As we collectively navigate this crisis we must consider the cost of failing to act. Essa, Danika, and Maria are living proof of how our society benefits when refugees have the opportunity to learn, to work, and to give. Acting on behalf of refugees is not merely altruistic. In Danika's words, "By saving refugees, we are saving ourselves, our future, our morality, and our civilization."
Simply put, there are some things in life which are good for us. Eating well, exercising and socialising are all a given, but I think volunteering should be right up there as well. It's strange but it sometimes feels like I'm a different person now from who I was and I think a lot of that is down to contributing towards something I feel so passionately about. If you're looking to improve your own life, try helping others, it's helped me to rebuild mine.
Volunteering doesn't always conjure the most romantic of images. Generally it's visions of solitary trips leafleting or rattling a tin in a shopping centre. But it can and does have a massive impact on our economy and on people's wellbeing; something we at Sue Ryder know very well and want to try and celebrate this Volunteers' Week.
This is the year that Volunteers' Week has been extended from seven to twelve days, enabling more people to take part. The final day coincides with the Patron's lunch: a celebration of Her Majesty the Queen's lifetime of service to more than 600 charities and organisations, on the occasion of her 90th birthday.
It's a well quoted fact that volunteering has numerous benefits-whether for health, skills development or wellbeing it's an all round great thing to do. Volunteering showcases human beings at their best and we should take the opportunity that volunteers week provides to celebrate and appreciate everyone who gives their time.
Unless we want to find ourselves in 2030 having failed to fulfil our commitments, writing another set of Global Goals, mourning the loss of a great opportunity for change, we must take the role of youth seriously. Young people have a passion for change that gives them the drive to shape the world they live in. In the mission to end poverty and deliver on the Global Goals, what better allies to have?