Serve America Act & GIVE Act

The Serve America Act (S. 277) is a Senate bill that would triple the number of volunteers in national service programs like AmeriCorps to 250,000 by 2013, expand service opportunities for people of all ages, create several new service programs, and support innovation in the nonprofit sector by social entrepreneurs focused on solving national problems.  A vote on the Act, sponsored by Sens. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass) and Oren Hatch (R-Utah) and endorsed by President Obama, is expected this week.

Read a summary of the Serve America Act here.

Read Independent Sector's Sample Letter in support of the Act here.

On March 19, 2009, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the similarly themed Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education ("GIVE") Act (H.R. 1388) by a vote of 321-105. 

Read a summary of the GIVE Act here and the Volunteer Generation Fund amendment here.

Read National Service Bill Passes House of Representatives in The Nonprofit Times here.

4 thoughts on “Serve America Act & GIVE Act

  1. I’m writing as grants manager of a religious nonprofit with a long history of sending volunteers to serve overseas in such areas as education and health care. Would the Serve America Act enable us to offset some of our expenses in sending our volunteers to serve overseas? Is the aid allocated by the act only available to those serving through government-sponsored volunteer programs? Or would any of those programs (e.g., “Volunteers for Prosperity”) work with existing overseas-sending volunteer organizations?

  2. Passed the House on March 31. Now waiting for the President’s signature when he returns from his European G-20 trip.

  3. The House will take up the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act today. The GIVE Act, now also passed by the Senate (on 3/26), is similar to the Serve America Act but not identical. For example, it contains an advocacy restriction similar to the one filed by Sen. DeMint that did not make the final Serve America Act. We’ll need to wait to see how the Senate-House conference committee meetings resolve the differences between the bills before they get signed by the President.

  4. Are the Serve America Act and the GIVE Act competing legislation? That is, will only one be made into law, or will they allow both to go through?
    I would imagine that if there are no redundancies they would allow both to pass, but I am having trouble finding information on this.

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