Gov. Ricketts Recognizes Veterans in AmeriCorps and Senior Corps for their Service in Nebraska
LINCOLN – Today, Governor Pete Ricketts, in partnership with ServeNebraska and the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), recognized veterans who have continued their service to America as AmeriCorps members and Senior Corps volunteers.
The event held at the Nebraska State Capitol recognized these dedicated individuals as members of National Veteran Corps, which is part of a larger effort to raise awareness of the value veterans bring to communities. The event today in Lincoln was one of nearly 200 recognition ceremonies featuring National Veteran Corps pin presentations taking place across the country throughout the month of November.
“Our servicemen and women risk their lives to protect our freedom and way of life,” said Governor Ricketts. “As Americans, it is our solemn obligation to support them and their families when they come home. Serving those who served us and engaging the talents of our veterans and military families is a priority for my administration and many Nebraskans.”
“Our commitment to veterans and their families is deep and it's twofold: We serve them, and we ask them to serve with us. National service gives our heroes a new mission on the home front, a pathway to opportunity, and a better transition to civilian life,” said CNCS CEO Wendy Spencer. “The National Veterans Corps recognizes the family of Senior Corps volunteers and AmeriCorps members carrying out the spirit of our shared values of devotion, honor, and service to our great nation. This month is an opportunity to salute those who are serving our country again, while bringing attention to the critical work being done by veterans-focused national service programs.”
Veterans and national service members were presented with a special pin during a press conference by Governor Ricketts, joining thousands of national service members across the country in the National Veteran Corps.
There are many veterans engaging their communities across Nebraska through a variety of programs. A few of them are highlighted here:
Lutheran Family Services AmeriCorps members who are veterans expand and strengthen the student-veteran outreach program at Bellevue University by providing 200 Bellevue Military and Veteran student’s service to help develop and improve education and employment prospects.
The Veteran Fire Corps, a program of Student Conservation Corps, trains and engages teams of military veterans in wild land fire mitigations. Projects include fuels reduction, fire effects monitoring, educational outreach, and pre-fire preparation of burn units. The team brought into Nebraska consisted of five members who served this year mitigating trees and brush from the Nebraska National Forest that was a current fire hazard from the fires in 2012. This team was in the state for three months serving with the US Forest Service.
Veteran’s volunteers through Senior Corps continue to give back to their communities in a variety of capacities. They provide much needed transportation (especially in the rural areas) to other veterans so they have access to medical services; offer companionship to individuals remain in their own home; and serve one-on-one with children in the classroom to improve their math and reading skills. Their dedication continues in their own communities after serving their county.
Last year, national service members across the country served more than 780,000 veterans and military members in VA clinics and hospitals, veteran service organizations, and at non-profits and public agencies. In addition, more than 23,000 veterans served in their local communities applying leadership abilities and skills acquired during their military service through Catholic Charities USA, Habitat for Humanity, Teach For America, and multiple conservation corps programs, including those that have helped combat wildfires in the Western U.S.
In addition to the veterans honored in today’s ceremony, the Governor also recognized national service participants supporting veterans and military families.
ServeNebraska, the Nebraska Volunteer Service Commission coordinates and supports community involvement by Nebraskans that address the needs of our communities. The commission coordinates AmeriCorps programming, celebrates volunteer achievements through quarterly and annual Awards, provides training and technical assistance, and works to ensure that those with disabilities are fully involved.
About the Corporation for National and Community Service
The Corporation for National and Community Service is a federal agency that helps more than 5 million Americans improve the lives of their fellow citizens through service. The organization includes AmeriCorps, Senior Corps, the Social Innovation Fund, the Volunteer Generation Fund, and more.