AmeriCorps is the conservative program that conservatives love to hate.
AmeriCorps, a domestic Peace Corps, is a federally funded program that provides modest living allowances and college aid to Americans who perform significant amounts of structured community service by responding to natural disasters, boosting education, bolstering public safety, fighting poverty, improving health, helping the environment and protecting homeland security.
AmeriCorps benefits go only those who work hard. Grants are awarded mostly by states. The vast majority of its participants work in nonprofit groups (not government agencies). And the program generates hundreds of millions of private-sector matching funds.
In theory, conservatives should embrace AmeriCorps as a model of how to boost self-reliance and empower communities.