Mayors highlight priorities on National Service Recognition Day

For National Service Recognition Day, the mayors of St. Paul and Minneapolis used the day to highlight their priorities for the cities, including access to education.

Leaders of local service organizations joined Mayor Jacob Frey in the Minneapolis City Hall rotunda as he unveiled a proclamation recognizing April 3 as National Service Recognition Day in Minneapolis.

“You won’t see transformative change, unless the community is involved, and the community will not be involved unless you have volunteers and service-oriented individuals doing the hard work on the ground on a day-to-day basis and that’s why they need to be recognized today,” said Mayor Frey.

“Your service makes a difference, you make a difference, you’re making this world and city a better place,” said Sam Schuth, Minnesota Director of Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS). 

The day, which is celebrated nationwide, highlights the contributions of those who join organizations like AmeriCorps and Senior Corps. Those members serve in groups like College Possible, an organization that helps low-income students realize the dream of attending and graduating from college.

“I thought it was a really good opportunity, to give back, give that opportunity to another student to learn how to get to their dream college,” said Susana Perez, an AmeriCorps member.

Perez used the occasion to highlight St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter administration’s efforts to encourage more volunteering and his proposal to establish a college savings program in St. Paul.

“With just a $50 contribution from a college savings account,” said Mayor Carter. “That will pay off over and over again for our city. In terms of – one – our young people going to college and this is a community that’s invested in them and has invested in them.”

Carter told Fox 9 his staff is still researching other cities like San Francisco and St. Louis, which have launched a similar program. 

According to the CNCS, there are 2,900 members of AmeriCorps in Minnesota and an estimated 11,000 Senior Corps volunteers.