Beijing Volunteer Service Federation deploys UN Youth Volunteers for the first time


Two Chinese UN Youth Volunteers started their assignment this year in Asia and the Pacific. Their assignments are the first to stem from the decade-long partnership between the Beijing Volunteer Service Federation (BVF), UNV, and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in China.

Yalin China UNV Youth Myanmar
Yalin Wu (right) interviewing the Director of the Disaster Management Department of the Myanmar Red Cross Society (MRCS) during the Community-based Disaster Risk Management training organized by MRCS, an event attended by ten Disaster Risk Reduction Youth Volunteers. (UNV, 2017)

Ge Yang (China), is currently supporting communications in the UNV Regional Office in Bangkok, Thailand, and recently shared her UN Youth Volunteer experience with Mr. Haoliang Xu, United Nations Assistant Secretary General and UNDP Director of the Regional Bureau for Asia and the Pacific.

Volunteering is one of the first steps for Chinese youth to work abroad and learn about different countries. After returning to China, I will actively share my experience with more Chinese youth as well as volunteer involving organizations to support them to engage more with the international development ecosystem,” explained Ge.

In the meeting, Ge highlighted interactions she had with youth from various countries in the region, including China. Regional youth events she supported through her assignment, such as the ‘Youth, Peace & Security Regional Consultation’ and the ‘South-South Knowledge Exchange on Youth Volunteering for the SDGs: Sharing Sufficiency Economy Philosophy (SEP) and Other Approaches from ASEAN countries’, offered great learning experiences.

Becoming a UN Volunteer offers a unique experience of international development, combining the rewards of making a difference for people on the ground, and a front-row seat in policy circles, bringing change through thought leadership, empowerment and inclusion,” said Mr. Xu.

While Ge is working at the regional level, Yalin Wu, Chinese UN Youth Volunteer, is serving at the national level in the UNV Field Unit in Myanmar. She supports communications for UNV and UNDP in Myanmar and through the Disaster Risk Reduction Youth Volunteer Project, she raises awareness about the importance of Disaster Risk Reduction in local communities.

The Chinese UN Youth Volunteers, fully-funded by the Beijing Volunteer Service Federation (BVF), are part of a cooperation project aimed at strengthening China’s involvement in the development of international volunteer service and South-South Cooperation along the Belt and Road Initiative.


“As a UN Youth Volunteer sent under the South-South Cooperation framework, I am supporting UNV’s and UNDP’s communications to show others the culture of Myanmar and their contributions to the SDGs. I believe disseminating volunteers’ efforts and achievements in Myanmar serves as a window for people to understand Myanmar’s local culture and context,” explained Yalin.

The collaboration between BVF and UNV with UNDP in China has been at the forefront of the volunteering sector’s development in China. This three-year project will strengthen people to people exchange as a component of South-South Cooperation and will focus on developing volunteering alliances along the Belt and Road Initiative.