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AmeriCorps Grants to Address Local Needs

Anchorage, Alaska – The Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development (DCCED) announced today that five Alaska programs have received AmeriCorps grants from the Corporation for National and Community Service.

More than $1.6 million in g rants will support 221 AmeriCorps members across the state who will focus on six key AmeriCorps priorities: strengthening education; fostering economic opportunity; preparing for and responding to disasters; improving health; meeting environmental and energy efficiency needs; and assisting veterans and military families. In Alaska, AmeriCorps grants and programs are administered by Serve Alaska, an independent agency operating under the auspices of DCCED.

“The benefit of these grants to Alaska communities, as well as to those individuals providing the service, is immeasurable,” said DCCED Commissioner Susan Bell. “In their efforts to help meet local needs, AmeriCorps mem bers will strengthen our communities and develop civic and leadership skills that can last a lifetime.”

AmeriCorps grant winners for 2011:

  • Rural CAP – Rural Alaska Village Environmental Network, $313,642 will support 20 positions focused on providing environmental education, recycling, and toxic waste removal in rural communities throughout Alaska.
  • Rural CAP – Building Initiatives in Rural Community Health, $234,401 will support 15 positions working to engage, motivate and educate youth and other volunteers to promote health and wellness in rural communities throughout Alaska.
  • Rural CAP – Students in Service, $13,760 will help support 65 positions providing social work and nursing services in community programs that serve low-income residents throughout the state.
  • Nine Star Enterprises Inc. – Learn and Earn Alaska, $650,000 to support 55 positions to assist in education, employment and volunteer r ecruitment services for programs that target ex-offenders, unemployed and under-employed Alaskans.
  • Southeast Alaska Guidance Association – $451,487 to support 66 positions in two programs: Serve Alaska Youth Corps engages disconnected, out-of-work young people in crew-based service projects on public lands throughout Alaska; Connections places AmeriCorps members in governmental agencies, nonprofit organizations and public school systems to support efforts to improve school success and encourage healthy lifestyle choices.

On a national level, AmeriCorps engages 80,000 Americans of all ages and backgrounds, bolstering the effectiveness of existing organizations by helping them reach more people and better achieve their missions. Since 1994, 706,000 men and women have joined AmeriCorps, and they have given more than 860 million hours of service to their country.

In 2010, Alaska AmeriCorps members:

· Tutored or mentored more than 31,960 disadvantaged children and youth;

· Provided more than 371,000 hours of service valued at more than $7.7 million;

· Recruited more than 15,980 volunteers; and

· Raised more than $634,800 in cash or in‐kind resources for the organizations where they served.

For more information, visit Serve Alaska at www.commerce.alaska.gov/serve/home.htm, or AmeriCorps at americorps.gov.

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