The International Volunteer Service Working Committee was officially established on April 27, 2022, with its secretariat located in Nanjing, showcasing the city’s significance in the realm of voluntary service. Addressing the gathering, Jing Disheng, Director of the Office of Nanjing Municipal Civic Enhancement Committee, expressed confidence in Nanjing’s role in advancing voluntary service globally and turning it into a vivid representation of modern Nanjing’s practices.
Duan Guiqing, Deputy Secretary-General of the China Volunteer Service Federation, emphasized the crucial role of voluntary service in building a community with a shared future for humanity. She highlighted the positive impact of international volunteer service in enhancing mutual understanding and communication between China and other nations. Zhu Jingfang, Deputy Director of the International Volunteer Service Working Committee, stressed that international volunteer service is a crucial means for countries to engage in global governance, shape their international image, and enhance international influence.
Young people, constituting a vital force in carrying out voluntary service and constructing socialist spiritual civilization, played a central role in the event. With Z-generation youth as the main participants, experts delivered keynote speeches on topics about “Youth Participation in Volunteer Service in Addressing Climate Change, Sustainable Development, and Trends and Practices.” They called upon young people to actively engage in voluntary actions and radiate the brilliance of youth.
The seminar also witnessed the release of the “Collection of Results of Gen Z’s International Volunteering Practice” on the Xinhua News Agency’s application, a national media platform, showcasing 20 cases of international volunteer service from Chinese NGOs, including the Nepal Earthquake Relief, Cambodian Mine Action, Rainbow SENSE Scholarship, International Free Lunch Program, China-Pakistan Medical Congress, Belt and Road Initiative, and Living Water Campaign by Chinese voluntary force such as Guizhou Blue Sky Rescue, Gansu Rainbow Volunteer Club, Red Cross Society of China, Chinese Medical Association, Overseas Chinese Charity Foundation of China, China Charity Federation, The Amity Foundation, China Foundation for Rural Development, Burundi Agricultural Poverty Reduction, Enlai Foundation, and China Foundation for Peace and Development. These cases illustrated how the collective efforts of young people assisted in rebuilding homes, promoting economic development, and fostering social progress in difficult countries and regions.
Representatives from Chinese volunteer force shared the stories behind international volunteer service cases. Qiu Lili, Founder of the Beijing Peaceland Foundation, shared insights into the involvement of Chinese rescue teams and volunteers in the Tham Luang cave rescue. She revealed the behind-the-scenes analysis and arrangements made by the Chinese rescue teams and volunteers, including underwater route planning. Furthermore, she narrated a compelling story about one of the rescued boys participating in professional training conducted by the Chinese emergency rescue team in Thailand five years later, becoming actively involved in subsequent rescue operations.
Wu Dan, Deputy Director of the Overseas Projects Department of the China Red Cross Foundation, shared humanitarian aid experiences in Syria, screening projects for congenital heart disease, and international free lunch initiatives in African countries. Wang Haoyu, Deputy Director of the International Development Department of the China Foundation for Rural Development, discussed their practices in establishing offices in Myanmar, Nepal, Ethiopia, and executing projects. These stories vividly illustrated the path of internationalization for the China Foundation for Rural Development.
Concluding the event, a round-table discussion was conducted on the topic of “The Path and Prospects of International Volunteer Service in the New Era,” moderated by Zhang Qiang, Professor of Beijing Normal University. Guests, including Liang Jie, Executive Deputy Secretary-General of the Beijing Enlai Foundation; Zhai Yan, Chairman of the Beijing ProBono Foundation; and Feng Pingping, Deputy Director of the Brand Communication Department at the Jiangsu Center of Xinhua News Agency, engaged in a discussion about the future of international volunteer service in the new era.
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