National service agency recognizes Utah volunteers during AmeriCorps Week, annual celebration of millions of Americans who unite in service

WASHINGTON, DC – On Tuesday, March 14, Michael D. Smith, CEO of AmeriCorps, awarded the President’s Volunteer Service Lifetime Achievement Awards to four Provo, Utah volunteers who have collectively served tens of thousands of hours. AmeriCorps is the federal agency for volunteerism and national service.

According to new AmeriCorps research, in 2021, at the height of the pandemic, nearly 1 million formal volunteers contributed 93.3 million hours of service through organizations worth an estimated $2.7 billion, making Utah the number one state in the US for formal volunteering.

The Utah County Senior Volunteers program is a division of the Utah County Health Department which includes Foster Grandparent and Senior Companion programs. Volunteers serve Utah County children and home-bound seniors across Utah and Wasatch County. 

Within the next decade both Utah and Wasatch counties will face an unprecedented increase in older Americans. These older adults will face significant challenges which put them at risk of losing their ability to live independently. Challenges to mobility are often created by geography, as well as the environment in the service area. The Senior Companion Program engages volunteers who provide respite, companionship and transportation to help older adults maintain independence and stay in their homes longer.

“The President’s Volunteer Service Award continues to highlight the enduring spirit of service that unites Americans and transforms lives,” said AmeriCorps CEO Michael D. Smith. “I am honored to recognize four outstanding volunteers for dedicating thousands of hours each to service to their community and the country during AmeriCorps Week.”

“Utah County Foster Grandparents was one of the original programs beginning in 1965 and continues to make a difference in the community to this day,” said Cheri Tuckett, Foster Grandparent Program coordinator in Utah County. “In 2022, Utah County Senior Volunteers provided 92 volunteers in Utah and Wasatch Counties serving 941 individuals. Our volunteers donated 64,346 hours providing companionship, transportation and respite services to help seniors remain independent and healthy, or serving as classroom grandparents, tutoring and mentoring children with special and exceptional needs.”

Today’s President’s Volunteer Service Lifetime Achievement honorees are AmeriCorps Senior volunteers serving with Utah County Senior Volunteers through the Utah County Health Department include:

  • Candace Camp, 14,607 hours
  • Lucy Fenn, 3,032 hours
  • Trudy McBride, 6,204 hours 
  • Jessie Shirk, 12,416 hours

Additionally, Utah is a leader in national service. Currently, more than 3,800 AmeriCorps member and AmeriCorps Seniors volunteers are meeting local needs, strengthening communities, and expanding opportunity through national service at more than 600 locations across the state. Last year, AmeriCorps invested more than $14.6 million in federal funding to support cost-effective community solutions, directly working with other local organizations.

Led by AmeriCorps and managed in partnership with Points of Light, the President’s Volunteer Service Award allows organizations to recognize their most exceptional volunteers based on service over a 12-month period or a lifetime. The awards program began in 2003 and honors individuals whose service positively impacts communities in every corner of the nation and inspires others to act.

This announcement coincides with AmeriCorps Week. During this week, AmeriCorps celebrates the millions of Americans ages 18 to 55+, who have served with AmeriCorps and AmeriCorps Seniors. In nearly 40,000 locations right now, more than 200,000 people serve as members or volunteers across all 50 states and territories. To join the celebration, follow AmeriCorps on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and join the conversation by sharing pictures and stories on Twitter, using #AmeriCorpsWeek. 

A President’s Volunteer Service Lifetime Achievement Award winner in Utah
A President’s Volunteer Service Lifetime Achievement Award winner in Utah
A President’s Volunteer Service Lifetime Achievement Award winner in Utah
A President’s Volunteer Service Lifetime Achievement Award winner in Utah