National Service Agency Announces 2015 MLK Day Grants

Sep 28, 2015
Six organizations will lead service activities across the nation 
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The federal agency that leads national Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service, the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), today announced the six organizations selected to plan and execute volunteer projects that will unite Americans in service. The 2016 MLK Day of Service will take place on Monday, January 18.
Each year, hundreds of thousands of Americans participate in the annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. National Day of Service, the nation’s largest day of civic engagement. In 1994, Congress designated MLK Day as the first and only federal holiday observed as a national day of service, and charged CNCS with leading this effort. 
As part of its MLK activities, CNCS awards grantees to national organizations to help mobilize more Americans to serve on the King Holiday and throughout the year. Altogether, these organizations will receive more than $700,000 in funding and leverage an additional $1.3M in matching funds. 
The organizations selected this year are: 
Youth Service of America 
  • YSA will engage 6,500 students in service-learning activities on MLK Day through a Beloved Communities Innovation School program, an expansion of the Good Neighbor Innovation School program funded by State Farm. YSA will select 10 K-12 public schools to receive Beloved Communities Innovation School grants.  
Iowa Western Community College 
  • Campus Compact partners will provide competitive mini-grant opportunities, which will connect campuses with community partners addressing community-identified needs. College students will recruit volunteers from their community and colleges to address issues regarding healthy futures and veterans and military families.  
Service for Peace 
  • Twelve to 15 sub-grantees will implement the MLK Day/Season of Service, 40 Days of Peace, the Backpack Angel program, and the Christmas Angel program. More than 5,000 students, 1,500 veterans, and 16,500 community neighbors will engage in service activities that include improving living conditions for residents, collecting and distributing school materials, conducting food drives, and collecting food for veterans and military families.  
Points of Light Foundation 
  • Points of Light will engage 50,000 volunteers over two years in 10 states across the nation in service projects that will improve educational outcomes for economically disadvantaged individuals.  Sub-grantees will create projects that will take place on or near local commemorative memorial roads named for Martin Luther King, Jr., in addition to creating opportunities to serve beyond the King Holiday.
The Arc of the United States 
  • The Arc will engage volunteers in 10 service projects around MLK Day. Each project will serve a community that has seen an increase in unemployment and the number of children living in poverty over the past 5 years.  Service activities will focus on providing emergency food from food banks and pantries to more than 1,800 people. 
Tennessee State University 
  • The service project will unite 10 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in the southeast region through community service and capacity buildings initiatives that address disaster services, economic opportunity, education, and capacity building. The collaboration will engage more than 50,000 student volunteers and school stakeholders and 17,000 community members and volunteers in service activities during the MLK holiday and the months to follow. 
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