Volunteering Development in Nepal Red Cross Society

Volunteering in Nepal

Nepal has a long history on volunteering. Historical evidence shows that Nepali people involved into various social activities voluntarily to support each other. Volunteering of that time was basically motivated by religious and social purpose. The volunteering activities were unorganised and based on service of individual people.

In a national context, organisation of the volunteering service was started only after 1926.The mega disaster–earthquake occurred in Kathmandy valley in 1934 and thousands of lives killed and affected. In that time government has mobilised thousands of local volunteer to cope the situation. Country wide in the community level volunteer mobilisation activities are boosting up after establishment of Nepal Red Cross Society in 1963. Still various unorganised volunteering activities are in practice in Nepal. For the better and effective mobilisation of the volunteers in the service delivery, government of Nepal should have legislation for volunteers.

Volunteering in Nepal Red Cross

As voluntary service is one of the fundamental principles of Red Cross movement, NRCS has been enhancing the spirit of volunteerism from its inception. It is well known that Nepal Red Cross Society is one of the humanitarian organizations and its activities, since its inception in 1963, are being carried out by mobilizing its volunteers. These volunteers have rendered their services during several kinds of disasters for the benefit of individuals and communities. In the changed context, it has been felt that there is a need to make the best use of knowledge and skills of Red Cross workers and volunteers in a planned and effective manner. All the members of NRCS are committed for voluntary service. In the past all the members of Society were considered volunteers. Concept of professionalism in volunteering is being developed. District Chapters mobilize different type of volunteers at emergencies and development work. Volunteers of Nepal Red Cross used to bear their expenses during volunteering by themselves and in this practice is still exists in the community level .The 15th amendment of NRCS constitution has clearly mentioned the definition of volunteer. As per the constitution of NRCS, the systematic volunteering concept is come out and now NRCS volunteering policy 2002 (amended in 2009) is exist. Policy attached here

The NRCS Fifth Development Plan focuses, among others, on the need for increased participation of volunteers such as programme volunteers, Junior and Youth members, teacher sponsors, members, office bearers and members of the Executive Committees at various levels and trained people in the community in an integrated and systematic manner. This is the call of the hour to initiate efforts with due priority accorded to it by the NRCS Sub-Chapters, District Chapters and National Headquarters to mobilize hundreds of volunteers in an organized and efficient manner.

In this context, it is to be noted that a new dimension has been added in the field of volunteer management through efforts made for collection of information on volunteers, both who have been already involved in voluntary services and potential volunteers, documentation of information thus collected, organizing training courses for them and their mobilization as well.

Volunteerism is backbone and Volunteers are the most important resource of a Nepal Red Cross Society. Nepal Red Cross has been mobilizing volunteers in emergency service and development sectors such as disaster management, first -aid, blood donation, tracing, campaign, community development, health and care etc. Volunteers can play a vital role in the diverse activities of the RC to improve the situation of vulnerable people.

Society has carried out volunteer management program and established administrative structure in central level. This program has been giving the priorities to increase the significant involvement of volunteers in all programs in a systematic way. As a programmatic view, the volunteer management programme is implemented in two District Chapters as pilot programme out of 75 district chapters with the financial support of Korean Red Cross in 2005.This program was implemented for three years period. The main objective of the project was to develop a model of volunteer management system in district chapters and project.

Activities carried out in Volunteer Management in NRCS:

  • NRCS National Policy of Volunteer Management -2009 exist
  • Volunteer management manual -2009 exist
  • Database of the volunteer in Hqs and District level
  • Participating in the Global Volunteer accident Scheme
  • VIVA study (Performance measurement and accountability have become increasingly important in the sphere of voluntary action. In this regard NRCS audited the performance of volunteers by applied Volunteer Investment and Value Audit (VIVA). The findings of VIVA ratio are quite impressive) – VIVA report is here
  • Leadership and service delivery training to the volunteers
  • Award and recognition

Types of volunteers in NRCS

  • Governance volunteer: Volunteers of Executive Committees involved in coordination of programme
  • Programme volunteer: Volunteers involved in emergency and development programme
    • Skilled volunteers: Volunteers having skill /Knowledge on a particular area
    • General Volunteer: Supporting Volunteers

NRCS Programme of Volunteer Involvement

  • Disaster Management
  • Health Service
  • Blood Programme
  • Community Development Programme
  • Training Programme
  • First Aid Programme
  • Youth Red Cross Programme
  • Fund Raising Programme
  • Other Red Cross Activities

Our Strength in Volunteer Management

  • Policy and Manual exist
  • Sufficient numbers of members including Junior and youth are committed for volunteering
  • Coordination and harmony between volunteers and staffs
  • Active participation of volunteers in decision making process
  • Volunteers are from community and working for the same community
  • Volunteers serving for long time
  • Effective mobilization of volunteers into programme
  • Total volunteer value from volunteer mobilization is greater than total investment on volunteers (high VIVA ratio)
  • Data base of volunteers is being established.


Interest of people within country and outside country for volunteering