Message on the Observance of National Volunteer Week, May 6 - 12, 1984

May 4, 1984

Across the broad expanse of our national history, from the earliest colonial times to the present, Americans have distinguished themselves by rising to the challenge of adversity. It is in this spirit that voluntarism has become a cornerstone of our way of life and a fundamental part of our country's continuing progress.

The American people are deeply proud of this long tradition of neighbor reaching out to neighbor with a helping hand. In the continuing need to solve community problems, the compassionate actions of the private sector reflect the sense of essential decency and concern that has so often been a hallmark of our national character. Truly there is no finer expression of the values we cherish than our united efforts to address problems through the creativity and the initiative of the private sector.

The record of achievement of government and the private sector working together inspires us to look to this source of strength in pursuing worthy goals in the future.

By acknowledging gratefully our heritage of voluntarism during National Volunteer Week, I hope all Americans will vigorously participate in their community's efforts to better the lives of their fellow citizens.

Ronald Reagan