Volunteering as a participation pathway. The Pathways through Participation project is a joint research project led by NCVO in partnership with the Institute for Volunteering Research (IVR) and Involve, funded by the Big Lottery Fund, September 2011.
Description: This paper focuses on the implications of the findings from the Pathways through Participation project for volunteer management. It is aimed at small, medium and large volunteer-involving organisations (VIOs) as well as volunteer centres (VCs) and other volunteering infrastructure organisations at the local, regional and national level.
The Spanish Volunteering Platform hosted the XIVth State Volunteering Congress in GaliciaMore than a thousand people participated in the XIVth State Volunteering Congress, on 29 November – 1 December 2011, which took place in A Coruña, Galicia, Spain. The congress was organised by the Xunta de Galicia (regional Galician government), in collaboration with the Spanish Volunteering Platform (Plataforma de Voluntariado de España), CEV members, and the Spanish Ministry of Health, Social Policy and Equality. The conference aimed to depict the present and future landscape of volunteering in Spain. Along with presentations, round tables, debates and workshops, the event also hosted 71 stands of various volunteer promoting, and volunteer involving entities throughout Spain. H.R.H. Felipe de Borbón, Prince of Asturias closed the event by presenting the Spanish state volunteering awards. One of the organisations awarded is CEV member Fundación Cibervoluntarios. They have been granted an Honourable Mention in the State Social Volunteering Awards 2011, in recognition of their volunteer work that generates new forms of participation and social innovation in support of individuals and groups at risk of exclusion.
Young Volunteers Stand up!
On September 7-11, the European Youth Forum organised the biggest Civil Society event of the European Year on Volunteering proving and showcasing the impact and outreach of volunteers in youth organisations: the II Youth Convention on Volunteering.
The event, hosted by the European Parliament, was a space for young volunteers and youth organisations to work together, to discuss with European decision-makers and to celebrate the commitment of young people throughout Europe building a better Europe every day.
The Convention consisted of a wide range of activities, most notably the Stakeholder Conference on the Rights of Volunteers, the Volunteer Bridge dedicated to the EU-China Year of Youth, the Volunteers Village, hosting Member Organisations' and other partners' stands and activities, the launch of the European Youth Forum Alumni Network and the YO!Fest which celebrated 15 years of the European Youth Forum.
Part of the Convention was the Volunteer Bridge, one of the flagship events of the 2011 EU-China Year of Youth, organised by the European Youth Forum in partnership with the All-China Youth Federation, the European Commission and the European External Action Service and with the support of the Policy Dialogue Support Facility. A World Music Village Workshop, a Graffiti Workshop and the III China-Europe Symposium on Youth Work Development featured in this event. It provided an experience of volunteering and showcased the contribution of participatory youth organisations to the volunteering sector and to society.
The Village provided the space to more than 80 organisations, Members and non-Members of the platform, to present their work, to bring forward the added value of volunteering within their specific contexts and to engage participants and visitors in a set of workshops and interactive sessions. This Village showed the diversity and strength of youth work and the work of youth organisations. The Youth Forum therefore held a meeting in the Village with experts of the institutions who work on the new cycle of EU Programmes dedicated to Youth.
Overall the Convention gave visibility to volunteering in youth work, showcased the impact of youth organisations, provided them with a space for exchange and to learn from best practices and gave political visibility to the European Youth Forum across the institutions in Brussels. One of the first results was the support to the draft Charter on the Rights and Responsibilities of Volunteers from several important actors such as Mr. Staffan Nilsson, President of the European Economic and Social Committee, Mr. Gianni Pittella, Vice-President of the European Parliament, Ms. Isabelle Durant, Vice-President of the European Parliament, Mr. Jean-Pierre Vandersteen, Director General for Communication of DG Communications (EC), Ms. Marian Harkin, EP Coordinator of the European Year of Volunteering.
The video report of the Convention can be viewed on the Youth Forum's Vimeo page.
ENGSO Hearing “Sport Volunteers: Promoting an Active Europe”
ENGSO Hearing "Sport Volunteers: Promoting an Active Europe" discussed the importance of volunteering for the sports movement. Hearing brought together MEP's and representatives of the sport organisations to share their views on policies enabling volunteering, and challenges and solutions of volunteering. It was organised in the context of the 14th ENGSO Forum in Brussels at the European Parliament on 13th October and hosted by Slovakian MEP Katarina Nevedalova (S&D). In the discussions MEP Hannu Takkula (ALDE) from Finland highlighted the EU's role to promote the exchange of best practice examples in the field of sport. In the second part of the Hearing "Challenges and Solutions" British MEP Emma McClarkin (ECR) was worried about the issues that makes it more difficult to volunteer, e.g. bureaucracy and lack of spare time. However, she concluded her opinion on importance of volunteering: "Volunteers are not paid, not because they don't deserve it but because they are priceless." ENGSO President Birgitta Kervinen, President of the Swedish Sport Confederation Karin Mattson Weijberg and Martijn Pakker from the European Volunteer Center also took the floor and contributed to the discussions.
More information on ENGSO website.
CEV member organisations led the national campaign “CROATIA IS VOLUNTEERING”The Association for Civil Society Development SMART in partnership with Volunteer Centre Osijek, Association Mi and Volunteer Centre Zagreb organised the promotional campaign "Croatia is volunteering" under the slogan of EYV 2011 "Volunteer! Make a difference", through the Croatian Network of Volunteer Centres. The purpose of the awareness-raising event was to increase the visibility and value of the contribution of volunteers and volunteering Croatian society. The event took place on 21st September 2011. Different volunteer activities/small scale actions were simultaneously held in partnership with different stakeholders from various sectors (public, civil society, local/regional government) and took place all over Croatia. Several thousand people got involved in the campaign. The events benefited from national and local media coverage and were held under the auspices of the President of the Republic of Croatia.
Volunteering as a means of empowerment and social inclusion- A bridge between the European Years 2010 and 2011What is the role played by volunteering in the fight against poverty and social exclusion? Is volunteering inclusive itself and is its empowering potential used to the full? What recommendations can we formulate for more and better voluntary action in combating poverty and social exclusion, as well as for a better recognition of the role of volunteers in this area?
These constitute a sample of the questions that were addressed by the over 150 participants of the CEV Symposium on 'Volunteering as a means of empowerment and social inclusion – A bridge between the European Years 2010 and 2011', organised in Brussels from 6th to 8th December. Symposium participants included professionals from the volunteering sector; decision-makers; experts in the field of the fight against poverty and social exclusion; as well as volunteers and people experiencing poverty and social exclusion. The conference was organised in collaboration with CEV's four Belgian member organisations – Vlaams Steunpunt Vrijwilligerswerk, Het Punt Brussel, Plateforme Francophone du Volontariat and Association pour le Volontariat – in the framework of the Belgian Presidency of the European Union (EU).
Consult the Brussels Declaration on the role of volunteering as a means of empowerment and social inclusion here.
EUCIS-LLL key messages on the European Year 2011 on Volunteering
The European Civil Society Platform on Lifelong Learning (EUCIS-LLL) brings together 25 European networks working in education and training. Together, they cover all sectors of education and training including networks for secondary and higher education, vocational education and training, adult education and popular education. Together they represent millions of students, school heads, parents, human resources professionals, teachers and trainers, reaching out to hundreds of millions learners all over Europe and beyond.
Volunteering plays an indispensable and capital role in lifelong learning. EUCIS-LLL key messages on the European Year 2011 are the result of the discussions that took place during the EUCIS-LLL annual conference on "The role, place and value given to volunteering in education and training" (9 May 2011, Krakow) and EUCIS-LLL working group on the social dimension of education and training.
European Year of Volunteering 2011 Tour Book
Summary: The book containing highlights, stories and photos of the EYV2011 tour has been published! Read all about the events, activities, volunteers, organizations, celebrities and high-profile visitors that attended the Tour stops in all 27 EU Member states.
State of the World's Volunteerism Report 2011, Published by: United Nations Volunteers (UNV).
This report is available in Arabic in 2012, English, French and Spanish. For more information visit