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The European Association for Palliative Care (EAPC), the Worldwide Hospice and Palliative Care Alliance (WHPCA) and the International Association for Hospice & Palliative Care (IAHPC) are working together to advocate for the support, recognition, promotion and development of volunteering in hospice and palliative care through the implementation of this Charter with the following aims:

  • Promote the successful development of volunteering for the benefit of patients, families and the wider hospice and palliative care community.

  • Recognise volunteering as a third resource alongside professional care and family care, with its own identity, position and value.

  • Promote research and best practice models in the recruitment, management, support, integration, training and resourcing of volunteers.


By signing the Charter you support the following goals:

  1. Recognition of the important role of volunteers in the total care of patients and their families, and in sustaining hospice and palliative care services.
  2. Promotion of volunteering in direct support of patients and their families.
  3. Effective management of volunteering, including clearly defined policy on roles, careful recruitment, selection, training and development.
  4. Effective support for hospice and palliative care volunteering at organisational, local and national levels.


For the full text of the Charter, click here. For more information please see the Charter’s background document




People from at least 13 different countries (Australia, Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, The Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania and UK) contributed to the development of the Charter.  We would like to acknowledge the work of the Steering Group of the EAPC Task Force on Volunteering in Hospice and Palliative Care, Task Force members and all who participated in the consultations.

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