April 29, 1983

By the President of the United States of America

A Proclamation

Voluntarism is a cornerstone of the American way of life and a fundamental characteristic of our American heritage. The generosity and civic-mindedness of the American people has long been a noted aspect of our Nation. Since its inception, this has been a country in which neighbor has lent a hand to neighbor, and families have banded together to help one another in times of adversity.

Voluntary service remains as important today as it was in earlier decades. We cannot rely solely on institutions of government to provide remedies for our problems. Many of the solutions must be devised and supported by other individuals and private groups. Greater emphasis must be placed on developing increased community commitment to voluntary service and on developing more volunteer leaders.

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, in recognition of the vital contributions volunteers make to our society, do hereby designate the period beginning on May 1, 1983 until April 30, 1984 as the National Year of Voluntarism, and I call upon the people of the United States and interested groups and organizations to observe this celebration with appropriate activities of voluntary service and efforts to attract additional persons to this valuable and rewarding tradition.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this 29th day of April, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-three, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and seventh.

Ronald Reagan

[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 12:38 p.m., May 2, 1983]

Note: The text of the proclamation was released by the Office of the Press Secretary on May 2.