Volunteering for post-2015

Volunteerism is a powerful means of engaging people in addressing development challenges.


These issue briefs are part of a UNV series summarizing the contribution of volunteerism to different issues and highlighting its cross-cutting role. They support UNV's advocacy efforts to recognize volunteerism in the post-2015 development agenda as a form of civic engagement that provides a key complementary mechanism for social, economic and environmental transformation.


Cover of UNV IssueBrief on Peacebuilding and VolunteerismUNV Issue brief: Peacebuilding and volunteerism

Using evidence from post-conflict situations, this Issue Brief demonstrates how volunteerism can be a key means for supporting national peacebuilding and global sustainable development.

The engagement of citizens through volunteerism can be powerful in promoting social cohesion and reconciliation, and helping to develop national civilian capacities. All of these make a critical positive difference in peacebuilding processes and initiatives.


Cover of UNV Issue Brief on Social Inclusion and VolunteerismUNV Issue brief: Social inclusion and volunteerism

Discussions on the post-2015 agenda have recognized and emphasized the central importance of social inclusion in the new development framework.

Using research-based evidence, this Issue Brief demonstrates that volunteerism, when well facilitated, can be a powerful mechanism for promoting social inclusion all over the world. Any framework that aims to reverse a "top-down" approach must recognize the contributions of volunteerism in aiding progress towards the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and ensuring sustainable human development in a post-2015 world.


Cover of UNV Issue Brief on Environmental Sustainability and VolunteerismUNV Issue brief: Environmental sustainability and volunteerism

Volunteerism has been a key driver of the global environmental movement, mobilizing communities all over the world to help address environmental problems.

This Issue Brief demonstrates that incorporating volunteerism into the post-2015 development framework as a mechanism for achieving environmental sustainability is absolutely critical. When well facilitated, volunteerism not only supports the achievement of environmentally sustainable outcomes but also promotes long-term processes and shifts in mindsets that sustain environmental gains.

IssueBrief---BasicSocialServices w85UNV Issue brief: Basic services and volunteerism

Volunteer action, when well facilitated, can be a particularly effective mechanism to foster support and complement the state provision of essential services across a number of sectors.

This Issue Brief demonstrates how volunteer programmes provide opportunities for inclusive participation in development processes, which can positively influence the reach and qualitative outcomes of service delivery. By bringing political, attitudinal and behavioural change, volunteerism also promotes social transformations that can help overcome the obstacles towards ensuring basic services for all.


  • Overview coverUNV Overview: Advocating for volunteerism post-2015
    This Overview presents UNV's vision on volunteerism and sustainable development, along with examples of volunteers' work in the post-2015 context. The post-2015 process offers an unprecedented opportunity for UNV to advocate for volunteerism and the values it stands for as an intrinsic component of any future global development framework.
    The Overview also looks towards the future at the potential of volunteerism for the implementation of the post-2015 framework, in relation to the plan of action for the integration of volunteerism in all relevant issues of the United Nations after 2015. This plan will be presented in 2015 to the United Nations General Assembly following the call made in 2012 through Resolution A/Res/67/138.
  • Youth volunteers - Engaging communities, changing livespost2015 brochure cover
    This publication aims to highlight volunteerism as an important universal strategy to promote the engagement of youth in achieving sustainable development in a post-2015 world. It collects stories gathered by UN Volunteers from across the world, capturing the journeys of young people which transform themselves and their development realities through volunteerism.
  • UNV Position Statement on the post-2015 development agenda
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  • Rio+20, MDGs and the post-2015 agenda (2-pager presentation)
  • Posters - Volunteering for post-2015 
  • Leaflet - Volunteering for post-2015
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  • Volunteer Action Counts branding

Among the UN documents prepared to develop the post-2015 agenda, the ones below are those which mention volunteerism and support its integration in the new agenda.

  • Cover of publicationThe world we want - Bangladeshi youth voices on a post-2015 world (2014) 
    This report summarizes the discussions and findings of the three youth consultations held in Jessore, Chittagong and Dhaka between August and October 2013. It highlights important principles and ideas that young people have to improve the world they live in. The consultations gathered 84 youth representatives from 30 youth-led organizations and institutions to understand young people's vision of a post-MDG world and ensure that their voices are heard at the national and global level. 
    Read/download the report (.pdf) | Read the report online
  • Cover of publicationVolunteering for the MDGs in Bangladesh (2013)
    This booklet features volunteers stories about actions to achieve the MDGs in the country and touches upon post-2015 approaches. For Goal 8, dealing with a global partnership for development, a UN Youth volunteer shares her experience on promoting social inclusion in a post-2015 perspective. The post-2015 agenda and the sustainable development goals are introduced at the end of the book as a bridge to the forthcoming development framework.