Partnership for 21st Century Conservation Service Corps Announces "100 Projects to Restore America"

For Immediate Release                                                                                             
Wednesday, June 11, 2014

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Partnership for a 21st Century Conservation Service Corps, a diverse group of private, public, and nonprofit partners announced a list of "100 Projects to Restore America" at an Aspen Institute-sponsored summit in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania on Friday.

The 100 projects showcase a variety of work happening across America where youth and veterans enrolled in Service and Conservation Corps programs will restore vital ecological habitat, improve recreational trails and areas, mitigate the impact of disasters, improve urban parks, preserve historic structures, and gain the skills and experience to become the next great generation of American conservation and community leaders.

The Gettysburg Summit, titled "Our Unfinished Work," was hosted by the Aspen Institute's Franklin Project. Speakers and advocates ranging from retired General Stanley McChrystal, Chelsea Clinton, and Barbara Bush joined other National Service champions to discuss the value of National Service to American life. The goals of the Summit included building support for developing more opportunities for young people to serve through a "Service Year," as well as through AmeriCorps programs, and encouraging greater awareness that these opportunities exist. The hope is to create a new "shared" American experience through Service.

While not attending the Summit in person, four former Secretaries of the Interior from both Democratic and Republican Administrations unveiled a letter of support for the 21st Century Conservation Service Corps (21CSC). Through public-private partnerships, the 21CSC seeks to enroll 100,000 youth and veterans annually, starting with an approximate enrollment of 20,000 this year.

Current Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell has been an ardent supporter of the 21st Century Conservation Service Corps, and recently announced an initial program of nearly $2 million in federal funding from the Department of Interior, U.S. Forest Service, and other agencies for 43 projects. This will be augmented by an additional $4 million of funds from other sources.

"We are pleased that the 21st Century Conservation Service Corps projects have commenced, and can provide a great venue for young Americans and veterans to improve their country, communities, and their own lives while gaining a sense of fulfillment," said Mary Ellen Sprenkel, President and CEO of The Corps Network. She added, "More than ever, National Service programs like Conservation Corps reflect the diversity of America. We view this diversity as essential as we train our next great generation of conservation and community leaders to tackle some of America's greatest challenges."

The full list of 100 projects can be viewed at www.21csc.org. A front-and-back handout with project highlights is also available as a PDF.

About The Corps Network

The Corps Network provides critical leadership to the Corps movement and our nation’s Service and Conservation Corps as they harness the power of youth and young adults to tackle some of America’s greatest challenges and transform their own lives. Our 100+ members operate in all states and the District of Columbia. Each year they collectively enroll approximately 26,000 Corpsmembers from ages 16-25. Corps are comprehensive youth development programs that provide their participants with job training, academic programming, leadership skills, and additional support through a strategy of service that improves communities and the environment. Learn more at www.corpsnetwork.org

Media Contact:

Levi Novey
The Corps Network
1100 G Street, NW, Suite 1000
Washington, DC 20005
Phone: 202.737.6272
Fax: 202.737.6277
Email: lnovey@corpsnetwork.org