Volunteerism advocates commit support to development initiatives of the government
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04 April 2017 Volunteerism advocates commit support to development initiatives of the government

Written by: Ira Karen Apanay

In an effort to produce a national policy and action agenda on volunteerism that will guide the Philippine National Volunteer Service Coordinating Agency (PNVSCA)and the voluntary sector in responding to the needs of vulnerable sectors in the country, around sixty advocates of volunteerism from different sectors in the National Capital Region (NCR) convene in a consultation forum last Friday in Quezon City.
The activity titled: Forum on Volunteerism: A Vision for the Future is a series of forums and focus group discussions in the National Capital Region, Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao that would help generate ideas among participants and be able to formulate a national policy and action agenda on volunteerism aligned with the Philippine Development Plan 2017- 2022.

In his welcome remarks, PNVSCA Executive Director Joselito C. de Vera cited the special value of volunteerism to the development of a country and expressed gratitude, as early as now, to the participants who dedicated their time and efforts for the said undertaking.

The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) was invited to present the PDP 2017- 2022 and provided the participants a guide on where to link their ideas and proposals to the three pillars of PDP: Malasakit, Pagbabago, and Patuloy na Pag-unlad.

Director Nerrisa Esguerra of the NEDA Development Information Staff urged the participants to identify programs and projects that can supplement the government efforts on priority areas identified in the PDP and AmbisyonNatin 2040.

“Government cannot do it alone and markets do not always work. Volunteerism can help fill the gaps,” Director Esguerra further said.Director Esguerra also explained that the voluntary sector can anchor their programs under these sections of PDP: Ensure a people-centered, clean and efficient governance, promote Philippine culture and values, accelerate human capital development, build safe and secure communities and ensure public security, public order and safety.

During the workshop, the participants were divided into four groups according to their sector and identified programs aligned with PDP as well as their recommendations to pursue their proposed programs.

The participants from the national government agencies, not-for-profit organizations, private corporate and government owned and controlled corporations, and the academe also signed the commitment banner expressing their support to volunteering initiatives that can contribute to the achievement of the PDP 2017- 2022.

Director De Vera said that after the successful first consultation, the PNVSCA will also gather the Local Government Units and faith-based organizations in the NCR soon.

The PNVSCAis the government agency mandated to promote and coordinate volunteer programs and services in the Philippines. PNVSCA closely works with other government agencies, non-government organizations, the academe, the corporate group, the media and other partners in converging and linking the different volunteering efforts and resources so that they are aligned with national priorities and assist especially the marginalized sectors and communities. PNVSCA takes the lead in advocating and recognizing the contributions of volunteers to nation-building and international cooperation.

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