National service has the potential to bring Americans together to tackle the competing crises of an ongoing pandemic, a worsening climate crisis, and increasing economic inequality. AmeriCorps, the nation’s largest national service program, does work of tremendous importance in our communities —but problems remain around who is able to serve in the program. AmeriCorps must embrace a new vision that centers equity and accessibility to ensure that all who want to serve are able to serve.
Robert Godfried is a policy fellow at Next100, a think tank focused on empowering those with lived experience to impact policy in that area. Robert’s work focuses on increasing equity and inclusion in AmeriCorps and the new Civilian Climate Corps. He draws on his experience in tenant organizing as an AmeriCorps member to inform his work advocating for better public service opportunities. He has previously worked as a field organizer for Elizabeth Warren’s 2020 presidential campaign, and as an associate at a progressive political digital marketing firm. He has a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Columbia University.
“Not everybody can be famous but everybody can be great, because greatness is determined by service.” ―Martin Luther King Jr.
Sunday Platform is our most important and long-standing community event. These gatherings educate, stimulate personal growth, inspire reflection and action, and strengthen our community. Sunday meetings usually begin with music, followed by greetings and a talk given by a Society Leader, member, or guest. Platforms cover a variety of topics that reflect current events, pressing social issues, and Ethical Culture philosophy. A collection basket is passed and money is shared between the Society and a charity selected for that day. While contributions are always appreciated, Sunday meetings are free and open to the public. Each Sunday meeting is followed by a luncheon and social hour.