After a 50-year conflict between the Government of Colombia and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia–People’s Army (FARC-EP), the objective of the UN Mission in Colombia (UNMC) is to support cessation of hostilities and to monitor the abandonment of arms as well as the definitive bilateral ceasefire.
The month of December was passing by and my sadness had turned into depression. At that moment, I had lived outside of Venezuela for almost two years, since I, like many other young people from my country, felt the need to look for opportunities beyond our borders. However, in my case, my stay in Colombia had become more challenging than expected: I couldn’t find a job where I could utilize my skills and professional knowledge, and I was quite far from content.
Volunteerism enables youth engagement, leadership and participation
Within Latin America and the Caribbean, young people between the ages of 15 and 24 account for 20 per cent of the population. This is the largest percentage of youth in this region, ever. The statistics are dire: 35 million of these young people never attended school, 39 per cent live in poverty and 25 per cent are unemployed.
At the United Nations stand at the summit, UNV organised an activity related to the “Youth for the SDGs” project, during which young leaders attending the summit were invited to ‘adopt’ one of the Sustainable Development Goals and to indicate a specific course of action which would contribute to its achievement.
Wendy Betancourt García (Colombia) is a UN Volunteer Project assistant with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Colombia.
This year, the theme of the International Day of Peace is “The Sustainable Development Goals: Building Blocks for Peace.” The Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development is the newly adopted plan of action for all countries that seeks to eradicate poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all through a collaborative partnership.
The third “Volunteer Talk – UNV Knowledge Sharing Webinar” was organized on 30 October 2014 and had as theme “Motivating and Recognizing Volunteers". The webinar featured experiences from the field on tools for recognizing the contribution of volunteers, in a wider policy context. The guest speakers for this webinar were Renata Farias, UNV Programme Officer in Cabo Verde and Adriana Serdan, UNV Programme Officer in Colombia.
The third “Volunteer Talk – UNV Knowledge Sharing Webinar” was organized on 30 October 2014 and had as theme “Motivating and Recognising Volunteers". The webinar featured experiences from the field on tools for recognising the contribution of volunteers, in a wider policy context. The guest speakers for this webinar were Renata Farias, UNV Programme Officer in Cabo Verde and Adriana Serdan, UNV Programme Officer in Colombia.
During the first UNV Partnerships Forum that took place in Bonn, on September 30th and October 1st 2014, eight UN Volunteers were given the floor to share their experience as UN Volunteer. In this video, Ioseba Amatriain Losa, Spanish fully funded UN Youth Volunteer tells about his experience in Colombia.
Volunteer work can become the driving force of change in many societies. Young Colombians know this, and for this reason, many take part in community work that promotes education and human rights as pillars of peace and development in their country.