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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 2, 2011

AmeriCorps Funds Now Available from IDHS
Grants designed to improve, strengthen Illinois communities

SPRINGFIELD, Illinois – The Serve Illinois Commission is looking for applicants interested in administering AmeriCorps funds.  AmeriCorps is a program of the Corporation for National and Community Service, an independent federal agency whose mission is to improve lives, strengthen communities, and foster civic engagement through service and volunteering.  AmeriCorps members serve their communities by improving education and healthcare, protecting public safety, safeguarding the environment, providing disaster relief and promoting civic engagement.

“AmeriCorps is an excellent opportunity for people to volunteer their time and talents and give something back to their communities,” said Ted Gibbs, Executive Director of the Serve Illinois Commission.  “Illinois has a strong tradition of volunteerism and compassion for those in need. AmeriCorps volunteers make a real difference in the communities in which they serve.”

The Serve Illinois Commission, part of the Illinois Department of Human Services, administers the AmeriCorps state programs in Illinois, and is charged with enhancing and supporting community volunteerism.  Serve Illinois is funded by the federal Corporation for National and Community Service and currently supports 33 AmeriCorps programs throughout the state.

AmeriCorps members dedicate a year to helping communities meet their unmet human service, education, public safety or environmental needs.  They receive a modest living allowance, student loan deferment and training.  Full-time members are also eligible to receive health insurance. Members who successfully complete their service receive an educational award of up to $5,550 to help pay for college, graduate school, vocational training or to pay off student loans.

Serve Illinois will host mandatory meetings for interested parties in Belleville, Chicago, Joliet and Springfield.  Proposals are due by December 1, 2011. 

For more information about AmeriCorps or Serve Illinois, please visit www.serve.illinois.gov or call (800) 592-9896.  The website is a valuable resource for Illinoisans seeking information about volunteer agencies, trainings, nonprofit resources and national service programs, including AmeriCorps.  The website includes a user-friendly volunteer matching portal where you can search for a volunteer opportunity in your area.
 



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