INTERNATIONAL VOLUNTEER DAY FOR ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT

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"The diverse and dynamic role of volunteerism in promoting the Sustainable Development Goals merits strong support from Governments and other stakeholders. On this International Day, I thank volunteers for their efforts to leave no one behind." — António Guterres, UN Secretary-General

International Volunteer Day (IVD) mandated by the UN General Assembly, is held each year on the 5th December. It is viewed as a unique chance for volunteers and organisations to celebrate their efforts, to share their values, and to promote their work among their communities, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), United Nations agencies, government authorities and the private sector.

Apart from mobilising thousands of volunteers every year, the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme contributes to peace and development by advocating for the recognition of volunteers and working with partners to integrate volunteerism into development programming. 

This year’s theme "Volunteers build Resilient Communities" to celebrate volunteers efforts that strengthen local ownership and the resilience of the community in the face of natural disasters, economic stresses and political shocks.

The United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme is mandated to support and promote IVD celebrations worldwide. Apart from mobilising thousands of volunteers every year, UNV contributes to peace and development by advocating for the recognition of volunteers and working with partners to integrate volunteerism into development programming. Every year, over 6,500 UN Volunteers serve with UN entities in some of the most challenging environments across the world, and 12,000 UN Online Volunteers complete over 20,000 assignments online through the UNV Online Volunteering service.

At the World Assembly of Youth (WAY) we recognise the effort put in by volunteers and the contribution they make to all programmes and activities in our global community. Since its establishment in year 2006, the World Assembly of Youth’s Volunteer Programme was initiated as a platform that links the youth all around the world that seeks to develop a dedicated group of young people who are willing to assist in WAY programmes and activities around the world. This programme works towards the elevation of youth and their development into leaders who are willing to donate some of their time and energy to support WAY in achieving its goals and aims.

Volunteerism is important for young people because it enriches our society, brings us together as a community and strengthens civic engagement, safeguards social inclusion deepens solidarity and solidifies ownership of development results.

Let us all join hands to strengthen volunteerism to build a community with a shared future for our youth and mankind so as to contribute their wisdom and power and jointly build a better world for all.