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January 19, 2018

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United Nations Volunteers programme (UNV)


The United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme is the UN organization that promotes volunteerism to support peace and development worldwide. Volunteerism can transform the pace and nature of development and it benefits both society at large and the individual volunteer. UNV contributes to peace and development by advocating volunteerism globally, encouraging partners to integrate volunteerism into development programming, and mobilizing volunteers.

UNV partners with UN organizations, as well as governments and institutions outside the UN system, including civil society, NGOs and the private sector. UN Volunteers worldwide play a unique role in the development process, supporting the efforts of partners to accelerate human development and achieve the Millennium Development Goals.

Since 1971, UNV has mobilized tens of thousands of skilled professionals to serve the causes of peace and development. In 2011, more than 7,000 volunteers representing 162 nationalities served in 132 countries. Reaffirming the commitment of UNV to promoting South-South cooperation, the vast majority (83 per cent) of UN Volunteers are nationals of developing countries or economies in transition.

UNV is committed to engaging equal numbers of female and male volunteers. UN Volunteers have an average age of 38 and 5-10 years of working experience. Building on its role as focal point for the International Year of Volunteers (IYV) in 2001, UNV manages the awardwinning World Volunteer Web portal, an online resource hub on volunteerism that provides a one-stop-shop for information, resources and organizations linked to volunteerism. The site is also the focal point for International Volunteer Day (IVD), which is celebrated on 5 December every year.

Through the Online Volunteering service UNV connects organisations with volunteers to collaborate online for peace and development. In 2011, nearly 17,000 assignments were completed over the internet by more than 10,000 online volunteers, 60 per cent of whom were from developing countries and countries in economic transition.

UNV was created by the United Nations General Assembly in 1970. It is administered by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). UNV headquarters has been based in Bonn since 1996.

(Source: Common Information Space of the UN Organizations in Bonn)

UN Campus
Platz der Vereinten Nationen 1
53113 Bonn

Tel.: +49 228 - 81 52 00 0

e-mail address:


Last update: July 31, 2013



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