Since 1980 skilled Australian volunteers have supported development in Sri Lanka, joining scores of local partner organisations to help them achieve their own development goals through the Australian Volunteers’ Programme, which is supported by the Australian Government, the Australian High Commission said in a statement.
The statement was issued in view of International Volunteer Day.
It said International Volunteer Day (5 December) was established by the UN in 1985 to recognise the valuable contribution volunteers make to international development across the world, and the theme for this year’s International Volunteer Day is Together We Can through Volunteering.
- Australian volunteers returned to Australia early in the year due to the impact of COVID-19, however the Australian Volunteers’ Programme has continued supporting partner organisations in Sri Lanka
- throughout 2020
The need to support local partner organisations to build their capacity and resilience, and support development objectives, remains crucial for Australia. In addition, the global nature of the pandemic makes the understanding of global inter-connectedness more valuable.
Acting High Commissioner Amanda Jewell said that recognising the value of skilled international volunteering has never been more important than in 2020.
“The impact of COVID-19 on communities in Sri Lanka has been profound, and while it has been a challenging year for Australian volunteers and the organisations they support, volunteering always finds a way,” she said.
Australian volunteers returned to Australia early in the year due to the impact of COVID-19, however the Australian Volunteers’ Programme has continued supporting partner organisations in Sri Lanka throughout 2020.
HE. Amanda Jewell further said that the Australian Government had supported skilled international volunteering for more than 60 years.
“When communities face crises people come together, and we are extremely grateful for the way Australian volunteers, and the local organisations they work together with, have continued to support each other,” she said.
“Today we say thanks to volunteers for all they have contributed to development in Sri Lanka, and for the long-lasting relationships they form with the Sri Lankan community.”