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Volunteering for peace and development
The United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme contributes to volunteerism for development by advocating for volunteerism globally, encouraging the integration of volunteerism into development programming, and mobilizing volunteers. 

UNV advocates for environments in which volunteerism can flourish and people have the ability and the right to participate in the development process. We promote the integration of volunteering into the objectives and activities of partners such as governments and development organizations, to facilitate national ownership of development processes.

Volunteerism for development focuses on optimizing volunteerism’s impact on peace and development. Achieving this requires the cooperation and commitment of the public sector, civil society and the private sector with support from the United Nations system and the world community. Individual citizens also have an important role to play through volunteering.

For development to be sustainable, the people affected by it must be actively involved to take ownership. Every day, individuals are engaged in development initiatives through volunteer actions both large and small in an effort to improve conditions for others and themselves. Volunteer action by millions of people has been critical to achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), and will be even more critical to achieve the 2030 agenda and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Volunteerism strengthens—and is strengthened by—trust, solidarity and reciprocity among citizens; it can transform the pace and nature of development. By creating opportunities for all citizens to participate in development, volunteerism empowers them and gives them a personal stake in their future.

Therefore, volunteerism fosters secure and stable environments conducive to the peaceful resolution of conflict. UNV strengthens the capacities of national partners, enabling local ownership of peace and development processes and encouraging recognition of volunteers and their cohesive engagement for peacebuilding.

Volunteerism is indeed a powerful and inclusive means of engaging people in tackling development challenges worldwide: everyone can contribute their time, skills and knowledge through volunteer action, and their combined efforts can be a significant force for achieving peace and development.

  Related articles    
UN General Assembly adopts Resolution on volunteerism in the 2030 Agenda
26 November 2015
New York, USA: UN Resolution “Integrating volunteering into peace and development: the plan of action for the next decade and beyond”, adopted by consensus by the UN General Assembly during its seventieth session, recognizes that volunteerism can be a powerful means of implementation for the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda. The General Assembly also acknowledges the Plan of Action 2016-2030 for integrating volunteering in peace and development, calling upon Member States, UN and a wide range of stakeholders to support and resource it, and recognizes UNV as the appropriate UN entity to support its implementation. Read
Introducing the corporate volunteering perspective in the UN Private Sector Forum 2015
27 September 2015
New York, USA: The UN Private Sector Forum 2015, hosted by the UN Global Compact, was an opportunity for global leaders from Governments, the Private Sector and Civil Society to discuss the role of the private sector in implementing the newly adopted Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme was an organizing partner of the Forum. Read
Integrating volunteering in the next decade
11 September 2015
Lago Agrio, Ecuador. At Albergue Apafano, a shelter for people displaced from Colombia, UN Volunteers Pilar Peña from Costa Rica and Ecuadorian national Alexandra Mendoza address colleagues from UNHCR and the Ecuadorian Red Cross. Collaboration among volunteers and partner organizations helps achieve best results. (Andrew Smith / United Nations Volunteers, 2009)
New York, USA: At the upcoming seventieth session of the UN General Assembly, the Secretary-General will report to Member States on progress on volunteerism since 2012, and present a proposed Plan of Action for the next decade and beyond (2016-2030).

The Plan of Action aims at integrating volunteering in peace and development policies and programmes through a strategic and collective long-term approach that matches the period of SDG implementation. It provides a frame through which civil society, the UN and other stakeholders can support and leverage the potential of volunteerism worldwide.

Volunteers vital to success of new global development agenda, UN report says
05 June 2015
UN Youth Volunteer Stepanka Pechackova, is fully funded by the Czech Republic, and works as a Communications and Outreach Youth Officer with UNV and UNDP in Mongolia. (UNV, 2015)
New York, USA: Volunteers are playing a vital role in making governments worldwide more accountable and responsive to their citizens, but their potential is seriously undervalued, a new report from the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme said today.

The State of the World’s Volunteerism Report 2015 is the first global survey of the contribution of volunteers to better governance, a prerequisite for the success of the new Sustainable Development Goals to be agreed at the United Nations in September.

UNV is administered by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)