Obama’s call to service and pledges to the nonprofit sector

 In Community, Leadership, Social Justice

With the historic inauguration of president-elect Barack Obama less than a day away, communities across the country are responding to Obama’s call to service in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the legendary civil rights activist. In 1994, Congress transformed the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday into a national day of community service. This year, the Corporation for National and Community Service and the Presidential Inaugural Committee are using the Internet and social media to spread the word about how people can get involved. USAservice.org now lists over 12,000 projects, double the number from 2008.

As nonprofits nationwide respond to a higher demand for services while weathering an economic downturn, many in the social sector are hoping the national day of service will inspire volunteerism throughout the year. To that effect, nonprofits are working to help Obama expand national service while also holding the new administration to pledges for support. For example, in Obama’s Blueprint for Change, he pledges to create a “Social Investment Fund Network” that will use federal seed money to leverage private sector funding and create an agency dedicated to building the capacity, innovation and effectiveness of the nonprofit sector.

Tomorrow the swearing-in ceremony for the 44th president will begin at 8:30 a.m. Pacific time and will be shown live at venues throughout the Bay Area. Televised coverage also begins at 8:30am.

The San Francisco Chronicle lists broadcast venues, large and small. The largest viewing will be at Oracle Arena in Oakland, with a live broadcast and booths operated by community groups. This event is the culmination of 10 days of community gatherings called “Unity for the Sake of Change,” co-hosted by the Alameda County Board of Supervisors.


Martin Luther King Jr. Day events in Bay Area by The San Francisco Chronicle.

USAservice.org – Search for volunteer opportunities in your community.

The Chronicle of Philanthropy – How Barack Obama Can Help Charities Become Key Forces in the Economic Recovery

Obama’s Blueprint for Change

San Francisco Bay Area Inauguration Events

Martin Luther King Jr. Biographies


Washington, DC Martin Luther King, Jr.
National Memorial

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