Our American Voice® Institute

Promoting Civic Learning and Community Engagement

C Smith

“Our American Voice® students are the hope of our country.”

Charles Carroll Smith

OAV 2022 Student Summit

Celebrating Students’ Civic learning and Engagement in their Communities

The Our American Voice® Institute was established by the Barat Education Foundation to build civic and community capital strengthening the ties that bind us together as Americans. The Institute has three cornerstone components: OAV Schools, Citizen U®, and Civic Life Collaborations. 


OAV Schools and Communities

The OAV Schools Program has operated in schools throughout Illinois since 2009 to develop the citizens of tomorrow today.

Learn More


Citizen U®

Citizen U® is funded through a Library of Congress grant to provide primary source-based lesson plans, educational resources, and assistance to teachers and students across the U.S.

Learn More


Civic Life Collaborations

The Institute partners with communities, educational institutions, nonprofits, and others to implement initiatives to strengthen our American democracy.

Learn More

Join us.

Our work would not be possible without the generous support of so many. Become an OAV champion today.