At 20 years old, AmeriCorps is the same age as many of its volunteers. And like any young adult, it is trying to figure out what will make it most successful while carrying a light pocketbook and a big bundle of optimism.
As President Bill Clinton signed the National and Community Service Trust Act in September 1993 and put the word “AmeriCorps” into the national vocabulary, he declared: “I will also use the pen President [John F.] Kennedy used 30 years ago — 32 years ago to sign the Peace Corps legislation, to create a new national service corps for America. We will call it AmeriCorps.”
AmeriCorps became part of the new Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), which, in turn, would knit together new and existing federal volunteer programs aimed at tackling problems in education, public safety, poverty, health and the environment.
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