International Volunteer Day 2017 | Volunteers Act First
Every year since 1985, December 5 is celebrated as United Nations International Volunteer Day (IVD). This year is no different and the theme for IVD 2017 is “Volunteers Act First. Here. Everywhere.” The theme is recognition of the positive solidarity of volunteers around the world who answer calls in times of crisis, helping save lives today and supporting those who want to continue living their lives with dignity tomorrow. Volunteering is an essential part of recovery as often times person who has been affected crisis in various forms receive aid from an average man who put others before himself.
International Volunteer Day provides an avenue for volunteering organizations and individual volunteers to make their contributions visible not just at the local or national level but also on an international sphere. The previous theme for IVD was International Volunteer Day for Economic and Social Development and this name is very appropriate as volunteerism though often overlooked contributes to the overall development of countries. In Jamaica, volunteering has become a popular habit.
Whether persons are volunteering because it is a requirement to graduate from school, to place on their resume, to meet people or simply for the “love and not the like,” there are over 100 organizations through which this can be done. These organizations include but are not limited to corporate entities both private and public, community youth clubs and school clubs.
Youths Inspiring Positive Change Jamaica Limited (Positive Org.) is a non-governmental organization which focuses on volunteering and engaging young people from all walks of life. The Positive Organization started with one young man, Mr. Neville Charlton who had a big dream but was determined to make it a reality. Since 2012, the organization has grown from just the founder and co-founder to over 60 (sixty) members and is rapidly growing. The organization has partnered with several organizations as we aim to give our members the holistic volunteering experience. We do not only provide volunteering opportunities but give our members the opportunity to be involved in advocacy around issues that are important to and affect youth.
Youths Inspiring Positive Change Ja indeed believes that volunteers should act first and so we ensure that members are equipped with the skills set to not just be the ordinary volunteer but to be able to make a positive change. We are not just volunteers but we are a group of shapeshifters, using what is right with Jamaica to change what is wrong with our nation.
The Positive Organization encourages all youth across Jamaica to go out & get involved. Take just an hour or two per week and volunteer at a children’s home, a hospital, a homework center or just help a neighbor who you think needs a little assistance. Our Chairman Mr. Charlton often proclaims that volunteering gives him a feeling of empowerment. “I am able to help someone that is less fortunate, someone who is just seeking a helping hand, my hand is available," that’s volunteering in a nutshell for our chairman.
Our President Miss Samantha Miller is an example of “likkle but tallawah” as she is small in stature but as a volunteer, she makes a big impact.
It doesn’t matter where you are from or who you are, we believe that all volunteers are important because we are the people that “Act First! Here in Jamaica & Everywhere.” Happy IVD 2017 Volunteers! Continue to Live, Think & Act Positive!
Recruitment & Development Manager
Youths Inspiring Positive Change Ja | Positive Organization