- The programme will encourage volunteering across the government sector, strengthening cohesion within employees’ families and communities
- Community Volunteers programme will aim to positively impact society as a whole by encouraging behavioural change on an individual and family level
- Eight government entities from Abu Dhabi’s social sector are participating in the initiative, with a view to a wider roll-out across more government organisations in the future
Abu Dhabi: As part of the Authority of Social Contribution – Ma’an’s drive to facilitate meaningful volunteering opportunities, the organisation has today launched its new ‘Community Volunteers’ programme, the pioneering new volunteering model, created to enable the government to have an active role in implementing volunteering opportunities, working towards strengthening cohesion with employees’ families and communities.
The first phase of the Community Volunteers programme will focus on the community sector and its employees to provide meaningful volunteering opportunities at work that reflect the organisation’s vision. Employees will be able to select missions throughout the year from a “Mission Basket”, each designed to spark behavioural change and address Abu Dhabi’s key social priorities, as identified by the Abu Dhabi Department of Community Development (ADDCD).
These missions include helping the community establish change towards habits related to smart saving by reducing energy consumption, financial savings and other missions.
The programme will be led by Ma’an, who will ensure that the missions that are carried out are aligned with Abu Dhabi’s social priorities and will oversee each participating entity and its rolling out of the programme.
H.E. Salama Al Ameemi, Director General of Ma’an, said: “Instilling a change of behaviour starts from the comfort of our own homes where individuals are surrounded by people that they love and care for, many of whom already go out of their way to provide energy and time to serve society.
“This is why we strongly believe the Community Volunteers programme can make a positive difference that will benefit the whole of Abu Dhabi by bringing people from all walks of life to help tackle the social challenges, while also inspiring others to volunteer. Through this programme, it is these opportunities that will touch the lives of people, fostering greater family and community cohesion and connection.”
Volunteers will become community change agents within their own time, taking an active leadership role to drive change within themselves, their colleagues, their workplace and their local communities, to help create a positive impact and long-term sustainable enhancements change for the future..
The project is also in line with the ADDCD’s volunteering policy, which was launched earlier in the year, to organise voluntary work in the Emirate with the aim of creating an efficient and effective volunteering environment. The entity is looking to raise awareness of volunteering opportunities and encourage participation, enhancing community participation.
In the first phase, the eight participating organisations, considered ‘Member Organisations’ from the social sector, including Ma’an and the Department of Community Development, Abu Dhabi Sports Council, Social Care and Minors Affairs Foundation, Family Development Foundation, Abu Dhabi Social Support Authority, Zayed Higher Organization for People of Determination and Abu Dhabi Housing Authority, will set a number of missions for the ‘Member Organisations’ volunteers to undertake that will address social challenges in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. These missions will encourage small behavioural changes leading to create a long-term impact, transforming communities.
The benefits of participating are holistic with volunteers able to develop leadership skills and a feeling of accomplishment for contributing to society. Organisations can also help improve employee engagement and satisfaction while the volunteering opportunities will help the Abu Dhabi Government’s efforts in tackling the social matters in an innovative way. In addition, the society will benefit from improved and stronger family support and cohesion, making a more prosperous society.
Ma’an was established in February 2019 by the Department of Community Development in Abu Dhabi with the aim of bringing together the government, the private sector and civil society to support a culture of social contribution and participation. The authority will deliver solutions for social challenges with five main pillars of work – a Social Investment Fund, a Social Incubator Program, Community Engagement Programs and the introduction of a new type of public contracting, Social Impact Bonds, as well as Outreach Management.
Ma’an will support the third sector to flourish in Abu Dhabi, enabling responsible not for profit associations or foundations and social enterprises to contribute to the development of strong, active and connected communities.
Ma’an Authority for Social Contribution is a ‘Ghadan 21’ accelerator programme initiative, supporting Abu Dhabi to become one of the best places in the world to do business, invest, live, work and visit.