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Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, Jewish Community Foundation of Greater Hartford, GYL Financial Synergies, and More Perfect Partner to Expand National Youth Community Service Opportunities

May 29, 2024 | WEST HARTFORD, CT – Gov. Ned Lamont, Sen. Blumenthal, Cong. Larson, AmeriCorps CEO Michael Smith, Hartford Mayor Arunan Arulampalam, and West Hartford Mayor Shari Cantor were among the speakers outlining plans for new service opportunities in Connecticut and nationally at the first-ever Connecticut Service Symposium on May 29.The event was held at the 1877 Club at the University of Hartford in West Hartford.

Leaders from across the state and nation celebrated public service initiatives happening in Connecticut and discussed how to advance these efforts. They also shared their views on leadership efforts in other states that are promoting a stronger culture of service.

The Hartford Foundation for Public Giving, Jewish Community Foundation of Greater Hartford, GYL Financial Synergies, and More Perfect are honored to be partnering with Gov. Lamont and other state and local leaders for this symposium. Along with the groups, local philanthropists led by Gerry and Karen Goldberg are working to enhance service opportunities for young adults across the United States.

The institutions and private donors have committed more than $200,000 to seed a national strategy to double the number of civilian national service opportunities for young adults from 125,000 to 250,000 by 2026. The effort will leverage the expertise and experience of community service programs such as City Year, YouthBuild and The Corps Network.

“The Hartford Foundation has long supported youth employment initiatives to provide young people with tangible work experience and the chance to give back to their communities,” said Hartford Foundation President and CEO Jay Williams. “We are glad to be working with Governor Lamont as well as local and national organizations and philanthropists to offer job experience and expand public service.”

“We’re energized by the opportunity to work with Gov. Lamont and these other amazing institutions and provide expanded opportunities for public service to young people across Connecticut and the country,” said Gerry Goldberg, CEO and Co-Founder of GYL Financial Synergies. “Together, we can strengthen public service in the country and provide incredible opportunities for the leaders of tomorrow.”

“Jewish philanthropists are proud to stand behind programs that bolster the communities where we and our families live and work, which in turn improves the quality of life for all,” said Walter Harrison, Interim President and CEO of the Jewish Community Foundation of Greater Hartford. “We’re pleased to be partnering with all the involved institutions and donors.”

“National service offers life-changing experiences for young people as they approach adulthood and provides a solid foundation as they prepare to enter the workforce and contribute positively to their communities,” said John Bridgeland, CEO and Co-Chair of More Perfect.

“When our young people engage in public service, they not only gain personal experience but also help bridge divides in our society by collaborating with people of diverse socioeconomic and racial backgrounds to work together for the common good,” said Alan Khazei, More Perfect Co-chair.