500+ City, County, Tribal Leaders to Recognize AmeriCorps and Senior Corps in Local Communities Across Texas
30 MAR 2017

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                          CONTACT: Elizabeth Darling

DATE: March 31, 2017                                                               512-287-2062, liz@onestarfoundation.org

 

500+ City, County, Tribal Leaders to Recognize AmeriCorps and Senior Corps in Local Communities Across Texas

AUSTIN, TX — On April 4, 2017, more than 500 mayors and county leaders across the State of Texas will be among over 4,000 mayors and county leaders nationally to join together in recognition of the impact national service participants in AmeriCorps and Senior Corps programs have made on their local communities.  Given the many social needs facing communities – and the fiscal constraints facing government at all levels – cities and counties are increasingly turning to national service as a cost-effective strategy to meet local needs.

The fifth annual Mayor and County Day of Recognition for National Service is a nationwide bipartisan effort to recognize the positive impact of national service in cities and counties, to thank those who serve, and to encourage citizens to give back to their communities.  The initiative is being led by the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), the National League of Cities, Cities of Service, and National Association of Counties (NACo).  In Texas, the initiative is being coordinated by CNCS’s Texas State Office in partnership with OneStar Foundation, which serves as Texas’ National Service Commission.

“We are proud to be part of the national service family and grateful for the AmeriCorps members and Senior Corps volunteers who are getting things done for Texas,” said Elizabeth Darling, President/CEO of OneStar Foundation, which administers $14 million in AmeriCorps State grants to nonprofits each year.  “Our AmeriCorps members and Senior Corps volunteers have made a significant impact on Texas’ ability to meet so many local needs, and the Mayor and County Day of Recognition for National Service is a perfect opportunity to recognize their great work.”

Each year, more than 33,000 national service members of all ages and backgrounds are helping to meet local needs, strengthen communities, and increase civic engagement in Texas through AmeriCorps and Senior Corps (Texas National Service Profile, 2016-2017). Serving at more than 3,000 locations throughout the state, these citizens tutor and mentor children, assist the elderly, support veterans and military families, provide health services, restore the environment, respond to disasters, increase economic opportunity, and recruit and manage volunteers.

Participating mayors and county judges will visit national service sites, assist with service projects, present proclamations, and host celebrations. Highlights of the Mayor and County Day of Recognition for National Service in Texas include events in the following cities:

  • Amarillo – On April 4, 2016, at 9am Mayor Paul Harpole will join national service programs to recognize the impact of AmeriCorps and Senior Corps programs in the Amarillo community and to thank members for their commitment and service.  In addition to remarks by the mayor, this event will feature a soil amendment and planting project by AISD national service members at the High Plains Food Bank Garden (815 Ross Street, Amarillo TX 79102).
  • Austin – Austin area national service programs will join Mayor Steve Adler on April 3rd at 9am on the South Steps of the State Capitol Building (1100 Congress Avenue, Austin TX 78701) where Mayor Adler will read a proclamation honoring National Service.  The event will include guest speakers and refreshments. 
  • Dallas & Dallas County – Dallas area national service programs will highlight the impact of AmeriCorps and Senior Corps programs in the county and city of Dallas on April 4th from 9am-11am.  A Proclamation Presentation will begin promptly at 9am at the Commissioners Court (411 Elm Street, Dallas TX 75202) followed by a Recognition Reception at The Senior Source (3910 Harry Hines, Dallas TX 75219) from 10am-11am. To RSVP, click here.
  • El Paso – Mayor Oscar Leeser and the El Paso City Council will recognize the impact of AmeriCorps and Senior Corps in the El Paso community with a proclamation honoring national service. This proclamation will be read in City Council Chambers on Tuesday, April 4th at 8:00 a.m. at El Paso City Hall (300 N. Campbell, El Paso TX 79901).
  • Fort Worth – Tarrant County national service leadership and members will meet on April 4th at 1pm at the Cornerstone Assistance Network (3500 Noble Avenue, Fort Worth 76111).  Attendees will focus on the importance of citizen service and bolster support for national service. 
  • Houston – Mayor Sylvester Turner will host a proclamation presentation at City Hall on April 4th (901 Bagby) at 11:30am to honor national service in the Houston area. Attendees should arrive early and bring a picture ID.

Many other Texas officials will participate throughout the month of April with proclamations, presentations at local council and commission meetings, or visits with local AmeriCorps members and Senior Corps volunteers. A full list of participating Texas mayors and county leaders can be found here. A list of event details for activities being held in Texas can be found here.  

“I am proud to be working with Texas leaders as we continue to strengthen communities through national service” said Kim Mansaray, Acting CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service.  “County officials and mayors are leaders who get things done.  They know firsthand the value of national service in tackling problems.  I commend participating Texas mayors and county leaders for working with us to improve lives and strengthen communities through national service.”

By shining the spotlight on the impact of service and thanking those who serve, local officials hope to inspire more residents to get involved in their communities. 

 “National service shows the best of the American spirit – people turning toward problems instead of away, working together to find community solutions,” said Terry Gunnell, Director of the CNCS Texas State Office based in Austin. “Today, as we thank national service members for their commitment, let us all pledge to do our part to strengthen our country through service and volunteering.”

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OneStar Foundation is the Governor-designated National Service Commission in Texas and administers the AmeriCorps State grant program. The Governor-appointed Board members oversee the legal and policy governance of the AmeriCorps Texas program portfolio. OneStar Foundation connects partners and resources to build a stronger nonprofit sector in Texas. For more information, visit onestarfoundation.org.

The Corporation for National and Community Service is a federal agency that engages more than five million Americans in service through its AmeriCorps, Senior Corps, Social Innovation Fund, and Volunteer Generation Fund programs, and leads President's national call to service initiative, United We Serve. For more information, visit NationalService.gov.

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