Voluntary Societies

Voluntary Societies


in the USSR, mass associations of working people created at their own initiative.

Under the Statute on Voluntary Societies and Their Unions (Collected Statutes of the RSFSR, 1932, no. 74, p. 331), voluntary societies and their unions, as organizations of independent civic activity among the working masses in the city and countryside, set as their task active participation in the socialist construction of the USSR, as well as assistance in strengthening the country’s defense. Voluntary societies are established and function according to the principles of strictly voluntary membership, democratic centralism, and guidance by Soviet legislation and by their own statutes. They have the right to nominate candidates for elections to bodies of state authority.

The USSR has an extensive network of voluntary societies. Scientific and scientific-technical voluntary organizations hold lectures in order to deepen knowledge in various branches of science and help discover and utilize reserves in industry, construction, and agriculture. Educational societies, above all the Znanie (Knowledge) society, and the All-Russian Society for the Preservation of Cultural Monuments, do work to raise the political, scientific, and cultural level of the Soviet people. Voluntary societies are also created in order to develop and strengthen cultural ties, friendship, and cooperation between the Soviet people and peoples of other countries; such voluntary societies have been unified into the Union of Soviet Societies of Friendship and Cultural Relations With Foreign Countries. The USSR All-Union Voluntary Society to Aid the Army, Air Force, and Navy (DOSAAF) is a mass voluntary defense organization of working people that helps to strengthen the armed forces.

Red Cross and Red Crescent societies involve broad masses of working people in the task of strengthening health protection in the USSR, and they also provide assistance to persons who have suffered during war or as a result of natural disasters. Voluntary sports societies are very popular. Various voluntary societies of nature lovers and societies of hunters and fishermen have gained wide popularity. Voluntary fire-prevention societies have been organized to recruit the public to participate in fire-prevention measures and to protect socialist property and citizens’ property from fire.


Luk’ianov, A. I., and B. M. Lazarev. Sovetskoe gosudarstvo i obshchestvennye organizatsii. Moscow, 1961.
Kravchenko, V. V. Dobrovol’nye obshchestva v SSSR i ikh pravovoe polozhenie. Moscow, 1964.
lampol’skaia, Ts. A. Obshchestvennye organizatsii i razvitie sovetskoi sotsialisticheskoi gosudarstvennosti. Moscow, 1965.


References in periodicals archive ?
He reiterated the ministry's support to the dedicated efforts being exerted by charity and voluntary societies and NGOs and civil society institutions towards consolidating community partnership.
The Minister has pointed out in his address before the Training Forum organized for the National Voluntary and Charity Organizations, organized by Sudanese Council of Voluntary Societies and Organizations in collaboration with Hamam Charity Organization for Peace, to the role played by Sudanese community in the various domains.
KUWAIT, Nov 27 (KUNA) -- Unifying relief efforts of the voluntary societies during war and catastrophes is the theme of a forum that kicked off here on Monday, patronized by the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs.
The charities and voluntary societies of the period possessed a patriotic desire to improve the welfare of the poor in order to sustain Britain's place in world affairs, but not enough evidence is provided to suggest that humanitarianism was a significant concern for those at the highest reaches of government (111).
Its 14 packed chapters analyze a myriad of voluntary societies and contain more than 20 pages listing voluntary societies.
They could do so by providing good role models and using the commanding heights of our world--schools, universities, voluntary societies, churches, the media, and the arts--to scorn moral indifference to harmful lifestyles and hold up the values that bring about success and well-being.
(We envy the Roman Catholics and Anglicans, whose hierarchies are more ready to permit pioneers to organize new mission efforts.) A church member who invites others to initiate a special-interest mission effort will discover a stubborn truth: a governing body must act before its members can form themselves into voluntary societies. Ralph Winter's article on this subject, "The Two Structures of God's Redemptive Mission," is mentioned by one of the contributors.
Amman, Nov 26 (Petra) -- A Saudi delegation representing social development agencies in Saudi Arabia visited the General Union of Voluntary Societies (GUVS) on Wednesday to review the Union's work and the services it provides.
Royal Jordanian donated a large amount of clothes to the General Union of Voluntary Societies (GUVS), which will distribute the gifts to underprivileged people in various governorates.
A diverse group of Protestant voluntary societies and activists endeavored to create an American "moral empire" at home and abroad in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
Membership of groups, from football teams to book clubs and voluntary societies, gives us a sense of social identity.
But back in 1910 when the surgery was set up - almost 40 years before the birth of the NHS - the only people registered were local working men, either miners or iron ore-factory workers, who paid voluntary societies to look after their health.

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