ServeNext.org Blog

The Week in Service Highlights

Posted by ServeNext Staff on March 4, 2011

The last few weeks have been busy for the national service community with HR-1 passing in the House and proposed cuts to funding to the Corporation for National and Community Service. In this week’s service update, we’ll touch a little on the budget issues, but for a full list of current information and press on the fight to save national service, click here.

Students Kate Leist, Sam Novey, Caleb Jonas, and Frank Marino work to spread the word about the Save AmeriCorps campaign. Photo Credit: Suzanne Kreiter, Boston Globe Staff

1.) In an effort to save AmeriCorps from elimination or drastic budget cuts, Harvard grad student and AmeriCorps alum Caleb Jonas began circulating an online petition through the online organizing platform Change.org. Jonas hoped to reach 500 signatures, but the results far exceeded Jonas’ expectations: as of today he has over 100,000. Go here to read the Boston Globe article about the petition and here to read an article by Caleb, Kate Leist, and Mikia Manley in the Harvard Crimson.

2.) A new study conducted by the charity World Vision found that teenage girls are more likely than boys to support causes through social media. In fact, 51% of girls say that they have become more aware of the needs of others by “liking” the Facebook pages of different causes. These findings are important for the nonprofit community because they demonstrate the importance of using social media tools to reach out to the Millenial generation. For more information, visit Chronicle of Philanthropy blog post about this phenomenon or visit World Vision website which contains the complete results of the study.

TFA alumni and supporters at the 20th Annual Summit in DC

3.) A few weeks ago, Teach for America celebrated its 20th anniversary at its annual summit in DC with speakers such as Patrick Corvington, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service, and U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and a performance by John Legend. These speakers along with the energy of 11,000 TFA corps members, alumni, and supporters reinforced the idea that since its inception this program has made large strides in addressing the achievement gap. For a blog post about the event written by a TFA alum, visit the Corporation’s National Service Blog.

4.) Huffington Post blogger Kari Henley recently published an interesting post called “How to Start a Movement in 3 Minutes” about the sense of community behind mobilizing a group. She asserts that first there has be a leader, someone who isn’t afraid to make a fool of themselves standing up for what they believe in. Next comes what Henley terms “The Lone Follower” who validates the leader’s vision and thought process and then “The Second Follower” who “sells” the idea to others and helps convey the idea that the movement is an upcoming train. Finally, there is the “Lose-or-Snooze Follower” who joins in once it makes more sense to be a part of something than it does to watch a movement unfold. Henley asserts that each role is essential to growing a movement. Check out the full blog post here.

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