of the next US President is heating up this month and in the months
to come. Thousands of people volunteer each year for political candidates,
not just the Presidential candidate volunteers. Here are some facts
and figures on the USA voting public. If you are organizing a political
campaign that uses volunteers, some of this information may be of assistance.
of adults in the US are registered to vote
million people voted in the US election of 2000; 55% of voting age
of women voted in 2000; 58% of men
of registered voters in Wyoming turned out to vote in the 2000 election
1972, eighteen year olds got the vote for the first time; 50% of 18-24
year olds voted that year
2000, 36% of 18- 24 year olds voted
of adults say they vote in presidential elections; 47% in statewide
elections, and 39% in local elections
of adults in Flint, MI are registered to vote; they are 18% more likely
to be registered than all adults in the US
of all young people whose parents vote in every election, reported
voting in November 1998
of people under 30 are informed about political candidates from late-night
TV show hosts like Jay Leno and David Letterman.
AmeriCorps Funding is Up
passed, and the President signed, a spending bull that includes $441
million for the AmeriCorps national service programs. This is a 62%
increase in support. It includes money for programs, beginning October
allows for the enrollment of 75,000 members for this fiscal year. This
is a dramatic reversal from last years allocation of 30,000 slots.
years reduction in funds was due to poor accounting and mismanagement
at the Corporation for National and Community Service. Congress insisted
the Corporation mend its financial house. The Inspector Generals
office has worked with the Corporation to remedy the problems.
Cities Around the World
percent of the worlds population lives in cities, but around
the world, most notably in the Western world, suburban areas are
looking like their city cousins. They are more diverse demographically,
places where businesses locate, and have greater economic opportunity.
How can cities hang onto business and capital and suburbs do the
same? Much of it is done with the help of volunteers. If you are
active in neighborhood groups or work with economic development
programs, here are some suggestions that can renew even the smallest
city or jazz up the newest suburb.
citizens to participate.
from a variety of sources shows that cities are less crime
ridden because private organizations engaged in economic and
community development. In some cases these nonprofit organizations
are helping control not just crime but the overall "health"
of the neighborhood.
suburbs and cities have changed how they look with pedestrian
malls and face lifts. Ownership of such activity works best
when volunteers, who are also business owners are involved
in the process of deciding how to implement physical changes.
These "face-lifts" make core retail areas a destination
for young and old. In addition, citizens need to discuss how
more people mean more cars, more waste, and more need for
landfill space. Looking good is important to success in renewal
and suburban areas continue to grow rapidly. There is also
greater diversity in the population. There are more elderly,
single , and non-family households.
neighborhood associations can help bridge racial and economic
gaps between people. Some cities, like Portland, OR, have
robust neighborhood groups that sponsor everything from block
parties to crime prevention initiatives. Volunteer involvement
is essential to healthy suburban or urban living. There is
even a growing interest in such things as co-housing or eco-villages.
The challenge is that some minorities might feel isolated
from the larger environment.
may have more people working at home, lessening commuting,
with its traffic jams and pollution. The other option computers
provide is for volunteers and planners to create simulated
communities before making "real" changes. Thus allowing
time for citizen input and involvement in solutions to potential