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Your VOICE Helped to Save AmeriCorps

December 19, 2011


As the dust settles in Washington, the funding prospects for CNCS and AmeriCorps have been clarified.  We know that CNCS was cut by $24.7 million, representing 16% less than the White House budget request.

No programs were eliminated in the proposed budget. However, about $25 million dollars were taken from the funding of the Corporation for National and Community Service.

Here are the details:

  • VISTA was cut $3.9 million to $95 million.
  • AmeriCorps State & National was cut $4 million to $345 million.
  • Senior Corps remains at $207.9 million
  • NCCC was increased to $31.9 million to relocate the Maryland campus as proposed by the Senate.
  • The Volunteer Generation Fund remains at $3.99 million.
  • The Social Innovation Fund was cut by $5 million to $44.9 million.
  • State Commissions were cut by $3.5 million to $13.5 million.
  • The National Service Trust was increased to $212 million.

A cut to AmeriCorps and National Service is never a good thing.  But given the rhetoric in Washington, and the challenging fiscal times for our country, weathering the storm with a cut of this size  — is a testament to you and your fellow Alums.

Since I joined AmeriCorps Alums as the Executive Director last April, I’ve continued to be amazed by the relentless enthusiasm shown by alumni, as passionate individuals and organized actors in cities across the country. A huge thank you to the incredible advocacy efforts shown this past year, including:

  • Save Service District Day visits in local Congressional Offices – regional chapters were present in numbers, taking pictures with their elected officials.
  • Rallying on Save Service Call-in Days.  As some state returns started to look low, we’d put out targeted asks to specific states and observe noticeable up-ticks
  • Using Twitter and FB to contact representatives directly.
  • Supporting the Fight the Zero day, with a presence of over 50 Alums in DC, and over 380 users sharing their stories on social media.
  • Alums in Oregon, Virginia, Illinois, and Texas participating in White House state calls and asking a question about the support of AmeriCorps with 100s of leaders and stakeholders on the line
  • Viewing and sharing our Save AmeriCorps video with your networks, garnering almost 1500 views in a week!

Thank you all for your continued advocacy efforts in ensuring that future generations can take part in the legacy of AmeriCorps. Your actions to help preserve service is a testament to your lifelong commitment to our national community and I am humbled to see the enthusiasm and spirit of our Alums. The fight is far from over, as service and AmeriCorps are still something we’re debating in Washington, rather than celebrating and expanding. It is important to continue educating others of the benefits of national service, sharing how your AmeriCorps year has inspired you’re current work and passions, and to keep contributing our voice on behalf of current and future AmeriCorps National Service members.

One Comment leave one →
  1. Sam permalink
    December 19, 2011 8:16 pm

    It was a hard hit for state commissions. We can’t believe that they totally cut disabilities and PDAT. Disabilities cut is not politically correct for sure. PDAT means training cuts which are critical for solid programing.

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