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Volunteers are ‘instrumental to the future of people and the planet’ – Ban says on International Day

06 Dec 2016

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New York, Dec 6: Marking International Volunteer Day, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Monday hailed the volunteers for providing shelter and support for refugees as well as those who were integral in emergency response situations in Haiti, Sri Lanka, Mali, and Colombia, saying that throughout the world, UN Volunteers (UNV) are among those who work to achieve peace.

“I extend my deepest gratitude to the more than 6,700 United Nations Volunteers, 12,000 United Nations Online Volunteers, and the one billion community volunteers worldwide. You are all instrumental to the future of people and the planet. Your commitment and passion can act as inspiration to us all,” said Ban in his messasgeon the Day.

The UN chief also expressed gratitude for the volunteers around the world who work to help bring the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) into reality. Volunteering provides an opportunity for everyone to participate in decision-making processes and is a way to engage in civil society by shaping conversations, questioning social norms, and promoting progressive values.

“Your commitment and passion can act as an inspiration to us all,” the Secretary-General emphasized.

The UN has celebrated this occasion since 1985, when it was first established in order to acknowledge the work of volunteers towards economic and social development. Since then, the day has evolved to recognize volunteers working in all different sectors.

The UN Volunteers (UNV) programme mobilizes some 8,000 volunteers each year to work towards peace and development around the world.

“On this International Volunteer Day, let us recognize the immense value of the world’s volunteers,” urged the Secretary-General.

“As they lend a hand to others, let us give volunteers a hand by applauding their global citizenship and their commitment to building a future of peace, prosperity, and dignity for all,” he underscored.

Photo: UNDP India/Sudhanshu Malhotra




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