Posted December 11, 2012 at 5:17 PM
by Kenzi Green, Director of Communications, College Democrats of America
On Election Day, young Americans proved themselves to be a powerful voting bloc. They registered thousands of voters and spoke out about issues that matter most to college students and recent graduates, from marriage equality to student loan reform. Young Americans, who accounted for 19% of voters on November 6, have no doubt solidified themselves as grassroots organizing superstars, but those efforts cannot end once the election cycle ends.
College Democrats will certainly continue to support President Obama’s policies in his second term; but we will also be using our appetite for organizing and commitment to Democratic ideals to help us carry out service projects in our respective communities in the coming weeks and months. The president’s vision for our country relies on a productive partnership between the government and its citizens, through which we all work to build safe and healthy communities.
That’s why the College Democrats of America sponsors a week of service every year, where College Democrats all across the country take on service projects in their area, forging community partnerships and investing in the the posterity of their neighborhood institutions. Democrats believe that we are greatest when we are working together–in politics and in life. This belief in unity has been central to the Democratic party for a long time, and it is what inspires CDA to continue this tradition of service each year.
Service projects can be as simple as tutoring in your local school system, volunteering at a nearby homeless shelter, or spending a day cleaning up a public park. They can also be more structured and long lasting. For example, the College Democrats at the University of Central Florida hosted a “Yes We Canned” food drive over Thanksgiving and participated in Homeless Awareness Month in their local community.
For youth organizers, this fall has been a busy one; between Election Day and cramming for finals, free time is hard to come by. But it’s important that we make time to give back. The merit of our education system and the quality of our civic life depend on the health of our communities. When we invest in our communities, we are all better off.
Young Americans know how to organize for political campaigns–they know how to craft messaging and inspire people to support their candidates. This holiday season, we will be using those same skills to orchestrate important community service projects. The projects will be fun, rewarding, difficult, and discussed on Twitter–join the conversation using the hashtag #CDAServes.
But serving others is not just a seasonal responsibility. By devoting our time and resources to highlighting service this December, the College Democrats of America hopes to remind people that service should be a lifelong habit, part of our daily lives.