Australian Volunteers International

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AVI Reconciliation Action Plan endorsed

As we draw towards the end of National Reconciliation Week, AVI is proud to announce the endorsement of our second Innovate Reconciliation Action Plan by Reconciliation Australia. Echoing the sentiments of Wurundjeri Elder Uncle Ringo Terrick who joined us for the launch event, this Reconciliation Action Plan is not just a document that sits on a shelf, it is a formal and public document that holds us accountable to our commitment to work towards reconciliation and truth-telling.

AVI rallies behind Allies for Uluru Statement of Commitment

In the wake of the October 2023 Referendum, AVI continues to stand in solidarity and unity with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples and, alongside more than 50 organisations in Australia as a signatory to the new ‘Statement of Commitment’. This statement sends a clear messaging, affirming that “We will not be fair-weather allies, we will not turn back, and we will not hesitate in continuing to fight for justice and self-determination for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.”

Aerial view of Suva. Credit: Kylie Willow

Blue Pacific Pro Bono Collaborative secures support from the UK Government’s Integrated Security Fund

The Blue Pacific Pro Bono Collaborative will be able to scale up its pro bono work, providing free legal support to Pacific-led sustainable development projects that address climate change as well as stability and resilience in the Pacific. This is made possible with new grant funding from the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office through the Integrated Security Fund (ISF). The ISF uses a whole-of-government approach to find creative solutions to promote international peace, security and stability.

Australian volunteers Ramas McRae and Rebecca Ladd supported Mongolian Association of Sign Language Interpreters (MASLI) in Mongolia as Training Development Officers through a hybrid assignment. Photo_ Henry Smith

Hybrid Volunteering AFR Innovation awards

The Australian Volunteers Program’s new hybrid volunteer model, designed to make international volunteering more accessible to a broader audience, has been recognised in the Australian Financial Review’s innovation awards.

PWSDI members and staff in front of office

AVI grants working to strengthen civil society in the Solomon Islands

In 2022, PWDSI applied for an AVI Grant to socialise a number of organisational policies which had been developed over the previous years and approved at Board level. The policies included Child Protection, PSEAH (Prevention of Sexual Assault, Abuse and Harassment) and Anti-corruption Policy. The project aimed to rollout the policies to staff and Board, providing them with training and support so that the policies were understood and implemented in the organisation.

Australian volunteer Callum Andrews after playing football with (L-R) Jonas (community counterpart), Rashly Aru (Ni Vanuatu volunteer), Daniel (community counterpart), Fatumine village, Tanna Island, Tafea province, Vanuatu. In the village, the volunteers are working with local community counterparts to build two school classroom extensions. Each Australian volunteer also teams up with several Ni Vanuatu volunteers to work on community identified projects, with topics such as health and sanitation, leadership and sport skills, baking cake and personal budgeting.

Partnership: Student mobility

AVI has been selected as the implementing partner for the University of Tasmania’s new flagship University Global Opportunity (UniGO) program, a fully-funded program enabling students from different faculties to immerse themselves in locally-led sustainability solutions in South-East Asia.  

Advocacy: AVI says yes to the Voice!

AVI fully endorses the Uluru Statement from the Heart and accepts the generous invitation to work together for the recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander sovereignty and a brighter future as a nation united. We wholeheartedly support the establishment of a First Nations’ Voice to be enshrined in the Constitution and a Makarrata Commission to lead to truth telling and treaty making. Australia is the only country in the world yet to formally recognise its Indigenous people in the form of a treaty or constitutional recognition.

Staff of the Solomon Islands National Referral Hospital, Honiara, Solomon Islands. L-R: Marcia Soihaka (Resident Medical Officer), Dr Tom Diko (Emergency Department Registrar) and Willie Falebo (Clinical Nurse Consultant). Frances Kennedy, Australian volunteer Emergency Nurse Advisor with the Solomon Islands National Referral Hospital, Honiara, Solomon Islands. Frances is part of the SIGISIP / SIMPLER program and is a COVID-19 response volunteer.

Health – Medical Care in Rural Communities

Mother (far L) accompanying her child who is receiving both physiotherapy and speech therapy in the National Paediatric Hospital in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. In this photo she is with Australian Volunteer Danielle Velluccii (third from Left), Buoy Samnith (second from Left – his face is block) – Nurse and Speech Therapy Assistant and Peng Vann (far Right) – Physiotherapist. Danielle Vellucci is an Australian Volunteer working with OIC Cambodia (Phnom Penh) as an Early Childhood Speech Therapy Mentor.

Volunteer Story – Danielle

EVAN DORAN – Research Development Officer, Universitas Muhammadiyah Makassar. UNISMUH is a private Islamic university in Makassar, South Sulawesi. One of its visions is to foster innovative research.The Teaching and Education Faculty has been appointed by the Government to manage and deliver the Certification Program for School Teachers in South Sulawesi. Evan is working with staff from the Faculty to develop an institutional research work-plan. He’s helping to improve research skills and strengthen knowledge of different methodologies, with the view to producing better publications and improving research dissemination.

Keeping pace in a rapidly changing world

Traditionally, the words ‘Highly Innovative’ have not been deemed synonymous with Australia’s not-for-profit (NFP) sector.

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