Plan of Action
It is estimated that there are 12.1 million full time equivalent volunteers in Africa with the highest proportion of people volunteering informally (86 per cent). Several countries in the continent have formulated and adopted volunteer policies and laws to strengthen an enabling environment for volunteering to thrive in Africa.
Why volunteering and inequality?
United Nations (UN) Member States and other actors have taken steps to achieve the SDGs by 2030, including many that involve volunteering.
There has been significant progress in some areas such as education, with more than 92.58 per cent of young men and 88.61 per cent of young women literate, but much work still remains to tackle critical challenges.
There are one billion people who are estimated to actively volunteer worldwide. The 2015 Human Development Report (HDR) highlights that, volunteering creates social value and fosters innovation where markets and organizations were unable to make a direct contributions to peace and development in areas such as education, health, water and sanitation.
By 2030, the sustainable goals (SDG4) aims to ensure that all girls and boys complete free, equitable and quality primary and secondary education leading to relevant and effective learning outcomes. Nowadays, young women do not have the same access to education and training as their male peers. According to UNICEF, globally, 264 million children and adolescents do not have the opportunity to enter or complete school.
Young people gain professional, technical, and soft skills (creativity, leadership, critical thinking) that are crucial for employability through their volunteering activities.
The GTM 2020 will be co-chaired by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and the United Nations Volunteers programme (UNV) and will discuss “Reimagining volunteerism for the 2030 Agenda” at the 2020 High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development.
The GTM 2020 will be informed by a Global Synthesis Report that will analyze evidence gathered by the Plan of Action Secretariat in 2018 and 2019. More information about the Plan of Action.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development explicitly recognizes volunteer groups as key actors to achieve the seventeen Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Following the launch of the 2030 Agenda in 2015, the General Assembly of the United Nations adopted the Plan of Action for Integrating Volunteerism into the 2030 Agenda, through Resolution A/RES/70/129 "Integrating volunteering into peace and development: the plan of action for the next decade and beyond".
The Consultation provided a space for Plan of Action stakeholders from the ESCWA region to identify opportunities to support volunteers to accelerate SDG progress and maximize the potential of volunteering to tackle the region’s most pressing issues.
The consultation facilitated substantive discussions and generated great interest from partners to further strengthen and leverage the role of volunteerism to accelerate progress on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).