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Counting on Cleary, Day #38/37: Celebrating AmeriCorps and the American Spirit of Giving Back

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AmeriCorps is marking its twentieth anniversary since the federal government launched this ambitious national service program. The aim of AmeriCorps is to provide Americans the opportunity to give back by making our country a better and healthier place to live. Over the years, more than 900,000 volunteers logged in over 1 billion hours of service to improve our schools, help in disaster recovery, assist Veterans, teach about good nutrition and provide access to healthy foods, clean up the environment, build homes and parks, and provide health and social services to underserved communities.

My younger son Todd took a gap year between high school and college to volunteer with AmeriCorps NCCC. His Dad and I made a trip to Detroit to visit him as he served in an inner city school there. As parents, we were never so proud of him as we witnessed the mutual affection between our 19 year old son and the 30 first graders he was encouraging and coaching. We later proudly attended Todd's commencement exercises at UNC-CH and Harvard Grad School, but honestly his AmeriCorps "commencement" was the most inspiring of all!

For the millennials counting on Cleary, the National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC) is a full-time, team-based residential program for men and women age 18-24. Volunteers are assigned to one of five campuses throughout the country. AmeriCorps NCCC members serve for a 10-month commitment in teams of 8 to 12 and are assigned to projects throughout the region served by their campus.

I am on a path to represent NC District 13 as a future Congresswoman where I will serve as a staunch advocate for the value of AmeriCorps among other essential services. AmeriCorps radically changes the lives of the people it serves as well as the lives of its volunteers, preparing them for a long term path of advocacy and service.

If you share our values of making lives better, especially for people that need it most, PLEASE sign up as a volunteer on the Cleary for Congress website. We've made hundreds of phone calls and knocked on thousands of doors, but that's still not enough in a district of nine counties. And if you are able to donate, that will help us to continue to get our message out.

Finally, a message to fellow baby boomers counting on Cleary: my husband and I are seriously considering linking up with SeniorCorps when we retire? Wanna join us?


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