CHICAGO- Governor Pat Quinn has proclaimed May 14-21, 2011 as AmeriCorps Week in Illinois. AmeriCorps is administered by the Serve Illinois Commission, which is operated through the Department of Human Services. The mission of the Serve Illinois Commission is to improve Illinois communities by enhancing traditional volunteer activities and supporting national service programs.
"Illinois has a strong history of service, and our AmeriCorps volunteers are making a difference in communities throughout our state," said Governor Quinn. "On behalf of the people of Illinois, I thank AmeriCorps members and alumni for their service, and applaud them for their hard work and commitment to strengthening our neighborhoods and communities."
AmeriCorps Week is devoted to "Getting Things Done." Activities for the week include service projects, recruitment of new participants, thanking community supporters and partners, as well as commending AmeriCorps members, partners, staff, friends, and alums that have dedicated their time and/or resources to performing service throughout the year. One program in Rend Lake, is even working to support flood victims in Southern Illinois.
“From neighborhood cleanups and building homes to tutoring children and signing up new volunteers, AmeriCorps members are making a difference in communities all across the state,” said DHS Secretary Michelle R.B. Saddler. “Their service is a highly valuable resource and I applaud the thousands of members who have made a commitment over the years to give back to their communities.”
Illinois currently has 2,600 AmeriCorps participants. Since the program’s launch in 1994, more than 26,000 Illinoisans have taken the AmeriCorps pledge to “get things done for America.” Illinois’ AmeriCorps participants have given back more than 30 million hours (or approximately $670 million) to their communities. Upon completing their service, AmeriCorps Members are eligible for a modest education award to pay a portion of their student loans or college courses. Since 1994, Illinoisans have earned $73,700,000 in education awards.
To learn more about AmeriCorps Week activities or to volunteer in your community, visit www.Serve.Illinois.gov