Mar 30, 2011

Make the Call to Save National Service Again!

Thank You! You Made the call! Now Let's Save Service Again!

During the Tribute on March 21 honoring President George H. W. Bush and celebrating  the modern-day service movement, we met Rhonda Ulmer, one of 600,000 AmeriCorps Alums who have changed this country.

We also heard about the bipartisan heritage of the service movement and the critical role that voluntary action plays in overcoming the challenges our families, communities, and nation face in the 21st Century.

It is vital that we continue to take this bipartisan message to Congress.

We know that in February, the House of Representatives proposed the elimination of AmeriCorps and the Corporation for National and Community Service.  The latest short-term budget for the government expires on April 8th.  Before that date, Congress will have difficult decisions to make regarding federal spending for FY 2011.  We also anticipate this week that the House Leadership will release its FY2012 budget proposal.

For these reasons, I urge you to call your Senators by using the number 1-855-US-SERVE (1-855-877-3783) on Monday, April 4th and express your strong support for national and community service.  For more information and other action steps, visit

I asked for your help earlier this month, and you along with the nation delivered with 10,000 calls. Now we need you to deliver one more time. Show Congress that America cares about service and AmeriCorps enough to visit their offices and call in support….twice!

Connecticut Alums awarded AmeriCorps Week Grant!

AmeriCorps Alums has awarded 10 grants to help fund and facilitate AmeriCorps week events, including a grant for our Connecticut Chapter.

Stay tuned for future events, including happy hours, social and public outreach, service opportunities and more!

ServeNext profiles CT Chapter leader Katherine Jones

ServeNext, a grassroots action organization, recently announced it's list of 2011 ServeNext Organizers, which includes AmeriCorps Alums CT leader Katherine Jones, who has served with PACT as a program associate and as a heath center coordinator. For the rest of the story, and to meet the other leaders, click here.

AmeriCorps Youth Health Service Corps Coordinator presents at GoodGuides

Marcella Lawson was recently a guest presenter helping to increase awareness and knowlege of health careers to middleschool students and their mentors. The project was in cooperation of Goodwill Industries of Western CT and the Area Health Education Center. To read the entire story, click here.

Senator Blumenthal's responds to letter

CT Senator Richard Blumenthal recently replied to a letter I wrote expressing the importance of supporting AmeriCorps programs. Here is the letter in it's entirety:

Dear Mr. Brightman,
Thank you for your thoughtful message regarding proposed cuts to AmeriCorps. I appreciate hearing from you.
There is no question that our nation is in the midst of a fiscal crisis. We’re spending too much money and leaving the bill for our children and grandchildren. A recent report released by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) shows that waste and duplication in government costs taxpayers billions of dollars each year. We need to rein in excessive and wasteful spending, as well as work to eliminate fraud to reduce our deficit.
At the same time, we must ensure that we do not make indiscriminate cuts that will ultimately hurt our country. Programs such as AmeriCorps provide valuable services to those in need, and also train a new class of young leaders who will go on to serve important roles in our community.
Please be assured that as the budget is considered, I will fight to make sure that the spending cuts we make are smart cuts, and that we continue to invest in our future by preserving funding for worthwhile programs like AmeriCorps.
Thank you again for your message. I will certainly keep your views in mind.
Richard Blumenthal
United States Senator

If you'd like to contact Senator Blumenthal you can online here or call his Hartford office at 860-258-6940.

Mar 20, 2011

Cutting National Service would hurt leadership development

Max Klau, director of leadership development at City Year, writes in a recent article about the ways National Service creates and fosters leaders. Here's a sample -

"Among the many good reasons why national service should be preserved, here's one case that needs to be made clearly and powerfully: National service represents a critical pipeline for developing the next generation of effective, committed, inspired civic leaders."

To read the whole article click here.

Community HealthCorps releases Statewide Impact Report

As the largest health-focused, national AmeriCorps program, HealthCorps performed over 15 hundred hours of service last year in Connecticut, and will sponsor 26 full time service members in CT this year!

A PDF of the Community HealthCorps Connecticut 2009-2010 report can be found here.

Mar 14, 2011

Kick Off AmeriCorps Week with Rock Cats Baseball!

Come out and show your support for AmeriCorps!

Friday, May 13th is AmeriCorps Night at New Britain Stadium.

Tickets are only $5, the Rock Cats (Minnesota Twins) will host the Portland Sea Dogs (Red Sox).

AmeriCorps will be featured during the First Pitch, an on field ceremony and the night will wrap up with fireworks!

Gates open at 5:05 pm, and the game starts at 6:35.

Stay tuned for more info, see you on the 13th!

Mar 10, 2011

Public Allies Connecticut seeks Program Manager (Job Posting)

Public Allies Connecticut (PACT) is seeking a Program Manager to work with AmeriCorps members and other non-profits in and around New Haven, and the rest of the state.

From the web - "Public Allies CT seeks a dynamic, energetic, solutions-minded professional with a passion for working with emerging leaders and supporting capacity building initiatives within the nonprofit sector. We seek a candidate who is able to support the growth and development of civic leaders by providing individual and group support, designing and facilitating experiential-based learning opportunities, and by expanding career and educational networks for emerging leaders."

Read much more about the position and how to apply by clicking here.

Over Eleven Hundred in Connecticut Stand for AmeriCorps!

As featured earlier in our blog here, the proposed budget cut elimination of AmeriCorps sparked a national outrage among service members, alums and ordinary citizens across the country. Thousands of people signed an online petition through urging law makers to save AmeriCorps, including over 1,100 people from Connecticut! Way to go Nutmegger's!

Take 5 and Save Service March 15th!

On March 15th AmeriCorps Alums are being asked to gather their voices on behalf of service and
call each and every senator across the country as congress gears up to set the budget for the following year!

You can help by taking a few minutes out of your day and contacting Senator Blumenthal's office at 202-224-2823 and Senator Lieberman's office at 202-224-4041.

Remember AmeriCorps in on the chopping block and every voice counts!

Mar 5, 2011

Public Allies Connecticut featured in Beat Of The Street

PACT Class of 2011

Public Allies Connecticut or PACT, is a statewide AmeriCorps program which seeks to create "New Leaders for New Times", and was featured recently in the local Beat Of The Street publication.

The article describes a December meeting where several topics were discussed, including project ideas, homelessness, after-school programs.

Beat of The Street strives to keep a pulse on homelessness in the Greater Hartford Region.

Stay tuned for more info on Public Allies CT, Beat of the Street and future service projects, including a soup kitchen event this June!

Mar 4, 2011

Connecticut Native and Connecticut College Alum Serves in Lake Tahoe

Adam Zeender is putting his Environmentla Science degree to good work as an AmeriCorps Environmental Education Assistant in Northern California with SNAP (the Sierra Nevada AmeriCorps Parternship). Adam also leads teens on summer trips and has worked as a ski instructor. Good luck Adam!

Baby-Boomers, Grad Students and AmeriCorps service opportunities with ElderCare

ACES (AmeriCorps in ElderCare Settings) is partering with NYAHSA (New York Association of Homes and Services for the Aging) to provide services at elder care service centers around the State of Connecticut. For much more information, including how to get involved click here.

AmeriCorps Week Dates Changed to May 7th-14th

AmeriCorps Week, the 7 days each spring dedicated to spreading the word about AmeriCorps through recruitment, recognition, service projects and special events such as AmeriCorps at the New Brittain Rock Cats is scheduled for May 7th-14th, 2011.

Stay tuned for more information and events on the best week of the year!