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Education

Native American students and educators face a unique set of circumstances surrounding tribal communities, including poverty, loss of culture and identity, and high suicide rates, all threatening students' academic success.

Last week, in the State of the Union, the President offered a plan for America to win the future. He challenged us to out-innovate, out-educate, and out-build our global competitors. The White House Council for Community Solutions will take on this challenge by encouraging the growth and maximizing the impact of innovative community-developed solutions related to youth development, education, and employment.

Last fall, about 360,000 youth, educators, and community partners began a year-long campaign to demonstrate the potential of education powered by service. Through the Learn and Serve Challenge, they pledged to engage in service-learning activities to help more young people understand how their education is relevant in the real world.

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.

Service comes naturally to Matt McCabe, the first AmeriCorps alum to join the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) Board of Directors. A commitment to service was instilled in him by his parents and grandparents from childhood. “They set the expectation that we give back to our community,” said McCabe.

The Corporation for National and Community Service kicked off its national Let’s Read. Let’s Move. summer initiative by joining the Junior League of Washington to give away the first of more than 15,000 books to DC Public School students.

Imagine a child cooped up inside a stuffy apartment building on a beautiful, sunny day because there’s no safe place to play outside. She has only unhealthy processed and fast foods to eat. This image is far removed from the nostalgic picture of a childhood summer filled with fun family vacations and camps. But for too many children, it is a reality that directly affects how ready they will be to move ahead in the classroom come September.

A passion for learning and service means one rotation was not enough for AmeriCorps member Rebbecca Bakre. So, after a stint with Civic Works, the 24-year-old, University of Maryland graduate joined Playworks Baltimore AmeriCorps while she pursues her master’s in public administration.

Physical activity is essential to a healthy lifestyle, and it can be especially important in helping kids do better in school. U.S. Health and Human Services studies show that regular physical activity for kids and teens improves strength and endurance, helps build healthy bones and muscles, and increases self-esteem. Parents, teachers, and community leaders can all play a supportive role, and help encourage a healthy lifestyle by promoting physical activity into everyday routines.

While Juliana Ko was serving with Teach for America on the outskirts of a Navajo Nation Reservation, she tragically lost one of her students to suicide and knew that she had to do something for her adopted community.

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