GFWC Continues to Be the Change
Dear Federation Friends,
You may have noticed lately more local and national news focusing on volunteering. As we have seen, community service and civic engagement are growing in interest among Americans. Senators Orrin Hatch of Utah and Edward Kennedy of Massachusetts have sponsored the bipartisan Serve America Act,(PDF) which creates strong governmental support for service through programs in the private and public sector. And many organizations participated in the ServiceNation Summit on September 11-12, 2008.
Hosted by an organization called Be the Change, the summit brought together national leaders from government, business, nonprofits, and educational institutions to discuss community service. The ultimate goal of the ServiceNation Summit was to “kick off the movement to inspire an America in which, by 2020, 100 million citizens will volunteer time in schools, workplaces, and faith-based and community institutions each and every year (up from 61 million today), and that increasing numbers of Americans annually will commit a year of their lives to national service.” Success would engage one million Americans a year in full-time service by the year 2020.
Unfortunately, GFWC was not included as a partner organization or in the list of coalition members supporting the ServiceNation Summit. However, as GFWC clubwomen know, the Federation has “been the change” for more than 118 years. This new national focus on community service is really a testament to the work our members do and to the impact our clubs have on their local communities.
For your ongoing dedication, I want to thank you and commend you. Your commitment to enhancing the lives of others is unwavering, and there has never been a more exciting or fulfilling time to be a GFWC clubwoman.
I have reached out to the organizers of Be the Change and the ServiceNation Summit (see attached PDF of letter) and asked them to recognize GFWC and include our Federation in future endeavors. I encourage each GFWC member to consider how you can share the message of community improvement. With more individuals seeking ways to be involved, it is your privilege and responsibility to let them know that GFWC is a true leader in community service, and that their membership can benefit them and their community.
As our country searches for a way to inspire grassroots service and civic engagement, let’s show them that, once again, GFWC can answer the call.
Yes, together in Federation friendship, we can do it!
Rose M. Ditto, Ph.D.
GFWC International President