Hello, AmeriCorps readers! Below you will find a general road map of AmeriCorps programs with emphasis on branches in Minnesota. We hope this will be a resource for you in understanding the layout of Corps programs in our state.
Road Map of AmeriCorps Programs in Minnesota
There are so many incredible AmeriCorps programs that it is often difficult to keep them straight! At the highest level there are three distinct subsets under the “AmeriCorps” umbrella: VISTA, State and National, and National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC). All three of these AmeriCorps subsets operate nationally.
1. AmeriCorps VISTA: Members participate in a twelve month, full-time service commitment—fighting poverty around the nation through indirect-service roles—building the capacity of nonprofits, schools, faith-based groups, and community organizations. VISTA members serve in the fields of education, community development, housing and employment services, and health services.
2. AmeriCorps State and National: Members participate in either a part- or full-time service commitment that can last up to twelve months. State and National is the largest of all AmeriCorps programs, operating in every state, U.S. territories, and on tribal reservations. Members serve in the fields of education, public safety, health, and the environment.
3. AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC): Members participate in a ten month, full-time, team-based residential service program. Working in partnership with a variety of organizations, members provide youth development activities, construct and rebuild low-income housing, take on environmental conservation efforts, and provide emergency disaster relief.
Within the three subsets of the “AmeriCorps” umbrella, there is a further breakdown of programs. Below is an outline of the AmeriCorps programs operating in Minnesota. Please note that this outline is not all inclusive.
- LEAP (Learning Early Achieves Potential): Around 20 members serving in southern Minnesota help preschool-age children to develop school readiness skills. Members also support families, educate parents on the connections between cognitive growth and healthy social and emotional development, and facilitate service-learning opportunities in the fields of early childhood development and education for community members.
- City of Lakes: Members aim to increase literacy proficiency for 6th-8th grade ELL students in the Minneapolis Public School district. Members provide one-on-one and small group tutoring, out-of-school enrichment, summer programming, and technology integration services.
- College Possible: 58 members provide programming and support to low-income high school and college-age students in the Twin Cities, with the goal of helping students access and complete college. Both AmeriCorps and AmeriCorps VISTA members serve with College Possible.
- Community Technology Empowerment Project (CTEP): 30 members help to bridge the digital divide for low-income communities and recent immigrants in the Twin Cities, with technology-related outreach, access, and training.
- Conservation Corps: Members facilitate environmental conservation community-service projects, focusing on youth development and job training. The residential Summer Youth Program tackles environmental service projects in rural Minnesota, while the Youth Outdoors program offers Twin Cities students a variety of after-school service opportunities around the metro area.
- Green and Healthy Homes Corps: 15 members work in Twin Cities metro area homes and help educate low-income families about green and healthy home interventions, with the support of Sustainable Resources Center’s programming. Members provide outreach and education, promote energy efficient practices, and help prevent lead exposure for children.
- GreenCorps: 28 members serve around the state in projects focused on energy conservation, waste prevention and recycling, living green outreach, and green infrastructure. Members are placed in cities, counties, nonprofits, and educational institutions, and operate under the coordination of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency.
- Habitat for Humanity: At Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity (the largest affiliate office in the state) 24 members build, rehabilitate, and repair homes in collaboration with community volunteers and low-income families in the metro area. Members also coordinate after-school youth programs and engage in community organizing. In addition, 11 VISTA members serve at affiliate offices in greater Minnesota, helping build capacity in family selection services, home rehabilitation programs, and media outreach.
- Math Corps: Around 70 members provide math tutoring and support to students in grades four through eight, in St. Cloud, the Saint Croix River Education District, and the Twin Cities. Members utilize Math Corps’s innovative curricula and endeavor to promote greater math proficiency and success.
- Minnesota Alliance with Youth Promise Fellows: 80 members work with either School-Community Partnerships or Statewide Partner Networks to support youth who are at-risk for dropping out of school. Members provide support, resources, tutoring, and interventions to ensure that students succeed.
- Opportunity Corps: More than 30 members serve as Employment Navigators, providing employment services to individuals facing significant economic barriers. Members offer support, resources, access, and advocacy services through partnerships with fifteen nonprofits in the nine-county metro area.
- Reading Corps: Over 750 members serve as reading and literacy tutors for youth age three through grade three, in collaboration with Head Start centers, preschools, and elementary schools around the state.
- True North: More than 65 full- and part-time members partner with nonprofits, schools, and community agencies in the Arrowhead region of Minnesota to support on-time graduation for students in grades 4-6. Members focus on promoting academic success, academic engagement, and service learning opportunities.