Summer of Service – btrax@ National Service Conference
- Jun 26, 2009
Photo by Tim Wagner © 2009
The non-profit world got a another boost this week as First Lady Michelle Obama spoke at the 2009 National Conference on Volunteering and Service.
The three day conference, co-organized by the Corporation for National and Community Service and Points of Light Institute, gathered more than 5,000 professionals and volunteers from non-profits, governmental agencies and other community organizations.
btrax staff attended the conference opener, where an All-Star team of speakers took the stage: actress Kerry Washington, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Obama, comedian Wali Collins, California First Lady Maria Shriver, rocker Bon Jovi and actor Matthew McConaughey.
Since many of our staff have worked for non-profits in the past and actively continue to support several (including Kiva, Fotovision and Mama Hope), we were excited to see volunteers and civil society professionals get their due.
A perfect storm of a highly skilled unemployed work force and influx of stimulus money from the Edward Kennedy Serve America Act has tripled the number of community organizers and advocates on the streets. This will have a substantial impact on communities – and long-term one as these people move on to other jobs in the future with their civic experience.
But the Obama administration hasn’t stopped at just putting the unemployed to work in a needed area. The president has also launched an ambitious call for all Americans to get involved – kicking it off with a “Summer of Service.”