Thursday, August 27, 2009

I Remember. I Serve -- Participating in the 9/11 National Day of Service and Remembrance


United We Serve -


Dear National Service Colleague,

We all mourn the passing of Senator Edward M. Kennedy, a lifelong champion of national service. His passion for service and legislative leadership were instrumental to creating the robust national and community service movement we have today. No other legislator has done more to advance national service, and we will deeply miss him. But as our Board Chair Alan Solomont said yesterday, Senator Kennedy would undoubtedly have wanted us to honor his legacy by redoubling our efforts to make service a part of every citizen's daily life.

One of the first ways we have to answer that call to action is coming very soon - the first-ever September 11 National Day of Service and Remembrance.

I Remember.  I Serve.  9/11 National Day of Service and Remembrance.

As we approach the end of the summer phase of United We Serve and recommit to service as a nation, we want to share some ways in which your organization can participate in the September 11 National Day of Service and Remembrance. We all remember where we were the moment we learned of the tragedy, and now, we serve on this day in the name of the 9/11 victims and heroes.

The tragic events of 9/11 inspired Americans to come together in a remarkable spirit of unity and compassion. It was a stark reminder that our fate as individuals is inherently tied to the fate of our nation. Eight years later, September 11 continues to evoke strong emotion and is a homage to sacrifice and a call to action. With our collective efforts, September 11, like Martin Luther King Day, will become synonymous with an annual call on Americans to serve.

In April, President Obama signed the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act which, for the first time, officially recognizes September 11 as a National Day of Service and Remembrance. This designation came as the result of years of hard work by 9/11 families and service organizations. The President and the Corporation for National and Community Service will ask all Americans to remember 9/11 and recommit to service in their communities throughout the year. We encourage you to continue to promote service by commemorating this milestone through the United We Serve initiative.

Since the launch of United We Serve in June, Americans from all walks of life have responded enthusiastically to the President's call to service. By joining with friends and neighbors, they have replenished food banks, prevented summer reading loss, provided health services, supported our veterans and military families, restored parks and public lands, and given back in countless other ways. With your help this summer, the Corporation has launched a website featuring over 250,000 service opportunities, collected thousands of stories of service from people from all walks of life, highlighted examples of impact-oriented service activities in communities across the country, and developed exciting new partnerships.

To continue to support United We Serve and observe the 9/11 National Day of Service and Remembrance, your organization can:

1.      Post your 9/11 service activities on We will be highlighting 9/11 service activities on - especially those occurring between September 7 to September 13. To ensure your opportunities appear, we recommend that you select a start and end date within that time period and include "September 11th" in the title. Keep in mind that opportunities with more robust descriptions tend to appear first.

2.      If you are planning a particular service event you would like us to consider highlighting in the media or on the blog, share the details with Corporation staff by filling in the Google form available at the following link:

3.      Inform your volunteer base about United We Serve and the President's call to service on 9/11. Use this day to mobilize current volunteers to serve on 9/11 and to recommit to service throughout the year.

4.      Spread the word about your 9/11 service activities by using United We Serve media tools available on

  • We encourage all organizations participating in the 9/11Day of Service to use the designated tagline, "I Remember. I Serve." in your media materials and communications. The phrase is a unifying element to commemorate the day and encourage Americans everywhere to both remember the events of 9/11 and to honor this memory through acts of service on the day and throughout the year.
  • You can personalize the tagline - "I Remember, on 9/11/2001, I was (fill in the blank). This year, I Serve (fill in the blank)." Please incorporate this theme into media statements/news releases, promotional materials, internal and external communication messages, and websites.
  • A graphic treatment and web banners are available on at

5.      Identify stories of national service participants who were either personally involved in the response to 9/11 in the weeks and months after the attack, or who were inspired to participate in national service because of 9/11. Submit these stories to by Monday August, 31. These examples will be used in media outreach and events surrounding this year's 9/11 Day of Service and Remembrance. Great stories include:

  • National service participants (AmeriCorps, Senior Corps or Learn and + Serve America) who served in response to 9/11 in NYC, Washington DC or other locations and who continue to be involved in their communities;
  • People who were motivated in full or in part to join AmeriCorps or other national service programs as a result of the tragedy of 9/11; and
  • Family members (parents, children, or other relatives) of people who were affected by 9/11 who have participated in service since the attacks.

In honor of the National Day of Service and Remembrance, the Corporation for National and Community Service will be supporting service activities in all fifty states and highlighting events nationwide. With the combined efforts of state governments, non-traditional service partners, businesses, and your organization, we are working together to reignite the spirit of unity and service that inspired Americans in the days after the September 11, 2001 tragedy.

If we can support your organization's September 11 plans or United We Serve efforts, please contact your Corporation state office or state commission.

Thank you again for your continued participation in United We Serve.

In service,

Nicola Goren
Acting CEO
Corporation for National and Community Service 



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About Me

The CalServe Network posts news and updates of interest to the service-learning field in California. News and updates are drawn from the CalServe List Serve and the National K-12 Service-Learning List Serve and various other sources.