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Americorps - Granting The Power To Change This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   With the downsizing of government, programs that benefit teens are being reduced, sometimes into oblivion. The new AmeriCorps program is one of these programs threatened by the Republican-dominated Congress. The benefits, though, are not only received by us, but by our community as well.

AmeriCorps is a program to integrate college-bound individuals into the community by allowing them to volunteer in programs that produce positive results for the multitudes, such as the Salvation Army and homeless shelters. As a "thank-you" for service, the government helps with education costs after a year or two of service.

Our President, whose plan this was, thinks the AmeriCorps program is excellent and benefits all those involved. Mr. Gingrich and company disagree, calling this program a waste of government dollars. I say if a large number of young adults get involved, many of our problems can be solved, or at least tackled and reduced. In return, many young adults, for whom college may seem financially out of reach, will be one step closer to receiving the education needed to take hold of the future.

We have seen what the government can do and how they "help" solve large problems, when in reality, the problems only get larger. Here is a well thought out program created by the government to help fix some of the problems in this country. I think it is time that more programs like AmeriCorps are created, not destroyed. Clinton stands by his program. Gingrich is out to destroy it. In-between is confusion, one-sided ideas, and harsh criticism. Maybe for once our leaders can cut through that mess and see that programs that give us the power to make a difference are a necessity to set this country straight again. ?


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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