Volunteering gets the Final Wrap
1 July 2002 at 1:07 pm
Six months after the successful conclusion to the International Year of Volunteering (IYV) organising committees, participants, governments and world authorities are finally wrapping up and digesting the impact.
A two-day gathering of international experts on volunteerism in Bonn has ended with a call for a centralised information “clearinghouse” on voluntary action in the wake of the UN International Year of Volunteers 2001 (IYV).
Meeting at the headquarters of the United Nations Volunteers (UNV),
representatives from 18 countries said the efforts to mobilise volunteer
organisations in more than 120 nations last year should continue through
the activities of governments, the United Nations and civil society.
Among recommendations to support volunteerism globally, participants noted
a need to collect data on volunteerism and to monitor the state of
volunteerism in countries around the world. To help keep abreast of
changes within the world of volunteering, they also suggested compiling a
volunteer monitoring “toolkit” and an annual “state of volunteering”
According to a report from the consultations, there was consensus on the
need for “strategic organisation, alliances, joint leadership,
partnerships and positioning on volunteering at global, regional and
national levels which would augment and support the spontaneous, vibrant,
‘bottom-up’ nature of volunteering which is the expression of a natural
desire to reach out to others”.
Participants came from Brazil, Canada, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany,
Honduras, India, Jamaica, Lebanon, Malaysia, Mexico, Mozambique, the
Netherlands, the Philippines, Russian Federation, South Africa, Spain, the
United Kingdom and Zambia. Representatives of CIVICUS, the European Union, the International Association for Volunteer Effort (IAVE), the
International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
(IFRC), the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), UNV and the World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) also took part.
UNV is the volunteer arm of the UN system. It extends hands-on assistance
for peace and development in 140 countries. Created by the UN General
Assembly in 1970 and administered by the United Nations Development
Program (UNDP), UNV works through UNDP country offices to send
volunteers and promote the ideals of volunteerism around the world.
If you would like to comment on these volunteer suggestions why not join our on-line Forum at probonoaustralia.com.au.
The Final Report of the International Symposium on Volunteering (ISV 2001, November 2001, Geneva) is now available on at www.isv2001.org