NAKASEC Certified for The Presidential Volunteer Award

NAKASEC Recognized as a Certifying Organization for The President’s Volunteer Service Award and VA Youth Program Approaching Application Deadline

ANNANDALE, VA — The National Korean American Service & Education Consortium (NAKASEC) has been recognized as a Certifying Organization for The President’s Volunteer Service Award (PVSA).  Eligible students and community members of all ages are now able to receive PVSA recognition of their involvement in the community through NAKASEC.  As 2016 is an election year, there will be many civic engagement and community outreach opportunities, including phone banking, leading community outreach, and conducting voter registration drives.  NAKASEC is seeking volunteers who are committed to issues the Korean American and larger Asian American & Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities face at the local, state, and national level.  Volunteers will undergo trainings prior to direct involvement in the community.  NAKASEC’s electoral organizing efforts are non-partisan, and do not endorse any candidate or party in this upcoming November election.  Instead, our efforts will focus on registering and encouraging AAPI voters to head to the polls on election day, raising awareness on the issues prevalent to our community, increasing intergenerational civic engagement, and providing in-language materials and communication accommodation for the AAPI community.  To get involved, please fill out a volunteer application on the NAKASEC website. For more information about the PVSA program and eligibility requirements, please visit www.presidentialserviceawards.gov.

The AAPI community is the country’s fastest growing racial population. In 2013, there were 20.8 million AAPIs in the U.S., or 5.5% of the country’s population. By 2060, there are projected to be over 47 million AAPIs, or 11.7% of the U.S. population.  Yet, only 47% of eligible AAPI voters went to the polls in the 2012 presidential election.  The lack of public education about the importance of voting and making AAPI voices heard in the electoral process is a major factor resulting in low AAPI voter turnout.

In addition to seeking new volunteers, NAKASEC is also seeking applicants for the Summer Youth Empowerment Program (SYEP).  SYEP is NAKASEC’s  first summer youth program for high school students in Northern Virginia.  From July 5th to August 11th, students will meet three days a week: Tuesdays and Wednesday will feature guest speaker events, discussions, and workshops, and Thursdays are designated for interactive activities, which include field trips to D.C.  SYEP aims to educate on community issues and build progressive AAPI young leaders in our community through discussions and activities focused on social justice topics ranging from immigration to civic participation to identity.  For more information about the program and to apply, please visit http://bit.ly/syep2016.  The application will close on May 29th.  For questions or concerns, please contact SaeHee Chun at schun@nakasec.org or (703) 256-2208.

SaeHee Chun, Campaign Coordinator at NAKASEC, said: “NAKASEC is very excited to announce our first summer youth program for local students.  SYEP is unique in that it will focus on and provide opportunities for students to engage in social justice and AAPI topics not commonly explored or addressed in high schools.  By exploring intersectionalities and empowering students in how they choose to identify, we hope students develop and interest and understanding of the role of youth in social justice efforts.  As NAKASEC is now a Certifying Organization of the PVSA program, we hope that more students join us in our electoral organizing efforts and engage with the AAPI community to uplift our community’s intergenerational concerns during this election.”