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Category Archives: UServeUtah Featured

Welcome Friends in Service

Dear Friends in Service,

It is inspiring to hear stories from all around the state of Utahns’ commitment and passion for serving their friends, families, neighbors, and communities. This spirit of service has earned Utah the #1 ranking in the nation for volunteerism and civic engagement for nine consecutive years! Volunteerism helps meet critical needs in Utah and provides significant economic and social value for our citizens and communities. Each year Utah volunteers dedicate millions of hours of service. Last year alone that service was estimated to be worth $3.5 billion.

The poet, Henry Longfellow said: “No man or woman is so poor as to have nothing worth giving.” This is the vitality of volunteering; it is something that anyone can do – no matter where they live, their age, income, religious or cultural affiliation. Volunteering is a wonderful opportunity that is open to all of us and there is a vast range of possibilities for volunteerism in Utah. I invite you to join with us as we focus on making a difference.

Yours in Service,

Lt. Governor Spencer Cox

Purpose

The purpose of the Utah Commission on Service and Volunteerism is to enable individuals, communities, and organizations in Utah to benefit from the service, power, skills, and passion of volunteers.

Our mission is to strengthen and grow bonds across Utah communities through the uniting power of service and volunteerism.

Our vision is vibrant, inclusive, productive communities with active, engaged citizens.

View our 2017-2019 STRATEGIC PLAN.

Our work is based in these core values:

  • Service Unites. Volunteering collectively grows bonds across various experiences, beliefs, backgrounds and barriers.
  • We believe that volunteerism is a uniquely American form of civic engagement that is fundamental to our democracy and critical to our communities.
  • We believe volunteers build strong communities and have a lasting impact on local needs.
    Utah volunteers are exceptional. They are willing to make the time, and the connections that come from reaching out in service to and with others.
  • We know that volunteers are bedrock in any community. Neighborhoods where volunteers gather and serve are more vibrant, safe, and engaged.
  • People who volunteer feel a unique sense of ownership and responsibility and are in turn transformed by the experience.

Our competitive advantages include:

  • We offer state leadership. As a branch of the state government and a program of the Office of the Lieutenant Governor, we can use our bully pulpit to promote volunteerism with authority.
  • We collaborate. We have years of experience working in the public and private sectors to focus resources on volunteerism.
  • We have data. Our studies measure the impact volunteers have on our lives and our communities.
  •  We have expertise. Our training to volunteer organizations helps them better use and support volunteers.
  • We bring resources to the table. Our nationally-recognized AmeriCorps programs connect local needs with manpower in a cost effective and efficient way.

UServeUtah, the Utah Commission on Service and Volunteerism, has a long history of advocating the value of volunteerism, training skilled volunteers, coordinating a statewide system to facilitate service, developing innovative AmeriCorps programs, and promoting Utah’s national leadership in volunteerism.

National Service

This year AmeriCorps, the Domestic Peace Corps, will engage more than 80,000 Americans nationwide in intensive, results-driven service in areas of critical need. UServeUtah administers all Utah AmeriCorps State grants and manages the Utah program portfolio comprising 10 AmeriCorps programs that target underserved populations in the focus areas of Economic Opportunity, Education, Environmental Stewardship, Disaster Preparedness, Healthy Futures, and Veterans and Military Families. In the 2015-2016 grant year AmeriCorps programs recruited over 23,000 volunteers who gave over 250,000 hours of service with an estimated value of over $6.2 million dollars.

In 2016, Utah AmeriCorps programs operating throughout the state engaged 1,640 AmeriCorps members. These members provided services to the homeless population, tutored and mentored youth, connected underserved populations to health care resources, restored and maintained parks, streams, and trail systems, taught environmental stewardship, and operated after school programs. Since 1994, more than 15,000 Utahns have participated in AmeriCorps programs, dedicating over 14 million hours to building up communities across the state.

In the event of a disaster, UServeUtah acts as the liaison with the Corporation for National and Community Service to call upon National Service resources such as AmeriCorps members for on-ground support and serves on the State Emergency Response Team (SERT) as the the lead in coordinating volunteer and donations management statewide.

Community Engagement

UServeUtah seeks to establish a strong infrastructure to support volunteers in Utah and functions as a consultant, and training resource to build and cultivate organizational capacity and increase volunteer utilization. UServeUtah also actively promotes volunteerism and is committed to creating ways for Utahns to identify and engage in quality volunteer and service opportunities. A primary aim of UServeUtah is to help organizations successfully use service & volunteerism as a strategy to fulfill their mission as well as increasing the number of highly skilled and long-term volunteers serving in Utah.

UServeUtah accomplishes this by (1) providing successful statewide trainings that ensure organizations are prepared to use volunteers effectively, (2) supporting businesses in creating employee volunteer programs throughout the state, and (3) helping local municipalities recognize and utilize volunteers as an effective means of addressing community needs.