2011-2015 Strategic Plan Fact Sheet

Strategic Plan 2011 - 2015 Fact Sheet


On April 21, 2009, President Obama signed the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act (SAA), the most sweeping expansion of national service in a generation. This landmark law is making America stronger by focusing service on key national issues; expanding opportunities to serve; building the capacity of individuals, nonprofits, and communities to succeed; and encouraging innovative approaches to solving problems.

Fulfilling the promise of the Act has been the top priority of the Corporation for National and Community Service, the federal agency that leads the nation's service and voluntary sector. One year after its enactment, volunteering is up, momentum is strong, and a new vision for service is taking effect, one based on growth, innovation, and targeting resources on our nation's pressing problems.

Guiding Principles: Service as a Solution, Expanding Opportunities to Serve, Embracing Innovation, Building Enduring Capacity

Five-Year Strategic Plan

Every five years, Congress requests each federal agency to adopt a strategic plan that defines its missions, goals, and the means by which it will measure its progress. The Serve America Act is helping to shape the Corporation's Strategic Plan for the next five years. Given the breadth of the social impact focus areas that are outlined in SAA, the Corporation has many opportunities to make significant progress in addressing issues of critical concern to the nation.

We began the strategic plan planning process by defining our Key Objectives, which summarize the Corporation's impact that we intend to accomplish over the next five years. We concentrated on getting to "the root of the problem" while ensuring that we kept our Key Objectives broad enough to address national challenges and needs. In addition, we sought to include Key Objectives that would be aligned with our strategic priorities, as outlined by our CEO. These priorities include:

  • Service as a Solution
  • Expanding Opportunities to Serve
  • Build Enduring Capacity
  • Embrace Innovation

Interviews with industry experts and thought leaders in the field were extremely helpful in assisting our staff in honing in on those Key Objectives that present the most strategic opportunities in addressing the focus areas outlined in the SAA. In addition, we explored key objectives that would allow us to deploy "place-based strategies" and address multiple federal agencies and initiatives. Finally, the Key Objectives should be informed by our past work, hold relevance in the years ahead, and enable facilitation of community members serving their communities.

The Key Objectives

In light of these criteria and conversations with industry experts, thought leaders and stakeholders, we are proposing the following themes for the Key Objectives:


Focus Areas as Outlined in SAA

Service as a Solution

Expand Opportunities to Serve

Build Enduring Capacity

Embrace Innovation


•Improve graduation rates for students
•Improve grade-level performance

Healthy Futures

•Improve the health and wellness of individuals in the areas of obesity
prevention, aging in place and access to health services

Environmental Stewardship

•Reduce consumption of fossil fuels


•Increase economic, education and health opportunities for veterans and military
families by leveraging national service, including veterans serving veterans


•Improve financial stability, access to affordable housing and employment
opportunities for economically vulnerable families

Disaster Preparedness

•Increase capacity of communities to serve vulnerable populations in the
event of a disaster
•Improve communities in disaster-affected areas


Next Steps

The themes of the Key Objectives will continue to be refined with experts and stakeholders through the public input sessions and additional outreach efforts. Once the Key Objectives are finalized, the staff will propose a set of metrics and indicators to provide additional specificity that will be used by the board and the CEO to monitor the Corporation's performance. The result will be a "chain of outcomes" that directly links the work of grantees, partners and service participants to the Key Objectives.

We are on a collective journey and together, we can provide opportunities for people to serve in a meaningful way. We genuinely want to hear from you. The Corporation wants and encourages both current and potential new partners and grantees to provide input and feedback on our strategic plan. Opportunities for you to provide feedback include the following:

  • Face-to-face Community Dialogues with our CEO and Board of Directors
  • Numerous webinars for the general public
  • On-line message board

The feedback and input from our Community Dialogues, webinars, and message board will be synthesized and shared with everyone whom we have on record as participating. In addition, a summary report will be posted on our website and disseminated broadly through our various listservs and other communication mechanisms.

Finally, the Strategic Plan itself will be posted on our website in the fall of 2010 and we will share the plan widely to ensure that you have a chance to examine the plan that you helped to create!


September 2010
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Media Contact

Samantha Jo Warfield
(202) 606-6775

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