"In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, we have a historic opportunity. The country is hungry for change and we do not have to live in an America that accepts poverty as a fact of life or chooses to ignore it. At so many critical moments in our nation's history, it has been our young people who have made a difference, and that's why I am asking them to join me and their peers in making the eradication of poverty the cause of this generation."
Senator John Edwards
From October 17-28th, Senator John Edwards will launch Project Opportunity on a two-week tour to ten colleges and universities. Project Opportunity
is a project of the Center for Promise and Opportunity
, of which Senator Edwards is the honorary chair.
The goal of Project Opportunity is to get more young people involved in their communities and to encourage them to advocate and promote policies that expand opportunity.
The tour will be making stops at:
University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill — October 17
University of Missouri - Columbia — October 18
Yale University — October 19
Harvard University — October 20
Dartmouth College — October 21
University of Texas - Austin — October 24
University of California - Berkeley — October 25
University of Wisconsin - Madison — October 26
Florida A&M University — October 27
University of Michigan - Ann Arbor — October 28
Young people who already care about the issue of poverty are concerned that too many of their peers have given up on public service. Students will be asked to take the Project Opportunity pledge and commit to 20 hours of community service per semester. Local service opportunities will be posted on the Project Opportunity website, providing web-based tools for recruiting friends and tracking service efforts, and providing a forum for students to blog about their experiences and learn from and meet each other.
In order to beat poverty, good policies are necessary. Good people are needed to get good policies put in place. As individuals, many young people understand they can accomplish much, but they realize that corporations, the government, and even the colleges and universities they attend need to do their share. At the encouragement of Senator Edwards, Project Opportunity will press for policy solutions at the local and national level, and work with their own colleges and universities to maximize their impact in the fight against poverty.