ORLANDO, Fla. – Today, Governor Rick Scott, along with Volunteer Florida CEO Chester Spellman and Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, announced that Governor Scott and Mayor Dyer’s “Governor-Mayor’s Initiative” has been funded by the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS). The City of Orlando will be receiving $404,305 in grant funding for the Governor-Mayor’s Initiative, administered by Volunteer Florida, to support 32 AmeriCorps members at approximately 17 Orlando community centers and public schools. AmeriCorps members will be serving with City Year Orlando, City of Orlando/After School All Stars and Heart of Florida United Way, and will serve an estimated 600 students.
Governor Scott said, “I’m proud to announce more than $400,000 in funding to provide additional education services for children in the Orlando area. This investment will build on the more than $1 billion in additional funding we secured for K-12 education last session. We’ll continue to fully invest in education so our children have the tools they need to pursue the American Dream.”
In addition to this program grant, $177,600 in college scholarships will be awarded to participating AmeriCorps members upon their successful graduation, resulting in a total grant of $581,905. The City of Orlando will also leverage $181,037 in local matching funds.
CNCS will increase the number of AmeriCorps members who provide academic and social support to students who attend low performing Orange County public schools. The Orlando-based Governor-Mayor’s Initiative is one of just eight CNCS state-city partnerships being implemented across the country.
The Governor-Mayor’s Initiative was incorporated in the CNCS’s 2013 Competitive AmeriCorps funding cycle, which included a new opportunity for state and local officials to work together on public-private partnerships. Governor Scott selected the focus area of education and engaged Mayor Buddy Dyer and City Year Orlando as primary partners.
“Our children are the future of our community and that future has been made brighter by the City’s investments in our youth programming,” said Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer. “The Governor-Mayor’s Initiative with the addition of 32 AmeriCorps members will continue to help us grow the impact of what we do and expand education and opportunity for our young people.”
“More than 86 percent of Volunteer Florida’s AmeriCorps programs are education-based, reaching 48,000 students in nearly 400 schools in the past year,” said Volunteer Florida CEO Chester Spellman. “We are excited to have Governor Scott and Mayor Dyer helping us to draw down additional funding for AmeriCorps as a way to improve our schools and communities.”
AmeriCorps engages more than 75,000 members in intensive service annually to serve through nonprofit, faith-based, and community organizations at 15,000 locations across the country. These members help communities tackle pressing problems while mobilizing millions of volunteers for the organizations they serve. Since 1994, more than 820,000 Americans have provided more than 1 billion hours of service to their communities and country through AmeriCorps.
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Volunteer Florida, the Governor’s Commission on Community Service, was established in 1994 by the Florida Legislature to administer grants under the National and Community Service Trust Act of 1993. The Commission grants funds to Florida AmeriCorps and National Service programs; coordinates volunteers and donations in a disaster; and inspires all Floridians to serve their communities. For more information, visit: www.volunteerflorida.org.