Making an Impact Press Release

For immediate release

October 3, 2011

Topeka, Kansas – Kids Voting USA (KVUSA) is pleased to announce a national civic engagement/service-learning contest titled, “Making an Impact.”  The contest requires 6th-12th graders to write a three-page essay about a recent civic engagement/service-learning project they completed.  Contestants are encouraged to submit photos and videos that capture the essence of their projects.  KVUSA will select the top projects that have created positive change locally and showcase them.  The winners in the 6th – 8th grade category as well as the winners in the 9th – 12th grade category will be flown to Washington D.C. to participate in the “Engaging Today’s Youth for Tomorrow’s Civic Leadership” symposium.  The symposium is a half day conference, which will highlight the winners of the “Making an Impact” contest, showcase civic engagement experts and provide the audience with a unique international perspective on civic engagement.  The Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools, CIRCLE (The Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement), League of Women Voters, Mikva Challenge, National Council for the Social Studies, and Rock the Vote have partnered with Kids Voting USA to make the contest and symposium possible.

“Kids Voting USA is excited to recognize students who are having a positive impact on their communities,” said Rachel Willis, executive director of Kids Voting USA.  “What’s a better grand prize, than a trip to our nation’s capital? Both the contest and symposium are a great civic learning opportunity for students, teachers and parents.”

The organization is accepting the “Making an Impact” essays beginning today through January 1st.  The contest winners will be announced during the week of January 16th – 20th.  The “Engaging Today’s Youth for Tomorrow’s Civic Leadership” symposium will be held on March 29th, 2012, at the Ronald Reagan International Building Rotunda.

These activities are being hosted in celebration of the 20th anniversary of Kids Voting USA.  Since 1992, KVUSA has worked with more than 4.5 million K-12 students in civic education and citizenship with a particular focus and a national standard based curriculum that promotes informed voting, technology and media literacy, and service learning and community engagement.  More information about the 20th anniversary celebration and these events will be shared throughout the end of the year.

For an entry form and the specifics about the “Making an Impact” contest and the “Engaging Today’s Youth for Tomorrow’s Civic Leadership” symposium go to www.kidsvotingusa.org/EYT2012.

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Kids Voting USA is a national nonprofit, nonpartisan organization working to secure the future of democracy by preparing young people to be educated, engaged citizens. The organization operates through a national network of community-based affiliates in 19 different states that partner with schools and election officials.  For more information, visit www.kidsvotingusa.org.

Media Contacts:

Rachel Willis (rwillis@kidsvotingusa.org or 785-271-6350)

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