December 5th 2016 is a day that has been set aside as International Volunteers Day by the United Nations. International Volunteer’s Day was designated by the United Nations in 1985 as an international observance day to celebrate the power and potential of volunteerism.
Volunteerism is generally considered a humane activity and is intended to promote good or improve the human quality of life. In return, this activity can produce a feeling of self-worth and respect. Many volunteers are specifically trained in the areas they work, such as medicine, education or emergency rescue. Others serve on as needed basis. When you volunteer, you are offering your time and resources, sometimes without pay, to help a person or cause.
Mr. Richard Dictus, Executive Coordinator, and United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme said; “Volunteering is a two-way street. Volunteers gain valuable experience, expand their knowledge and enrich their lives through their actions. At a national level, volunteers use their expertise to create meaningful impact for communities and countries. At a community level, volunteering gives voice to those who are marginalized, for example women, youth and those with disabilities, and enables people to effect real change. As well, volunteering enable people to develop skills to participate in society, to integrate to increase their employability. Volunteers truly are the best among us and today is an opportunity for us to acknowledge and celebrate their invaluable contribution to peace and development worldwide.”
Dr. Virginia Clerveaux, Director of the Department of Disaster Management and Emergencies indicated that; “As a result of the recognition of the critical role that volunteers often play in disaster management at the community and sometimes at the national level steps were taken to include in the TCI Disaster Ordinance 2015 a section on volunteers in order to ensure that volunteers will be protected in case of injury or lawsuit during the performing of their duties. It is to be noted that the TCI is one of the few countries in the region that officially captures this important group in their Disaster Ordinance.”
Therefore, today 5th December International Volunteer’s Day, is a time to reflect and applaud the efforts of all volunteers all over the world and in recognition of the day, the Department of Disaster Management and Emergencies (DDME) would like to thank our Turks and Caicos Islands Volunteers; Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT), Communities United in Response to Emergencies (CURE), Shelter Managers and Turks and Caicos Search and Rescue Task-Force (TSART), who continues to volunteer both in the Turks and Caicos Islands and aboard. Most recently TSART assisted response efforts in the Bahamas following Hurricane Matthew in October this year. Services rendered were greatly appreciated.
The Management and Staff of DDME would like to express our gratitude and appreciation to our Volunteers, who are giving of their time and service not just to the people of the Turks and Caicos Islands, but internationally. Finally, if you would like to join DDME Volunteer Team please feel free to visit the Department Office in Providenciales or Grand Turk or your local District Commissioner’s Office for applications forms or visit our website on www.gov.tc/ddme/forms
The example volunteers set for us all cannot be underestimated. Today, join DDME in giving not just our volunteers, but volunteers everywhere a round of #GlobalApplause.