Sorry, i know the cross-posting without lj cuts is really bad manners, but this is SO important and SO timely if I could just reach a few of you, it would be worth the nasty responses.....
I've been an AmeriCorps member for almost two years, and in that time I have made contributions to almost 100 organizations, in labor and volunteer hours.
These programs keep children reading, fed, and nurtured.
We save the lives of countless endangered animals and protect the environment.
People all over this country are affected by disasters every day, AmeriCorps services these people when they will need it the most in their lives.
We contribute to the health and well being of countless Americans.
We are people, from every walk of life, age,race, and religion,
We are seperate in our diversity, but united in that we are volunteering, to make everyone's lives better in this country.
We struggle day to day, financially, mentally and physically, doing what you can't even PAY most people to do.
People who have participated in AmeriCorps program often take what they've learned, and continue to contribute to they're communities, helping others in need either in our spare times or by working in the non-profit sector.
The numbers are mind blowing, the effect, even though we are not a well known program, has a huge impact on our country. The devestation that will happen as a result of these cuts is sickening.
I can’t begin to put even a percentage of what we do, but here are a few local examples:
Farmers and elderly in rural areas, devestated by tornadoes or ice storms, can't even begin to repair damage,
AmeriCorps members come in for over a month to help those that other programs can't/won't reach, even if it's just to move trees or sort debris.
These same members also spend part of their summer fighting fires in MO, along with doing controled burns (at no cost to the Forest Service.)
AmeriCorps members in St. Louis tutor hundreds of kids in inner city schools where the teachers are overworked, underpaid and stressed well beyond they're means. After school programs are run by AmeriCorps members in many of these schools, which, due to the cost of these programs, would not happen otherwise.
Here’s what WILL happen as a result of cuts in AmeriCorps funding:
More kids on the inner city streets with nothing to do.
More children that cannot read
More people left without hope, resources, or even someone to listen during the worst moments of their lives.
I have personally been affected by the time I've been in AmeriCorps. I have learned to deal with conflict, interact with teams, and been given an OPPORTUNITY to work my way through college, something I never thought I would be able to do.
I could go on for a very long time about this and frankly, if I do I might cry. This is a serious issue people, the ramifications of the losses we are facing are horrendous.
PLEASE PLEASE help - just write a letter, however brief, and we will hand deliver it to the President himself. Email adresses and info below.
Thank you. Because someday, you may need us, too.
Supporters Of AmeriCorps
1315 Ann Ave.
St. Louis, MO 63104
questions? respond as a comment or call 314-772-9002
also: www.americorps.org is a wonderful info site
If you’d like to know more about my personal adventures, mostly stories in and about AmeriCorps, read back on my journal calender, since this journal has been mostly about these experiences, here in St. Louis and along the West Coast.