"I can assure you, public service is a stimulating, proud and lively enterprise. It is not just a way of life; it is a way to live fully. Its greatest attraction is the sheer challenge of it – struggling to find solutions to the great issues of the day. It can fulfill your highest aspirations. The call to service is one of the highest callings you will hear and your country can make."
- Lee H. Hamilton
Our good deeds help make us who we are. By many definitions, it is our humanitarianism, or our compassion and benevolence that make us truly human. Whether through activism, school- or community-based service projects, fundraising, or donation of time and labor to national or international initiatives, generosity of spirit drives individuals of all ages, classes and backgrounds to “step up” and work for improved living conditions, education, and enrichment for all.
Increasingly governments are becoming aware of the value of working with community and civil society organizations to address public problems. Civic engagement allows them the benefit of specific combinations of knowledge, skills and other resources useful in covering the interests of more stakeholders. Many government organizations are putting in place systems to encourage and facilitate civic engagement, where the public can be involved in policy development processes focused on issues that affect their lives. To some extent new information and communications technologies (ICT) enable civic engagement, by putting the public in direct contact with their political representatives. ICT also enables community and civic organizations to widely disseminate information, and receive ideas and feedback; it expands the reach of invitations to possible participants in problem solving discussions and debates.
Overall civic engagement is an important aspect toward truly realizing democracy.