AmeriCorps Swearing In Ceremony for ServiceWorks -- Initiative Aims to Address Youth Unemployment

2015-2016 AmeriCorps VISTA Members Part of Citi Foundation's $10 Million Investment Reaching 25,000 Opportunity Youth in 10 Cities across the United States

Newly named community partners expand reach of ServiceWorks

Jul 24, 2015, 16:52 ET from Points of Light Foundation

ATLANTA, July 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, 75 AmeriCorps VISTA members will take the pledge of service administered by Wendy Spencer, CEO of the Corporation of National and Community Service, as part of ServiceWorks, a national program addressing barriers to youth economic opportunity. More than 150 civic and corporate leaders, non-profit executives and elected officials will attend the swearing-in ceremony held at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights. Grammy-award winning artist J. Ivy will serve as Master of Ceremonies and Mark Swinton, Producer at Tyler Perry Studios, will deliver the keynote address.

"I am proud to welcome these new AmeriCorps VISTA members into the national service family today – they are the core of everything we do," said Wendy Spencer, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service.  "The service of these members will be focused on helping create opportunities for youth who find themselves at a crossroads in their lives that without direction could lead to missed opportunities in both career and educational options.  As a result of this ServiceWorks partnership, thousands of our nation's youth will benefit with a better and brighter tomorrow."

Through ServiceWorks, the AmeriCorps VISTA members work with youth, ages 16-24, to help them develop workplace competencies and gain leadership experience through skills training and by designing and implementing community service projects. The program was co-developed and implemented by Points of Light, the Corporation for National and Community Service, and the Citi Foundation.

"ServiceWorks equips 16-24 year-olds for college and career success through volunteerism, skill building and coaching. The program increases opportunities for young adults in our communities and reinforces a culture of achievement. Our scholars are provided the tools, and the access, to greater success," added Tracy Hoover, CEO of Points of Light.

Launched in March 2014, ServiceWorks is a key component of the Citi Foundation's $50 million, 3-year Pathways to Progress initiative to connect 100,000 low-income youth with opportunities to improve their career readiness. A total of 225 AmeriCorps members over three years will engage 25,000 underserved young adults in 10 U.S. cities to develop the skills they need to prepare for college and careers. ServiceWorks is the nation's largest corporate-sponsored AmeriCorps VISTA program and aligns with President Obama's efforts to create new public-private partnerships that use national service to help solve our nation's most pressing challenges.

"We have been inspired watching our ServiceWorks VISTAs meaningfully engage young people across the 10 cities and develop skills that will prepare them to compete in a 21st century economy," said Brandee McHale, President of the Citi Foundation. "The AmeriCorps VISTAs being sworn in today will continue this effort and play a crucial role in addressing the persistent issue of youth unemployment to help create more on ramps on the path to economic opportunity."

The Corporation for National and Community Service is the federal agency that engages more than five million Americans in service through its AmeriCorps, Senior Corps, Social Innovation Fund, and Volunteer Generation Fund programs, and leads the President's national call to service initiative, United We Serve. For more information, visit www.NationalService.gov.

The Citi Foundation works to promote economic progress and improve the lives of people in low-income communities around the world. We invest in efforts that increase financial inclusion, catalyze job opportunities for youth, and reimagine approaches to building economically vibrant cities. The Citi Foundation's "More than Philanthropy" approach leverages the enormous expertise of Citi and its people to fulfill our mission and drive thought leadership and innovation. For more information, visit www.citifoundation.com.

Points of Light – the world's largest organization dedicated to volunteer service – millions of people to take action that is changing the world. Through affiliates in 250 cities and partnerships with thousands of nonprofits and corporations, Points of Light engages 4 million volunteers in 30 million hours of service each year. We bring the power of people where it's needed most. For more information, go to www.pointsoflight.org.

SOURCE Points of Light Foundation



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