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The Serve Illinois Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service

Upcoming AmeriCorps Webinars

Spring 2024 Newsletter

On behalf of the Illinois Department of Human Services, the Bureau on Volunteerism and Community Service, and the Serve Illinois Commissioners, thank you for your ongoing service to Illinois!

We are off and running in 2024! As we are ending the first quarter of the new calendar year, Serve Illinois has been incredibly busy setting the foundation for an impactful year.  We are in the process of releasing several Notices of Funding Opportunities for AmeriCorps with new program models as well as planning grants to reach all parts of Illinois.

We have also been very busy preparing to honor volunteers at the Governor’s Volunteer Service Awards (GVSA) being held in Chicago.  This year we will be recognizing awardees from 2023 and 2024 from across Illinois.  On the 20th of May, Serve Illinois will be hosting the National Service Summit in Chicago.  The National Service Summit is the annual assembly of AmeriCorps members and stakeholders in Illinois.  This event is designed to celebrate our AmeriCorps members while introducing young people to the wonderful world of National Service.

Under the National Service Program, the Volunteer Generation Fund is working very closely with the University of Illinois to launch ‘civics in the classroom’ curriculum, which would be implemented in several school districts across Illinois.

Finally, the Commissioners of the Serve Illinois Commission have been busy finalizing the strategic plan for 2024-2026 after working with Embark Solutions on developing a strategic framework for the commission.  All this before the summer begins with lots more coming from the Serve Illinois Commission.

We truly appreciate your support and partnership.  Stay in touch through our social media posts, come to one of our volunteer opportunities, or simply reach out to see how you can be a part of a movement not a moment for Illinois.

Yours in Service,

Andres Fernandez

Serve Illinois Executive Director

Governor's Hometown Awards Application Available!

The IDHS-Serve Illinois Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service (Serve Illinois) in partnership with the office of the governor, is now accepting applications for the Governor’s Hometown Awards (GHTA) program. GHTA gives formal recognition to those who contributed to projects that improved their community’s quality of life. These projects, sponsored by local units of government, had strong volunteer support, met a need, and made a definitive impact, thereby generating a positive outcome in the community, and by extension, the state.

 

Application due date is June 14, 2024

AmeriCorps Climate Corps Grant NOFO

CSFA# 25-444-80-3330

Important: All new applicant organizations must apply to the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) for AmeriCorps National funding by:

A. Completing the instructions included in this NOFO, and

B. Submitting their application via eGrants, AmeriCorps' web-based application system.

C. Submitting the Uniform Application for State Grant Assistance and the Grantee Conflict of Interest Disclosure to DHS.ServeIllinois.NOFO@illinois.gov

D. New applicants will be selected for submission to IDHS/Serve Illinois for funding consideration through the Merit-Based-Review process administered by Serve Illinois, under the purview of Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS). The merit-based review is described in Section E.2. Review and Selection Process. AmeriCorps National will make final award determinations.

Applications are due by 06/12/2024 4:00 PM CST

Governor's Volunteer Service Awards Ceremony

The Governor’s Volunteer Service Awards in celebration of the 2023-2024 class took place on Thursday, April 25, 2024, at the South Shore Cultural Center in Chicago.

These awards recognize individual volunteers through a statewide award program, highlighting the importance of volunteerism and community service in Illinois. Twenty-seven out of thirty-four winners were awarded plaques for winning in their category and region and received a bouquet donated by Inspire Through Flowers.

The winners recognized traveled from various parts of the state, from Mt. Vernon to Carthage, and Clinton to Chicago. Categories included AmeriCorps Seniors, AmeriCorps Members, Adult, Youth, and Public Health categories. Dr. Jarmese Sherrod and Shelley Long were the masters of ceremony for the night, with Serve Illinois Executive Director Andres Fernandez, IDHS Secretary Designate Dulce Quintero, Serve Illinois Chair Natalie Furlett, and Serve Illinois Recognition Committee Chair Amy Rueff providing congratulatory remarks.

Attendees enjoyed entertainment and dinner, including special musical performances by Leo High School Choir, who were recognized as Honorary AmeriCorps members, along with Dr. Sherrod, Shelley Long, and volunteer photographer, Danielle Long, for their volunteerism work at the awards.

The event was full of joy, dancing, and beautiful Lake Michigan sunset views, providing a perfect background for a pleasant evening.

Congratulations to the 2023-2024 awardees!

AmeriCorps Climate Corps Grant NOFO

CSFA# 25-444-80-3329

Important: All new applicant organizations must apply to the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) for AmeriCorps National funding by:

A. Completing the instructions included in this NOFO, and

B. Submitting their application via eGrants, AmeriCorps' web-based application system.

C. Submitting the Uniform Application for State Grant Assistance and the Grantee Conflict of Interest Disclosure to DHS.ServeIllinois.NOFO@illinois.gov

D. New applicants will be selected for submission to IDHS/Serve Illinois for funding consideration through the Merit-Based-Review process administered by Serve Illinois, under the purview of Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS). The merit-based review is described in Section E.2. Review and Selection Process. AmeriCorps National will make final award determinations.

Applications are due by 05/30/2024 4:00 PM CST

Ombudsman Volunteers Wanted!

Have you heard about the Ombudsman Program? Well, here is a great opportunity to serve in your local community and support older adults. The Department on Aging is seeking Ombudsman volunteers to serve as an advocate and address problems for older adults living in long-term care communities.

 

Primary Responsibilities

 Visit assigned facilities regularly, providing an independent presence in the facility.

 Maintain a professional relationship with residents, family, and facility staff.

 Work to resolve complaints made by residents of long-term care facilities.

 Provide information, referral, and education regarding long-term care rights and other concerns of residents and their families.

 Attend and support resident and family council activities.

 Maintain accurate records as directed.

 Keep information obtained about residents confidential.

Disaster Volunteers Wanted!

The IDHS-Serve Illinois Commission on Volunteerism and Community Service seeks volunteers who can assist with administrative coordination for families affected by floods in Cook County. During the month of September, heavy rains caused flooding in several areas throughout Cook County. As a volunteer recruitment partner, Serve Illinois is working to address these unique challenges.

If you have a heart for service and would like to help these communities recover, please sign up to be an Illinois Disaster Volunteer.

Serve Illinois and our regional partners will provide specialized disaster volunteer training.

*** This opportunity offers both in-person and virtual volunteer shifts***

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