in place and the broadcasting materials purchased. Hopefully you will be able to take part but failing this the virtual broadcast will be recorded and available to you to view later.
Virtual Culture Versus CoronaVirus
Let’s look at a typical schedule for the podcast/video from which we then see what has to be prepared. Introductions will be at the start of the podcast/video – Introductions of members, new partners and new participants would be introduced. A brief intro from each of them – 5 min slot ~~ Introductions would be followed by The news from Brossac will be at the start of each podcast/video This will be a 5 min slot presenting the general news of life in Brossac including what is in the local papers plus the news relating to the virus/epidemic and our village. ~~ Following the brossac news we would then introduce a Brossac Villager this section would be titled Meet a Brossacaise a person who is either a dignitary, commercant or a figure this interview could be live which would give participants the chance to ask questions or it could be a pre-recorded interview. – 10 min slot ~~ Following the meeting the person from Brossac the next slot is “Facts about” This slot will be dedicated to giving facts about the department of the Charente and or the region of Nouvelle-Aquitaine it would include something unusual, or unknown, relating to history, life, music, culture, patrimoine, people, general facts etc – 10 Min slot
Virtual French Lessons On-Line
Facts about would be followed by a French lesson for beginners and intermediates. The subject of the lesson would be different each week and the teachers would work and plan around the subject used in the previous slots. So the theme of the lesson could be something which was mentioned in the News from Brossac or maybe the person interviewed or even from the facts about or simply something which is requested by you, the participants. -30 mins slot ~~ Following the French lesson for beginners and intermediates is The Excursion Which would be exactly what is says an excursion to a tourist site or place of interest situated in the southwest of France. This may also include a visit to see an artisan making cheese, wine or cognac, This section would be a pre-recorded video and the slot would last least 20 mins max 30 mins. ~~ The Excursion would be followed by a further French lesson for intermediates and advanced. The subject of the lesson again, would be different each week. -30 mins slot ~~ The French lesson for intermediates and advanced would be followed by a round-up and goodbye in this last slot we would mention what is planned for the next podcast/video plus reinforce the corona virus guidelines.
We are taking reservations for 2021 you can read more information upon our website at Volunteer In France take time to like us at our Facebook page at Volunteers Page So you can keep up with the news at La Giraudiere take time to add our blog to your favorites here is the link Volunteers Blog
Each year La Giraudiere hosts #volunteers and #interns of all ages, backgrounds and nationalities. The accommodation fees we collect pay to finance the running of our culture exchange center which is totally staffed by volunteers.
This year we have lost April, May, June and maybe some more. Yesterday the primeminister in France annouced the start of the finish of the present lock down so maybe we will be osting volunteers and interns from July to October but we now it will be difficult for those to arrange transport and other logistics.
So although, for the moment, we have no wages to find this year we still have to pay loans, taxes, rates, insurance and maintain the center in readiness for when we can reopen. As a non profit association based in France we have always put back into the project any surplus achieved and therefore have never provided or produced funds for such a situation which we find ourselves in due to the #coronavirus or #Covid19.
We now look to friends and those who have either benefited from their time at La Giraudiere and feel they can help us get through thus difficult time. Maybe you were due to arrive this year as a first timer or maybe La Giraudiere was to be something for you later.
Please also share and like our various posts and comments on our social media concerning the fund raiser. Any help you can offer would be appreciated for those of you who have never been to La Giraudiere then you can read more about us at our website http://www.lagiraudiere.com/about_us.html
Following on from previous posts this is an update as to what is happening here at La Giraudiere. How we still hope to recover some of our 2020 season from the coronavirus epidemic.
As France slowly starts to come out of it’s confinement I am now able to travel up to 100 kilometres from La Giraudiere. I now no longer need to make and print an attestation for when going out shopping or othe vital reasons.
Some schools start to reopen, shops also start to reopen but still no news concerning restaurants, bars and cafes. There is talk of tourist events starting to happen and sporting events may restart but with no public audience.
The French prime minister said “French restaurants and cafes may be allowed to reopen from June 2, and pupils can start returning to school from May 11. This would be with strict rules. Public events of more than 5,000 people are outlawed until September. Working from home is encouraged for at least three more weeks”.
He further said “The tourism industry is likely to continue to suffer, as beaches will not reopen until at least June 1. Parks and gardens will be accessible only where virus infections are low, and inter-regional travel will be discouraged”.
Corona-virus vaccine needed
To date at La Giraudiere the April, May and June programs were cancelled and it may be inevitable that July, August, September and October may also be cancelled. Fingers crossed a vaccine is needed soon.
As a non-profit association resources at La Giraudiere are low and we have never created a fund, or treasury, to cover such an emergency. Anything gained was always put back into the project, with insight we should have created a reserve for such happenings.
So this year will be particularly difficult, as for many others, with no revenue from Erasmus projects, volunteers and interns fees. Many of you who had reserved a place for this year and paid your deposit have asked for it to be carried over to 2021 and some of you have donated that deposit towards helping the project get through these difficult times, for these gestures of solidarity I thank you all.
If you would like to help and can afford a small donation then please do so and thank you but, if times are difficult for you to, then you can still help simply by posting a link on your Facebook page to our blog or to one of our crowdfunds. If you have twitter then please tweet this blog post on you twitter account every little bit helps.
Following on from our previous post at the end of March concerning the 2020 volunteers and interns season at La Giraudiere.
In France we are still in a lock down but there is some light starting to appear in these dark times. During April the president of France addressed the nation and announcing the extension of the confinement in France until May 11. at which time a gradual relaxing of the lock down would start. This is providing the population continue to be civic, responsible, obey the rules and only if the spread of the virus has actually slowed down.
French President Emmanuel Macron further warned in April that the end of the national lock down on May 11 would only be a first step as France looks to pull out of the crisis created by the corona virus pandemic.
In a recent newspaper article French officials announced that Britons and those from European Union member states will not be placed in 14 days mandatory quarantine if they travel to France, as suggested by the country’s health minister.
The French embassy in London tweeted that the measure would not be imposed on those arriving in France from the UK or Schengen area.
Flights to and from France during coronavirus epidemic
Flights to and from France are still taking off, but airlines across the board are cancelling services due to a huge drop off in the demand, and the French government has announced that international flights are to be reduced, so it’s important to check before you make your way to the airport.
There are lots of restrictions as individual countries close their borders, and the EU has restricted all travel into the Schengen zone from non Schengen countries.
French President Emmanuel Macron had recently predicted that normal travel into France might not happen until at least September. But, the statement was criticized for being too optimistic and, at the same time, ignorant of the seriousness of the pandemic. Ministers of Italy and Spain have both expressed a realistic prediction that international travel wouldn’t likely return in 2020 at all. It is estimated that the European airline industry might recover by the second quarter of 2021.
When will La Giraudiere be accepting volunteers & interns?.
We will await the relaxing of the lock down on May 11th at which time we can decide if to prolong our closure or start opening up to volunteers and interns.
Our region Nouvelle Aquitaine and in particular our department of The Charente are in the green zone at present and for sure La Giraudiere is not keen to be the reception, or exchange point, of the coronavirus in south west France.
Rest assured that preparation and maintenance of La Giraudiere continues in preparation for our first volunteers and interns.
Travel Insurance claims & coronavirus in France
Remember to use your travel insurance to make good any losses you have incurred as regards accommodation, hotel and of course any deposit you paid to us to reserve your place.
All Balances of stay will be repaid and thank you to those of you who have donated to the La Giraudiere project.
In all probability deposit will not be repaid but remember our offer to use this deposit at a later date even next year is open and will continue to be so. Even if you accept this offer you should still include the deposit within your travel insurance claim.
Remember to keep all your travel invoices and receipts to help the claims process go smoothly, Insurers may take a different view on when you can put in a claim. Some will look at it within 28 days of your planned departure. But others will ask you to wait until 48 hours before, in case government advice on travel changes.
If you are offered a voucher, or a free rescheduled booking instead of cash, you can accept or refuse it. But if the airline later folds, the voucher will probably become invalid. And if you re-book but later decide against going on a flight that has not been cancelled, you will have lost your right to a refund and may not be covered by your travel insurance.
This Blog and it's content as been put together by the Volunteers who have participated and are now participating in the project at La Giraudiere.
For the second edition of la Giraudère we are working on the YERRF project, to have more information about it read: recherche de bénévoles
Located 1 km from the village of Brossac within the department of the Charente. This little unknown region of South West France is a jewel to be discovered.We are here participating in a volunteers working holiday. Come back often to see what we've been up to!
What would best describe the La Giraudiere project and it’s program
The whole idea of the La Giraudiere project is for people of all backgrounds, all ages, all nationalities to have the chance to live together learn about each others lifestyle exchange their knowledge, experiences and skills whilst living and working together in France and at the same time helping, improving and adding to the Project for those to come in the future.
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School Trips to France website now live
You can now get a preview of the School Trips to France website which is in construction