Service and Conservation Corps Participate in "Mayors' Day of Recognition for Service" Events Nationwide

On Tuesday April 1st, numerous members of The Corps Network participated in events nationwide with their Mayors to recognize the contributions that National Service makes in their communities. In total, more than 1750 mayors were expected to participate across the United States.

American YouthWorks and the Texas Conservation Corps (shown above with Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell) where even one of the programs prominently featured in a video made by Austin, Texas to showcase Service and how it plays a role in their communities.
 


Other Highlights:

  • [Photo] Utah Conservation Corps AmeriCorps members with numerous mayors
     
  • [News Release] Heart of Oregon Corps Attended Several Events with numerous mayors
     
  • [Photo] Greater Miami Service Corps Attended Several Events with numerous mayors
     
  • [Photo Set] Montana Conservation Corps Helps Build Gardens at School
     

[Photo] Operation Fresh Start crew representing at Mayoral Proclamation on AmeriCorps service day

20th Anniversary of AmeriCorps


From the AmeriCorps Facebook page

On September 21, 1993, President Bill Clinton signed the National Service Bill on the South Lawn of the White House, creating AmeriCorps. Twenty years later, AmeriCorps is still going strong and continues to draw record numbers of applications year after year. Last week, people across the country celebrated AmeriCorps' 20th Anniversary and discussed the impact and future of the program. Here are a few highlights. 

 

Video from MSNBC

 

Video from the 20th Anniversary Celebration at the Mellon Auditorium in Washington, DC

 

Huffington Post op-ed by Wendy Spencer, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service

Is it possible to effectively harness youthful enthusiasm and idealism and turn it into it a renewable resource for good? We think so. Twenty years ago, President Clinton signed a bill that created AmeriCorps and gave our country a new outlet for national service that did just that.

From its modest beginnings, AmeriCorps has grown to annually engage nearly 80,000 Americans who dedicate a year of their lives to serving in communities large, small and everything in between. And this is meaningful service that helps solve some of the most difficult challenges our nation faces...keep reading

 

Chigcago Tribune op-ed by Bill and Chelsea Clinton

The idea of community service is as old as America itself. Older really. Benjamin Franklin helped form the first volunteer fire department in Philadelphia in 1736, spawning a movement that continues to this day in communities throughout the country. Alexis de Tocqueville, in the 1830s, contrasted America with his native Europe by saying that the central difference was that in America, people didn't wait for the state to solve problems. They just got organized and tried to figure out what to do about them. Service is at the core of our national character...keep reading.

 

The Corps Network attends the AmeriCorps 20th Anniversary Celebration at the Mellon Auditorium in Washington, DC


From The Corps Network's Facebook page

This morning at the big AmeriCorps 20th Anniversary celebration in Washington, D.C., Wendy Spencer, the Corporation for National & Community Service's CEO, presented Washington Conservation Corps with a Service Impact Award for their disaster services work. The event program notes the Corps' participation in response to disasters nationwide, including Hurricane Katrina, the Joplin and Missouri tornadoes, wildfires in Eastern Washington, and Hurricane Sandy. In total they have logged over 38,000 hours in response efforts. Wait to go Washington Conservation Corps! Several other Corps got airtime during the celebration, including Civic Worksby Representative John Sarbanes, and Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa was shown for their own disaster relief efforts in a photo.

 

 

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[Video] AmeriCorps, Youthbuild, and Youth Conservation Corps Featured on PBS Broadcast for American Graduate Day

On Saturday, we were proud to watch several of our young spokespeople represent AmeriCorps and us on PBS's nationwide broadcast of American Graduate Day. 

Germain Castellanos, a Corps Network 2005 Corpsmember of the Year and a former member of Youth Conservation Corps (YCC) in Waukegan IL spoke about his AmeriCorps experience, as well as Jamiel Alexander, one of our good friends from Youthbuild and the National Council of Young Leaders. They were interviewed by Wes Moore, a former U.S. Army Captain who is a youth advocate, best-selling author, and now hosts "Beyond Belief," a show on the Oprah Winfrey Network. The segment also includes a short video about AmeriCorps' Education Service Corps.

Watch by clicking here or on the image above.

Boiler Plate: 
On Saturday, we were proud to watch several of our young spokespeople represent AmeriCorps and us on PBS's nationwide broadcast of American Graduate Day. Watch the segment on AmeriCorps here.

20th Anniversary of AmeriCorps


From the AmeriCorps Facebook page

On September 21, 1993, President Bill Clinton signed the National Service Bill on the South Lawn of the White House, creating AmeriCorps. Twenty years later, AmeriCorps is still going strong and continues to draw record numbers of applications year after year. Last week, people across the country celebrated AmeriCorps' 20th Anniversary and discussed the impact and future of the program. Here are a few highlights. 

 

Video from MSNBC

 

Video from the 20th Anniversary Celebration at the Mellon Auditorium in Washington, DC

 

Huffington Post op-ed by Wendy Spencer, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service

Is it possible to effectively harness youthful enthusiasm and idealism and turn it into it a renewable resource for good? We think so. Twenty years ago, President Clinton signed a bill that created AmeriCorps and gave our country a new outlet for national service that did just that.

From its modest beginnings, AmeriCorps has grown to annually engage nearly 80,000 Americans who dedicate a year of their lives to serving in communities large, small and everything in between. And this is meaningful service that helps solve some of the most difficult challenges our nation faces...keep reading

 

Chigcago Tribune op-ed by Bill and Chelsea Clinton

The idea of community service is as old as America itself. Older really. Benjamin Franklin helped form the first volunteer fire department in Philadelphia in 1736, spawning a movement that continues to this day in communities throughout the country. Alexis de Tocqueville, in the 1830s, contrasted America with his native Europe by saying that the central difference was that in America, people didn't wait for the state to solve problems. They just got organized and tried to figure out what to do about them. Service is at the core of our national character...keep reading.

 

The Corps Network attends the AmeriCorps 20th Anniversary Celebration at the Mellon Auditorium in Washington, DC


From The Corps Network's Facebook page

This morning at the big AmeriCorps 20th Anniversary celebration in Washington, D.C., Wendy Spencer, the Corporation for National & Community Service's CEO, presented Washington Conservation Corps with a Service Impact Award for their disaster services work. The event program notes the Corps' participation in response to disasters nationwide, including Hurricane Katrina, the Joplin and Missouri tornadoes, wildfires in Eastern Washington, and Hurricane Sandy. In total they have logged over 38,000 hours in response efforts. Wait to go Washington Conservation Corps! Several other Corps got airtime during the celebration, including Civic Worksby Representative John Sarbanes, and Conservation Corps Minnesota & Iowa was shown for their own disaster relief efforts in a photo.

 

 

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North to Alaska! Corps Helping with Flood Relief Efforts in Remote Village

Editor's Note: Over the summer, numerous Corps and partners have been assisting with flood relief efforts in the remote village of Galena, Alaska as part of a FEMA - AmeriCorps mission assignment. To date, among The Corps Network's membership, Washington Conservation Corps, Conservation Corps Minnesota and Iowa, and American YouthWorks have sent crews. In addition to the excellent story below that we are republishing courtesy of AmeriCorps and the National Service Blog, FEMA has an excellent resource page that includes items like a pair of striking before and after satellite images that show the rapid extent of flooding. There is also a Yukon AmeriCorps response Facebook page that includes photos and regular updates. As usual, we are proud of our members and partners for their excellent work to help out in a time of need, no matter how challenging the logistics or how far the distance!

By Paula Katrina Drago

On June 25, President Obama made a federal disaster declaration for parts of Alaska along the Yukon River due to ice jam-related flooding from May 17 to June 11. On cue, a team of AmeriCorps members soon arrived in the remote village of Galena to help people there begin to recover.

Flooding affected villages along a 1,200-mile stretch of the Yukon in the United States – a distance roughly the length of the Mississippi River from Minneapolis, MN, to Vicksburg, MS. The ice blockage sent water flowing into Galena and other villages along the river, flooding homes, schools, and other critical infrastructure.

Response efforts to Galena were unlike any other flood response as the town is only accessible by plane and barge (and only plane once the river freezes up in early fall). The logistics of moving people and resources in and out of the village poses some unique challenges, and any work that isn’t complete by the time winter arrives in late September won’t be resumed until May.

AmeriCorps members arrived in Galena on July 13, two weeks after FEMA made the official federal disaster declaration. Within an hour of landing, they were in the field beginning the critical work of repairing the community. Since their arrival, AmeriCorps members have:

  • Gathered more than 100 homeowner work-order requests for volunteer assistance and established a collaborative work order and dispatch process for the Galena area.
  • Completed more than 70 work orders.
  • Collected and distributed 500+ pounds of food, 40+ pounds of clothes, and 5,600+ pounds of other supplies.
  • Provided direct volunteer management support to over 30 volunteers.

AmeriCorps members are supporting shelter operations and helping residents muck and gut, remove debris, and repair their homes, but that’s only a snapshot of the national service response. For a more detailed picture of what AmeriCorps is doing in Galena, watch the video below and read a member’s account of her team’s experience. 

Going to the Dogs

AmeriCorps has also played a critical role in addressing the impact of the flood on animals there because Galena’s dogs are more than pets—they’re integral to survival.

Dogs help residents find their way home in poor weather conditions, and they alert owners to predators and other dangers. Many are part of dog sled teams that are an important form of transportation – especially when temperatures fall below the point where fuel freezes and render motorized vehicles useless – in a town that is also a stop for the famous Iditarod race. 

Compared to many of the disasters AmeriCorps members have responded to in the last two years, Galena, Alaska, is small in size. Yet whether a disaster impacts millions, thousands, or hundreds, each family receives the same response whenever their world gets turned upside down.

When the work orders arrive, our teams don’t refer to them by a number or even a last name. They see instead that “Allison’s sister” needs some trees removed or that “John’s father” needs his home mucked and gutted. By connecting on this intimate level, AmeriCorps is able to do an even-better job with what we do best: getting things done.

To view the original version of this story and see additional photos and the short video, please click here to journey to the National Service blog.

Boiler Plate: 
Over the summer, numerous Corps and partners have been assisting with flood relief efforts in the remote village of Galena, Alaska as part of a FEMA - AmeriCorps mission assignment.

The Corps Network Praises President Obama's Creation of New Interagency National Service Taskforce

Cool Map Shows Where AmeriCorps NCCC Crews are Working Nationwide

Each week, AmeriCorps NCCC (National Civilian Community Corps) updates a map that shows where their crews are deployed nationwide. While there are 5 major training campuses for NCCC, it's clear from the map that the impact of this residential Corps program stretches far and wide beyond those areas!

Learn more about AmeriCorps NCCC

AmeriCorps Members from Civic Works Visit White House, Meet President Obama

 

(Official White House Photo by Pete Souza)

On Friday of last week, 12 AmeriCorps members were invited to the White House to talk about National Service with President Obama and other senior officials. Among them were 2 Corpsmembers from Civic Works, Baltimore’s Service Corps. Leonard Chase (seen in the right corner) and Myeasha Taylor, we thank you for representing the Corps movement and National Service!

You can read more about their visit and the short biographies of all 12 AmeriCorps members who attended at serve.gov by clicking here.

Over 40 Youth Conservation and Service Corps to Participate in Nationwide Celebration of Earth Day, Environmental Stewardship, and AmeriCorps

WASHINGTON, D.C. —  Over the coming week, over 40 Youth Conservation and Service Corps will host Earth Day events in partnership with AmeriCorps. These events, in conjunction with other Earth Day events implemented nationwide by other AmeriCorps programs, will highlight the importance of environmental stewardship in local communities.

Waukegan, Illinois Salutes Local AmeriCorps Members

 


Speakers at an event to honor AmeriCorps members in Waukegan, IL. Corpsmember of the Year Germain Castellanos pictured on the far left.
 

For one week every year, communities and nonprofit organizations rally together to honor AmeriCorps members, AmeriCorps alums, and the hard work these men and women do for our country. During this year’s AmeriCorps Week, held March 9 – 17, Youth Conservation Corps of Lake County (YCC) joined with other area nonprofits to salute local AmeriCorps members at a ceremony in Waukegan, Illinois’s Robert Sabonjian Plaza.
 


Illinois AmeriCorps members.
 

The event included speeches from a number of individuals who know firsthand the importance of AmeriCorps programs. Attendees heard from representatives from Youth Build Lake County and Habitat for Humanity Lake County, as well as from Bob McCammon, Executive Director of YCC. Germain Castellanos, a YCC alum and a 2005 Corpsmember of the Year, also spoke.

Since 1994, over 20,000 people from Illinois have served as AmeriCorps members. They have donated a combined 26 million hours of service to bettering American communities.

Thank you for everything you do!

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