College Possible Chair
This week we have Edie Turnbull, Executive Director, College Possible Chair, Voices for National Service Wisconsin Working Group. Edie is here to share with us the importance of AmeriCorps and what we need to do in order to preserve AmeriCorps funding and maintain this importance resource in Milwaukee.
Take it away Edie!
See you soon,
What if I told you I had an investment opportunity for you that would return 400%? You might think I was trying to scam you, because it’s so far outside the norm. And yet, when it comes to AmeriCorps and Senior Corps, that’s exactly the return from the programs to the community – for every dollar that is invested, a whopping four dollars comes back to the Milwaukee community!
You might think this makes national and community service a no-brainer, right? Wrong. The fact is, the budget blueprint released by the current administration zeroes out AmeriCorps and Senior Corps. While cost savings are important, the elimination of these programs would have no real impact on overall federal spending – total funding for them is .029 percent, or less than three hundredths of one percent.
If the high-quality, public-private partnership that is AmeriCorps and Senior Corps would go away, the shock waves would be felt significantly in Milwaukee County. Currently, there are 1,190 Corps members doing critical work in 251 programs throughout the county – in the areas of education, housing, disaster response, veteran support, and the list goes on. Programs you know and respect would be impacted –City Year, College Possible, Foster Grandparents, Habitat for Humanity, LISC, Public Allies, SPARK Early Literacy Program, Teach for America, Wisconsin Reading Corps – just to name a few.
“The critical work we do in helping students stay in school and on track to graduation relies in part on AmeriCorps,” says Meralis Hood, Vice President and Executive Director of City Year Milwaukee. If AmeriCorps is zeroed out, more than 7,200 students in Milwaukee schools might lose the full-time support of City Year AmeriCorps members.
That is just one example. We need you to act in order to preserve AmeriCorps funding and maintain this important resource in Milwaukee. Clicking this link will take you to a site that can make calling your congressional representative very simple. If email is more your vehicle, click this link for an easy outreach tool.
Milwaukee needs everyone to raise their voice in support of service, so this valuable asset can continue to benefit our community. Don’t wait, do it today.
Executive Director, College Possible
Chair, Voices for National Service Wisconsin Working Group