National Service Blog

  • Posted on May 20, 2015

    As one of the first wave of federal Pay for Success (PFS) grantees, Third Sector Capital Partners prides itself on going the extra mile to support programs that help at-risk youth and young adults secure a living wage and the employment skills to gain self-sufficiency.

    With a $1.9 million grant from the Social Innovation Fund (SIF) in 2014, the Boston-based advisory firm is strengthening the ability of local governments and service providers to implement PFS, a new way of focusing on outcomes. Under a PFS-financed project, the government leverages philanthropic and private dollars so that government pays only after service providers generate tangible results.

    Through its federal award Third Sector is offering technical assistance to seven subrecipients across workforce development, education and social services, working with these agencies to develop their own capacity to implement PFS.

    But in addition to technical assistance, Third Sector is taking innovative steps to promote success of these efforts. Unique among the 2014 SIF PFS grantees, Third Sector is requiring subrecipients to provide matching funds so that these agencies also have a stake in developing effective pay-for-performance models.

    “It’s important for these agencies to have skin in the game,” said Tim Pennell, Third Sector associate director. The cash match may be small – a minimum of $25,000 – but it provides ample evidence of the organization’s commitment to the PFS concept.

    “It means they are putting...

  • Posted on Sep 2, 2009
    During Safety and Security Week the Somebody Cares organization took part in their fourth week of Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training hosted by the Harris County Citizen Corps. The fourth week of the eight week program taught them about Emergency Medical Operations.
  • Posted on Aug 31, 2009
    As a tornado touched down just a few city blocks away, a humble group gathered in the safest place it could be, deep in the basement of a church, hardly aware of the storm outside. We were caught up in trying to make a difference, volunteering at Groveland Foodshelf, which serves the neighborhood just south of downtown Minneapolis.
  • Posted on Aug 31, 2009
    “Number 3, number 3 number 2, number 2 number 9, number 9 number number 9, number 9 number 5!” The Student Conservation Association (SCA) youth crew chants out their rhythm game to warm up before hiking into National Park Service land to perform trail work at the Phleger Estate. “Who has the first aid kit?” SCA crew leader Katrina Ellis shouts as the seven members grab their loaded backpacks for the day. Despite the early morning hour, these local teenage youth are ready to get started.
  • Posted on Aug 31, 2009
    As a professional athlete, Rams linebacker Chris Draft has had to deal with many challenges on the field. No challenge may have been bigger than trying to tackle asthma through every stage of his career. Chris knows the challenges of having asthma as an athlete, and that’s why he’s partnered with the National Lt. Governor’s Association to challenge coaches across the country to educate themselves about the challenges and dangers of asthma to athletes.
  • Posted on Aug 31, 2009
    Volunteers across the country are teaming with Islamic Relief USA in the annual 'Day of Dignity' effort to serve thousands of homeless and underserved people in 19 cities.
  • Posted on Aug 31, 2009
    David Pickens is a native of Fayetteville, North Carolina, where he graduated from Reid Ross Senior High School. There he played football and was a two-time all-conference defensive lineman. He was also a member of ROTC and marched in the "Cumberland Rifles" drill team. He spent his first year of college at Fayetteville State University playing football before transferring to North Carolina A&T State University. While at A&T he participated in ROTC, the "Aggie Rifles" drill team, and joined the U.S Army Reserves.
  • Posted on Aug 30, 2009
    Having been a part of organized baseball since an early age, the concept of teamwork has been a part of my life for a very long time. I’ve seen firsthand the power of a unified group and how together a group can accomplish great things and succeed despite any obstacles. I also have seen how counter productive, and sometimes destructive, disunity can be to a common goal. One early Saturday morning in May, members of my team, the Chicago White Sox, again reminded me of how together there is nothing we, as active members of our communities, cannot accomplish.
  • Posted on Aug 30, 2009
    One student said that this was her first time doing community service. Another said that others had helped her throughout her life and this was the first time she could return the favor. More students said that random people who saw their service stopped and thanked them for their work.
  • Posted on Aug 30, 2009
    The US Department of Health and Human Services partnered with Safe Shores on a back to school supply drive and flu educational event forDC area youth who have been the victims of or witnesses to extreme violence and abuse.
  • Posted on Aug 30, 2009
    Our Western Fraternal Life Association Lodge 236 members have done community services for decades and plan to expand volunteer efforts. One effort began six decades ago and will continue for decades into the future. One purpose is to remind present and future generations of historical events so that, hopefully, we will work to prevent them from occurring again. Another purpose is to honor veterans who have served, and sometimes died, to keep such tragic events from recurring.

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