ORLANDO – Volunteer Florida hosted a training event this week for ten states across the Southeast. With support from the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), VF hosted the Southern Regional Training in Orlando and partnered with Comcast to host a service project as part of the training. 

Volunteer Florida CEO Chester W. Spellman said, “Volunteer Florida is thrilled to be selected as one of only five states across the nation to host a regional training event for CNCS. We are proud to bring over 400 individuals from ten other states to Florida to not only participate in extensive training, but to support the local economy and area families with a meaningful service project.”  

The Southern Regional Training brought together AmeriCorps programs and Senior Corps programs from across the Southeast to receive critical fiscal and programmatic training so that each state can expand the impact of its service programs.  Participants received training on topics ranging from effective grants management and budget development to compliance with federal laws. National speakers included Wendy Spencer, CEO of CNCS, Bill Basl, Director of AmeriCorps for CNCS, and Erwin Tan, M.D., Director of Senior Corps for CNCS. Speakers from Florida included Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, Florida Division of Emergency Management Director Bryan Koon, and Tony Carvajal, Executive Vice President of the Florida Chamber Foundation. 

“I am thrilled that Volunteer Florida could host the Southern Regional Training conference,” said Wendy Spencer, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service. “The conference is an opportunity to share lessons learned, meet our colleagues face-to-face, and discover new ways to ‘get things done for America!’ The opportunity to do service – the crux of what we do each day – is the cherry on top.”

City of Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer said, “State and local government leaders are increasingly turning to volunteers and national service as a cost-effective strategy to address local challenges. The City of Orlando has seen a substantial benefit from Volunteer Florida and its local grantees and partners, who serve thousands of students in our schools and community centers to keep them on track to graduate.” 

“One of the most unique elements about a Volunteer Florida event is the service aspect, and the Southern Regional Training event is no different,” noted Spellman.  “On Tuesday, volunteers assembled 2,000 hygiene kits and 2,000 snack packs for needy children and families in Central Florida. We are proud to mobilize our colleagues from neighboring states in service to Florida.”

The Southern Regional Training wraps up Florida Volunteer Month, which is observed every April in Florida. To showcase the variety of volunteers making a difference in Florida’s communities, Volunteer Florida encourages Floridians to use the hashtag#ServeFL on social media when sharing their photos and service stories. 

To learn more about Florida Volunteer Month or to search for volunteer opportunities, visit:www.volunteerflorida.org.