David Stone
FDR Four Freedoms Park Volunteers Gather for a Group Photo
FDR Four Freedoms Park Volunteers Gather for a Group Photo
Credit: FDR Four Freedoms Park

Today's politics got you down? Remember when Presidents were iconic titans, both diplomats and humanitarians? Here's your chance to do something to feel better while honoring values that built modern America.

FDR Four Freedoms Park, the graceful, green gem that occupies the southmost tip of Roosevelt Island, was built to honor President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's Four Freedoms Speech, his State of Union to Congress in 1941 as World War II accelerated its horrors in Europe. Of interest today is the fact that the park was designed by Louis Kahn, a refugee to America in 1906,  born Itze-Leib Schmuilowsky, in an area now part of the free nation, Estonia.

The Four Freedoms FDR declared fundamental for "everywhere in the world" were:

  1. Freedom of speech
  2. Freedom of worship
  3. Freedom from want
  4. Freedom from fear

This speech is broadly recognized as signaling America's stepping up as a mature nation into world leadership. 

Today, all four remain in jeopardy on all continents. FDR's unfulfilled dream of universal human dignity grows more significant and the Park in his honor a vibrant symbol of inspiration, three-quarters of a century later.

The Park seeks your help in carrying out its mission of...

"Volunteers are an essential part of the Park, helping us to educate the public about FDR, architecture, and the four freedoms," according to its leadership.

"There are many opportunities for Park volunteers, including welcoming visitors, leading tours, implementing public programs and events, assisting the horticultural staff with Park maintenance, photography, office responsibilities, promoting and protecting the memorial and much more!

"You’ll get the chance to meet some friendly people, learn more about Franklin D. Roosevelt and Louis Kahn, and provide support for our ever-growing programs."

The Park asks for a commitment of only four hours a month, a small price to pay for helping uplift American values at home and for visitors from abroad.

To learn more, stop by at Volunteer Open Houses in the Park on Saturday, April 8th or Sunday, April 9th from 12:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. or email park@fdrp.org for more information.

Do your part. Feel better about America today while you actively make it happen.