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About Senior Corps 
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Hurricane Volunteer Support Fund
In the wake of the recent hurricanes, the Corporation is coordinating volunteers to assist with repair and relief efforts in areas affected by this devastating storm. Your donation will support volunteers in providing food and shelter, managing donations, helping victims get necessary assistance, and long-term rebuilding efforts.
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USA Freedom Corps Partnering to Answer the President’s Call to Service
 
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Saturday, August 06, 2005

CONTACT: Sandy Scott
Phone: 202-606-6724
Email: [email protected]

CONTACT: Cindy Vizza
Phone: 202-729-3238
Email: [email protected]

   

HHS Secretary Leavitt Touts ‘Economics of Goodness’ At Closing Session of National Volunteer Conference

 

(Washington, D.C.) – Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt closed out the 2005 National Conference on Volunteering and Service by touting the “economics of goodness” and noting the strong connection between volunteering and the overall health of our nation

“What every person in this room, what every person in America who volunteers is practicing, is ‘the economics of goodness,’ ” said Leavitt, a former governor of Utah, in his keynote address to volunteer leaders. “Now, I’m not talking here about the economics of saved wages. I’m talking about the productivity that it produces – what happens in the human soul when human beings engage themselves in the lives of others.”

“When we talk about volunteering,” he continued, “we’re talking about the health of the nation – we’re talking about its physical health, its moral health, and its economic well-being. It is, in fact, the economics of goodness at work.”

Near the end of his remarks, Leavitt asked for the volunteer leaders’ help in promoting the new Medicare prescription drug coverage, both to their families and to the people they serve. “We all need to reach out because, frankly, that’s what we do in America,” he said.

The closing session of the annual three-day conference began with videotaped remarks by President Bush. “Through your leadership, you are mobilizing America’s volunteers, and providing millions of our citizens with opportunities to serve a cause larger than themselves,” the President said. “By supporting the good works of good people with kind hearts, you are showing that America’s greatest strength lies in the compassion, decency, and generosity of our citizens.”

The session also featured inspirational stories of service by 13 individuals who received the Corporation for National and Community Service’s 2005 Spirit of Service Awards, which are presented each year to outstanding participants in the Corporation’s Senior Corps, AmeriCorps, and Learn and Serve America programs. For more information on this year’s awardees, go to http://www.nationalservice.gov.

Also addressing the closing session was “Chicken Soup for the Soul” author Mark Victor Hansen, who noted that he believes that all people are “coded to give,” but that many people are limited by their personal mindsets.

Earlier in the day, more than 400 state service commissioners and AmeriCorps program directors concluded their annual grantee training with a retrospective look at the past ten years and a prospective on what the future might hold for AmeriCorps. Former U.S. Senator and Corporation CEO Harris Wofford described how bipartisan support for national service has grown over the past decade as more elected officials learn about AmeriCorps’ highly decentralized structure. National service architect Shirley Sagawa described the program’s start-up phase and the lessons learned from the early years. Current Corporation board member William Schambra and Corporation CEO David Eisner both outlined a promising future for AmeriCorps and other service programs, and urged grantees to provide their input on the Corporation’s five-year draft strategic plan by August 31. Wrapping up the forum and the three-day training, AmeriCorps Director Rosie Mauk thanked grantees for their hard work in making AmeriCorps happen on the local level.

Co-sponsored by the Corporation for National and Community Service and the Points of Light Foundation & Volunteer Center National Network, the National Conference on Volunteering and Service is the largest annual gathering of leaders of the national service and volunteer networks in the nation.

At the end of the three-day conference, Corporation CEO Eisner urged attendees to keep up the momentum for service and volunteering. “Are you ready to take this incredible momentum back home to re-energize and rev up your efforts? Are you ready to grow this movement to 75 million in the next five years?” he asked, referring to the effort to build upon the 64.5 million American adults who currently volunteer in their communities.

Bob Goodwin, President and CEO of the Points of Light Foundation, noted the success of this year’s conference and urged the volunteer leaders to come to next year’s conference June 18-20 in Seattle. “We wanted to feed your hearts, your minds and your souls. Have we succeeded?” Goodwin asked, to a rousing response from the audience

The National Conference on Volunteering and Service was made possible with the support of a number of sponsors, including the leadership partner, UPS Foundation. Other major sponsors include Accenture, Anheuser-Busch Companies, AT&T;, Business Strengthening America, The Steven Case Foundation, Deloitte & Touche USA LLP, The Home Depot, KPMG, The J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation, Marriott International, Inc., Nextel, Northrop Grumman, Pitney Bowes, Target Corporation, The Walt Disney Company, and The Washington Times, and numerous other sponsors.

The Points of Light Foundation & Volunteer Center National Network, a nonpartisan and nonprofit organization, supports and organizes the vital work of community volunteers who help solve our nation’s most serious social problems by bringing people and resources together. The Foundation builds knowledge, skills and programs for volunteer leaders and volunteers to succeed, and provides leadership to mobilize volunteers in thousands of local communities across the country. For more information, call 202-729-8000 or visit http://www.pointsoflight.org.

The Corporation for National and Community Service provides opportunities for Americans of all ages and backgrounds to serve their communities and countries through three programs: Senior Corps, AmeriCorps, and Learn and Serve America. Together with USA Freedom Corps, the Corporation is working to foster a culture of citizenship, service, and responsibility, and to help all Americans answer the President’s Call to Service. For more information, call 202-606-5000 or visit http://www.nationalservice.gov.

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