Volunteering Strategy – Call for Input
The Minister of State at the Department of Rural and Community Development, Mr. Sean Canney, TD, has launched a Call for Input Paper on Volunteering.
This paper is the first step in developing a national volunteering strategy. It will inform stakeholders about the proposed development of a national volunteering strategy and seek their views on what constitutes volunteering and what this strategy should contain.
The Minister said: “One of my Department’s key objectives, as outlined in our Statement of Strategy 2017-2020, is the development of a national strategy on volunteering.”
Volunteers make an enormous contribution to Irish society, developing communities as vibrant, inclusive and sustainable places where people want to live. The very real economic, cultural and social benefits of volunteering permeate through an incredibly diverse range of activities.
Central Statistics Office (CSO) data gathered in the Quarterly National Household Survey (QNHS) in 2013 indicated that the overall rate of volunteering for the country stood at 28.4%, or over a million people.
Minister Canney continued: “It is important all stakeholders are involved from the very beginning in the development of a national volunteering strategy, so that their views are captured and reflected in the development of the final strategy which emerges.
“This is particularly important in view of the length of time which has elapsed since the previous policy documents on volunteering – the White Paper on a Framework for Supporting Voluntary Activity and for Developing the Relationship between the State and the Community and Voluntary Sector (2000) and the subsequent “Tipping the Balance” document (2002).”
While much has been achieved in the interim in terms of the development and funding of volunteering infrastructure on a nation-wide basis, it is now timely to develop a national volunteering strategy which will result in a shared vision for the future of Irish volunteering.
The participation of a broad range of stakeholders is key to the development of this strategy. As a result, it is also proposed to establish a National Advisory Group, representative of all stakeholders and chaired by the Department of Rural and Community Development to inform the Department’s development of the strategy.
When the draft strategy is developed, a further opportunity will be offered, by means of a public consultation process, for any further views on the strategy before it is finalised.
Minister Canney concluded: “This is an important opportunity for both the volunteering sector and the general public to have their voice heard in the development of a national volunteering strategy. I would urge all interested parties to engage with this initiative and input proactively into the development of a strategy for the future of volunteering in Ireland.”
If you would like to contribute your views on volunteering, please download the Submission Form from www.drcd.gov.ie. The closing date for submissions is Thursday 14 February 2019.
The Wheel Member Consultation on the National Volunteering Strategy - 29 January
We inviting all of our members to a consultation event to help develop The Wheel's submission on this Volunteering strategy, in the Carmelite Community Centre, 56 Aungiers Street, Dublin 2 on Tuesday 29 January 2019 from 11am to 1pm.
The event is exclusive to members and is free to attend. However, registration is required.
If you are not available to attend the event and/or wish to feed into our members consultation, you can complete our online survey here, and/or to make your own submission.