INTRODUCTION

The National Volunteer Service (NVS) of Papua New Guinea is a statutory body of the government establish through an Act of parliament in 1990. It is aligned with the Department of Community Development, Youth and Religion and comes under the care of the Minister responsible. Its intended purpose is to recruit nationally skilled and qualified Papua New Guineans to serve in rural communities as volunteers.

They were to sacrifice two years of their lives/careers to provide much needed services to communities that were unreached by the normal service delivery of the government. NVS can be viewed as a mechanism put in place by the government to “fill in the gaps” in areas where the normal service delivery of the government have failed to reach or are non-existent at all. Using volunteerism as a tool to achieve the government’s goal in service delivery for greater economic and social development has been the core function of NVS for over 23 years now since the first volunteers were dispatched in 1993.

The Office of the National Volunteer Service (NVS) was established through the National Volunteer Service Act in Parliament on the 12th of April 1990. It was a private member’s Bill put forward by the late Honorable Bernard Narakobi, former Member for Wewak. The primary objective of NVS is to promote, encourage and instill the principles and values of volunteerism among skilled and professional Papua New Guineans. The other agenda of NVS is to provide an alternative service delivery mechanism for government through the placement of Volunteers within communities and civil society organizations at cost that both the communities and the government can afford.

The driving force behind the creation of NVS was to act as a mechanism to complement existing government channels of services that were already in place but not efficiently benefiting or in most cases non-existent to the majority of our population.

Parliament, in creating NVS at that time, had envisioned the importance of a service which promotes

  • The ideals of Papua New Guineans helping Papua New Guineans
  • Sustainable development through self-reliance and self sufficiency
  • Leadership by sacrificial service and
  • Nationalism and citizenship

As the main goals for the country’s journey toward economic, social and political prosperity as a true democratic country.

The vision by the then members of parliament in supporting and passing this Bill was to ensure that basic vital services and development initiatives by the government reaches all citizens of Papua New Guinea wherever they may be.

It was also around that time that the normal service delivery system of government was slow and stagnant with many of its development policies failing to convert into tangible development designed to alleviate poverty and socio-economic improvement.

This situations prompted the government of the day to create a mechanism that will enable Papua New Guineans help other Papua New Guineans, and out of this policy, the National Volunteer Service was conceived.

NVS is a vehicle to promote and support citizen participation in sustainable, people centred development.

The legislation comprised of the following organizational functions:

  • To promote a spirit of sacrifice and service,
  • To participate generally in the economic development of Papua New Guinea.
  • To provide labour and skills to the community for development projects either free of Charge or at a very low cost,
  • To encourage and participate in the development of economic activity at the village or community level,
  • To provide a means for its employees to demonstrate a commitment to the advancement of the development of Papua New Guinea,
  • To cooperate and work with agencies of the State and Provincial Governments in the achievement of their plans and purposes,
  • To work with other voluntary agencies whose goal is the development of the people of Papua New Guinea
  • To corporate with and assist institutions having similar functions, in countries outside Papua New Guinea, in spirit of solidarity to achieve humanitarian objectives of those countries and,
  • Generally to do such supplementary, incidental or consequential acts and things as are necessary or convenient for carrying out its functions.

The spirit of caring and doing things for others in need is the fundamental basis of volunteerism. Volunteerism comes from the heart and it is inherent in the PNG and Melanesian culture.

The National Volunteer Service recruited, orientated and deployed its first batch of volunteers in 1993 and has since been doing this for 23 years. Over the years it has recruited more than 500 volunteers under its recurrent program. NVS currently have the group 17 volunteers out in the field. Their term will end in August 2017.

Volunteers recruited by the National Volunteer Service are in the areas of health, education, business, agriculture, fisheries, environment, community development, tourism and many other areas that communities have a need in. The volunteers recruited are mostly Papua New Guinean citizens but can be expatriate volunteers who are willing to dedicate their lives in sharing their skills and knowledge to help our people get the services they need.

 

GOALS.

The broad goals of the National Volunteer Service are to promote development by fostering:

  • Self Reliance

The elements of self-reliance and its values are built into all community development programs initiated and implemented by NVS. The significance of independence is measured in the context of self-reliance.

 

 

 

  • Sustainability

Personal viability is inherent to every individual but often remains untapped and unrecognized unless enhanced and developed. NVS seeks to explore this values which could be harnessed into productive volunteerism for community development.

  • Respect

The sustainability and thus the productivity of any community development is highly dependent on the participation of the stakeholders particularly the beneficiaries of such development.This element of development is highlighted by the

  • Personal Viability

Culture and traditions is the building block of a society. It is our culture, distinct and diverse that gives us our identity and recognition by people of

 

 

 

 

  • Participatory Development

NVS carry out community development service within a sacrificial environment where normal service providers are unavailable.

 

 

 

 

  • Equality

NVS image is important if it were to be accepted in the community as partner in development. Such image is reflected in every volunteer

 

 

 

 

  • PNG Culture and Traditions

While NVS delivers services in a sacrificial manner and in environment largely constrained, it is mindful that all its programs are efficient and achievable.

 

 

 

  • Service to the Community

All NVS programs are designed to promote growth and productivity. Only qualified volunteers are placed for community development programs

 

 

 

  • Image

NVS strives to develop, maintain and sustain sound financial capacity and exercise utmost transparency in the implementation of its various programs.

 

 

 

 

  • Efficiency

While NVS delivers services in a sacrificial manner and in environment largely constrained, it is mindful that all its programs are efficient and achievable.

 

 

 

 

  • Growth

All NVS programs are designed to promote growth and productivity. Only qualified volunteers are placed for community development programs

 

 

 

 

  • Sound Financial Capacity.

NVS strives to develop, maintain and sustain sound financial capacity and exercise utmost transparency in the implementation of its various programs.