2.2 Administration and governance of youth volunteering
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The main actor involved in making decisions in the field of youth volunteering is theMinistry of Labour, Pension System, Family and Social Policy (MLPSFSP). It should be noted, however, that MLPSFSP is responsible for volunteering regardless of volunteer age, so it is not just directed towards youth volunteering. Under the Act on Volunteering (OG 58/07, 22/13, 84/21), MLPSFSP is:
- ensuring implementation of this Law and other regulations deriving therefrom,
- monitoring the situation in the field of volunteering and proposing the adoption of appropriate measures,
- collecting data on the number of volunteer organizers, the number of volunteers in the RC and the number of Croatian citizens who volunteer abroad, as well as other data based on annual reports of volunteer organizers,
- convening the inaugural session of the National Committee for the Development of Volunteering,
- taking other measures and tasks to develop volunteering and implement the Act on Volunteering.
The National Committee for the Development of Volunteering is an advisory body of the Government of the Republic of Croatia that implement measures and activities aimed to promoting volunteering and work on its development. It consists of 19 members appointed by the Government of the Republic of Croatia (RC), who are also representatives of the MLPSFSP, Government of the Republic of Croatia for Cooperation with NGOs, Office for Human Rights and National Minorities' Right, National Foundation for Civil Society Development, Ministry of Science and Education, Ministry of Health, and representatives of civil society organizations who are volunteer organizers and independent experts. National Committee for the Development of Volunteering, under the Act on Volunteering (OG 58/07, 22/13, 84/21) proposes measures to improve the position of volunteers in society. Then, in co-operation with the relevant bodies, proposes regulations on volunteer benefits, decides on the award of a state volunteering award, initiates the adoption or modification of regulations regulating volunteering, issues the Ethics Code of Volunteers, undertakes other activities for the development of volunteering and performs other measures and activities determined in the Act on Volunteering (OG 58/07, 22/13, 84/21).
Government of the Republic of Croatia Office for Cooperation with NGOs is an expert service of the Government of the Republic of Croatia, which carries out professional tasks from the domain of the Government of the Republic of Croatia with regards to creating conditions for cooperation and partnership with non-governmental, non-profit sector, especially with associations in the RC. Within its scope, the Government of the Republic of Croatia Office for Cooperation with NGOs performs, inter alia, the work of drafting, systematic monitoring, analysis and evaluation of the implementation of strategic programs for creating a stimulating environment for the development of civil society, and the preparation and implementation of measures of other strategic documents covering activities of cooperation with NGOs and participation in making, systematic monitoring, analysis and evaluation of the normative framework for the activities of associations and other civil society organizations in the RC.
Non-public actors that participate in developing policies in the area of youth volunteering are Regional Volunteer Centres (non-profit/non-governmental organizations - Volunteer Centre Zagreb, Volunteer Centre Split, Volunteer Centre Rijeka, Associations for Civil Society Development SMART and Volunteer Centre Osijek) whose main objective is promotion and development of volunteer activities at local, regional and national level. Regional Volunteer Centres formed the Croatian Volunteer Development Center and thus work jointly with decision-makers in the field of volunteering. In addition to regional volunteer centres, there are also about thirty local volunteer centres which, if they meet certain criteria, can become members of the national network of volunteer centres, which is one of the programmes of the Croatian Volunteer Development Centre.
Since Croatia is a EU member, with establishment of European Solidarity Corps its volunteering projects (including transnational projects) became available to Croatian citizens. However, on a national level, there are no valid strategic documents which regulate cross-national (transnational) cooperation in the field of volunteering.
In the past, the framework for cross-sectoral cooperation in this field had been laid out in the National Strategy for the Creation of an Enabling Environment for Civil Society Development from 2012 to 2016 and the National programme for Youth 2014-2017. However, currently there are no valid strategic documents which regulate cross-sectoral cooperation in the field of volunteering. Regardless, the National Committee for the Development of Volunteering, as a platform for cross-sectoral cooperation, is active (the current members were nominated in 2019 for a two-year term).