The EESC issues between 160 and 190 opinions and information reports a year.
It also organises several annual initiatives and events with a focus on civil society and citizens’ participation such as the Civil Society Prize, the Civil Society Days, the Your Europe, Your Say youth plenary and the ECI Day.
The EESC brings together representatives from all areas of organised civil society, who give their independent advice on EU policies and legislation. The EESC's326 Members are organised into three groups: Employers, Workers and Various Interests.
The EESC has six sections, specialising in concrete topics of relevance to the citizens of the European Union, ranging from social to economic affairs, energy, environment, external relations or the internal market.
Taking into account that volunteering is an important driver of inclusive growth, a key factor in many economic and social policies and a research subject which is currently insufficiently measured, the Committee calls on the European Commission:
to put in place the conditions to start methodological work and research into volunteer work by national statistical offices from the EU Member States. In so doing, use should be made of the International Labour Organisation's Manual on the Measurement of Volunteer Work;
to work on a standardised methodology for research into volunteer work and to ensure its adoption by the Member States, via an appropriate EU Regulation;
to gather and make available consistent information resulting from research into volunteering conducted in individual countries or at EU level;
to introduce legal measures binding at the EU and Member States level which would enable the non-profit sector to co-finance public grants with the economic value of volunteer work.
The EESC uses this opportunity to reiterate the need for a favourable environment and support for voluntary activities.