UNICEF supports youth volunteering together with the Ministry of Youth and Sports and the Ukrainian Volunteer Service NGO
On 9 April 2021, the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) in Ukraine signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Ministry of Youth and Sports of Ukraine and the Ukrainian Volunteer Service. The parties pledged to work together to raise the level of volunteering culture among young people, in particular, by creating and developing the National Volunteering Platform.
The National Volunteering Platform shows Ukrainian youth the opportunities provided by volunteering and is a guide through the world of kindness. Civil society organizations can use the platform to announce projects where volunteering opportunities are available, while potential volunteers can view opportunities in their regions and select the most interesting initiatives.
"Launching this volunteering platform is an important step for us, and we are happy that we started it with inspired, responsible partners. This is also an important step for the national youth policy, showing further recognition of volunteering in Ukraine, and I am confident that this is just the beginning of our effective progress in this direction," said Maryna Popatenko, Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports of Ukraine.
"When we talk to national government institutions or with hromadas, we say that they need to engage with young people, to listen to them, to consider what they want and what they need. If young people are not engaged in the community, it is difficult for the administration and others to understand and listen to them. But volunteering bridges the gap between being a passive person and being an active person in society. For young people, this is their first step towards taking responsibility, engaging, but also understanding how things work," said Lotta Sylwander, UNICEF Representative in Ukraine.
The Volunteering Platform was launched in March this year and was made possible thanks to fruitful cooperation between UNICEF, the Ukrainian Volunteer Service and the SoftServe company, with the support of the Ministry of Youth and Sports of Ukraine.
“During the first pilot month, we were joined by over 50 organizations from entirely different sectors: social assistance, culture, sports and environment. In addition, we already have great positive feedback from volunteers,” said Anna Bondarenko, Head of the Ukrainian Volunteer Service.
A video of the event is available here.
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