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International Volunteers Day

International Volunteers Day

Recognising our Army of Volunteers on International Volunteer Day 5 December

If ‘it takes a village to raise a child’, then consider how many people are needed to nurture the thousands of Australians doing it tough every day. This is why we are thankful for the 15,000+ on-going Salvation Army volunteers across our Southern Territory who donate their time and skills every day in nearly every Australian community. This figure represents 75% of  The Salvation Army’s workforce!

The opportunities volunteers and local officers bring to our organisation is incalculable—not only are they willing to dedicate their time to our services and corps, they bring skills we may not have, they bring connections and new ideas. They are our advocates and disciples, extending the goodness and hope into communities.


A prime focus of The Salvation Army’s Volunteer Resources team has been to increase the organisational capability of our hundreds of managers of volunteers in best practice volunteer involvement. In the last year, this has resulted in approximately a 10% increase in our volunteer numbers—in a climate where overall volunteer numbers are decreasing in Australia.


Our volunteers and local officers truly reflect the diversity of the local community in which they assist, from inner city multicultural centres to remote indigenous communities, across all age groups and personal circumstances, many working, others retired, studying or looking for work, generously dedicating their skills and experience for the greater good.


International Volunteer Day is mandated by the United Nations General Assembly and is held each year on 5 December and was adopted by the UN General Assembly through Resolution A/RES/40/212 on 17 December 1985. Since then, governments, the UN system and civil society organisations have successfully joined volunteers around the world to celebrate the Day on 5 December.

Through the years, International Volunteer Day has been used strategically: many countries have focused on volunteers’ contributions to achieving the Millennium Development Goals, a set of time-bound targets to combat poverty, hunger, disease, illiteracy, environmental degradation and discrimination against women.

The organisation of International Volunteer Day is generally the result of a partnership between the UN system, governments, volunteer-involving organisations and committed individuals. Representatives from the media or academia, Foundations, the private sector, faith groups, and sports and recreational organizations are often involved too.


Each International Volunteer Day, Salvation Army’s General Andre Cox publicly recognises the positive impact and contribution of our volunteers in Salvation Army centres around the world.  It is important that this messaging is reinforced all year round in our prayers, conversations, and recognition events.  Volunteers keep us going!

Ciska Burrie
Volunteer Resources Coordinator (Vic)
Territorial Volunteer Resources Department
‘No act of kindness, no matter how small is every wasted’
- Aesop

Prayer Points:

  • Volunteers continue to use their gifts and talents to serve The Salvation Army’s Mission of sharing the love of Jesus.
  • Our people at all levels come to know and continue to appreciate the value volunteers bring to the organisation and spiritual life.
  • Our volunteers will be transformed by our work, faith and spirit.
  • Volunteering continues to be supported and respected across the organisation.


Titus 3:14

‘And let our people learn to devote themselves to good works, so as to help cases of urgent need, and not be unfruitful.’