International Volunteer Day
The United Nations (UN) annually observes the International Volunteer Day for Economic and Social Development on December 5. It is an opportunity for volunteers, and volunteer organisations, to raise awareness of, and gain knowledge for the contribution, they make to their communities. It is also viewed as a unique opportunity for organisations and volunteers to celebrate their efforts, to share their values, and to promote their work among their communities, non-governmental organisations (NG0’s), United Nations agencies, government authorities and the private sector.
The act of volunteering is found in every cultures, languages, and lifestyles. Yearly, millions of people volunteer their time and skills to help make the world a better place. When they volunteer, they help to improve the lives of others. And when they volunteer, they also gain a greater sense of belonging to their communities.
International Volunteer Day 2020 theme “Together We Can Through Volunteering” is the focus of IVD this year amid the Covid-19 pandemic that has thrown people across the world in an unprecedented crisis. International Volunteer Day observed on December 5 each year is an opportunity for people to say a big thank you to all those who put service above self. Appreciating volunteers, encouraging governments to support volunteers and recognize their contributions is among the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the UN at international and local level. The Indian arm of the UN Volunteers, in front of IVD 2020, tweeted, “We thank all volunteers and celebrate their efforts during these unprecedented times and their zeal to make the world a better place, one kindly act at once! #TogetherWeCan Build back better because together we are stronger!”
The UNV India posted on Twitter their #togetherwecan anthem featuring the “brilliant volunteers”. This year the IVD campaign that started on October 15 culminates on December 5.
Please follow our social media channels @UNVolunteers and use the hashtags #TogetherWeCan and #IVD2020 to be part of the conversation.
Amid the Covid-19, in India, countless corona warriors are in the forefront fighting the war against the pandemic.
International Volunteer Day History
International Volunteer Day was mandated by the UN General Assembly in 1985. The UN Volunteers campaign each year to encourage volunteers in communities for peace and development.
International Volunteer Day: Objectives
Some of the main objectives of celebrating International Volunteer Day are as follows:
- To show their volunteering experiences, best practices and prepare a plan to strengthen their capabilities of work for promoting human development by their skills and knowledge sharing.
- To impart and mobilize the general public globally through the experiences of volunteers taken part in human development on the Internet.
- To acknowledge the winning individual volunteer and their organizations to facilitate their nomination for the UNV online volunteering award.
- To eliminate poverty, gain thorough primary education, promote gender equality, lessen the childbirth rate, improve the health of nurturing mothers, prevent the spreading of AIDS, malaria, and other diseases, and also ensure to make the environment healthy for living.
Benefits of volunteering
- Volunteering connects you to others
- Volunteering is good for your mind and body.
- Volunteering can advance your career.
- Volunteering brings enjoyable and satisfaction to your life.
International Volunteer Day: Celebrations
This day celebration involves the volunteers in many activities which are as follows:
- Parades and rallies are organised with the purpose to increase awareness among people globally.
- Rewards and acknowledgment are organised for winner volunteers for recognizing their significant involvement in their communities.
- Various competitions and events are organised for the Volunteers.
- Promise taking campaigns for voluntary services to the precise tasks.
- Time donation campaigns are also organised for people.
- International Anti Corruption Day
It also focuses on the UN Millennium Development goals like;
- To help in eliminating of poverty
- To achieve universal primary education.
- Promote gender equality
- Empower Women
- Reduce Child death
- Improve maternal health
- Reduce the spread of HIV/AIDS, malaria and other health problems.
- To help in ensuring environmental sustainability.
Resolutions for International Volunteer Day
The United Nations General Assembly informed in its resolution of 20 November 1997 that 2001 will be observed as the International Year of Volunteers (IYV). IVY is considered as the special year for increasing the recognition of volunteers, expediting their work in developing a network of communication and promoting the benefits of voluntary service.