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EACEA National Policies Platform


2. Voluntary Activities

2.3 National strategy on youth volunteering

Last update: 22 March 2024

Existence of a national strategy 

There is no specific national strategy on youth volunteering in Serbia. However, the National Youth Strategy (see Chapter 1/1.3 National Youth Strategy) recognizes the importance of youth volunteering and introduces measures to encourage it, as well as to improve conditions for volunteering of young people.

Scope and contents 

The National Youth Strategy for the period 2023–2030 emphasizes the importance of volunteering: ‘Volunteerism has a positive effect on personal development and the acquisition of important competencies for further professional and personal development of young people, and at the same time brings benefits to the whole society.’ 

The Strategy recognises that, although data from Survey on the position and needs of young people indicate that the number of young people who participated in volunteer activities has been growing over the years (27% in 2021 and 22% in 2015) and that young people have significant family support for volunteering (93% in 2020), in international research, Serbia ranks very low in terms of volunteering in general. According to the Global Youth Development Index (YDI) in 2016 on the indicator of civic participation (which also takes into account the time young people spend in volunteer activities), Serbia is on the YDI Youth Development Index at 155th out of 183 places (score 0.248).

In the scope of the Specific goal 3: “Young people are active participants in society at all levels“, the National Youth Strategy implements Measure 3.2: “Encouraging volunteering and activism among young people“. Central to this measure is the sustained promotion of civic participation and volunteering, with a keen focus on disseminating information about inclusion opportunities and cultivating a spirit of solidarity. An essential facet of this measure involves the establishment of a conducive volunteer environment, ensuring that volunteering is regulated effectively, particularly in emergency situations. Additionally, there is a dedicated emphasis on the ongoing development and support of the national volunteering program, "Youth Rules." Special attention is reserved for informal youth associations, student parliaments, and pupil groups, aiming to integrate them into volunteer activities. These efforts extend to comprehensive training for young people and organizers of volunteer services, both in regular situations and emergency scenarios. The Strategy also mentions the European Solidarity Initiative as a crucial element, aiming to empower and inspire young individuals to actively contribute to societal well-being, fostering values of civic participation, volunteering, and solidarity within the youth community, on European as well as national and local levels.

The adoption of the National Youth Strategy was followed by the endorsement of the Action Plan for the implementation of the Strategy for the period from 2023 to 2025. This plan outlines four indicators to monitor the progress of Measure 3.2. (The share of young people who volunteered in the last year; The number of informal youth associations supported during one calendar year at the local, provincial and national level; The number of organisers of volunteer services; The percentage of youth associations and their alliances that are registered in the Uniform Records of MoTY and that encourage young people to activism and engage them in the work and activities of the association.) Additionally, it includes eight specific activities aimed at achieving the measure, along with details on funding sources and estimated financial resources for the designated period.

Responsible authority 

The top-level government authority responsible for the implementation, coordination and monitoring of the National Youth Strategy is the Ministry of Tourism and Youth.

Implementation of the Action plan for the period from 2023 to 2025 for implementation of the Youth strategy in the Republic of Serbia for the period from 2023 to 2030 has not been evaluated so far.


The Strategy 2023-2030 was preceded by National Youth Strategy 2015-2025 which was replaced before the expiration date for its implementation. It ceased to be applied as of the date of the publication of new Strategy (Official Gazette of the RS, No. 22/15). A new Strategy was adopted, before the previous one expired, based on the perceived need to respond to the changed context, which occurred due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and due to the emergence of new strategic, national and international documents (see Chapter 1/1.3 National Youth Strategy).