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For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
April 29, 2008
Fact Sheet: 2008 National Volunteer Week
President Bush Celebrates The Important Work Of Volunteers Across The Country
Today, President Bush celebrated National Volunteer Week and met with Peace Corps trainees preparing to leave for Guatemala. During National Volunteer Week, we recognize the millions of American volunteers who offer their time and talents to help the less fortunate and to create positive and lasting change in communities at home and around the globe. National Volunteer Week began in 1974 when President Richard Nixon signed an executive order establishing the week as an annual celebration of volunteering. Since then, every U.S. President has signed a proclamation promoting National Volunteer Week. This year's National Volunteer Week theme is "Volunteer to Change the World."
President Bush And His Administration Remain Committed To Building A Culture Of Service, Citizenship, And Responsibility
In his 2002 State of the Union Address, President Bush issued a national call to service and created the USA Freedom Corps to help Americans serve a cause greater than themselves.
In his 2005 State of the Union Address, President Bush announced the Helping America's Youth Initiative. The President asked Mrs. Bush to lead this nationwide effort to raise awareness about the challenges facing our youth, particularly at-risk boys, and to motivate caring adults to connect with youth in three key areas: family, school, and community. As the leader of this Initiative, Mrs. Bush has hosted one national conference and six regional conferences and participated in 132 other Helping America's Youth activities to promote the efforts of youth-serving organizations and the importance of engaging youth in volunteer service.
The Administration also created the President's Council on Service and Civic Participation. This group of community leaders, entertainers, business executives, professional athletes, and media personalities promotes the importance of volunteering and service. It also recognizes individuals and groups with the President's Volunteer Service Award. The President regularly honors local volunteers with this award during his domestic travel, and since 2002, he has met with more than 600 volunteers. Today, the President presented this award to two individuals:
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