Baltimore Receives $4.4 Million in AmeriCorps Funding to Support Youth Development and Economic Opportunity

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 
Jun 12, 2015
 
Funding will support 630 AmeriCorps members and Senior Corps volunteers 
 
BALTIMORE, MD – The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), the federal agency that administers AmeriCorps, announced today new AmeriCorps and Senior Corps investments to support youth development, education, and economic opportunity programs in the City of Baltimore. 
 
The federal agency announced more than $4.4 million in new investments to support more than 630 AmeriCorps members and Senior Corps volunteers to serve in Baltimore in the coming year, including 105 this summer. The federal investment is projected to generate an additional $3.8 million in local support to increase community impact and return on federal investment. AmeriCorps members will be eligible to earn up to $2.5 million in AmeriCorps education scholarships to help pay for college, vocational training, or pay back student loans. 
 
“We are so pleased to be supporting more AmeriCorps and Senior Corps participants to meet pressing needs in Baltimore,” said Wendy Spencer, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service. “AmeriCorps and Senior Corps are powerful and proven solutions to community needs across the nation. I am confident that the work of our national service volunteers will have a significant impact on Baltimore and its young people.” 
AmeriCorps members and Senior Corps volunteers will tutor and mentor youth, build and repair homes, mentor ex-prisoners and youth offenders, clean neighborhoods, and help low-income communities access healthy food. This summer alone, six AmeriCorps NCCC teams will carry out projects in Baltimore, serving more than 17,500 hours to prevent summer reading loss, expand learning opportunities, serve meals, and participate in enrichment activities with children. 
 
Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), the ranking member on the Appropriations Committee, issued a statement outlining the positive contributions of AmeriCorps members to Baltimore:
 
“AmeriCorps members are unflagging, unflinching and determined to make a difference.  They tackle the toughest problems in our communities,” said Mikulski.  “I am so pleased with today’s announcement by the Corporation for National and Community Service, choosing to dedicate some of its resources to help out the City of Baltimore during its time of need. These efforts will truly transform lives and the City of Baltimore.”
 
New CNCS investments in Baltimore 
 
  • Greater Homewood Community Corporation: AmeriCorps VISTA Summer Associates will develop and implement a pilot program to address the needs of men and women existing in the prison system.
     
  • Civic Works Service Corps: AmeriCorps members will leverage volunteers to educate students, make housing more affordable, and help low-income communities access and learn about healthy food.
     
  • Teach for America Maryland: AmeriCorps members will serve as teachers in 115 schools for low-income students, resulting in improved academic performance among beneficiaries. 
     
  • Volunteer Maryland: AmeriCorps members will be placed in Baltimore nonprofits to develop or improve volunteer programs. 
     
  • Notre Dame Mission Volunteers Program: AmeriCorps members will provide tutoring and small group instruction to disadvantaged K-12 students. Members will also work with low-income adults to improve their employment skills. 
     
  • The Choice Program, UMBC: AmeriCorps members will provide community-based case management services, job readiness training, and mentoring to reduce youth involvement in crime and gangs, improve academic engagement, and keep youth at risk of permanent foster care placement in their homes.
     
  • Senior Corps: The Maryland Department of Juvenile Services (DJS) Foster Grandparents Program will be expanded to include 25 additional Foster Grandparents and corps of volunteers who will serve youth beyond the time spent in a DJS facility. This investment will support an additional 300 youth to receive the benefits of Foster Grandparent volunteers.
Most of the AmeriCorps members serving in Baltimore will be supported through a grant overseen by the Maryland Governor’s Office on Service and Volunteerism (GOSV), the Governor-appointed service commission in the state of Maryland. Later this summer GOSV will make additional AmeriCorps grants to support additional Maryland AmeriCorps programs. 
 
Baltimore has long been a city with deep service roots. The city is home to the first ServiceBowl, and serves as one of five AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC) Campus. Baltimore residents rank third among mid-size cities in generating the most AmeriCorps members per capita. This year, CNCS invested more than $17.6 million to support 2,024 AmeriCorps members and Senior Corps volunteers serving at 339 locations across Baltimore.
 
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