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April 9, 2009
Congress recently passed the “Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act,” which will expand the number of AmeriCorps slots from 75,000 to 250,000 by 2017, and increase volunteer opportunities at home and abroad. President Obama’s engagement of a new generation of Americans in service, linked to our nation’s international diplomacy and development efforts, signals a defining opportunity to advance the full potential of smart power in addressing critical global challenges. This bi-partisan congressional action also reflects a welcome step to help boost national and international service.

Question to the Blogosphere:  Do you think that efforts like those supported by the Kennedy Service America Act will increase the opinion of the United States overseas?  Do you think that these effort and those of PeaceCorps increase mutual understanding between nations, or are volunteers unable to impact the opinions of many people in the countries they adopt as their homes for two years?  Do security concerns prevent Americans from going to the countries in which we need to promote public diplomacy and reconciliation efforts the most?

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