United Nations Volunteers (UNV) and Voluntary Services Overseas (VSO) have announced a new partnership that they hope will maximise their impact in marginalised communities by increasing the level of local volunteering.
The two organisations announced yesterday that they have signed a memorandum of understanding committing them to working much more closely together to build partnerships at country level to support research, promote volunteering and help undertake advocacy to push for legislation on volunteering.
Flavia Pansieri, executive coordinator of UNV said: “This partnership agreement gives formal acknowledgement of our strong, long-term working relationship with VSO and provides a framework for collaborative work.”
Chief executive of VSO, Marg Mayne said the partnership, “will help promote and strengthen volunteering for development, increasing the participation and engagement of marginalised communities in decisions which affect their lives.”
A spokesman for VSO told civilsociety.co.uk that in countries where both organisations operate, “the partnership will filter down to individual programmes” and that “people will see a difference on the ground – the idea is that it will increase volunteering".
VSO currently operates in more than 30 countries with local partners and has more than 250,000 local volunteers as well as its international volunteers. UNV works with partners to integrate volunteerism into development. It currently operates in around 130 countries with field units in 86 countries.
The partnership was launched at an event in London yesterday alongside the UK launch of UNV’s first State of the World’s Volunteerism Report calling for an increase in volunteerism in developing countries.