- 06 December, 2017:
Government has at heart the welfare and well-being of the vulnerable and the disadvantaged of the society. In order to develop its social agenda, Government cherishes the contribution of volunteers to strengthen its efforts to cater for the needs of the community.
The Minister of Social Security, National Solidarity, and Environment and Sustainable Development, Mr Etienne Sinatambou, made this statement yesterday at the Municipality City Council, Port Louis to mark the International Volunteer Day (IVD) 2017. The event is a joint initiative of the Ministry of Social Security, National Solidarity, and Environment and Sustainable Development, and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
In his address Minister Sinatambou recalled that IVD is an opportune time to recognise the social work carried out anonymously by volunteers with a view to ensuring equity and inclusiveness in society. Volunteers can be defined as ordinary people having an extraordinary heart. They are all driven with the common goal of helping people in need without expecting any reward, he said, adding that their unflinching commitment and generosity are indeed laudable.
According to the Minister, there is a pressing need for smart volunteerism to uplift the quality of services volunteers offer, in order to achieve meaningful social change. To this end, Government has set up various capacity-building programmes and trainings to strengthen and enhance the potentials of volunteers, he said.
On that note, Mr Sinatambou announced the launching of training programmes for members of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in effective communication, social leadership and first aid which will be organised at the initiative of the NGO Trust Fund and the UNDP.
For her part, the UN Coordinator of UNDP, Ms Christine Umutoni, highlighted that volunteerism helps to translate human principles into concrete actions. It particularly holds significant value in war-torn countries and regions facing social conflicts, wherein volunteers safeguard rights of those in precarious situations, she added.
Speaking about the multicultural context of Mauritius, she underlined that volunteerism helps to promote social inclusiveness, a sense of cohesion and solidarity in the society. She pointed out that an inclusive and equitable participation of the community is important and adding that Mauritius is a good example in this matter.
Ms Umutoni outlined that the UNDP supports Government in its endeavours to care for the disadvantaged members of the society. In this regard, she enumerated some of the initiatives which include: establishing a Social Register for Mauritius; organising various workshops to map out strategies to attain sustainable goals; setting up of the National Council of Social Work and supporting the fight against poverty and organising capacity-building training for NGOs, amongst others.
International Volunteer Day
IVD, observed worldwide on 5 December, seeks to celebrate the power and potential of volunteerism. It is an opportunity for volunteers, and volunteer organisations
to raise awareness of, and gain understanding for, the contribution they make to their communities. It is also viewed as a unique chance for volunteers and organisations to celebrate their efforts, to share their values, and to promote their work among their communities, non-governmental organisations, United Nations agencies, government authorities and the private sector.
The theme for this year is ‘Volunteers Act First. Here. Everywhere.’ , highlighting the positive solidarity of volunteers around the world who answer calls in times of crisis, helping save lives today and supporting those who want to continue living their lives with dignity .
Government Information Service, Prime Minister’s Office, Level 6, New Government Centre, Port Louis, Mauritius. Email: email@example.com Website:http://gis.govmu.org