Cooperation between civil society and municipalities is growing

CFSA has conducted the municipal survey as a part of a Volunteer Report from 2016-18. The survey shows that municipalities have become more aware of how associations and volunteers can contribute in fields in which the municipalities are less effective. This has led to the municipality's interest in creating good relationships and frameworks for a cooperation between the municipality and civil society, to create better welfare for all citizens.

Creating better welfare is one of the two main tracks of the European Volunteer Capital year along with celebrating the culture of volunteering in Denmark. One of the actions that has made it easier and more accessible to volunteer, is the Government's regulation that allow unemployed and retirees to spend more hours on volunteering. But the area is also facing challenges. Unions are keeping a close eye on volunteers in making sure that organizations are not moving into the fields of their members – a line that volunteers are also making sure not to cross. The balance between labour and voluntary work was also one of the issues raised at the meeting on September 23 2017, when the heritage from the volunteer program, that was established during Aarhus as the Culture Capital 2017, was discussed.

ReThinkers: Experience from 2017
To learn from the experience and to continue the best elements from the 2017 volunteer program, the so called ReThinkers, municipal officials, citizens and representatives from companies and culture institutions, educational and tourism organizations met and raised questions like: What experiences should we bring into the future? And what challenges are we facing? In particular, these nine issues for the future were discussed:

  • How do we keep a balance between voluntary and labour work?
  • What motivates voluntary ReThinkers to continue after 2017?
  • Which organizations can continue the Aarhus Culture Capital 2017 volunteer program?
  • How can we organize and finance future volunteer programs?
  • How can we make sure that the culture of volunteers can be continued?
  • How do we make it more easy and accessible to be a volunteer in the future?
  • How can we make sure that all volunteers feel that they are a part of the Volunteer Capital 2018?
  • How do we recruit a new volunteer coordinator who can continue after Aarhus Culture Capital 2017?
  • How do we include disabled people to volunteer?
For each issue, a coordinator signed up as the responsible for working on a solution. The role of The Volunteer Capital 2018 is to support the coordinator and assist with networking.