How To Write a Motivational Letter

You are applying for a European Solidarity Corps project and the hosting organisation asks you to send over a Motivational Letter? Are you wondering how to write the more efficient motivational letter to boost your chances of entering the project of your dreams?

We’ve got you.

Often writing a motivational letter causes stress and may bring a person to give up on application. The doubts around how to write a motivational letter are indeed many, and involves most of the young people applying for a European Solidarity Corps project.

We also want to point out that the following advices work for any kind of motivational letter, being it to apply for a job or an internship, a part from a volunteering project of any kind.

Basic Rules When Writing Your Motivational Letter

Here are some basic rules on how to write a motivational letter:

  • Write a maximum of 3-4 paragraphs;
  • No more than 1-page;
  • Do your best for a good-looking layout;
  • Do not write it on a rush, think about what you’re putting in words (tip: write a checklist first);
  • Always write down your personal data and the information about the organisation;
  • Write it in English (generally speaking, write it in the language requested);
  • If you’re applying for different projects, do not use the same motivation letter;
  • Save it in PDF version, never in other formats.

The Differences When Writing a Motivational Letter for a Job vs. a Volunteering Project

When applying for a job vacancy, remember that you need to keep up formality and that the CV has its importance too. Do not write too much about your personality in your motivational letter but try to point out your professional experiences.

When applying for a volunteering project, formality takes a back seat, but do not forget your sense of kindness! Passions and motivation need be underlined, often more than the CV. In your motivational letter you want to write a lot about your personality. Do not talk too much about your professional experience but besides about your life experiences.

Which Questions To Answer

Try to answer the following questions when writing your motivational letter:

  • Who are you? (age, origin, interests)
  • For which project are you applying for?
  • Why that project specifically? What caught your attention?
  • What do you like about that project? What about the hosting organisation? (Tip: go search for it on social media and website!)
  • What could you bring to such project? Which are your personal skills and past experiences that make you the perfect candidate?
  • If you’re not able to motivate your choice, maybe the project doesn’t really suite you.

The Motivational Letter

The Motivational Letter can be divided into 4 parts.

  1. Write down (if possibile) the name of the person that is going to read your motivational letter. Otherwise, leave it general. Do not mention a “hiring manager” or “HR manager” as this is perceived as too formal. Write a brief introduction about yourself. Remember that the very first lines can make the difference, so write them carefully!
  2. Explain why you are the right person for the project of choice. Underline your commitment to give your energy and time for a project that meets your passions and interests. Do not copy/paste you CV. Try to tell a story about yourself. Remember that it will be an exchange: you will give your time and energy and will get back something, what would you like to learn from such experience?
  3. Consider the organisation hosting the project and let them know that you’ve already done your search to get know more about what they do. Demonstrate that you already know the organisation and write down why you woudl love to volunteer with them.
  4. Conclusions: consider to close up your motivational letter with a catchphrase, to stand out among the other candidates. Remember to say goodbye at the very end. If you are able to, put down your digital signature.

We hope that our tips will be useful when writing your motivational letter.

Good luck!

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