AmeriCorps Celebrates 20 Years of Service

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In 1993, President Bill Clinton signed the National and Community Service Trust Act, creating AmeriCorps. Just one year later, on September 12, 1994, the first class of AmeriCorps members began their service in communities all over the country. Since that first day when 20,000 members took the pledge, AmeriCorps has expanded to meet the nation’s most critical needs. Today over 75,000 new members dedicate their lives to service every year.

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Exactly 20 years later, on Friday, September 12, 2014, Barnstable County AmeriCorps Cape Cod members and staff, joined by Barnstable County Commissioner Sheila Lyons, the Resource Development Office, and program alumni, met up with service and volunteer programs from across Massachusetts to celebrate this new milestone. The event was hosted by the Massachusetts Service Alliance at the Gantcher Family Sports and Convocation Center at Tufts University in Medford, MA.

The audience heard from Congresswoman Katherine Clark; Mora Segal, C.E.O. of The Achievement Network (ANet) and daughter of Eli J. Segal; Alan Solomont, Tufts University alum and current Dean of the Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service at the university; and Keynote Speaker Robert L. Gordon, III, President of Be the Change, Inc.  As if hearing from all of those people was not inspirational enough, all the new AmeriCorps members participated in a simultaneous swearing-in ceremony with programs nationwide during a simulcast from Washington, D.C.

Opening Ceremony

The C.E.O. of The Corporation for National and Community Service, Wendy Spencer, led the AmeriCorps Pledge of Service, which was followed by speeches from former President Clinton and President Obama. President Clinton shared an anecdote about the pen he borrowed from Sargent Shriver, the first director of Peace Corps, to sign the National and Community Service Trust Act. This pen was the very same pen President John F. Kennedy used during the founding of Peace Corps in 1961. 

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Please enjoy this video from the Corporation for National and Community Service.

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Year 16 Members Have Arrived!

Year 16 Members on their first day of the new corps year.

Year 16 Members on their first day of the new corps year.

The staff welcomed 29 new members and 3 returning members to the Barnstable County AmeriCorps Cape Cod family for our 16th corps year  yesterday, September 8, 2014. Handbooks were discussed, forms were signed, and A’s were donned at the Craigville Conference Center in Centerville. Welcome to the team, everyone!

Learn more about our new corps, HERE.

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15th Anniversary Event & Graduation

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The last picture together! (Year 15)

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Veteran/visiting and seasoned staff of AmeriCorps Cape Cod – these are some of the “gears” that turn the machine!

What a whirlwind it’s been for AmeriCorps Cape Cod these past few weeks! We had to say goodbye to Year 15, and welcome back alumni from year’s past to celebrate 15 years of service on Cape Cod. There is certainly more to be said, but for now let us just say “THANK YOU!” We cannot express the totality of our gratitude for all the alumni, service partners, sponsors, and supporters. Stay tuned for more information about our 15th Anniversary celebration!

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15th Anniversary Event – Join Us!

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Can you believe it’s been 15 years since AmeriCorps Cape Cod began serving Barnstable County? Have you RSVP’d for the celebration? If not, please visit our Facebook page OR contact our office directly!

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Highlands Fest 2014

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Thank you to all the volunteers and our beloved service partner, the Cape Cod National Seashore, for making this year’s Highlands Fest a huge success! Check out our Facebook album for pictures of the event.

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Highlands Fest 2014 – Join us!

Celebrating Volunteerism Making Waves Mural 003Save the Date: Saturday, June 28th, 2014 from 10AM to 2PM

@ Highlands Center (29 Old Dewline Road, North Truro, MA 02652)

Highlands Fest is an annual celebration of the Highlands Center at Cape Cod National Seashore. The center was created using the infrastructure from a former Air Force station. The intent for the Highlands Center is to create a place which fosters the unique, cultural heritage of Cape Cod by engaging in an environment in which scientific research, arts creation, and educational programs can flourish. Please join us for this annual event!

For more information, please see the event flyer or visit the CCNS Web page -

Or contact Program Specialist Michael Sousa for other inquiries!

 

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Member Blog – Spring is in the Air

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Post by Jairus Burdick (Year 15 – Bourne House)

With winter finally giving way to spring, a lot will change and not just the landscape.  Instead of having to bundle up in winter hats and gloves, we are able to don our short sleeves and put on sunglasses again.  Many of the winter projects focused on removal of invasive species, burning accumulations of natural fuels (fallen trees & other dry organic material), and creating new hiking trails, all of which involve the removal of something.  However, now that the vegetation on Cape Cod is growing again, we will be assisting at sites dedicated to fostering growth and preserving native plant and animal species, as opposed to just removing invasives.  A few examples include installation of dune fencing in Brewster, transplanting beach grass in Falmouth, and planting native species in Provincetown.

Along with the plants beginning to grow again, the Cape will soon see a large influx of summer residents and visitors.  The population will grow immensely, which will increase the pool of potential volunteers for us to recruit.  Some of the Individual Placements (similar to an internship) our members have been paired with will see direct benefits from this influx of volunteers, such as the Department of Natural Resources in Barnstable, which incorporates volunteers into a variety of projects (i.e. shellfishing, maintaining herring runs, and trail maintenance).  Our engagement with volunteers and the community are an important part of AmeriCorps Cape Cod’s mission. For 15 years the program has been bringing the residents and visitors of Cape Cod together, not just to help strengthen the community, but to preserve the delicate ecosystems here.  This effort has produced tangible and visible results from Bourne to Provincetown in ways that some of the summer residents may not fully realize.  With so many more people visiting the Cape and different projects coming up, the spring and summer are sure to be active for AmeriCorps Cape Cod.  We look forward to getting out there and getting things done for America!

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THANK YOU!

thankYOUApril was a busy month for AmeriCorps Cape Cod…we had signature events, tree plantings, outreach fairs, and participated in numerous projects planned by other organizations.

Our members and staff would like to thank all the volunteers, supporters, donors, and service partners for their involvement in a wildly successful month of projects.

Check out the following news stories and albums to see the magic that happened during April!

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14th Annual Canal Clean-Up

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AmeriCorps Cape Cod and the Army Corps of Engineers will be hosting the 14th annual Canal Clean-Up this year on Saturday, April 19 from 9AM to 1PM at the Buzzards Bay Recreation Area (103 Main St. Bourne, MA 02532).

AmeriCorps is asking community volunteers to help beautify the recreation areas along the Canal on the day all amenities and buildings officially open to the public for the warmer seasons. In addition, this year is especially exciting as it’s the Canal’s Centennial Anniversary!

Volunteers will be picking up trash and debris, installing and painting fences, clearing brush, installing signs, helping weed the butterfly garden, and more. There will also be educational booths with organizations such as IFAW (International Fund for Animal Welfare), Leave No Trace, and Clean Harbors along with family-friendly activities open to the public. Breakfast and lunch will be provided, and the Falmouth Fiddlers will be joining us for live entertainment!

To register for the event, please visit our registration page HERE!

For additional information, please contact:

Bethany Reynolds
AmeriCorps Cape Cod Member Leader
Office: 508-375-6870
Email: lehacml@barnstablecounty.org

 

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All Access Brewster – National Volunteer Week

Fotor0306104215Interested in volunteering with us during National Volunteer Week (April 6th – 12th)?

Click HERE to our registration form!

For more information, click HERE for a brief PSA about the event. Also, see our press release.

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