General Declaration 2011
At its 2011 annual meeting in the city of Vienna (Austria), the General Assembly of OINA resolved to continue this year with the implementation of its three pillars, namely philosophy, culture and volunteering, and wishes to highlight the following:
Reaffirming its conviction that philosophy and access to knowledge should not only be theoretical, but should also have a practical aspect that will enable human beings to deal with life with wisdom; and that, taking advantage of the legacy of the classical philosophers, we can attain happiness by understanding ourselves and treating others with respect, as an expression of harmonious coexistence that will make us all more human and more tolerant.
Reaffirming the value of culture as the necessary foundation for the knowledge of the history of humanity, that can give us the necessary tools to understand our own period of history better and to move towards the future with practical projects that will provide human beings and, in particular, the new generations, with access to universal education, without discrimination of any kind; with the aim of discovering ethical, moral and timeless values that will reinforce human dignity and the protection of humanity’s most fundamental rights to life and peaceful coexistence.
Reaffirming the need to offer our altruistic energies and support, through volunteering activities, to help those who, due to poverty or lack of knowledge or resources, are unable to access the most basic levels of survival. Such aid should be provided not only to human society, but also to the natural environment, as the latter is the necessary support for the habitat of the former, because the planet is the home of all.
In this sense, and as in previous years, the General Assembly of OINA reaffirms its conviction that it should continue to support the initiatives of different International Organizations and Non-Governmental Organizations which, in the same way as OINA, work resolutely to improve the health of the planet and the peaceful coexistence of the human beings who inhabit it. Accordingly, it reaffirms its intention to continue with its work of supporting international commemorative events which, if they are to go beyond mere proclamations, need the support of organizations such as OINA and so many others in the world to achieve their aims by promoting international cooperation.
Taking note of the fact that 2011 has been declared as the International Year of Volunteering, and that the United Nations is preparing a Report on the State of World Vounteerism, promoting a worldwide debate on volunteering.
Taking note of the fact that volunteering is a means for addressing the issues of poverty reduction, sustainable development, climate change and disaster prevention in the framework set out by the Millennium Declaration and the United Nations Millennium Development Goals.
Without forgetting that, as well as the United Nations, the European Union has also declared 2011 as the European Year of Volunteering and that members and member associations of OINA in Europe are participating in this and have been involved in significant volunteering activities for decades.
It therefore resolves to continue with the substantial volunteering work carried out by the International Organization New Acropolis in more than fifty countries, as reflected annually in its International Yearbook published in Spanish and English and distributed worldwide; and to support all the associations affiliated to OINA in their efforts to strengthen relations between civil society and institutions, so that volunteer actions can be as effective as possible in redressing and alleviating the great social and cultural deficiencies which humanity is facing in the present millennium.
To recall that, in its Resolution A/RES 61/193, the United Nations General Assembly approved the motion to declare 2011 as the International Year of Forests, in order to raise awareness that forests are an integral part of the sustainable development of the planet in view of the economic, sociocultural and environmental benefits they provide.
In this sense, the members and member associations of OINA have been carrying out forestation campaigns for more than twenty years on the different continents where they operate. Therefore, it earnestly recommends that this important work be continued, particularly in this year dedicated to forests with the same or even greater emphasis as in previous years. Without forgetting the extremely important work carried out by OINA during the past decade, and also in this decade which has just begun, of effective campaigns of fire prevention, reforestation in the face of natural disasters and forest supervision activities carried out by New Acropolis volunteers in different countries with large areas of woodland, as well as environmental education campaigns that have been developed recently with evident effectiveness in the prevention and protection of our forests, which are the lungs of our planet.
Recalling that the Organization of American States has declared 2011 as the Inter-American Year of Culture in order to promote education and culture in Latin America.
It is emphasized that the important work which is being carried out by New Acropolis in aid of culture and education throughout the world and, in particular, in the countries of Latin America, is a reflection of the awareness that its associated members have that culture and education are two fundamental pillars of peace, tolerance and harmonious coexistence. Accordingly, it recommends that members and affiliated associations continue with this work in aid of culture and education, by implementing the initiative promoted by the Organization of American States in the countries of Latin America.
Furthermore, the General Assembly of OINA reaffirms its conviction concerning the importance of continuing to work on the development of moral and ethical values, which is one of its founding objectives, since these constitute the fundamental basis for the formation of character. Such values also enable human beings to understand humanity as a coming together of individual wills, where we all belong to the same family, not in a speculative and theoretical sense, but in a real way that allows us to share in both the pain and the happiness of others and to go forward together in our endeavour to build a better and more habitable world.