Why volunteering? Because I strongly believe in the values of volunteering.
To me volunteerism is an authentic form of expressing motivation; it is an occasion to get deeply invested in a mission, to be able to contribute with our skills and competencies where really needed. Volunteering is about being part of the change, it’s an occasion for our human side to prevail upon our personal interests.
The day the cyclone hit, we accommodated five neighbour families who sought refuge after the cyclone winds destroyed their houses. A total of 33 people sat in our small sitting room and I had to climb up the roof to place stone blocks to prevent the roof of being swept away.
Working with UNICEF as a UN volunteer over the past year, my assignment included building awareness among staff on climate change, its impact and how we can mitigate its effects. I also advocate for sustainable practices in the way people consume energy and resources and manage waste both at work and in their personal lives. These efforts are in line with one of the targets of Sustainable Development Goal 13: to improve education, awareness-raising, human and institutional capacity on climate change mitigation, adaptation, impact reduction and early warning.
This call closed on 9 June 2019. In March and April 2019, Southern Africa was hit by two subsequent cyclones that left a trail of damage and destruction in their path. In Zimbabwe, the floods burst rivers, and mudslides resulted in the loss of lives and livelihoods, severely damaging road networks, water points, bridges, irrigation schemes and electricity infrastructure. UNV is currently working to urgently recruit national and international UN Volunteers to support recovery initiatives by UNDP in Zimbabwe.
UN Volunteer Lucy Tabot Akabum is a Human Rights Officer at the UN Joint Human Rights Office of MONUSCO in Bukavu, in eastern DRC. She was one of ten UN Volunteers who contributed to the Volunteer Initiatives for Peace and Development (VIPD) project to provide clean water for 39 orphans.
This call closed on 20 May 2019. In March and April 2019, Southern Africa was hit by two subsequent cyclones that left a trail of damage and destruction in their path. In Mozambique, Cyclone Idai left more than 600 people dead and an estimated 1.85 million people in need of humanitarian assistance. UNV is currently working to urgently recruit national and international UN Volunteers to support emergency response efforts by UNDP and UNICEF in Mozambique.
Areas of focus
Sri Lanka is identified as one of the major hotspots of climate change (according to a report by the World Bank, a hotspot is a location where changes in average weather affects the living standards negatively). Some 4 million people in the country are projected to be severely affected by 2020, thus it is imperative to know exactly how and how disastrous the consequences of this threat will be.
1. Agriculture and Agricultural Productivity
According to UNICEF-WHO Joint Monitoring Programme data from 2015, only 16 per cent of the population in Eritrea have access to basic sanitation facilities and 76 per cent practice open defecation.
I support my team in achieving SDG 6 through planning and monitoring of programme activities and enhancing the capacity of government partners to enhance their monitoring and reporting.
What was your UN Youth Volunteer assignment?
My UN Youth Volunteer assignment in 2013 was as a WASH Specialist for UNICEF in Burundi. I was based in the capital Bujumbura and supported various aspects of UNICEF’s water, sanitation and hygiene programme, mostly targeting rural areas of Burundi. My tasks included among others the follow-up of emergency relief activities for returning refugees, the supervision of partner organizations and contractors who implemented project activities and the development of proposals on WASH innovation.
The Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan (NYKS) and the National Service Scheme (NSS) are among the world’s largest youth volunteering schemes. They aim to help young people to reach their full social, economic and human potential, while instilling a strong sense of civic engagement facilitating greater youth participation in achieving sustainable development goals collaborated with Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of India.