Integrating volunteering in the next decade and beyond

In 2012, the UN General Assembly requested "the Secretary-General to [present] a plan of action to be developed by the United Nations Volunteers programme to integrate volunteering in peace and development in the next decade and beyond [...]." (Resolution A/Res/67/138).

The United Nations Volunteers programme (UNV) has therefore developed a Plan of Action which aims at integrating volunteering in peace and development policies and programmes through a strategic and collective long-term approach that matches the period of sustainable development goals (SDGs) implementation. 

The Plan provides a frame through which civil society, the UN and other stakeholders can support and leverage the potential of volunteerism worldwide. In fact, evidence exists that when volunteerism is integrated into national development strategies and United Nations plans, people are increasingly able to contribute to achievements in education, health, governance, sustainable livelihoods, security and peace, environment, gender and social inclusion.

Based on the improved recognition of volunteerism and on the continuing need to better acknowledge its essential contributions, the Plan identifies three strategic objectives:

  1. strengthen people's ownership of the post-2015 agenda through enhanced civic engagement and enabling environment for citizen action;
  2. integrating volunteerism into national and global strategies for the post-2015 development agenda; and
  3. measuring volunteerism to contribute to a holistic understanding of the engagement of people and their well-being and be part of the monitoring of the SDGs.

The Plan has taken into account a variety of input and feedback received from a wide range of stakeholders since the International Year of Volunteers (IYV) in 2001 and particularly during its tenth anniversary in 2011 and beyond. Partners and stakeholders from across the world have been extensively consulted, both online and onsite, in 2014-15.

The Plan of Action is part of the Secretary General Report A/70/118 (see chapter IV) about progress made with regards to the recognition and promotion, facilitation, networking and integration of volunteerism worldwide since 2012, which will be discussed by the UN General Assembly in December 2015.