For Immediate Release
June 20, 2020
Contact: Cristina Valdivia Aguilar, firstname.lastname@example.org, (916) 508-9018
California Volunteers Announces “Summer of Service” for Young Californians
SACRAMENTO – First Partner Jennifer Siebel Newsom and Chief Service Officer Josh Fryday invite students, teens, and young adults across the state to join the #CaliforniansForAll Summer of Service. The initiative allows young Californians the opportunity to support organizations providing essential services and to receive recognition from the First Partner and California Volunteers, Office of the Governor for their commitment.
“Many young Californians have had their summer plans upended by the pandemic, and we are inviting them to turn this crisis into an opportunity,” explained Chief Service Officer Fryday. “Young Californians are an untapped resource for good and there is an urgent need for their skills and energy.”
In partnership with the Born This Way Foundation, California Association of School Councils and others, the #CaliforniansForAll Summer of Service will recruit young Californians from all backgrounds to help solve local and state issues through direct service while gaining valuable knowledge about their communities. The immediate priority for this summer is to mobilize young volunteers to address food insecurity by providing crucial support at local food banks or food pantries. Due to high rates of unemployment, food insecurity across many of our communities has doubled, while volunteer ranks have been depleted due to COVID-19. Most food banks accept volunteers as young as 13 as long as they are accompanied by an adult. Other opportunities available include giving blood and delivering meals, and other youth-led initiatives like virtual mentoring and creating care packages.
“From the very first weeks of this pandemic, young people across the state have stepped up to help their neighbors and lead the way in creating a culture of me to we.” said First Partner Newsom. “As we kick off summer, I can already say I am proud of the work they have done, and I look forward to seeing what all young Californians who sign up will achieve in the months to come.”
The Born This Way Foundation, led by Lady Gaga and her mother Cynthia Germanotta, builds action-oriented programs and useful resources for youth to thrive and drive change in their communities. The foundation will use its social media platform to promote summer of service.
“Together, we are facing the collective trauma of a pandemic, ongoing racial inequality, and systemic reform, among a host of other global issues. Yet, in the face of these challenges, young people have shown their ability to lead with resilience, bravery, and kindness. They are organizing, raising funds, and using their talents to support community efforts,” said Shadille Estepan, Communication and Outreach Manager at Born This Way Foundation. “Kindness is a service. It’s up to each of us to help meet the needs of our community by supporting the organizations providing essential services.”
The California Association of Student Councils and the Cal State Student Association will share the service initiative with their networks and invite young Californians to join.
“The #CaliforniansForAll Summer of Service initiative aligns with the curriculum offered in the CASC Summer Leadership Program and the hundreds of summer hours committed to volunteer training by our high school and college students. I am in full support of the effort to expand youth service across the state,” said June E. Thompson, Ph.D., Executive Director of California Association of Student Councils.
“In times of uncertainty, the one thing that unifies people is a strong sense of community. Volunteering is a great opportunity for college students to come together and better our state and society,” said Zahraa Khuraibet, Cal State Student Association President.
Zoomers to Boomers is a free service in which Zoomers (members of Generation-Z, born between 1995 and 2015) deliver food and necessities to immunocompromised and elderly Baby Boomers.
“We are Generation Z and we are here to help,” said Danny Goldberg, Zoomers to Boomers President.
Young Californians can volunteer at any time between now and August 31. The number of hours they commit is at their discretion and/or that of their parents. They will receive recognition based on the number of hours they serve — whether as a volunteer (10 hours), leader (50 hours) or ambassador (100 hours).
Those interested can visit californiavolunteers.ca.gov/summerofservice to learn more and sign up. Young Californians ages 13-17 must have a parent sign up on their behalf. Californians ages 18-25 can sign up directly with #CaliforniansForAll. In-person and virtual opportunities are available.
#CaliforniansForAll Summer of Service partner organizations include:
- Association of Independent California Colleges and Universities (AICCU)
- Born This Way Foundation (BTWF)
- Cal State Student Association (CSSA)
- California Association of Student Councils (CASC)
- University of California Student Association (UCSA)
- Student Senate for California Community Colleges (SSCCC)
- Zoomers to Boomers
California Volunteers, Office of the Governor is tasked with empowering Californians to take action to improve their communities.