Points of Light Celebrates People in Action During National Volunteer Week

Members of Congress from Across the Country to Honor Local Volunteer Leaders

Apr 11, 2012 – Points of Light, the leading volunteer organization, will lead the nation in a celebration of people doing extraordinary things through service during National Volunteer Week, April 15-21. The week honors the people and organizations dedicated to taking action and addressing problems in their communities.

“National Volunteer Week focuses attention on the impact and power of volunteerism and service as an integral aspect of our civic leadership,” said Points of Light CEO Michelle Nunn. “It is a time of celebration and of recognition of the power of people to create change.”

National Volunteer Week, sponsored by Reward Volunteers®, draws the support and endorsement of the president and Congress, governors, mayors and municipal leaders, as well as corporate and community groups across the country. President Barack Obama will issue a national proclamation, and members of Congress from across the country are sharing the story of a Daily Point of Light Award honoree from their district or state.

During National Volunteer Week, Points of Light will host special events and recognize and mobilize thousands of volunteers across the nation. Highlights of the week include:

  • The national Make A Difference Day Award luncheon on April 19 will celebrate the 2012 Make A Difference Day honorees for their outstanding contributions and impact through voluntary action. Each will receive a $10,000 grant from Newman’s Own and a trip to Washington, D.C., to the event. In addition, the event highlights the commitment of Newman’s Own, USA WEEKEND Magazine and Points of Light in inspiring, equipping and mobilizing people to create change. The keynote address will be given by Kevin Bacon, actor, musician and founder of SixDegrees.org.
  • A Billion + Change will host a breakfast and panel discussion at the 2012 Business and Civic Leadership (BCLC) National Conference on April 17 on the ways skills-based volunteering can create high-impact social change. The discussion will focus on ways companies can offer their best business skills and talents to benefit the mission of nonprofits.

Points of Light will also launch two new public service announcements during National Volunteer Week to encourage volunteers to take action in their communities. One, by country music icon Reba, urges people to connect to Points of Light to find local volunteer opportunities. The other, by Ann Lopez, formal national spokesperson for the National Kidney Foundation and founder of The Lopez Foundation, highlights National Donate Life Month in support of organ, eye and tissue donation. Both videos are available on Points of Light’s YouTube channel and the National Volunteer Week website.

Now through July 7, volunteers are encouraged to download and use the Reward Volunteers® app for iPhone or web widget. Reward Volunteers is a free, easy way for anyone that volunteers to log their time, post to Facebook and earn rewards for themselves and the organizations they serve.

Points of Light is also recognizing 10 national nonprofits that are making a tremendous impact on our country’s most critical challenges. These organizations, which have partnered with Points of Light, are mobilizing volunteers in meaningful ways to create change through hands-on service. These organizations also demonstrate a collaborative spirit through partnerships with other organizations to help strengthen communities across the nation. Partners include: Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., American Red Cross, Big Sunday, Blue Star Families, Boys and Girls Clubs of America, FoodCorps, Give an Hour, National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (VOAD), Share Our Strength and United Methodist Communications.

Points of Light is also recognizing its Leadership Partners, companies making important, strategic investments in the communities where they live and work through their partnership with Points of Light. These companies not only provide employee volunteers’ time and talent, they provide thought leadership and significant financial support. They include tier one partners American Express, Hasbro, Target, University of Phoenix and the UPS Foundation; and tier two partners Altria Group, Best Buy, GlaxoSmithKline, Google and JPMorgan Chase.

About Points of Light

Points of Light is the leading volunteer organization with more than 20 years of history and a bipartisan presidential legacy. Our mission is to inspire, equip and mobilize people to take action that changes the world. We connect people to their power to make a meaningful difference by providing access to tools, resources and opportunities to help volunteers use their time, talent, voice and money to meet the critical needs of our communities. We are organized into three divisions: Programs, Civic Incubatorand Action Networks, which include HandsOn Network, the largest network of 250 local volunteer centers across the country and around the world; generationOn, the youth service movement that ignites the power of kids to make their mark on the world; AmeriCorps Alums, the national service alumni network that activates the next generation of service leaders; and Points of Light Corporate Institute, our enterprise that enables companies to engage their employees and customers in service. For more information, visit www.pointsoflight.org.

Media contact:
Anne O’Neill
Points of Light