International Volunteer Day (IVD) December 5th is an international observance designated by the United Nations since 1985. It offers an opportunity for volunteer organisations and individual volunteers to make their contributions visible – at local, national and international levels – to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Apart from mobilising thousands of volunteers every year, the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme works closely with partners and governments to establish national volunteer programmes to create structures that foster and sustain local volunteerism in countries. Through the Online Volunteering service volunteers can take action for sustainable human development by supporting the activities of development organisations over the Internet.
The International Volunteer Day (IVD) mandated by the UN General Assembly, is held each year on 5 December. It is 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 (NGOs), United Nations agencies, government authorities and the private sector.
Apart from mobilising thousands of volunteers every year, the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme contributes to peace and development by advocating for the recognition of volunteers and working with partners to integrate volunteerism into development programming.
Through the Online Volunteering service, volunteers can take action for sustainable human development by supporting the activities of development organisations over the Internet. Every day thousands of people are volunteering, online or on-site, contributing to peace and development, working to achieve the MDGs and engaging people to shape the sustainable development agenda.
International Volunteer Day 2019
This year 2019, the theme is in alignment with that of the High-level Political Forum (HLPF), i.e., Empowering people and ensuring inclusiveness and equality.
The theme for IVD 2019 will pay tribute to volunteerism empowering people to participate in their own communities; volunteering to promote inclusion, diversity, non-discrimination; and volunteerism as a mechanism to reduce inequalities in society. Accordingly, the tagline for the IVD 2019 will be: Volunteer for an Inclusive Future
The Day is an opportunity for us all to promote volunteerism, encourage governments to support volunteer efforts and recognize volunteer contributions to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) at local, national and international levels.
UNV coordinates a campaign to promote IVD every year, building on the impact volunteers have in communities, nationally and globally. This year the campaign will focus on SDG 10 and the pursuit of equality – including inclusion – through volunteerism.
Downloads and resources
These are resources from 2018, 2019 resources will be online in November.
- Dowland a Certificate of Recognition for your volunteers (MS Word)
- International Volunteer Day 2018 Poster 1 (Adobe PDF)
- International Volunteer Day 2018 Poster 2 (Adobe PDF
- Volunteer Recognition Ideas (Adobe PDF)
- Download a toolkit for online activities for IVD 2018
- Download a toolkit for offline activities for IVD 2018
- You can download other resources for the 2018 event from the UN Volunteers web site
The International Association for Volunteer Effort is pleased to announce the United Arab Emirates as the host country of the 26th IAVE World Volunteer Conference. After a rigorous selection process, the Emirates Foundation in Abu Dhabi has been chosen as the host organisation for this premier global event, to take place in 2020.
The exact dates will be announced soon. Please visit the International Association of Voluntary Effort (IAVE) web site for further details as they become available.
International Volunteer Managers Day (IVM Day) is celebrated globally on November 5 each year. The day is put aside to allow volunteer managers a chance to reflect on and celebrate the critical work they do, and more importantly, it allows an opportunity for them to educate others about the significant role they play in mobilising the often complex resources volunteers bring with them.
Mission / Statement of Values
We celebrate the profession of volunteer leadership because:
- Volunteer Managers have the skills and knowledge to help people be part of the solution in meeting community needs. Even in cynical times, they practice the art of the possible.
- Volunteer Managers change lives – both the lives of volunteers themselves and of those served by well-led volunteers. It is a life-changing profession. Volunteer managers provide the leadership and direction that allows people to build a good and just society and to mend the social fabric. Without professional leadership, people’s time, talents and efforts could be wasted.
- A well-run volunteer program shows the community, including potential donors, that the organisation is not afraid of public scrutiny and involvement and endeavours to make the most efficient use of monetary assets.
- Well-led volunteers become an advocacy and public relations force for an agency or program — a force no amount of money could buy.
Ways to take part
- Have the CEO head of your organisation write to each volunteer telling them how important the work of the Volunteer Programme Manager working in their organisation is.
- Remember to send a thank you message to the extended group of staff in your agency who support the work of volunteers (but who may not be recognised as a Volunteer Programme Manager). It’s a great way to gain support and educate.
- Send an e-card to your peers and colleagues.
- Encourage your local Volunteer Centre to host an event or mention the day in their newsletter.
- Find ways to educate your agency about your role through the promotion of the day.
- Use IVMDay as an excuse to write an article about your role for your agency newsletter or local paper.
- Place a link to the IVMDay website from your volunteer web page.
If you are a member of a professional Association, create an annual award to celebrate the work of Volunteer Programme Manager in your area.
- Throw a party to honour Volunteer Programme Managers in your area.
- Hold a press conference and invite local dignitaries to talk about the community impact of the work of Volunteer Programme Manager
- Nominate your Volunteer Manager for a Volunteer Ireland Award
- Send a press release to the editor of your local newspaper that highlights the special work that Volunteer Programme Managers do in the community.
- Put a reminder to celebrate IVMDay on November 5 in the signature line of your emails.
- Prepare celebratory gift bags for the Volunteer Programme Manager so that they can have a treat on this special day.
- Encourage your local VolunteerCentre to host an event and then encourage as many Volunteer Programme Managers as you can to attend. Take lots of photos and remember to use them to publicise IVMDay the following year.
2019 Theme – Time for Change
Join our IVMDay 2019 campaign! The theme for 2019 was Change the Tune!
For volunteer managers and demonstrate how we are agents and advocates of change for volunteers and volunteering.
We hope that this timely theme will allow us to explore the changes needed in our great profession to ensure it remains relevant and powerful into the future.
The 2020 theme will be annoyed in Autumn 2020.
Please feel free to post your pledge by email your photos to firstname.lastname@example.org
Get Resources for International Volunteer Managers Day from the IVMD web site.
Make sure you tag #IVMDay20 for 2020 events.