May 5, 2009 DEARBORN, MI* â€“ The Fifth National Arab American Service Day will be held Saturday, May 16, 2009, across 19 cities, from New York to San Francisco. It is a day of impact and solidarity, in which hundreds of Arab Americans give back to their neighbors and communities. Each year the National Network for Arab American Communities (NNAAC), a project of the Arab Community Center for Economic & Social Services (ACCESS,) coordinates this project to foster and encourage volunteerism and service among diverse communities.
This yearâ€™s Service Day will kick-off with a rally at Hemlock Park in Dearborn. Volunteers will have an opportunity to work on three community projects: prepare food packages at Gleaners Food Pantry in Detroit or Taylor, prepare food packages for seniors at Focus: HOPE in Detroit, or beautify the Focus: HOPE campus by landscaping their park and boulevard. An expected 250 volunteers will give back in simple, but powerful ways during a time when community strength is needed more than ever.
Last year in metro-Detroit, over 200 volunteers came together to serve their communities in Dearborn, Warrendale, and Corktown. They planted gardens, cleaned up parks, painted benches, taught children healthy habits and much more. Locally, NNAAC is happy to once again announce that Loweâ€™s employee volunteers are participating and the company is donating products to support the community projects.
Communities across the country will also be participating in Service Day by coordinating hands-on service projects from serving special needs children and seniors to beautifying neighborhoods, building new homes, delivering food packages, and hosting health fairs. While each community has organized a unique project, and established local partnerships, they all have one thing in common: they are Arab Americans responding creatively to community needs.
The National Arab American Service Day is truly representative of the Arab American community, a community committed to giving back through service and to building bridges with our diverse neighbors,â€ said Sue Makki, Project Director of our national AmeriCorps program.
The motto â€œServing Communities, Connecting People,â€ beautifully captures the theme of the event. Through the common goal of community service, Arab Americans are joining together in new partnerships and collaborations.
The Service Day will be spearheaded by members of NNAACâ€™s national AmeriCorps program that are serving in these community organizations. It is the only national AmeriCorps program offering Arab Americans and non-Arabs the opportunity to serve at Arab American community organizations. This yearâ€™s National Service Day takes place during third nationwide celebration of AmeriCorps Week, May 9-16, spotlighting the vital work done by AmeriCorps members in communities across country since the national service program began 16 years ago.
*WHAT*: 5th Annual National Arab American Service Day *WHEN*: Saturday, May 16^th from 11:30 a.m. â€“ 4 p.m.* *WHERE*: Hemlock Park (located at the corner of Hemlock St. and Schaefer Rd, in Dearborn, MI.)