As we approach the end of the summer phase of United We Serve and recommit to service and service-learning going forward, I want to encourage you to participate in the September 11th National Day of Service and Remembrance. Please see the list of ideas at the bottom of this letter.
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 are asking all Americans to remember 9/11 and recommit to service in their communities throughout the year. We encourage you to continue to promote service-learning by commemorating this milestone through the United We Serve initiative.
With the recent loss of Senator Kennedy, a champion for national service and service-learning from the very beginning, this effort takes on even greater significance. We can honor his legacy by redoubling our efforts to make service a part of every citizen's daily life and service-learning part of every young person's education.
We have just over a week until September 11. Think about how to connect your already-planned service-learning classes, programs, and projects to the National Day of Service and Remembrance.
Here are some specific suggestions:
- Go to Serve.gov to find an event happening on/around 9/11 in your community, or post your own projects there if you're looking for participants.
- If you post a project between September 7th and 13th, include an end date in the posting and include "September 11th" in the title.
- To make sure we know about events you'd like to highlight for special attention, enter them here and be sure to use the attached media tools to recruit media on your own: http://spreadsheets.google.com/viewform?formkey=dGxTZjJCbS1sQ0RnZ0NiT0hIcFhXcEE6MA
- We encourage all organizations participating in the 9/11 Day of Service and Remembrance to use the designated tagline, "I Remember. I Serve." in your media materials and communications.
- Consider including discussions, writing exercises, or other activities related to 9/11 as part of service-learning projects. What happened and what was significant? What lessons can we take away? Why does it make sense for this to be a National Day of Service and Remembrance?
- Consider using September 11 as a time to gear up for the National Learn and Serve Challenge, which kicks off the week of October 5.
- See Youth Service America's "8 for 9/11" document for ideas for connecting lessons of 9/11 with service-learning projects.
If we can support your September 11 plans or United We Serve efforts, please contact your Corporation State Office (http://www.nationalservice.gov/about/contact/stateoffices.asp) or State Commission (http://www.nationalservice.gov/about/contact/statecommission.asp), or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you again for your continued participation in United We Serve.
Elson B. Nash
Learn and Serve America
Corporation for National and Community Service