2011 has been designated as the European Year of Volunteering within the European Union. The purpose of the Year is to support the efforts of member states and civil society organisations to create conditions which are conducive to the development of volunteering across Europe.
The year provides an excellent opportunity to support the development of social action, a key pillar of the Big Society.
As part of the national work programme for the Year, The Office for Civil Society has identified national priorities which support the Big Society Vision, and is seeking partner organisations to support the development and implementation of activities within England which relate to these priorities. The national priorities include:
encouraging and enabling individuals to make a contribution within their communities and help solve social issues by volunteering
promoting good practice within the private, public and voluntary and community sector in relation to the development of effective employer supported volunteering (ESV) programmes
identifying and sharing good practice and resources relating to effective volunteer management
promoting good practice in opening the door to volunteering opportunities to those traditionally less likely to volunteer