Health and Family Services Cabinet
Kentucky AmeriCorps members in the spotlight for AmeriCorps Week
During National AmeriCorps Week, May 13-20, AmeriCorps programs across Kentucky will sponsor special events to say “thanks for the hospitality” to their host communities and to promote national service.
In Kentucky, the Kentucky Commission on Community Volunteerism and Service (KCCVS) in the Cabinet for Health and Family Services administers AmeriCorps.
“National AmeriCorps Week is being observed in mid-May to coincide with the AmeriCorps achieving the half-million membership mark,” said Eileen Cackowski, KCCVS director.
During the 2005-06 program year alone, almost 68,000 Kentuckians directly benefited from service provided by AmeriCorps members. During that time, AmeriCorps members recruited nearly 9,000 community volunteers who provided more than 42,000 hours of service in their hometowns.
AmeriCorps members helped build 56 homes and rehabilitate more than 20 homes for disabled and elderly residents, and more than 4,050 children in grades 1-12 received academic tutoring last year.
Nearly 16,000 at-risk elderly and people with disabilities received help with everyday living tasks so they could remain in their homes and continue to live independently, and nearly 600 homeless individuals and families found permanent or transitional housing thanks to housing counseling and related assistance from AmeriCorps members, among a host of other contributions members made.
“AmeriCorps members deserve the recognition of National AmeriCorps Week to make more people aware of the good work they do and to promote the opportunities AmeriCorps offers to members,” Cackowski said.
AmeriCorps members may serve one or two years. Upon completion of their service, members are eligible for an education award of $4,725 that can be used to pay back student loans or cover tuition costs. Kentucky AmeriCorps members have received more than $13 million in education awards since 1994.
For more information about Kentucky’s AmeriCorps programs, call toll-free (800) 239-7404 or visit the KCCVS Web site at www.chfs.ky.gov/dhss/kccvs/.
SIDEBAR: Local AmeriCorps Week events planned
Several AmeriCorps programs are hosting special events during National AmeriCorps Week, including:
- Lexington/Fayette County: Getting Things Done for Kentucky's Homeless, an AmeriCorps program sponsored by the Homeless and Housing Coalition of Kentucky, will host a community service project at the future site of the Kentucky Children’s Garden in the Arboretum. The day will end with a Celebration Dinner. For more information, contact Program Director Josie Kirker at (502) 223-1834 or (800) 335-1797.
- Eastern Kentucky University SERV Corps will host its annual Celebration of Service at the First Baptist Church in London, Thursday, May 17. For more information, contact Program Director Nancy Thames at (859) 622-6556.
- Green River Area Development District Homeland Security Corps and Senior Connections AmeriCorps program members will share stories of their service at an open house and potluck dinner Saturday, May 19. For more information, contact Program Director Dave Clark at (270) 926-4433.
- The Barren River Schools Learning Corps will host its annual Celebration of Service at the Barren River Lodge Monday, May 14. For more information, contact Program Director Shannon Bailes at (270) 684-5300.
- Louisville Metro Community Action Partnerships and the Jefferson County Schools Every 1 Reads AmeriCorps programs will host an open house Tuesday, May 15, at the Louisville Metro Center. For more information, contact Program Directors Patricia Pointer (502) 485-3025 or Tracey Harper (502) 574-1157, ext. 321.