Tuesday, March 21, 2023


Texas lawmakers consider legislation to prevent cities from self-governance, Connecticut considers policy options to alleviate an eviction crisis, and Ohio residents await community water systems.


Gov. Ron DeSantis breaks his silence on Trump's potential indictment and attacks Manhattan prosecutors, President Biden vetoes his first bill to protect socially conscious retirement investing, and the Supreme Court hears a case on Native American water rights.


The 41st state has opted into Medicaid which could be a lifeline for rural hospitals in North Carolina, homelessness barely rose in the past two years but the work required to hold the numbers increased, and destruction of the "Sagebrush Sea" from Oregon to Wyoming is putting protection efforts for an itty-bitty bunny on the map.

UT Leads with Formal Volunteering Efforts in AmeriCorps' Latest Research


Thursday, January 26, 2023   

According to AmeriCorps' latest research, Utah was the state with the highest number of residents volunteering with nonprofits in their communities from September 2020 through 2021.

Michael Smith, CEO of AmeriCorps, said those in the Beehive State and across the country had to find innovative ways to give back to their communities during the height of the global COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the data, about 40% of Utahns regularly volunteered with nonprofit organizations, which classifies as formal volunteering. Smith pointed out the number jumped to 61% when looking at how people from Utah helped in informal ways, such as doing favors for neighbors.

"To put that in context, we got 23% for formal and 51% for informal," Smith reported. "Those rates were pretty high, and it shows why we need to do this research. We need to study what was happening. What was the secret sauce?"

The research is conducted every two years in a joint effort between AmeriCorps and the U.S. Census Bureau.

Smith emphasized the research showed cause for concern and celebration. For the first time since the agencies started tracking the data in 2002, there was a 7% dip in the number of Americans engaging in formal volunteering. He added informal help remained strong and steady.

Smith admitted he was a bit nervous in receiving the numbers from the latest research, since he knew the COVID-19 pandemic would likely mean many were not able to volunteer as in previous years. He explained AmeriCorps was not shocked to see a dip in formal volunteering, but it was greater than expected.

At the same time, he added he was pleased to see when the going got tough, Americans really showed up for one another.

"We saw neighbors creating learning pods so that children of first responders could have a place to go and learn in a safe place," Smith recounted. "We saw folks saying 'I'm going to the grocery store. Anyone who can't get out to the grocery store in my apartment building, I'll go and get that done.' "

Smith hopes formal volunteering will rise again, but stressed AmeriCorps will be looking at ways to remove barriers to get even more Americans volunteering and civically engaged. He noted the need for volunteers within nonprofits is at an all-time high, which can also become a pipeline for employees in the social sector.

get more stories like this via email
Clear-cutting a forest can leave behind a scarred landscape, as seen in this 2019 photo from an area linked to the Enviva Northampton wood pellet plant in Garysburg, North Carolina. (Dogwood Alliance)


Climate-change groups are calling attention to the environmental destruction linked to the wood pellet industry - even as California is considering a …

Social Issues

Many Nebraskans know how crucial a family caregiver is to one of their family members. Now AARP research has put a dollar value on that unpaid care - …

Social Issues

South Dakota is home to one of the nation's largest American Indian reservations, and the area is part of a movement among tribal nations to take …

According to a report from the Appalachian Citizens Law Center, the black lung benefit rate for a miner with no dependents is now 738-dollars a month. (Adobe Stock)

Health and Wellness

As the cost of food, medicine and rent continues to climb, new data shows the benefits miners receive are now 40% less than what they received in 1969…


With the cost of farmland up by more than 8% percent in North Carolina, the state's Black farmers are struggling to purchase additional acreage or …

Garrett Betts inspects his 275-gallon tank and trailer setup. Before Garrett built the trailer, he was hauling water with the tank in the bed of his truck.(Photo by Zachary Shephard)


By Zachary Shepherd and Kelsey Paulus for Kent State News Lab.Broadcast version by Nadia Ramlagan reporting for the Kent State-Ohio News Connection Co…

Social Issues

Republican-sponsored bills and amendments in the Legislature would eliminate the Tennessee Commission on Children and Youth. More than 1.5-million …


The annual cleaning of acequias in northern New Mexico gets underway in earnest next week, just as a filmmaker debuts a documentary about their past…


Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021