12/06/2012 06:30 pm ET Updated Dec 07, 2012

Obama Announces National Day Of Service Will Kick Off Inauguration

President Barack Obama announced today there will be a national day of service on Jan. 19 -- one day before he takes the oath, the AP reports.

“This year’s inaugural will reflect our belief that working together, we can keep moving our country forward and fulfill the promise of the American dream for all families,’’ Obama said in a statement from his Presidential Inaugural Committee, according to the New York Times.

The Presidential Inaugural Committee includes former presidents Jimmy Carter, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, as well as actress Eva Longoria serving as committee co-chair, the AP reports.

This isn’t the first time the president has asked Americans to organize and participate in community service projects. On Jan. 19, 2008, the day before his first inauguration and on the federal holiday for the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday, Obama held a national day of service, according to the New York Times.

Similarly in 2009, Congress designated Sept. 11 as a national day of service and remembrance. Obama asked Americans to find ways to help their fellow citizens to create a sense of unity in remembrance of the 2001 terror attacks, according to the AP.

The Commander-in-Chief also established National Volunteer Week, a seven-day stretch in April that encourages citizens to help out in their communities.

“Serving our country is not just something that we should expect our members of our armed forces to do," Obama said at a service event in 2009. "That's something that we should expect all of us as citizens to do."



Presidential Inauguration History