Tomorrow Together: A call for service, empathy and unity this 9/11

This September marks the 15th anniversary of the attacks on 9/11. The National Human Services Assembly (NHSA) and National Collaboration for Youth (NCY) are proud to join 9/11 Day and a coalition of more than 25 prominent organizations to encourage service, empathy and unity through a new initiative called Tomorrow Together. Tomorrow Together will include large-scale service projects across the nation on September 11, 2016, bringing together a diverse community of people to help address hunger in America and other important societal issues.

Some activities happening in the D.C. area include:  

  • Through AARP, volunteers will help pack more than one million meals for at-risk seniors, children, veterans and others. Register here.
  • Millions of educators will receive free educational service-learning materials that assist in teaching empathy, through a collaboration with the Ashoka's Start Empathy Initiative and the National Youth Leadership Council.  
  • At the college level, The George Washington University will help organize other universities and colleges to participate in 9/11 Day.

NHSA and NCY are urging all members to endorse and support Tomorrow Together to teach empathy, unity and service to young Americas in observance of the upcoming 15th Anniversary of 9/11. We hope you’ll join us in supporting this important mission. There is no cost to do so. Participating organizations will have access to free lesson plans, videos, toolkits and other resources to help teach empathy, unity and service to young people in the context of the 9/11 learning experience.

Here’s What You Can Do:

  1. Visit and sign on as a supporting organization.  Your name will be listed as a supporter and you will be added to a confidential mailing list to receive updates when resources become available.
  2. Access the newly launched Tomorrow Together lesson plans and toolkits and share with your networks via email, social media, and more.
  3. Engage young people in community in service projects timed to coincide with the 15th anniversary of 9/11. This can happen through organizing a national activity (see some of the D.C. area events listed above and on AND by encouraging your local sites/affiliates to participate in or organize service opportunities in their communities. These projects need not occur on 9/11, but can happen at any time during the month of September in observance of the anniversary.

Why Your Support is So Important Now!

The 9/11 Day founders, which included many relatives and friends of 9/11 victims, are now asking NHSA and NCY to help promote the ideals of empathy and togetherness for the 15th anniversary of 9/11, in tribute to those lost and injured in the attacks.

9/11 Day co-founder and executive vice president Jay Winuk perfectly summed up the goal of the effort. Winuk's brother, Glenn J. Winuk, an attorney and volunteer firefighter and EMT, died in the line of duty as a rescuer on 9/11. Jay said, "As someone who lost a loved one on 9/11, I was truly inspired by the remarkable way our nation came together in the months following the attacks. We owe more than division and discord to those who perished from the attacks and those who served in its aftermath. The anniversary of 9/11 should be a reminder to us all about our common humanity and the opportunity we have to help people and communities in need."

This is an important and essential effort.  Few of society’s problems will be solved until we start understanding and respecting our differences, and work together as one to make our nation and the world a better place for us, for our children and for generations to come.  So please join us in marking this message an important part of your program for the 15th anniversary of 9/11.

9/11 Day is also releasing public service announcements (PSAs) featuring 14-year-old Hillary O'Neill from Norwalk, CT, one of more than 13,000 children born in the United States on the day of the tragedy, September 11, 2001. In the PSAs, O'Neill urges the nation to see the anniversary of 9/11 as a day to work together to do good deeds. View her message on YouTube.