Developing a European Software to Validate and Recognize the Key Non-Formal & Informal Competences Needed by Seniors who are Volunteers in Social & Educational Activities


Through Adult Lifelong Learning, we think that what is considered as a problem by many, the European ageing population, might become an opportunity once we are able to use the enormous amount of knowledge generated by European elders throughout the years. For this, it is necessary to activate them socially. Volunteering is an ideal framework to establish inclusive and active citizenship, to generate value based on sustainability and validated knowledge enhancing the elders’ role within inclusive societies (European Strategy 2020). Seniors might provide to other generations knowledge acquired by non-formal or informal learning we do not learn at schools or university. However, many of them are not qualified to plan, manage and assess this transfer process, which often leads to unsatisfactory volunteering experience and might generate and show in apathy or lack of motivation for future social participation on the one hand, and lost knowledge on the other.

Aims and target groups

This project is aimed at developing and implementing a tool for the evaluation, validation and recognition of key competences necessary for retired seniors to participate as tutors in volunteering activities with youngsters. Our target group, seniors retired who do or want to participate as volunteers in social and/or education related activities with young people, will have a system allowing them to:

  • know if they have the non-formal and informal key competences required to act as volunteers in social & educational activities;
  • validate their related skills in social activities and recognise the competences acquired through non-formal and informal ways;
  • be able to plan their own training processes to improve their skills as volunteers


Another important objective of the project is to develop the following main products for the seniors and educational stakeholders:

  • Reports describing trends and performance proposals to facilitate a successful participation of seniors in volunteering processes in social & educational fields and the 10 key learning outcomes required by seniors in volunteering processes,
  • A repository of Good Practices in the evaluation, validation and recognition of non-formal and informal learning in social & educational activities
  • A competence management tool to validate and recognize the key non formal & informal competences needed by the seniors who are volunteers in social & educational activities
EU-Program: LLP, Grundtvig Multilateral Project
Coordination: Fundación de los trabajadores de la Siderurgia Integral (Bilbao, ESP)
Contact: Karin Kronika
Duration: October 2012 - September 2014
This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.