[United States Statutes at Large, Volume 124, 111th Congress, 2nd Session]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office, www.gpo.gov]

 
PROCLAMATION 8500--APR. 16, 2010

Proclamation 8500 of April 16, 2010
National Volunteer Week, 2010
By the President of the United States of America
A Proclamation

Since the founding of our Nation, we have met our greatest challenges
through the dedication of countless Americans who have given generously
of themselves, asking for nothing in return. The American story is a
story of volunteers--of patriots who fought for our founding ideals, of
people who marched for justice, of firefighters who rushed into burning
towers, and of ordinary citizens who lifted up struggling communities.
All were volunteers, and their work changed our country.

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This week, we recognize their enduring contributions and encourage more
Americans, especially our youth, to join their ranks.
Today's vast challenges require a renewed commitment to service, and
Americans are answering that call. From mentoring a student and feeding
the homeless, to rebuilding after a natural disaster, volunteers are
touching lives every day. Social entrepreneurs are pioneering innovative
approaches to community service, and technology is providing us with new
ways to connect with one another. Public-private partnerships are also
expanding the scope and effectiveness of volunteerism.
My Administration is committed to ushering in a new era of service and
responsibility. We launched United We Serve, a nationwide initiative to
encourage all Americans to make service a part of their daily lives. The
Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act, which I signed last year, has
expanded and updated programs at the Corporation for National and
Community Service, harnessing the energy of millions to meet our most
pressing national challenges. We are also investing in social innovation
and volunteer management to give community groups the capacity to tackle
local concerns.
During National Volunteer Week, we honor the ordinary people who give of
themselves to accomplish extraordinary things, and we encourage more
Americans to strengthen our country by volunteering. Visit Serve.gov to
find volunteer opportunities across America and resources to start your
own project. This website highlights volunteer opportunities for
Americans of all ages, and I especially hope our young people will be
inspired to chart a course of service.
Whether through the workplace or a house of worship, in our own
neighborhoods or in another state or country, service binds us together
as Americans in a way nothing else can. It defines us as a people, and
it is essential to achieving our national priorities. Together, let us
answer the call, take hold of our shared future, and meet the challenges
of our new century.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of
America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and
the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim April 18 through April
24, 2010, as National Volunteer Week. I call upon all Americans to
observe this week by volunteering in service projects across our country
and pledging to make service a part of their daily lives.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this sixteenth day of
April, in the year of our Lord two thousand ten, and of the Independence
of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-fourth.
BARACK OBAMA