Statewide, MISS. – The Mississippi Commission for Volunteer Service (Volunteer Mississippi) announced on Friday, July 20, that Mississippi received $3.29 million in AmeriCorps funding from the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), the federal agency for volunteerism and national service programs.
This federal investment includes 14 AmeriCorps grants that have been awarded to several Mississippi-based nonprofit organizations, the Mississippi Institutions of Higher Learning, and other Mississippi state and local government agencies.
The $3.29 million award is projected to generate an additional $2.58 million dollars in local support to increase community impact and return on federal investment. This funding will support 549 AmeriCorps members who will tackle the toughest problems in Mississippi, including tutoring and mentoring Pre-K to 12th grade students, conservation and environmental management services, providing health education and physical activities to address the obesity epidemic, and educating Mississippi’s youth on opioid abuse prevention. CNCS will also provide up to $1.57 million dollars in education scholarships for the AmeriCorps members funded by these grants to help pay for college, vocational training, or pay back student loans.
“Volunteer Mississippi is honored to support the growth of National Service programs in Mississippi,” said Executive Director Monica Ritchie. “It’s essential that we continue to serve our great state in the areas of education, economic opportunity, workforce development, healthy futures, and environmental restoration.”
Since 1994, more than 14,000 Mississippians have served as National Service members, providing over 29 million hours of service.
“Those members and community volunteers make a powerful impact on the most critical issues facing Mississippi,” she went on to say. “It is a distinct honor to support and promote National Service in Mississippi, and we embrace this opportunity to strengthen communities."
Below is a list of the 2018 AmeriCorps programs in Mississippi:
84 “Tutors with A Mission” will offer one-on-one and small-group tutoring to 1,404 students in approximately 26 elementary schools in Mississippi, resulting in 70% of the students completing the program demonstrating improved academic performance in literacy and/or math.
Campus Link AmeriCorps
Members will tutor and mentor middle school students in Hattiesburg and surrounding areas, resulting in 75% of those tutored becoming more academically engaged and prepared to move to their next level of education.
Climb CDC Workforce Training Institute AmeriCorps Gulf Coast
AmeriCorps members will treat 20 acres of parks and public lands on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.
10 full-time AmeriCorps members will connect children to healthy food in limited-resource public schools by teaching nutrition education, building and tending school gardens, and promoting locally grown food in cafeterias in Gulfport, Jackson, Oxford, Stoneville, and Tupelo.
Grenada School District:
AmeriCorps members will tutor over 1,000 low-performing K-8th grade students in reading and/or math, resulting in at least 85% of those tutored attaining a 15% gain in achievement of math and/or reading.
City of Laurel’s Laurel Plays
AmeriCorps members, focused on environmental stewardship and healthy futures, will treat 130 acres of city/public land and engage 475 Laurel youth in recreation league sports, resulting in youth demonstrating increased physical activity.
My Brother's Keeper, Inc. AmeriCorps
Members will influence over 1,000 students by serving as outreach workers and facilitators through the Youth Media Development (YMD) Media Literacy campaign. This is an intervention focused on educating youth in the Jackson Metropolitan Area on opioid abuse prevention.
Operation: UPWARD AmeriCorps
Members will educate at-risk, low-income citizens about drug abuse prevention and provide resources and support services for economic stability in various current programs at Operation: Upward. At the end of the first program year, members will be responsible for 80% of the low-income citizens participating in education and preventive activities for prescription drug and opioid abuse demonstrating a change in social behavior and increased knowledge. Further, 85% of the clients will utilize the economic opportunity component to develop skills to enable them to find employment.
Scientific Research 1’s COOL Education Project
AmeriCorps members will provide 1:1 tutoring to K-12 students in Hinds, Madison, and Scott counties to increase college readiness and STEM skills. At the end of the first program year, the AmeriCorps members will be responsible for 70% of the economically disadvantaged students who complete the program having improved academic performance in math and/or literacy and school engagement.
The Institute for Disability Students / TRIAD AmeriCorps
Members will provide health education training through the HealthMatters curriculum to school districts in Forrest, Lamar, Harrison, and Hancock counties. At the end of the first year, the AmeriCorps members will be responsible for providing health education to 750 middle and high school students with disabilities, with an anticipated 70 increasing their healthy behaviors.
The University of Mississippi’s College Corps
AmeriCorps members will serve economically disadvantaged 4-year old children by implementing the Jumpstart for Young Children (JFYC) curriculum, as well as students in grades one through four by implementing the Scholastic Brainstorm (SB) curriculum in Oxford, Columbus, Okolona, Water Valley, Hattiesburg, Indianola, and communities surrounding these cities. At the end of the first program year, members will be responsible for increasing 128 (80% of children who complete the Brainstorm curriculum) first through fourth grade students' scores on the STAR Reading Assessment by 7 months.
About Volunteer Mississippi
Our story — the story of volunteerism in Mississippi — is about service as a way of life. It’s about leadership in our communities, our schools and our churches. And it’s about results — statewide, volunteers and national service members are getting things done, making a difference for our children, our seniors, our veterans and military families. More information about Volunteer Mississippi and all its programs can be found at www.volunteermississippi.org.