New York, NY (April 24, 2013)
New York City's youth are mobilizing for the 25th anniversary of Global Youth Service Day (GYSD), April 26-28, 2013, when young people in more than 100 countries will participate in volunteer projects and celebration events. State Farm has been the presenting sponsor of GYDS since 2001.
As the largest service event in the world, GYSD recognizes the contributions that young people make to their communities 365 days a year. GYSD is a program of Youth Service America (YSA), which coordinates the event and offers grants, programs, and resources to assist in planning meaningful service-learning projects that improve the lives of young people and communities.
Existing local organizations are given an opportunity to play a larger role in GYSD by becoming a lead agency. State Farm provides GYSD lead agencies planning grants of $2,000 and this year has provided grants to New York City non-profit organizations World Cares Center and DOROT.
World Cares Center's (WCC) Master of Disasters: Train the Trainer program prepares youth ranging from kindergarten through high school to help themselves, their families, communities and schools in the event of a natural disaster. These trainings combine fun and interactive activities for all participants while teaching valuable lessons on individual, family, and community readiness.
"World Cares Center is proud to once again be a Global Youth Service Day lead agency. Through WCC's Master of Disaster program, youth are engaged as ready responders to take the appropriate action when crisis occurs with in their homes and neighborhoods," said Lisa Orloff, founder and Executive Director of World Cares Center. "Hurricane Irene and now Superstorm Sandy have shed light on this much needed program and how youth can take the lead in safety initiatives. We look forward to continuing our efforts with State Farm and Youth Service America."
From now through April 26, World Cares Center's team of volunteers and staff will deliver this training to youth in schools and youth centers. After delivering the training, youth will be encouraged to share on video their lessons learned from the training and how they apply to their most recent experience with Superstorm Sandy. These media clips will be used to create a video to be shared globally to help other youth prepare for future disasters.
Teenage volunteers from DOROT's teen leadership council Next Generation will engage frail and isolated older adults in two ways: visiting homebound seniors to celebrate their birthdays and assisting frail elders on an intergenerational museum outing. Birthday visits and museum trips are among DOROT's year-round programs that alleviate the social isolation of the frail elderly and bring the generations together for their mutual benefit.
"The teens involved in DOROT's Next Generation leadership council exhibit leadership qualities beyond their years. We are delighted to help cultivate their talents and dedication as they engage their peers to serve socially isolated older adults in our community. They are the future of volunteer leadership, and we are proud that they engage in meaningful and mutually appreciated experiences with the seniors," said Mark Meridy, Executive Director of DOROT.
YSA (Youth Service America) improves communities by increasing the number and the diversity of young people, ages 5-25, serving in substantive roles. Through grants, service-learning programs, mobilization campaigns and resources, YSA supports a global culture of engaged youth committed to a lifetime of service, learning, leadership, and achievement. The impact of YSA's work through service and service-learning is measured in student achievement, workplace readiness, and healthy communities. YSA's signature event, Global Youth Service Day, is the largest and longest running service event in the world, and takes place in more than 100 countries on six continents April 26 to 28, 2013.
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