2.7 Social inclusion through volunteering
The support to volunteers is specified in the Law on Volunteering. Volunteers are not allowed financial compensation or other material benefits from volunteering. However, the organisation or institution engaging volunteers is expected to compensate volunteers for any indirect expenses arising from volunteering. The following list of benefits is not considered material or financial compensation:
- working clothes and means and equipment for personal protection of volunteers
- travel, accommodation, food and other expenses arising from the volunteering services and activities
- medical examinations needed for volunteering
- preparatory training for conducting volunteering services and activities
- insurance premiums paid in the event of an injury or professional illness during volunteering, or financial compensation for insurance for damage incurred in the organiser of volunteering or a third party
- payment of pocket money, in case of long-term volunteering (see Chapter 2/2.1 General context/Main concepts). The amount of pocket money may not exceed 30% of the net amount of the minimum monthly full-time salary in the Republic of Serbia. The payment of the pocket money is determined by the contract on volunteering.
Online volunteering platform https://volonterinamrezi.rs/ was launched in 2020 under the working plan of the Ministry of Youth and Sports with the aim to advocate and contribute to easier networking, information and volunteer involvement of young people in Serbia. The platform is managed by UNICEF in cooperation with the Young Researchers of Serbia.
Top-level policy measures or initiatives that tackle development and strengthening of social cohesion and inclusion in the communities where volunteering projects take place are not yet developed.
Top-level policy measures, initiatives, or programmes supporting young volunteers to engage in projects that contribute to solving of societal challenges are not yet developed.
However, one of the principles outlined in the National Youth Strategy is “Social responsibility and solidarity” where various forms of volunteer activities are seen as having an important role in building and nurturing social values and the development of young people’s communities. It is also outlined that young people should express solidarity with all social groups who may be at risk of discrimination or discriminatory treatment.
Authors should describe any top-level measure, initiative and programme supporting young volunteers to engage in projects that contribute to solve societal challenges, such as:
- Solidarity with groups at risk of marginalisation (e.g. migrants and refugees, seniors, individuals with fewer opportunities, the homeless)
- Climate change and environmental challenges (e.g. green consumption, sustainability, environmental protection)