Cameron and Obama - two minds greater than one...?

10 June 2011 | By Cause4 staff

Last month, during President Obama’s first official state visit to Britain, it was stated that the USA and United Kingdom will draw upon joint knowledge and expertise in a bid to strengthen global volunteering and community engagement.

As one of six joint collaborative initiatives announced, Cameron and Obama have said that the world’s leading volunteer organisations, US Peace Corps and Voluntary Services Overseas, will join together to ‘promote volunteering and active citizenship through people to people exchanges.’ It is envisaged that they will work alongside communities and organisations to develop effective strategies in order to increase volunteering and ultimately address world issues of poverty.

There is great scope for success here, with both organisations being well established in their field. The UK’s VSO is a leading international development charity, who last year alone assisted 26 million people in reducing poverty, with 1600 international volunteers working in 42 countries across the world today. US Peace Corps was established in 1961 by President John F. Kennedy, and currently has 8,655 volunteers working with local communities within 77 countries. To date, over 200,000 Americans have served with US Peace Corps.

With over 50 years experience between them, and with a shared vision and ambition, we expect to see great achievements from this partnership. Indeed, given that both US Peace Corps and VSO are such successful organisations, there is a great deal of promise in their ability to realise an effective strategy. It is extremely encouraging that Obama and Cameron have recognised the importance of pubic engagement through volunteering and, in combining resources and expertise, are able to implement an ambitious, yet fundamentally crucial, programme.

Whilst volunteering and active community engagement are increasing, numbers are still low. There is always scope for all of us to do more, so we hope a new wave of encouragement and wider promotion will be enough to raise the population’s involvement. It is also envisaged that through the partnership a wider scope for learning and policy will be developed, strengthening the way in which we implement volunteering projects in the future.

So, good luck to a new transatlantic partnership, we hope it will pave the way for others, and will be a great example of allowing people to volunteer, get out there and get stuck in.

 

Back to top

Blog index

“We are pleased to support the development of these materials, through Arts Fundraising & Philanthropy, to provide a comprehensive bank of knowledge and experience that can be easily accessed by leaders of arts organisations and practitioners, both in the UK and internationally. One of our priorities at the Arts Council is to help arts and cultural organisations become more resilient and sustainable as they explore new revenue streams.”

Sir Nicholas Serota, Chair of ACE

More by posts by Cause4 staff

Cause4's Pick of the Month - August 2019

1st August, 2019 | By Cause4 staff

It's a new month and the Cause4 team are excited to introduce another four inspiring individuals that are guiding the way in charity leadership, social entrepreneurship, Trusteeship and Arts Fundraising. Read on to meet our pick of the month for August. 

Cause4’s response to: The UK Civil Society Almanac 2019 Report

15th July, 2019 | By Cause4 staff

The UK Civil Society Almanac Reports, released by the National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO), is a crucial source of data that has been providing insights into developments in the voluntary sector since 1996. NCVO has now released its latest annual report, of which the following response will outline key findings including positive growth in terms of grants and investments, whilst public donations and fundraising decline. Diversity in particular has been highlighted as an ongoing issue within the sector throughout the report.  

Cause4's Pick of the Month June 2019

4th June, 2019 | By Cause4 staff

As we approach summer and the longest day of the year this month, we can’t believe quite how fast this year has gone – or the 10 years that led up to our birthday party in May! In our spirit of Sharism, check out our favourite Charity Leader, Entrepreneur, Trustee and Arts Fundraising and Philanthropy Fellow of the Month for June!