Volunteers clean, donate food in Yambio
5 December 2011 - UN Volunteers (UNVs) in the Western Equatoria State capital of Yambio marked International Volunteers Day with a cleaning campaign and food donation at Yambio Civil Hospital.
The 20 South Sudanese and international volunteers were drawn from UNMISS, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), UN Development Programme (UNDP), and UN Population Fund (UNFPA).
The volunteers held a forum with mothers at the hospital, where they discussed the importance of breastfeeding, problems and consequences of malnutrition and keeping the environment clean.
Midwife Specialist and International UNV Kyomuhendo Gaudy, said healthy mothers have healthy children and families.
"We can make our children healthy with the available food we have at home and avoid any kind of diseases associated with lack of nutrition, and can reduce the expenses of the hospital," the Ugandan volunteer said.
Dr. Julius Caesar, Medical Director of Yambio Civil Hospital said the work of volunteers could inspire his staff to engage themselves in similar activities.
"Cleaning the environment is one of the most important methods to keep a healthy and hygienic environment," Dr. Caesar said. "We do appreciate the contributions of these volunteers in this regard."
South Sudanese UNV Jackline Tillian of UNHCR said she hoped more people would understand what volunteerism means through cleaning of the hospital grounds. "Volunteerism means commitment to work for people and I just want to encourage people to do the same for others."
Public Sector Reform Specialist from Uganda, James Ojok, a UNV working in the State Ministry of Public Service, said the day highlighted contributions of volunteers in South Sudan and the world. "Volunteerism is not only for internationals, but ... for all people, including locals to volunteer themselves for the common good."
Afewerki Gidey, an Ethiopian UNV working as a Rule of Law Officer at the State Ministry of Local Government and Law Enforcement, said they aimed to inspire and encourage local youths to volunteer themselves for the development of their community.
"I am proud to work as a volunteer, as it meast promoting peace, stability and development among the communities and also to share experiences worldwide," he said.
Togolese UNV Ami Adzido of UNHCR said everybody should take the opportunity to volunteer. "We are here to highlight that everybody has a potential to do volunteerism work to help people."