By far the best part of my job is meeting volunteers. On Wednesday, I met Joseph. He is from Nigeria and a volunteer in Sierra Leone, as part of the Economic Commission of West African states (ECOWAS) Volunteer Programme (EVP), the first regional Volunteer scheme in the world.
Joseph Uzaka Munoye is a basic Science teacher at the oldest secondary school in the country, called Anna Walsh, since September 2017. He didn’t hide his appreciation that the joint ECOWAS-UNV team was paying him a courtesy visit to see how his assignment was going.
UN Volunteers assigned to UN entities such as the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA), play important roles, advocating for improvements in environmental management and engaging communities to protect the ecosystem.
In 2017, 266 UN Volunteers in West and Central Africa, or 17 per cent of all volunteers deployed in the region, served in assignments linked to environmental issues.
During their assignments with peace keeping missions, UN Volunteers are known to demonstrate an exceptional level of professionalism, dedication and courage.
I first became a UN Volunteer in 2004 when I accepted an assignment with the United Nations Operation in Burundi (ONUB) as a Support Officer. I was excited about the opportunity. I still remember practically jumping from joy in my office when I received the offer. My enthusiasm was quickly dampened by the words of caution from colleagues and friends—some of them calling me crazy for being happy to land a role in a warzone.
Under this year’s IVD theme “Volunteers act first. Here. Everywhere“, two events were planned in the Montserrado County in the North West of Liberia. For the very first time, the UNV Field Unit also organized awareness events in Grand Gedeh County (Zwedru) and Grand Cape Mount County (Robertsport).
Having had the opportunity this past year to live in Bosnia and Herzegovina, I saw first-hand the positive influence of the UN; and this influence greatly resonated with me. Now, I welcome the opportunity to be actively involved in helping this global organization achieve its goals.
Democratic elections provide a crucial opportunity for citizens to shape their governing structures and freely chose the leaders that will lead the nation on their behalf. The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) promotes credible and inclusive elections by supporting countries to establish independent electoral bodies and prevent electoral conflict and violence.
My name is Henry Tambade (Zimbabwe). I am an international UN Volunteer stationed in Monrovia, serving as Corrections Training Officer with the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) since September 2013. I have a degree in Adult Education which I obtained from the Midlands State University in Zimbabwe in 2010. I also have a diploma in the same field obtained in 2005 from the University of Zimbabwe.
The issue of women’s rights is a global issue. The status of women’s rights around the world is an important indicator of global well-being. Despite many successes in empowering women, numerous issues still persist in all areas of life. For example, Sexual and Gender-Based Violence is increasing in a variety of forms in Liberia. While there may be a decrease in some instances of physical domestic violence, both physical and emotional abuse continue to occur.
As a UN Volunteer Human Rights Officer with the United Nations Mission in Liberia (UNMIL), I am engaged in monitoring, investigating and reporting human rights violations and abuses, as well as building capacity of civil society partners and state authorities.
Aside from monitoring detention centres, prisons and police cells, I am engaged in the creation of local human rights networks, and I help them develop their capacity in monitoring and advocacy to build a society that respects human rights with dignity, mutual understanding and peaceful dialogue.