Cybercafé project – Breaking the Isolation


Project “Breaking the Isolation”

For more than five years an EU Action Programme called “European Voluntary Services” (EVS) supports informal education opportunities for young Europeans through trans-national volunteering, directly and actively involving young people in activities designed to meet the needs of society in a wide range of fields. Especially the development and running of “Patient Internet Cafés” in eleven hospitals situated in seven European countries in 1999/2000 has been a very positive experience both for hosting hospitals and for participating young volunteers.

The European MS Platform decided to re-establish the project, which was made possible by EU-funding.

EMSP is ...... an European  Non Governmental Organisation (NGO) established by the National Multiple Sclerosis Societies of European countries for coordinating and promoting international activities at European level.

It  presently consists of 29 National MS Societies representing their countries.

EMSP's Council presently consists of one delegate of each of the following countries:

Austria, Belgium, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and  UK.



What’s the job of us volunteers:

“Trying to explain how simply to work with a computer and how to find a way trough the internet, that’s our task“

One problem of MS is that sufferers feel lonely. In an attempt to break this isolation, the EMSP Cybercafé project was started in six countries in Europe.

The aim of the project is to provide information and a means of communication for people to avail themselves of, despite their increasing disability. The cafés are supervised through the European voluntary services by young people from foreign countries, who are also provided with the relevant training. (yep!)

Our work is first to assist the hosting hospital or rehab centre with the promotion of the Cyber Café- services among patients, staff and local guests. At the same time, we act as teachers and supervisors in order to ensure that absolute beginners in PC and Internet use are encouraged to learn the basics.

(Finally, we are also responsible for the smooth and safe running of the Cybercafé, including the set up and supervision of rules against improper use of the facilities.)

The project duration is limited to 12 months including the group preparation of the young volunteers (organised centrally) and the language training (organised in the hosting country or, where this is not possible, centrally).