The Year of Service: Volunteer Florida Reflects on the Highlights of 2019
|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 23, 2019
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Today, Volunteer Florida CEO Clay Ingram highlighted the incredible successes that the agency has had in 2019, from administering funding to support national service and disaster recovery to the launch of Florida’s official volunteer opportunities platform, Volunteer Connect.
“The Governor and I believe that volunteering is necessary to strengthening our communities,” said First Lady Casey DeSantis. “We are thrilled to be able to partner with Volunteer Florida to promote service in Florida and I applaud the agency for the work they have done under CEO Ingram’s leadership.”
“Under the leadership of Governor and First Lady DeSantis, Volunteer Florida has been able to do more good for Florida’s communities,” said CEO Ingram. “Together, we have been able to create a culture of volunteerism in our state which will only grow stronger in the years ahead. Thank you to the Governor and First Lady, our Commission and Foundation, and our stakeholders and partners for making 2019 the year of service in the Sunshine State.”
In partnership with First Lady DeSantis, Volunteer Florida launched Florida’s official volunteer opportunities platform, Volunteer Connect, this past fall. Volunteer Connect serves as an intermediary between Floridians who are interested in engaging in community service and 501(c)(3) organizations and governmental entities that mobilize volunteers. To date, Volunteer Connect has several volunteer opportunities available by over 260 organizations, with users visiting the platform daily.
With funding provided by the Corporation for National and Community Service, Volunteer Florida is able to administer funding to support AmeriCorps programs throughout Florida. During the 2019-2020 program year, the agency will support 40 programs with 1,668 members serving in 34 Florida counties.
Additionally, Volunteer Florida provides support to nonprofit and service organizations through the Volunteer Generation Fund. During the 2019-2020 program year, the agency will support 22 organizations who will recruit at least 8,800 volunteers who will serve 6,600 volunteer hours.
Volunteer Florida is committed to promoting disaster resiliency and recovery in Florida through our work in emergency management. The agency supports the Community Emergency Response Teams, and in 2019, Volunteer Florida supported Disaster Case Management Programs (DCMP) for Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Michael survivors. Since January 2019, the Hurricane Irma DCMP has provided services to over 26,000 households in 49 counties.
Through the Florida Disaster Fund, the Volunteer Florida Foundation supported community partners engaged in long-term recovery efforts in the areas affected by Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Michael. In 2019, the Foundation committed to the rebuild and repair of over 183 homes, the rebuild of the volunteer fire station in the Town of Alford, and the repair and replacement of HVAC units in Gulf County schools. Additionally, this commitment will also aid 1,160 families with their personal unmet needs as a result of Hurricane Michael.
About Volunteer Florida
In 1994, Volunteer Florida was established in Florida Statutes to manage national service programs, such as AmeriCorps, and advocate for volunteerism throughout the Sunshine State. Since then, Volunteer Florida has evolved to serve as the state’s lead agency for mobilizing volunteers and coordinating donations before, during and after disasters, including managing the Florida Disaster Fund. After 25 years, Volunteer Florida remains committed to promoting volunteerism in Florida, and recently launched the state’s official volunteer opportunities platform, Volunteer Connect. Through our work, Volunteer Florida delivers high-impact volunteer programs and opportunities that engage Floridians, transform communities and make the state a better place to live. For more information, please visit www.volunteerflorida.org.