Support for Voting and Civic Engagement

CIVIC ENGAGEMENT: FOUNDATION OF DEMOCRACY

Empowering Individuals and Communities Through Civic Engagement

What is civic engagement and citizenship and why is it important for AmeriCorps members to increase civic engagement competencies? Aren't members civically engaged by virtue of their commitment to service?

Defining Active Citizenship To begin, there are many ideas and definitions of civic engagement. Most definitions include, in some form, at least three key components. Consider this definition from The State of Service-Related Research. The Grantmaker Forum on Community and National Service

Citizenship or civic participation consists of behaviors, attitudes, and actions that reflect concerned and active membership in a community. This includes the more traditional electoral citizenship activities, such as voting, serving on nonprofit boards or school boards, as well as less traditional forms of political participation, such as community organizing and social activism. It includes participation in small neighborhood-based efforts and the larger national and international movements.

Behaviors, attitudes and actions. These are the common principles of citizenship and civic engagement. Voting, serving, organizing and social activism are all expressions of active citizenship. And, while many individuals associate citizenship primarily, or solely, with voting, active citizenship clearly encompasses a broader range of involvement.

Active citizenship is about personal and community empowerment. Voting is a part of that package of empowerment, but only one part. Service is a part as well, but only a part. For individuals and communities to access legitimate power to promote and protect their interests and rights, they must also be able to serve, organize and to take action. By accessing as many sources of civic empowerment available, individuals and communities can impact their own lives, and the lives of others, in a significant way.

Voting alone is usually not sufficient. Service, by itself, is also often inadequate. Or organizing. Or even social action. But together they components of civic engagement can be very effective in not only addressing needs but also affecting change.

Well-trained AmeriCorps members can be significant influences and resources in helping facilitate an expanded awareness of active citizenship and civic engagement.

Roots of Active Citizenship Active citizenship has a strong tradition in this country dating back to its earliest days. In fact, the principles of active citizenship are embedded in this country’s founding document, the Declaration of Independence. This document outlines the fundamental rights extended to all individuals. The presence or absence of these rights is often referred to as social justice. To better understand the concept of active citizenship as expressed through civic engagement, one simply needs to reference the founding document that holds both a promise and a mandate.

Source: Corporation for National Service

Foundation and philanthropic support for voting in support of civic engagement from around the Web.



18 Central New York Nonprofits Vie for $8,500 Grant
Foundation: Central New York Community Foundation

The Central New York Community Foundation is conducting an online voting to grant $8,500 to one of the 18 projects that submitted their proposals. The month of September is the third of four...more

HENRY Devotes Income to Mortgage and Children

The Central New York Community Foundation is conducting an online voting to grant $8,500 to one of the 18 projects that submitted their proposals. The month of September is the third of four...more

Pepsi Decides to Give to a Good Cause

Pepsi's new project, Pepsi Refresh, involves giving $20 million dollars to a good cause instead of spending it in Superbowl advertising. They are doing a mass social media campaign in order to...more

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Cuts Ties With US Conservative Group
Foundation: Gates Foundation

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has recently announced that they will no longer be awarding a grant to American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) as a result of the council's involvement in...more




Find Top Fifty Foundation Givers

Source: Foundation Stats (Foundation Center) / CC BY-NC-SA 4.0

Social Enterprise Network Sites



The 1st annual 2013 Social Entrepreneurship Conference was a collaboration between the Maricopa Small Business Development Center, SEED SPOT, Wells Fargo, the SBA, and the Maricopa Community Colleges.




Social Services Jobs in Kansas

  Executive Director Jobs
  Substance Abuse Jobs
  Education Jobs
  Social Work Jobs
  Social Work Jobs


Federal Government Grant and Assistance Programs


Great Ships Initiative | Tribal Colleges and Universities Program | AmeriCorps | English for Heritage Language Speakers Grants to U.S. Institutions of Higher Education | ASPR Science Preparedness and Reponse Grants | Watershed Protection and Flood Prevention | Empowerment Zones Program | ACA State Innovation Models: Funding for Model Design and Model Testing Assistance | | Site Style by YAML | Grants.gov | Grants | Grants News | Sitemap | Privacy Policy

Edited by: Michael Saunders

© 2008-2022 Copyright Michael Saunders