Lower Saxony and Bremen
Recommendations to strengthen volunteering
In the volunteer fire department or in the gym club, volunteers do a lot for the welfare of a society. There are now proposals on the table as to how the framework conditions can be improved.
Hannover (dpa / lni) – How can volunteer work in Lower Saxony be supported and strengthened? That was one of the issues that a commission made up of state parliamentarians and experts from various disciplines has been dealing with since October 2020. On Friday, the committee delivered its 170-page final report with numerous recommendations for action to the president of the state parliament, Gabriele Andretta (SPD).
According to the Commission, nurseries and schools must convey the meaning of voluntary work and awaken the desire to shape society. This is possible, for example, through projects and cooperation between nurseries, schools and clubs. The committee asks state politicians to expand projects and programs to promote volunteer work and provide more support to all those who volunteer, for example, with attractive discounts on purchases, services and local transportation.
The Commission sees opportunities in digitisation, for example for public relations work and staff and program development. She emphasizes the need to specifically train club leaders so they can use digital tools well.
According to the committee, spending allocations and tax allocations should be checked regularly and adjusted if necessary. To give more recognition to volunteers, activities such as “Volunteer Day” could be made more attractive. The Commission proposes to improve the recognition of young volunteers under the age of 25 in particular. “They will be given greater prominence at the regional and national levels through award ceremonies and certificates that can be attached to applications,” the report says. As strategic measures, the commission of inquiry calls for an engagement strategy and a coordination office as a central point of contact in the state for clubs, associations and initiatives.
Andretta said it was important to encourage volunteerism and break down barriers to volunteering. “Democracy thrives on the fact that citizens care not only about themselves but also about others and actively work for the common good.”