Cyprus Mail
Cyprus

Low number of volunteers, but youths show interest

Volunteers in Nicosia engaging in a clean-up

LESS than ten per cent of Cypriots take part in volunteering, but the fact that young people make up the biggest group of volunteers is encouraging and may mean things are improving, the volunteer office announced on Thursday.

“Despite the fact that in recent years there has been an increase of volunteer activity, either through awareness among citizens or through organised actions of voluntary bodies, we cannot not say that volunteering has reached the desired levels,” the volunteer commissioner Yiannis Yiannakis said.

Those aged 16 to 29 and 30 to 39 are the biggest contributors, joint research carried out by the volunteer office, the statistical service and NGOs has found. As part of investigating social conditions, Cypriots aged 16 and over were questioned about their participation either collectively or individually during the year 2015.

Most people, 7.2 per cent of those asked, participated in voluntary work organised by others, whereas only 2.6 per cent acted at their own initiative. The amount of men and women were roughly the same.

More than 20 per cent stated that a lack of interest was the reason for not volunteering, and roughly the same number said they had no time, most of them in the age group from 30 to 49.

Some 24 per cent of the volunteers were in the 16 to 28age group, and just 15 per cent were 50 to 59 years old.

People were particularly unwilling to participate in anything having to do with policies and politics. About two thirds or 64 per cent reported they were not interested in public consultation and a mere two per cent took part in related activities.

The results can be found on the websites of the volunteer office and the statistical service at www.volunteercommissioner.gov.cy/ and http://www.mof.gov.cy/mof/cystat/statistics.nsf/index_en/index_en?.

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