Volunteers for sustainable development

11.10.2016 – From 9 to 12 October, development workers and other volunteers are meeting at the IVCO Conference 2016 (International Volunteering Cooperation Organizations) – an event organised by the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme and GIZ.

Climate change, armed conflict, natural disasters and disease – many people and communities currently face formidable challenges. Achieving sustainable development is also a major task – and not only in fragile states. Against this backdrop, it is increasingly important to enhance the resilience of people and societies to the various threats.

Cooperation between national governments, civil society, the people affected, the private sector and national and international organisations is therefore essential. And dedicated volunteers play an important role in this context. The volunteers often work directly within the group of people affected or with the communities under threat.

For the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, too, this work is a key element in achieving sustainable development. ‘We involve volunteers in our programmes as development workers,’ GIZ Managing Director Hans-Joachim Preuß said at the conference. ‘They assume an important role, as they have direct access to the local population and administration,’ he added.