What is AmeriCorps?
The Mission of AmeriCorps is to provide opportunities for citizens of all ages to help improve the nation through service to communities - making our environment cleaner, our children healthier, our schools better and our streets safer. A special emphasis of AmeriCorps is on the critical problems of children and youth and the need for all young people to serve, not just be served. We offer several terms of service and program options for individuals with various educational and work related experiences.
Who does AmeriCorps Serve?
WNY AmeriCorps serves a wide range of people in your community and beyond. Our VISTA members help Non-Profits in the area prosper and grow so they may serve their cause in the community. Our ABLE members are active in schools across Buffalo, helping to bridge the gap in education to those who need it the most. Service Corps delivered 2,500,000 Pounds of food in the last year alone to feed families across Western New York. YouthBuild helps provide shelter for families and access for the disabled while teaching the members valuable skills. AmeriProCorps maintains preparedness among our local professionals and first responders, ensuring skilled response in the event of an emergency or disaster in their community. Our Gulf Coast Programs reach beyond the borders of New York, rebuilding and revitalizing the Mississippi Gulf Coast after the devistating Hurricane Katrina. Who would you like to serve?
Is it like the PeaceCorps?
Yes. AmeriCorps is often referred to as "the domestic Peace Corps." Both agencies are committed to service, and both offer challenging and rewarding full-time opportunities. However, Peace Corps assignments are all overseas and last for two years, while AmeriCorps members serve only in the US and can serve in both part-time and full-time capacities ranging from eight weeks to one year.
What would I be doing if I joined?
With nine distinct programs, WNY AmeriCorps offers a wide variety of ways to serve. Odds are we have a position and location that is a perfect fit for you. Check out our Programs page or call 716-418-8500 for more information on our various programs.
Do members get paid?
Members may be eligible for a modest living allowance and/or an education award. This varies by program and commitment type. Please call 716-418-8500 for more information.
Do I stay in one place or do I travel?
Typically WNY AmeriCorps members remain in the area they wish to serve for the entirety of their service. However the Service Corps Respond Team, which may require you to travel to areas of emergencies or disasters.
Are there any age restrictions?
You must be at least 17 to join AmeriCorps. There is no age limit.
What is an Education Award?
An Education Award is essentially money that can only be applied to certain educational institutions or towards loans taken out for educational purposes.
Where can I use my Education Award?
You can use your Education Award anywhere a Stafford Loan is accepted or to pay back loans from such an institution. For more details, please visit http://www.americorps.gov/for_individuals/benefits/benefits_ed_award.asp
Is it all physical labor?
No. WNY AmeriCorps offers service opportunities which range from assisting teachers in the classroom via our ABLE program to helping build capacity within a local non-profit in our VISTA Program. Service Corps and Youthbuild do require that you be able to complete physical tasks.
Could I have another job while doing a term of service?
VISTA is the only program that requires that you not seek or hold any other form of employment. Other programs allow you to hold a second job, but only if it does not interfere with your service. AmeriCorps is actually designed to make service possible for people who hold regular jobs in the professional field and can be tailored to your schedule.
How do you say "AmeriCorps?"
Ameri-Core (Don't let the P and S fool you!)