It is said that volunteerism is the biggest form of humanity and estimated that more than one billion people around the globe volunteer their time, skills, and experience to help improve the communities they live in.
Volunteers provide practical support to vulnerable children, and advise on sophisticated technical and legal issues. On December 5, several national and international volunteer organisations in Uganda celebrated the International Volunteer day (IVD) by donating laundry, medical and food items to Home of Hope, a home for children with disabilities in Jinja.
This year’s IVD has been commemorated under the theme ‘Solidarity through volunteering’. Joseph Kariisa Bagambaki, the country director of Building Tomorrow, noted that the impact of climate change, the Covid-19 pandemic, together with political and economic shocks around the world, highlight the challenges many people and communities face in their daily lives.
However, the act of volunteering, and the solidarity it demonstrates, contribute to address inequalities in our communities, and provide support to the most vulnerable in societies. This is why ‘solidarity’ is important.
Edith Lukabwe, the founder and director of Home of Hope, is a volunteer herself and is currently taking care of 90 children with multiple disabilities, many of whom have been abandoned by their parents or guardians.
Founded in 2017, the organization has gone an extra mile of doing community work and educating parents of disabled children on how to best care for them. In addition, the organisation provides medications, basic needs, social protection and inclusion and conducts home visits and outreaches.
She was honoured with an appreciation plaque handed over to her by the JICA Uganda senior representative, Fukuhara Ichiro. Toily Kurbanov, the executive coordinator of UN Volunteers, paid tribute to volunteers across the globe.
“Their time, efforts and passion make a positive impact on people’s lives and help address the planet’s most challenging issues,” he said. He expressed his deepest gratitude for their ongoing commitment. Volunteers are present at all levels of society. Each bringing a specific set of skills to the tasks they undertake.
Under the slogan ‘Together, Act now’ the international volunteer organizations encouraged each and every one in their capacity to volunteer in their own way.