Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service Grants FY 2011
The PeaceJam Foundation is an international education program that connects youth to Nobel Peace Laureates through service-learning. Since 2006, PeaceJam (PJ) has committed over 600,000 youth to one million acts of peace in the Global Call to Action (GCA) campaign. Initiated by 12 Laureates, including the Dalai Lama and Archbishop Desmond Tutu, the GCA campaign aims to bring peace by empowering youth with the tools needed to become agents of change. In connection with CNCS, PeaceJam looks to further Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s vision for nonviolent social action by engaging over 7,000 volunteers in over 600 service projects on MLK day over the next 3 years. PeaceJam's targeted communities are plagued by poverty, racism, violence, and social injustice. 43% of PJ participants fall below the national poverty line. 53.2% belong to racial or ethnic minority groups, and many qualify as youth at risk of incarceration or dropping out. PeaceJam addresses these needs through education, inspiration, and action. In 5 curricular programs youth explore 10 global issues and the nonviolent strategies used to address them. Youth then study Laureates' lives, and are inspired to design action projects for their communities. We will achieve change on 3 levels: a.) Spread the teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. through curriculum modules and MLK day activities b.) Decrease community needs in CNCS's focal areas through youth-led action projects c.) Develop youth leadership and conflict mediation skills through service-learning. PeaceJam conducts annual evaluations for its programs, measuring youth leadership skills, tracking the number and quality of service projects, measuring community impacts, and documenting the demographics involved. The grant timeline will span October to May each year, for the next 3 years. Sub-grantees must complete a GCA project on MLK weekend, and present the project to a Nobel Peace Laureate at the spring PeaceJam conference.