The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the National Youth Authority (NYA), Pius Enam Hadzide, has stressed the need to strengthen institutional arrangements to enhance youth participation in volunteerism and support towards national volunteer schemes.
He said there should be a mutual aid and other community-based initiatives to create opportunities for people to volunteer on a wide range of issues.
Speaking during the International Volunteers Day on Monday, the NYA CEO recounted how the skills and enthusiasm youth volunteers and volunteer groups had committed to serving various communities in Ghana and around the world.
This year’s event was dubbed “Solidarity through Volunteering – Together, act now”.
Mr Hadzide further indicated that it serves as a clarion call to all to realise the potency of volunteerism in achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
He recalled the immense contribution of volunteers and volunteer groups in the combat against COVID-19. “I laud them for the provision of vital support to the operation of quarantine centres, disseminating health information to communities as part of the national disaster management system, as well as reaching people in rural and remote areas with COVID-19 prevention messages in their own languages,” he stated.
These acts, he noted, are characteristics of volunteer work to provide mutual aid and self-help, service delivery, campaigning, and participation. He said they realised this by working together to address common needs, through organizations and associations to deliver services.
“Volunteers participate in a wide range of actions and initiatives related to the planning, implementation and evaluation of development processes that strengthen the participation, inclusion and ownership of SDGs by all people,” he said.
Mr Hadzide indicated that the International Volunteer Day celebration was a chance to thank the many individuals who act with this spirit of giving and to encourage others to follow their example.
Volunteers, he said, offer life skills while expanding their own know-how to empower communities while earning a sense of personal fulfilment at having made a difference in our world.
He urged the public, particularly the youth, to be inspired by the many individuals who selflessly serve others, and resolve to do their part to contribute freely and proactively to change conditions towards a better future.
The NYA CEO said his outfit is mandated to facilitate youth development as well as stir up the spirit of volunteerism among young people.
According to him, this has gingered the Authority to introduce the National Youth Volunteer Programme (NYVP), a programme geared towards inculcating the spirit of patriotism, nationalism and community service into the youth.
He added that the NYVP allows young people to offer voluntary services in various communities, under modules such as Youth Development, Education, Gender Mainstreaming, Infrastructure among others.
“These services offered in the spirit of nationalism and community service, help in also localizing the efforts and contributions of the country in achieving Sustainable Development Goals,” he said.
YouthConnekt Gh, a subcategory under a larger YouthConnekt Africa, he revealed, had liaised with the United Nations, private companies and civil society to create opportunities for volunteering and youth employment for young aspiring leaders.