OregonServes, (officially recognized as the State Service Commission for Oregon) was created in 1994 to provide Oregonians with a statewide entity to focus service and volunteer efforts, to enhance the ethic of service and voluntarism in the state and provide funds for state-based AmeriCorps programs. As a state commission, OregonServes’ role is to promote and elevate service, volunteerism and civic engagement in Oregon Communities.
The Commission’s work is supported and advised by a maximum-25 member board of Governor-appointed commissioners, whose role is to fulfill the statutory responsibilities for state service commissions as authorized by 42 U.S.C. § 12638 and outlined in 45 CFR 2550.50 National and Community Service Trust Act of 1990 as amended by the Serve America Act. The Oregon Volunteer and Community Service Act, passed in 2007, also solidified Oregon Volunteers’ role to promote the development of better communities by using citizen participation and volunteerism to foster greater civic responsibility.
With changes made by the Oregon Legislature in 2021 (Senate Bill 77) the Oregon Volunteers Commission was renamed OregonServes, and other modifications were made to statutes governing the OregonServes commission and operations to align with current practice and federal law.
With changes made by the Oregon Legislature in 2018, the Oregon Volunteers: Commission for Voluntary Action & Service was transferred from the Governor’s Office to the Higher Education Coordinating Commission, through House Bill 5201 and House Bill 4163, effective July 1, 2018. Oregon Volunteers is housed in the HECC Office of Workforce Investments.
Primary Program Areas
- Volunteerism: focus service and volunteer efforts
- Civic Engagement: enhance the ethic of service and voluntarism in the state
- AmeriCorps: provide funds for state-based AmeriCorps programs
Strengthening our communities by inspiring Oregonians to actively engage, volunteer, and serve.
OregonServes promotes and supports AmeriCorps, volunteerism, and civic engagement to strengthen Oregon communities.
For Oregon Volunteers:
- OregonServes is the trusted resource on volunteerism and civic engagement.
- OregonServes is integral and vital to Oregon's addressing of our state's greatest needs.
- OregonServes is sustainable with resources and stability to meet its mission.
- Volunteering is an integral, prominent and essential part of everyday life.
- Oregon's 36 counties have strong, healthy communities built and sustained through service.
- Public engagement drives government.
- Community: Strengthening Oregon through service and volunteerism is the heart of everything we do.
- Diversity: Commission programs, members and staff strive to reflect the full diversity of all Oregonians. We are especially attentive to issues of diversity including: race, gender, political affiliation, class, education, geography, interests, disability, sexual orientation, age, culture.
- Effectiveness: The results of an efficient, effective, strategic use of resources will further the Commissionʼs mission. We will make decisions in line with short and long term priorities.
- Mutual Benefit - Gyoto Ryoung: We take intentional action to create a triple win (win 3) – a win for the commission, for our partners, and for Oregon communities.
- Integrity: We do what we say we will do and only what we are able to do.
- Partnership: We invest time in building relationships, honoring diverse perspectives, and creating win3 solutions.
- Innovation and Creativity: We encourage new ideas and find solutions to better serve Oregon communities.