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Foster Grandparents

National service makes a difference for millions of Americans, but few examples demonstrate this idea better than the story of AmeriCorps member Chris Guzman. His inspirational speech during last week’s National Conference on Volunteering and Service in Washington, DC, drew a standing ovation, and we believe his journey is a prime example of how Corporation for National and Community Service programs change lives.

When Joseph Aragon heads to school in the morning you won't find him toting a backpack stuffed with school supplies or carrying a lunchbox. Instead, this 64 year-old brings with him a lifetime of experience and knowledge to share with the students of Blanche Pope Elementary School on the Hawaiian Homestead land in Waimanalo.

On Wednesday July 12, 2011, I was honored to participate in a White House event on senior volunteerism and service. At the event, Melody Barnes, Director of the White House Domestic Policy Council, explained that seniors in service creates a “win-win” situation—communities benefit from the volunteers and the volunteers benefit from the act of serving.

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.

The Service News Digest is a regular feature on the Serve.Gov blog. In this series, we showcase news highlights that feature national service and Corporation for National and Community Service programs. Take a look at some of the great stories that had people talking recently.

On the National Service blog, the past few weeks have been dedicated to veterans. We've shared stories of WWII and Gulf War vets, of vets inspiring and helping young people, and of vets serving their country on the battlefield, and off.

Among the milestone events that have marked our nation's history, World Word II is one everyone knows of but few remember. The heroes of that war, their shared sacrifice and their continued dedication, shows they truly are the greatest generation. Montana's Bernard Mulder, 89, is one of these heroes.

It's no secret that personal attention in the classroom can deliver big results on a report card. For children of military families, that extra kindness can be even more crucial. Frequent moves and the stress caused by having a parent on deployment can take a toll. But a special group of military kids in Dover, DE is getting a little support from a few great Grandparents.

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.

One wouldn't expect to see a 90-year-old wandering the corridors of Remann Hall, a juvenile detention center in Tacoma, WA. However, Del Rotan, a World War II veteran, has made Remann Hall his “second home,” mentoring at-risk youth at the facility for 16 years as a foster grandparent.

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