VOLUNTEERING: CREATES VALUE FOR ALL
Volunteering is all about giving back without expecting anything in return, whether it’s in the form of money or material goods. According to the United Nations Volunteer (UNV) programme, volunteerism can be classified into four categories: campaigning or advocacy, civic participation, service to others or philanthropy, and mutual aid or self-help.
In Nigeria, youth volunteerism has a rich history dating back to pre-colonial times when community leaders encouraged young people to assist one another in various tasks. These words of wisdom from the elders led to the formation of youth groups that voluntarily took on projects such as building community squares, cleaning markets, cutting grass, and organizing village wrestling events. These initiatives not only contributed to the overall development of the community but also fostered stronger bonds among its members and provided economic benefits to the participating youth.
In today’s world, the significance of volunteerism has grown even more. Encouraging Nigerian youth to engage in volunteer work is synonymous with promoting self-reliance, enhancing their decision-making abilities, and increasing their involvement in nation-building. Developed countries like the UK and Canada have consistently demonstrated the positive impact of volunteerism on individuals and society.
With approximately 70% of Nigerians living in extreme poverty and 65% of Nigerian youth below the poverty line, while the unemployment rate continues to rise and has reached alarming levels of up to 40%, volunteerism presents a great opportunity for job creation. In the USA alone, Independent Sector reports that 9 million full-time jobs are directly and indirectly created from volunteer activities. What has worked in the Western world can also work here.
Volunteering not only provides much-needed support to communities and organizations but also equips individuals with valuable skills, experiences, and networks that can enhance their employability and contribute to personal growth. It promotes a sense of belonging, instills a spirit of empathy and compassion, and fosters a culture of civic engagement and social responsibility.
At ACYSD, we believe in the transformative power of volunteerism. We strive to create opportunities for Nigerian youth to engage in meaningful volunteer work, enabling them to make a positive impact on their communities while developing skills that will benefit them personally and professionally. Join us in building a brighter future through volunteering and be part of the movement for positive change in Nigeria.
Together, we can create value for all through the power of volunteerism.