(Washington, D.C.) – The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) announced $500,000 in grants to 13 organizations committed to the engagement of Americans in service during the September 11th National Day of Service and Remembrance 10th Anniversary Challenge.
Organizations from across the nation took part in the Challenge, administered by CNCS, to promote service as a way to honor those the nation lost and those who have served the nation proudly on the 10th Anniversary of September 11. More than 140 organizations took part in the challenge, culminating in service projects across the country that reported engaging more than 150,000 volunteers on and around September 11.
These three-year grants will help organizations expand service opportunities to promote and engage more service participants on September 11.
“On the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks, it is remarkable to see how Americans are turning to service as a tribute to the victims and survivors of the tragedy,” said Robert Velasco, II, Acting CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service. “These grants will help organizations mobilize volunteers on September 11 and unite Americans through service.”
Grants ranged from $10,000 to $100,000 and the winners ranged from $10,000 for Habitat for Humanity of Laramie County to join forces with AARP Wyoming, the Boys and Girls Club, and Cheyenne Light Fuel and Power to implement a volunteer block party, to $100,000 for a Serv-a-thon in the weeks leading up to September 11 in Joplin, Mo. The funds raised by the Serv-a-thon helped fund nonprofit projects and re-open schools. The culminating events included the 9/11 flag stitching, canned food drives, a “Joplin Says Thank-You” card campaign, and Stars of Hope painted and placed throughout the city. A summary of the grants including purpose, and proposed service areas, can be found below.
“This grant will help us expand our efforts to serve the needs of communities beyond Paramus, New Jersey,” said Jane Cosco, founder of Operation Goody Bag. “While as a nation we will never forget what happened 10 years ago, we are grateful for this opportunity to honor that memory and express appreciation to those who served to keep us safe.”
The Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act established September 11th as a National Day of Service and Remembrance and authorized CNCS with promoting service to honor this day.
The Corporation for National and Community Service is a federal agency that engages more than five million Americans in service through its Senior Corps, AmeriCorps, and Learn and Serve America programs, and leads President Obama's national call to service initiative, United We Serve. For more information, visit NationalService.gov.
Corporation for National and Community Service
2011 September 11th National Day of Service and Remembrance 10th Anniversary Challenge Grantees
$10,000 Grant Winners
- Big Brothers Big Sisters of San Angelo, TX
Big Brothers Big Sisters of San Angelo joined with other community organizations to host a 5K Run to Remember fund raiser and mentor recruitment awareness event. Volunteers staffed all aspects of the race from parking to water stations to race set up. Over 200 people ran in the race to raise money for Big Brothers Big Sisters. For 10 weeks leading up to the event they promoted a Couch to 5K program to get people off their sofas and ready to run. The event doubled in size in 2011 with over $14,000 in donated media to promote the race and mentor recruitment. Moments of silence were held as part of the remembrance ceremony.
- Habitat for Humanity of Laramie County, Cheyenne, WY
In its second year, Habitat for Humanity of Laramie County joined with AARP Wyoming, the Boys and Girls Club, and Cheyenne Light Fuel and Power to implement a volunteer block party. They joined with other volunteers to take over a block and weatherize all the houses, replace light bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs, and beautify the yards of lower income and elderly residents. The day began with an inspirational program lead by local members of the military.
- Islamic Networks Group (ING), San Francisco, CA and five other cities
ING and its affiliates recruited volunteers to implement and staff interfaith gatherings with the theme “Standing Together: 9/11 Interfaith Service and Remembrance.” Events were held in five cities nationwide: San Francisco, CA, Phoenix, AZ, Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN, Atlanta, GA and Cincinnati, OH. Events varied at each location and included interfaith discussions with a call to event attendees to make a commitment to address identified community issues, a screening of the film “Love, Hate, Love”, and food drives.
- 9/11 Freedom Rally, Denver, CO
Seven nonprofits largely focused on first responders and military personnel came together to implement a public festival to raise funds for local groups that support active duty and retired responders and military in activities from training assistive dogs to family support services to care packages. The all-volunteer, all-day event featured service activities (preparing boxes to be used for care packages), entertainment, memorial ceremonies, volunteer recognition and fundraising.
$25,000 Grant Winners
- South Arkansas Community College Foundation, El Dorado, AR
As part of their annual Outdoor Expo, the South Arkansas Community College Foundation dedicated their Arkansas 9/11 Memorial, which was designed through pro-bono architectural services and included tributes and a flag ceremony. The expo was an all-volunteer event intended to raise funds for scholarships through a rib cook-off, provide information about community resources and opportunities to volunteer through their exhibitions, and offer fun activities for kids.
- Harvesters: The Community Food Network, Kansas City, MO
On September 10 and 11, volunteers in Kansas City, Missouri and Topeka, Kansas worked on various projects sorting and repackaging donated food items. Their work provided over 62,000 meals for individuals and families in need. In addition, volunteers learned more about Harvesters and service and participated in a tribute ceremony.
- HandsOn Clarksville (a program of HandsOn Nashville), Clarksville, TN
Home to many Ft. Campbell soldiers and families, this year's tribute and “Serve to Remember” service projects were especially important. Volunteers participated in a range of projects from serving meals to the homeless, to carrying out home chores for senior citizens, park beautification, painting remembrance murals, shelter repairs, supporting needs identified by the Wounded Warrior program, sorting and stocking food at local pantries, working in community gardens, and reading to children.
- Massachusetts Military Heroes Fund, Boston, MA
Leading up to the 9/11 service project, hundreds of volunteers collected and donated supplies and participated in letter writing campaigns to prepare for a day of building care packages for our troops. One thousand twenty-two care packages were filled with items and supportive notes. The remembrance program included several speakers and a memorial table to leave messages for local military families affected by attacks of 9/11.
$50,000 Grant Winners
- Jewish Community Center (JCC) of Mid-Westchester, Scarsdale, NY
In a day of service and remembrance, moments of silence were observed at key moments throughout the day and the names of local residents who died 10 years ago were read. Volunteers listened to tributes and participated in variety of activities including a blood drive, bone marrow registry, delivery of Rosh Hashanah holiday packages, card-making and item collection for troops, clothes drive, and other collections for cereal, home care and medical supplies, toys, and jars of honey. In addition there were activities for children and teens including creating a Caring Quilt, decorating cupcakes for local fire and police stations, making blankets for hospitalized children and lunches for the hungry.
- DOROT, New York, NY
Volunteers of all ages came together to prepare, pack and deliver over 500 packages and gifts to homebound seniors who are at risk of hunger and isolation. In addition, volunteers wrote postcards of thanks and encouragement that were delivered to local police precincts and fire stations.
- Women of Color Cultural Foundation, Jacksonville, FL
Leading up to 9/11, school children constructed a commemorative quilt symbolizing the Twin Towers. As part of their service, volunteers collected and distributed food, held pancake breakfasts for first responders and military families and veterans, made care packages, planted trees, made cards of caring for disabled vets, and held a snack collection drive.
$100,000 Grant Winners
- Operation Goody Bag, Paramus, NJ
In the last 10 years, Operation Goody Bag has distributed over 200,000 goody bags to military men and women, first responders, and veterans. For 9/11, children decorated goody bags and filled them to be sent to soldiers living abroad. This year participants filled and decorated over 16,000 goody bags.
Distinguished Entrant: $100,000
- Missouri Southern State University, Joplin, MO
More than doubling their original estimate of 5,000 volunteers, the residents of Joplin engaged in a Serv-a-thon in the weeks leading up to 9/11, engaging in service projects that also raised money for their city (10 people in a team, ten $10 pledges). The funds raised by the Serv-a-thon helped fund nonprofit projects and re-open schools. The culminating events included the 9/11 flag stitching, canned food drives, a “Joplin Says Thank-You” card campaign, and Stars of Hope painted and placed throughout the city.