Task Force on Expanding National Service
“Today I want to announce a new task force … to take a fresh look at how we can better support national service – in particular, on some of our most important national priorities: improving schools, recovering from disasters, and mentoring our kids.”
– President Obama
For decades, national service has been a cost-effective solution to critical challenges facing our communities and nation. Recognizing the value of national service in improving lives and strengthening communities, President Obama created the Task Force on Expanding National Service on July 15, 2013.
The Task Force was charged with developing strategies to expand national service to meet national needs through collaboration with other Federal agencies and the private sector. It is the latest in a series of actions the Administration has taken over the past four years to expand opportunities for Americans to serve, to focus service on our toughest challenges, and to increase the impact citizens have our communities and nation.
The Task Force was established under a Presidential Memorandum that builds directly on the bipartisan spirit of the Serve America Act. The Task Force is chaired by Wendy Spencer, CEO of CNCS, and Cecilia Muñoz, the Director of the White House Domestic Policy Council. The Task Force consists of representatives of 13 cabinet departments, the Peace Corps, National Science Foundation, Office of Personnel Management, Environmental Protection Agency, and the White House.
Among other activities, the Task Force will make recommendations on policies to expand national service opportunities, recommend ways to coordinate volunteering and service programs across the Federal government, develop opportunities for interagency agreements between CNCS and other federal agencies, and identify public-private partnerships to expand national service.
By creating new interagency and public-private partnerships for national service, the President’s action will engage more Americans in results-driven service, expand economic and educational opportunities for those who serve, enhance Federal agencies’ capacity to achieve their missions, more efficiently use tax dollars, and build the pipeline of Americans ready to enter public service.
Expanding National Service Opportunities
Since the creation of the Task Force on Expanding National Service, CNCS has worked with a number of federal and private sector partners to launch new AmeriCorps service opportunities that address critical challenges.
Working with Bank of America and Points of Light, AmeriCorps VISTA will provide the backbone for a new Financial Opportunity Corps to bring financial coaching to 10 communities around the nation. For more information, click here.
This partnership between CNCS and the Department of Justice will enroll approximately 100 lawyers and paralegals as AmeriCorps members to provide legal services to the most vulnerable of the unaccompanied immigrant children crossing the border without a parent or guardian. For more information, click here.
As part of a three-year project to help 25,000 low-income youth develop the skills they need to prepare for college and careers, 225 AmeriCorps members will engage youth age 16-24 in a volunteer response effort in 10 cities in this collaboration between AmeriCorps, Points of Light, and the Citi Foundation. For more information, click here.
CNCS and the Department of Justice’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention are investing up to $10 million over three years to create Youth Opportunity AmeriCorps, a new program to enroll disconnected youth in national service programs. For more information, click here.
USDA and CNCS have joined in a landmark new partnership to engage more than 300 AmeriCorps members and other youth in gaining valuable career skills and experience while restoring the nation’s forests and grasslands. For more information, click here.
AT&T is joining with AmeriCorps and MENTOR to launch a new program to engage AmeriCorps members in regions around the country and engage thousands of at-risk youth in mentoring activities. For more information, click here.
The U.S. Department of Transportation and CNCS are collaborating on an effort to expand youth workforce development opportunities and strengthen transportation career pathways at the state level. The agencies will encourage states and regional transportation planning agencies to rely on AmeriCorps members with conservation corps programs to complete transportation-related projects. For more information, click here.
The Task Force was inspired by successful national service partnerships that CNCS developed with other federal agencies over the past two years, including:
A partnership between the Federal Emergency Management Agency and CNCS, FMEA Corps is a 1,600 member AmeriCorps NCCC program solely devoted to disaster response and recovery. For more information, click here.
This partnership between the Department of Education and CNCS is bringing hundreds of new AmeriCorps members into the nation’s lowest-performing schools to support and sustain turnaround efforts. For more information, click here.
President Obama launched this CNCS initiative to place hundreds of AmeriCorps members in nonprofits across the country to mobilize professionals to inspire young people to excel in STEM education. For more information, click here.