14 December 2004
Over 500 people participated in the International Volunteer Day (IVD) celebrations in El Yarmouk, a community located 20 km south from Sudan's capital Khartoum, on 5 December.
(Photo by UNV Sudan)Khartoum, Sudan:
Over 500 people participated in the International Volunteer Day (IVD) celebrations in El Yarmouk, a community located 20 km south from Sudan's capital Khartoum, on 5 December, cleaning public places and planting trees. They comprised people of all ages from El Yarmouk and nearby communities and volunteers from 10 participating organizations.
After the cleaning and tree-planting campaign in the morning, the soft drink company Coca-Cola distributed exercise books and caps to school children in the community. There was no boring moment as the Kaitta Folklore Musicians, of western Sudan, played melodious music.
Later, participants settled under a canopy for discussions on volunteers' role in promotion of peace and sustainable development in Sudan. The discussions resulted in some concrete plans to improve and strengthen volunteerism in the country. The IVD organizing committing, for example, is planning to work next year on enhancing recognition of volunteers, facilitation of volunteering activities and strengthening networks among volunteering organizations in Sudan.
As the day ended, cultural activities began with songs performed by children of El Yarmouk. The vibrant Kambala cultural dance of southern Sudan followed. Crew from Mango 96 FM Radio kept the whole of Khartoum abreast through a live radio coverage of the activities.
To cap the IVD celebrations, the Omdurman National Radio broadcast live on 7 December a discussion on the "Roles of Volunteers in Promotion of Peace and Sustainable Development in Sudan", in which representatives of the IVD 2004 organizing committee took part.
The committee is comprised of members from the Sudanese Environment Conservation Society (SECS), Almanar Voluntary Organisation, Sudanese Consumers Protection Society, Sudanese Society for Women and AIDS In Africa (SWAA), Environmentalists Society, Sudanese Air Boys Scout, and United Nations Volunteers (UNV), and the Community Development Association of El Yarmouk. Other organizations that participated in the celebrations include Medecin Sans Frontier and Sudanese Social Forestry Society.
The event was sponsored by Mango 96 FM Radio, Coca-Cola, Khartoum State Cleaning Company, and Omdurman National Radio.