Interested in becoming a VISTA?
AmeriCorps VISTA is an amazing experience, but it is also a year-long commitment. Make sure you check out the AmeriCorps website as you decide if VISTA is the right thing for you.
Building Bridges Across the River
Skyland Workforce Center (SWC) is a project of Building Bridges Across the River, a collaborative of nonprofit organizations providing employment-related programs and services in southeast Washington, DC. Building Bridges Across the River has a mission to engage individuals, businesses, government, and community-based organizations to serve as a hub for a range of employment-related services and opportunities that can lead to economic self-sufficiency. Many job seekers face multiple challenges related to literacy, computer skills, work readiness, transportation, housing, and other barriers to employment. SWC provides high-quality workforce development programs in one location, leading to work-ready employee candidates, career-focused job placement, economic self-sufficiency, and improved quality of life. The VISTA project is intended to meet the needs of people in our community who visit SWC because they want someone to review their resume before they attend a job fair, they are uncertain about how to answer behavioral interview questions, or they are being screened for a job using online meeting software that they have never heard of and do not know how to use. To achieve this, the VISTA will evaluate the existing volunteer program from recruitment to management, identifying opportunities and implementing improvements that support a consistent weekly schedule for volunteer help for unemployed and underemployed jobseekers who need to accomplish an employment-related goal. Position filled!
Community Solutions deploys the best problem solving tools from multiple sectors to help communities end homelessness and the conditions that create it. Community Solutions co-developed the John and Jill Ker Conway Residence (JJKC), a 124-unit affordable housing development with 77 units of permanent supportive housing (PSH) for formerly homeless individuals. At the John and Jill Ker Conway Residence, Community Solutions is dedicated to helping formerly homeless residents thrive in their permanent home by coordinating wraparound supportive services and providing on-site social programming. JJKC residents are predominantly veterans (59%), 50+ (81%), male (84%) and Black (92%). At the JJKC residence, the VISTA will empower residents to create and implement peer-led initiatives that will bolster resident and staff capacity and increase resident satisfaction, health, and well-being. Position filled!
Community Preservation and Development Corporation (CPDC)
The Community Preservation and Development Corporation, or CPDC, is a premier not-for-profit real estate developer dedicated to providing safe, high-quality, and affordable housing for low- and moderate-income individuals and families. Their mission is to develop vibrant communities through innovation and partnership; vital to accomplishing these goals is the engagement of a strong and diverse cohort of volunteers. Since 2006, CPDC has leveraged volunteer time and talent to address the critical needs surrounding health and wellness, education, environment, economy, and resident engagement to ensure that CPDC and communities grow and thrive together. CPDC is expanding its resident services from 30 sites to 100 over the next 3-5 years. To be successful, volunteers will become a more important part of expanding resident services across more sites. In 2019, the VISTA member will work to successfully integrate volunteers into the CPDC Network Demonstration Model (3-4 newly formed clusters of affordable housing properties) to add capacity in more affordable housing communities to support resident services and resident engagement. Position filled!
District Bridges is a local nonprofit that organizes community building opportunities in vulnerable neighborhoods, and supports local economic development through assisting small businesses. It serves the businesses, organizations, and individuals who live, work and play in the Ward 1 neighborhoods of Columbia Heights, Mount Pleasant, Petworth, Park View and Pleasant Plains. Their mission is to enrich neighborhood vitality by bridging community engagement and economic development so that individuals, businesses, and organizations can thrive together.The VISTA will be focused on supporting economic development in underserved and rapidly gentrifying neighborhoods through assisting small businesses to access technical assistance and to address obstacles to business sustainability. Apply to District Bridges now!
Douglass Community Land Trust
Overseen by City First Homes, the Douglass Community Land Trust (CLT) is a community-based initiative to preserve and increase affordable housing and prevent displacement, initially focused on DC’s wards 7 and 8. The key results for the Douglass CLT will be to preserve long-term affordability, creating community-held assets, and to build assets for individuals and families, particularly for long-term residents of Anacostia and other neighborhoods east of the Anacostia River. The Douglass CLT has a racial equity outcome as well, given that the residents of Wards 7 and 8 are predominantly poor and African-American. Within 10 years, the Douglass CLT aims to acquire land under 750 homes, providing excellent stewardship of the properties and ensuring that the residents not only benefit from stable affordable housing (rental and homeownership), but are part of the decision-making about what happens in their own communities. The Douglass CLT and Permanent Affordability VISTA will, by assisting with the launch of the Douglass Community Land Trust, work to ensure that residents of the District of Columbia are able to strengthen the existing community and resist displacement that follows patterns of divestment and subsequent redevelopment. Apply to the Douglass Community Land Trust now!
The mission of Jubilee Housing is to build diverse, compassionate communities that create opportunities for everyone to thrive. They reach this mission through the development and management of “justice housing” -deeply affordable housing in a resource rich neighborhood. They deliver or partner with other organizations to provide appropriate services to allow their residents and program participants to thrive. Services include out of school time programs for children and youth, support services for returning citizens, and a range of social service and financial coaching for low income and low wealth residents of Jubilee Housing. The VISTA project will provide research/support for initiatives designed to increase the availability of public financing for new affordable housing. The project will also support Jubilee and citywide initiatives designed to improve the quality and availability of out of school time programs for at risk youth. Finally, the project will work with city wide initiatives designed to facilitate successful outcomes for returning citizens -residents returning home after a period of incarceration. Position filled!
The mission of MANNA, Inc. is to help low and moderate income persons acquire quality housing, build assets for families through homeownership, revitalize distressed neighborhoods, and preserve racial and ethnic diversity. The VISTA member will assist with duties and responsibilities within Project Acquisitions and Corporate Development. The VISTA member will work with Corporate Development in developing social media content and a “young professionals” under-30 volunteer-fundraising group as well as a formal “major gifts” program. The position will also explore avenues of property acquisitions that MANNA is not exploring or has not previously explored. Position filled!
Mi Casa, Inc.
Mi Casa Inc., a 26-year-old affordable housing developer based in Washington, DC, integrates capacity-building, resident education and engagement into many aspects of our work with low-income communities, including co-operative development and running a unique intergenerational housing program. The intention of this VISTA project is to work with Mi Casa’s capacity-building, training, and community-based initiatives to with the purpose of strengthening low-income households and communities, including co-ops and the Genesis Intergenerational Program. The goal of Mi Casa’s capacity-building programs is to sustain the long-term viability of affordable housing communities such as co-ops and community-based programs like Genesis. Long-term sustainability of community-based housing is supported by facilitating ongoing resident engagement even after the threat of loss of housing has been replaced by housing security. This VISTA project involves developing a strategy that can inform Mi Casa’s capacity-building and training programs for co-ops and promote resident engagement in our co-ops and our community- based housing program, Genesis. The strategies developed will form the basis for revisions to Mi Casa’s Capacity-Building and Training Program Plan and the Genesis Intergenerational Program Plan, which will further support the goal of sustaining long-term affordable, community-based housing. Apply to Mi Casa now!
The National Alliance of Community Development Associations (NACEDA) has a mission is to lead the community development field and its partners in shaping and influencing strategies that advance community prosperity. NACEDA achieves this mission by strengthening its members through trainings, convenings, and cross-sector partnerships. NACEDA’s members are 40 state and regional associations for community development in 25 states and DC. NACEDA’s Thriving Networks program builds the capacity of state and regional community development associations to better provide support to their members – community-based organizations that serve low- and moderate-income communities. Thriving Networks programmatic work primarily includes professional and peer trainings, consultations, and conferences (examples include: strategic communications trainings, facilitating board retreats, sharing members’ expertise in hosting their own AmeriCorps VISTA programs, and more). The Thriving Networks VISTA project will build the capacity of NACEDA’s Thriving Networks program by working closely with staff to: develop an efficient analysis and use for results from NACEDA’s member capacity survey, systematize NACEDA’s brokering of capacity building and technical assistance for members, and explore business models for service delivery. Apply to NACEDA now!
National Housing Trust
National Housing Trust, or NHT-Enterprise, was formed in 1999 to meet the need for a capable, mission driven organization focused on providing affordable housing that shelters low-income families and children. NHT’s community development programs are working to help low-income families build a pathway to college or vocational school. In addition, their programs are working to find new ways to build financial capability amongst households. Developing new strategies and approaches will require that they understand current policies on these issues, identify partners, and improve their ability to collect data about families’ progress towards economic mobility. To support their mission, they also offer community development programs to help their residents achieve greater economic stability through financial literacy, job readiness, and asset building. They are looking for a capable VISTA Fellow to help support their community development programs. The VISTA Fellow will play a key role in building their capacity to help families achieve financial stability, pursue college and career related goals, secure program partners, and evaluate programming. Apply to NHT now!
Sinai House is a family-oriented residential program that provides safe housing and an array of social services to families that are homeless.It enables families to move from homelessness to independence by providing safe and affordable housing, comprehensive social services and financial support. Their team provides a wide range of social services to the families to support them in this transitional phase. The program sets financial, educational and employment goals for each member of the family and helps them to achieve these goals. The VISTA’s project will enable them to collect and analyze the data and outcomes for our families, allowing Sinai House to improve programming and services, as well as build their volunteer program to provide the support, skills, and resources volunteers need to be successful. Position filled!
The Washington Area Community Investment Fund, or Wacif, has a mission is to increase equity and economic opportunity in underserved communities in the Washington, DC area by investing knowledge, social, and financial capital in low-and moderate-income entrepreneurs. Wacif measures its success by loans deployed, assessment of quality advisory services provided to small business owners, and data assessment focused on overall impact such as increased household income, credit scoring, and asset building such as increase business revenues, jobs, and taxes. Taking into account the experience of the VISTA, the proposed project will build Wacif’s capacity to communicate its impact, address issues facing Washington area entrepreneurs,and engage new partners in advancing its mission of inclusive entrepreneurship, equitable economic development, and community wealth building. Apply to Wacif now!