Volunteer cooperation program renewal is excellent news for Canada!

WUSC and CECI heartily applaud today’s announcement by Honourable Christian Paradis, Minister of International Development and La Francophonie of federal funding for their organizations’ joint volunteer cooperation and international development program, known as Uniterra.

The organization’s executive directors, Chris Eaton (WUSC) and Claudia Black (CECI) express their gratitude and appreciation for the Minister’s leadership in the process that led to the announcement of results regarding the Call for Proposals for the Volunteer Cooperation Program 2015-2020. The process challenged all interested organizations to rigorously analyse and demonstrate the value of volunteer cooperation to Canada’s efforts in international development. That selection process concluded today with a clear acknowledgement of the important role that volunteer cooperation plays in delivering sustainable development results in a cost-effective manner and a clear acknowledgement of Canada’s leadership in the sector.

Volunteers are the effective heart of international cooperation. Skilled, committed volunteers present Canada’s public face to the world in our global efforts to improve lives and reduce inequality. Volunteers make an essential contribution to the success of well-designed development initiatives by lending their passion and expertise to advance sustainable development.

Since WUSC and CECI co-founded the Uniterra volunteer cooperation program in 2004, nearly half a million people are enjoying better living conditions as a result of Uniterra. The announcement today positions Canada internationally as leaders in volunteer cooperation, alongside peer nations such as the United Kingdom, France, the United States of America, Japan, and others. With this exemplary commitment from the Government of Canada, WUSC and CECI are at the forefront of leadership on global issues and good practice in development.

The Uniterra program has distinguished itself and innovated over the years, proving volunteer cooperation to be a key development tool, generating a positive impact in 14 developing countries. This next phase of Uniterra signals a fresh and vital cross-sectoral approach to sustainable economic development and poverty reduction ̶ especially for youth, women and marginalized people ̶ to improve lives around the world.

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