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FORUM NEWSLETTER • FEBRUARY, 2015   |   View this email in your browser
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Members of the Post-2015 Volunteering Working Group presenting at IVCO 2014 (WUSC-CECI).

Welcome to the seventh edition of Forum’s e-newsletter.

Wishing all our Forum colleagues around the globe a happy new year! It is an important year for Forum as we look to 2015 with a vision for the strengthened inclusion of the role of volunteerism recognised in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We have much success to build on:

Helen Clark

Helen Clark, Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), in a video address to IVCO 2014 conference delegates fully acknowledged the role of volunteers for development so far, as well as in the new framework. "Experience with the MDGs has shown us that development cooperation has to look beyond technical and financial assistance and embrace people-centred approaches and solutions, which are devised from the ground up", she said.

This recognition was mirrored in the Secretary General’s Synthesis Report on the Sustainable Development Goals, The Road to Dignity by 2030: Ending Poverty, Transforming All Lives and Protecting the Planet. Forum celebrates the explicit mention of volunteerism and volunteer groups as per paragraph 131 below – something Forum members, associate members and members of the Post-2015 Volunteering Working Group have been advocating to see included this past year. Congratulations to all involved in achieving this great outcome.

Paragraph 131:

“As we seek to build capacities and to help the new agenda to take root, volunteerism can be another powerful and cross-cutting means of implementation. Volunteerism can help to expand and mobilize constituencies, and to engage people in national planning and implementation for sustainable development goals. And volunteer groups can help to localize the new agenda by providing new spaces of interaction between governments and people for concrete and scalable actions.”

For the road to 2030 and beyond, a greater emphasis on people power and people centred development is good news.

The The Road to Dignity by 2030 is also available in all the UN official languages on UNV’s website at: http://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/

Ways that you can take action

#1 Use the Post-2015 Volunteering Working Group’s Toolkit to progress volunteerism at the national level

IVCO 2015

The Post-2015 Volunteering Working Group Advocacy Toolkit provides background information on the post-2015 process and suggests a number of ways in which we can influence its outcomes. It draws on the Advocacy Toolkit: Influencing the Post-2015 Development Agenda produced by CIVICUS and Stakeholder Forum, which can be consulted for more detailed analysis, advice and case studies.

We encourage all organisations involved in international volunteering to take at least one action in the Toolkit. Greater engagement by all will result in our collective voice continuing to be recognized and valued.

Download the toolkit here: http://forum-ids.org/?p=10047

#2 Sign up to the Lima Declaration today

International volunteer and cooperation organisations, volunteer involving organisations and partners are invited to sign up to the Lima Declaration – we are working to gather as many signatories as possible. Please join the 50+ organisations who have already signed up by sending your confirmation email to Adjmal Dulloo: adjmal.dulloo@forum-ids.org.

About the Lima Declaration
The Lima Declaration, created at IVCO 2014, recognises that sustainable development is not possible without volunteers. The declaration is a statement of our agreed priorities and messages as international volunteering cooperation organisations for the Post-2015 Development Agenda and its’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and a commitment to take action to ensure that volunteers’ priorities are reflected in the new development framework and the SDGs.

The declaration calls for Member States to recognise volunteer groups as key partners and stakeholders of the post-2015 framework and its’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The declaration also calls for ensuring an active role for citizens, including volunteers, in any accountability mechanism to monitor progress towards the SDGs; and affirms that "the full potential of volunteers to contribute to the achievement of the SDGs can be unlocked only by an SDG framework that explicitly recognises and supports volunteerism".

An Appendix to the declaration details specific possible contributions to the proposed SDG framework. It stresses the role of volunteerism as a cross-cutting means of implementation across all goal areas, with effects in terms of capacity building, awareness raising, strengthening of civic sense, along with its complementary role in terms of service delivery. It also outlines the role volunteers can play to strengthen monitoring of the SDG achievement.

#3 Add a volunteer story to the 500 Days, 500 Ways campaign

Share your story of community, local, national and international volunteers working in a wide variety of ways to fight poverty in some of the world’s poorest communities: http://500ways.org/submit/

#4 Join the Post-2015 Volunteering Working Group

Contact Adjmal Dulloo for details: adjmal.dulloo@forum-ids.org

Forum Board news

Warm welcomes and fond farewells

Chris Eaton

After completing a six year (full term) on the Forum Board of Directors, Peter Reicher (HVSF) stood down from his role at the 2014 Forum Annual General Meeting. We would like to take this opportunity to thank Peter for his contribution to Forum during this time, including the successful hosting of IVCO 2009 in Hungary. After three years of dynamic leadership, Nita Kapoor (FK Norway) handed over the reigns as Forum’s Chair; Nita will remain as a valued member of the Forum Board. The Chair position has been taken up by Chris Eaton (WUSC) after being voted in as a new Board member – Chris is looking forward to growing Forum from strength to strength in the year ahead. Finally, we extend a very warm welcome to new Forum Board members, Suzanne Gentges (GIZ) and Jean-Daniel Balme (France Volontaires), who both bring a wealth of experience and energy to their roles.

Latest news on volunteering for post-2015

Check out the latest news on volunteering for post-2015 here: http://www.volunteeractioncounts.org/en/post-mdg.html

For information about membership with Forum

Membership of Forum is open to non-profit organisations, including NGOs and state bodies, that are actively engaged in one or more aspects of development service, whether directly or in terms of co-ordinating such work on the part of other organisations.

To become a member, or for more information, visit the Forum website: http://forum-ids.org/members/become-a-member/

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