Volunteer movement – what is it?
On 5th of December the world celebrates the International Volunteer Day (IVD). Thousands of events and information campaigns take place to celebrate and promote volunteerism this day. United Nations Volunteers always join the movement, and UN Volunteers in Crimea, Ukraine are not the exception.
I as UN volunteer at the UNDP Sub-Office in Crimea together with the UNV/UNOSDP/UNDP Project “Young Football Volunteers: Sport and Development for Millennium Development Goals” (YFV) will conduct an information session on volunteerism, its role in the world, and its benefits for social and personal development. The info session is a panel at the BarCamp “Ideas Out Loud” organized by a local NGO the Center for Regional Development “Top Kaya”. The first in history of Simferopol BarCamp is dedicated to civil journalism and cooperation between civil initiatives and media will take place on 1 of December.
During the session the UN Volunteers programme information materials will be spread out. The most active participants will receive prizes from the YFV project: the project t-shirts and informational materials on HIV prevention and the UN MDG comic book. The participants will also have an opportunity to observe the photo exhibition “Charity through the Prism of Objective Lens” which is the result of the all-Ukrainian contest organized by the Ukrainian Philanthropists Forum, and the materials of the UNV campaign “Volunteering Matters”.
Despite the fact that the term “volunteerism” and “volunteer movement” became a buzz word nowadays, not many are aware about its true meaning. “Unpaid labour” is the first that occurs to mind. In fact, this is not the case. On the international level volunteerism is recognized as a powerful driving force based on strong civil society. Why? The point is that people talk about volunteering aloud and appreciate its value. In our country volunteer movement is like grey economy – nobody tells that it exists, nobody promotes it, let alone understanding its true value. Thus we lose the opportunity to use this tremendous resource for our personal sake and for the sake of our society.