Conference on volunteerism, Geneva, July

Russian NGOs invited to Geneva for an international conference on volunteerism

03.04.2014, Perm

The 5th International conference on “Volunteerism – a vehicle for social change” will take place from 1-4 July at the United Nations building in Geneva, Switzerland. The conference is a long-term project designed to promote the successful development of world volunteer activity, in which Russian NGOs are playing a major part.

The international conference “Volunteerism – a vehicle for social change” is an annual, multi-faceted event aimed at encouraging effective dialogue across a range of UN-related issues, coming up with joint decisions, and developing partnerships and cooperation with those taking part. It is being organised by the independent non-profit organisation “Vector of Friendship”, the Perm Centre for Volunteer Development, the Cultural Committee of the UN’s Geneva office with support from the Russian Federation’s Foreign Ministry, the Permanent Representation of the Federation at the UN’s Geneva office, together with other international organisations in the city, the Ministries for Culture, Youth Policy and Mass Communications of the Perm region, and a public support fund set up in the name of the diplomat, A M Gorchakova.

Russian and foreign experts have been invited to the conference, as well as representatives from international and national volunteer centres, non-profit organisations, higher education institutions, business companies, together with state and public workers.

To date, 35 applications from 20 Russian regions have been received by the organising committee. These include representatives from volunteer bodies, further education and volunteer training centres for Sochi-2014, heads of charitable funds and volunteer organisations, specialists and leaders of agencies involved in youth work. The overall number for the Russian delegation attending the conference currently stands at 60 people.

During the conference, members of the Russian delegation will have an opportunity of presenting and publishing a report as part of a set of conference projects, as well as promoting the work of their organisations at a projects’ exhibition at the event.

The main themes of the conference comprise “The many forms of volunteer work. international cooperation”, “Corporate volunteerism and social enterprise”, “Volunteering in the wake of the Sochi 2014 Olympics”, “The 2013 World Summer Student Games in Kazan”, “The contribution of volunteers in preserving cultural items and the growth of social tourism”, “Young people in the jobs’ market. Alternative ways of working”.

The conference programme will involve plenary sessions, discussion fora, round-table events and workshops. There will also be business visits to look at how UN systems operate, including familiarising attendees with the work of the organisation and its programmes. A cultural excursion programme will also be organised for the Russian delegation.

The deadline for receipt of applications is 28 April.

More information is available via the conference website. Further information can be obtained by telephone: (342) 237-11-10 or e-mail:

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