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Disaster

This week, I had the opportunity to speak at the National Conference on Volunteering and Service here in Washington, DC. Sponsored by Points of Light, the conference is the world’s largest annual gathering of volunteering and service leaders and supporters. I also announced that President Obama and the First Lady will host a celebration at the White House, on July 15, 2013, in honor of the 5,000th Daily Point of Light award.

In December 1985, the United Nations designated the first Monday of October as World Habitat Day. This year, the theme of World Habitat Day is Cities and Climate Change.

It's the start of a long Fourth of July weekend and for many that means a trip to the beach or backyard barbeques. For most it will mean an extra day or two off work and a patriotic celebration of some sort, possibly a parade or some fireworks.

Last week, five AmeriCorps alumni received the Congressional Gold Medal Award in Washington, DC. In our post last week, we talked a little bit about their work with the program, but we thought it would be fun to get to know them a bit better.

Superwoman. That should be RSVP volunteer Evelyn Hildebrand's new name. If you're ever able to catch up with her, she's probably volunteering.

In April, more than 40 tornadoes tore through Alabama. The deadly storms killed more than 200, destroying buildings and homes along its path. Tuscaloosa was the epicenter of a deadly EF-4 tornado which killed more than 40 people.

There are all kinds of emergencies out there that we can prepare for. Take a zombie apocalypse for example. That's right, I said z-o-m-b-i-e a-p-o-c-a-l-y-p-s-e. You may laugh now, but when it happens you'll be happy you read this, and hey, maybe you'll even learn a thing or two about how to prepare for a real emergency.

In Bastrop, TX, AmeriCorps members are helping to match volunteer and nonprofit agency workers with wildfire survivors who need help with recovery tasks.

On April 27, Tuscaloosa, Alabama was on the minds of many Americans, but most didn't realize the damage statewide, especially in the small town of Hackleburg, population 1,500. In a rural area nearly 100 miles away from Birmingham, Hackleburg remains in the shadow of Tuscaloosa but the damage was just as bad, if not worse. The majority of the town was demolished and 17 residents were killed in the storm.

In the wake of chaos and tragedy following the September 11th tragedy, AmeriCorps members from the National Preparedness and Response Corps of the Atlanta Red Cross were deployed to Ground Zero. Among those who served was then-70-year-old Donald Trantow.

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