Run in partnership with Ireland’s network of Volunteer Centres, National Volunteering Week is a week-long celebration of volunteering that takes place in Ireland every May. This year, a new video highlights the stories of Vumani from Zimbabwe, Mohamed from Somalia, sisters Alina and Ilona from Ukraine, and Mildred from Co. Monaghan.
The video highlights the contributions of displaced individuals in Ireland and celebrates the impact they make in our communities. It features interviews with volunteers who share their experiences of resettlement, and the positive impact volunteering has had on their integration.
“I joined Bray Tidy Towns as a volunteer because I’m new in the place. I need to make friends,” said Vumani Moyo, who moved to Bray, Co. Wicklow last year from Zimbabwe. “Luckily, people welcomed me and my family. Everything is going well. I’m feeling at home now.”
“Irish people are so kind and generous,” commented 16-year-old Alina Aleksieieva, who fled the war in Ukraine with her family last year, moving to Belturbet, Co. Cavan. “They support Ukrainians so much, so we are really grateful for their support.” Alina and her sister Ilona have been giving back to their new community in Cavan by volunteering in local nursing homes, performing concerts for the residents.
“Diversity and inclusion are core values of National Volunteering Week, and this video is a testament to the power of volunteering to bring people together,” explained Volunteer Ireland CEO, Nina Arwitz. “We hope that by sharing these stories, more people will be inspired to volunteer and connect with their communities. Volunteering is an act of profound generosity that can transform our communities into more diverse, dynamic, and welcoming spaces. By offering our time and skills to support the needs of others, we not only strengthen our communities, but also deepen our own sense of belonging and connection. This National Volunteering Week, we’re celebrating the power of volunteering to enrich our communities, bridge social divides, and create meaningful connection.”
The video was made possible thanks to support from the Department of Rural and Community Development.