Youth Service America
Martin Luther King Service Day Initiative 2012
The goal of the Semester of Service: Families program is to provide a framework for families to serve together over an extended period of time. YSA proposes to engage at least 48,000 youth and adult volunteers in season-long or semester-long projects in the first year, all serving on and between 9/11 Day of Service, Martin Luther King Day, and Global Youth Service Day (GYSD).
Semester of Service was conceived in response to requests from service field leaders who lacked a way to link Martin Luther King Day and GYSD to achieve deeper impact. Semester of Service: Families will take the process and best practices from the Semester of Service and apply it to the family, achieving community impact. YSA has discovered that the IPARD/C process used in Semester of Service is useful to volunteers in all settings, school and non-school-based, as a strategy for maximizing impact on volunteers and communities.
The program will be open to all 50 states and the District of Columbia, with grants to support Lead Organizers or School Engagement sub-grantees in 16 of the biggest cities and top media markets. YSA will utilize its extensive partnership network to recruit high-quality community leaders. In addition, each year of this proposed three year partnership will have at least four grants will be reserved for public schools near military hubs that serve a large percentage of students from military families. While grants will only go to 16 sub-grantees, program materials and other YSA resources will be made available to any school or organization in the United States free of charge.
With the Semester of Service: Families program, youth ages 5-25 and their families, together, will focus on some of the nation's most pressing issues, such as education, health, environment, economic opportunity, and disaster relief. This program would mobilize young people as agents of change and take the country one step closer to realizing Dr. King's vision of a Beloved Community.
Subgrantees through this program will be expected to work school district-wide, citywide, or statewide. During the recruitment and review processes, YSA will target the largest cities or media markets by population. These cities include: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Dallas-Fort Worth, San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose, Boston, Atlanta, Washington, DC, Houston, Detroit, Phoenix, Seattle-Tacoma, Tampa-St. Petersburg-Sarasota, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Miami-Fort Lauderdale, Denver, Cleveland-Akron, Orlando-Daytona Beach-Melbourne, Sacramento. Other major metropolitan areas will be considered, as will organizations working statewide in any state.