Regional Volunteering Meeting at CDS brings together sector leaders

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On April 29, the 1st Regional Meeting on Volunteer Management took place as a joint initiative of the World Scout Bureau-Interamerican Region and the Latin American Centre for Volunteering (CELAV), under the auspices of United Nations Volunteers and the City of Knowledge Foundation.

This meeting, first of its kind, gathered at the premises of the World Scout Bureau-Interamerican Region in the City of Knowledge, leaders of international organizations, NGOs, universities and foundations working in the Latin America and the Caribbean, who incorporate volunteerism strategically in their programs and projects.

Dacil Acevedo, General Director of the Latin American Centre for Volunteering (CELAV), said the aim of the meeting was "to promote inter-institutional synergy to multiply results on the agenda of solidarity in Latin America, mobilized through volunteering". Ms. Acevedo was very satisfied with the results, and indicated that they will be shared in the Ibero-American Congress on Volunteer to be held in December 2015 in Medellin, Colombia, and whose theme focuses on social innovation.

Raúl Sánchez, Regional Director of the World Scout Bureau, co-organizers of the event, said that "volunteerism is the engine of millions of organizations and it is for the Scout Movement. It would be impossible to quantify the talent, time and treasure that millions of volunteers have provided in fulfilling the mission of the Scout Movement: To contribute to the education of young people through a value system based on the Scout Promise and Law to help build a better world, where people are self-fulfilled as individuals and play a constructive role in society. As World Scout Bureau-Interamerican Region we are extremely pleased to have been able to contribute to the realization of this first meeting, since the synergy that we can achieve between our organizations can definitely set a new course for volunteering in the region."

Meanwhile, Irene Perurena, Executive Vice President of the City of Knowledge Foundation, stated "for the City of Knowledge Foundation it is imperative to stress the importance of volunteerism by supporting initiatives such as the 1st Regional Meeting on Volunteer Management. City of Knowledge hosts the most important hub of humanitarian aid in the region and is an ideal starting point for initiatives that could be replicated in other countries in Latin America and the Caribbean. This is also a great opportunity to remember and celebrate the generous, selfless and courageous nature that drives volunteers around the world. We are confident that through this 1st Volunteer Meeting, initiatives will arise that will be reflected in concrete contributions to the region."

For Francisco Roquette, Regional Manager of United Nations Volunteers, "this is a great opportunity for the different partners and efforts regarding volunteerism to meet, and the United Nations welcomes this effort. We believe there are three aspects of volunteer management that are of particular importance: national volunteer programs incorporated in governments, programs for young volunteers and international volunteer programs."

The meeting was a starting point for further cooperation and public-private coordination in volunteering in Latin America and the Caribbean, which will allow future scaling of the impact of programs lead by organizations through a road built collaboratively.