Become An Americorps Partner Site
AmeriCorps engages more than 80,000 Americans each year in intensive, results-driven service. Since 1994, AmeriCorps is part of a tradition of national movements such as VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) and the CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps), involving people of all ages and backgrounds in strengthening American communities. Our members are part of the AmeriCorps State and National program, and are focused on direct service.
WHAT YOU CAN ACHIEVE AS A PARTNER SITE
AmeriCorps members serve their communities in ways that address disaster services, economic opportunity, education, environmental stewardship, healthy futures, and veterans and military families. They also recruit volunteers to enhance their effectiveness. Here in West Virginia, nearly 800 members of all ages and backgrounds are serving each year to meet some of the most critical needs in the state. AmeriCorps State and National members focus on direct service, although they can do limited capacity building and fundraising as directly related to projects they are working on.
HOW HIGH ROCKS FITS IN
High Rocks is one of West Virginia’s AmeriCorps grant host sites. Each AmeriCorps host site must apply for an AmeriCorps team of at least 10 members. Every year, we write an umbrella AmeriCorps application for all our partner organizations and ourselves. We handle the majority of reporting, administrative requirements and compiling performance data across the programs for your AmeriCorps member projects so that you can focus on building effective programs that improve people’s lives and our communities. We help you navigate the more obscure reporting and compliance requirements, provide you with the training you need to be successful, and offer limited mentoring on an as-needed basis as you develop a successful multi-year project.
Is my organization the right fit?
An AmeriCorps member placed at your site can improve your organization’s capacity to address community needs by doing direct service. High Rocks has four main program pillars: Leadership Development, Engagement with Learning, Wellness, and Community Engagement/Volunteerism. High Rocks partners and AmeriCorps members will work to build one or more of these areas. Currently, the High Rocks AmeriCorps grant’s primary performance measures are to:
- Education: Increase pre-school, K-12, and post-secondary engagement with learning and social and emotional skills
- Organizational Capacity: Increase effectiveness, efficiency and scale of organizations by engaging volunteers
Your project doesn’t have to fall entirely within one of the above categories, but they are our current AmeriCorps grant reporting measures, so we like to help develop projects that have one of these components. For example, if you’re working with non-profits or community members, you’re probably working with volunteers. We are happy to talk to you about your organization and the work you do to work towards a potential partnership.
The financial value of each AmeriCorps member slot is approximately $36,000. The federal government provides more than $20,000 of this value. This includes the $6000+ education award and a $15,000+ federal grant through High Rocks that are applied to each members' total cost.
There is a requirement to match the grant award with local funds. This local match of $15,000+ is provided by your sponsorship of $6000, and additional match documented by High Rocks of $9000+ per member. Through using our other program expenses to help document the match, High Rocks helps our partners leverage federal funds.
High Rocks expects all our partner sites to work with us to make the AmeriCorps program a transformational experience for the members, a valuable partnership for your organization and High Rocks, and an effective tool for addressing community needs. Your organization will commit to:
- Clear and consistent communication with High Rocks and your AmeriCorps member
- Effective weekly supervision meetings and timesheet review
- Timely submission of monthly AmeriCorps member progress reports
- Monthly supporting documentation, including participation and evaluation of volunteers and constituents
- $6,000 non-refundable financial contribution upon award of AmeriCorps member slot
- Implementation of the High Rocks AmeriCorps policies with their AmeriCorps member
- Development and implementation of volunteer best management practices in your organization
- Compliance with state and federal AmeriCorps regulations
What do you need to become a partner site with High Rocks AmeriCorps Project?
- Submit a Letter of Interest
- Designate a site supervisor for your potential AmeriCorps member
- Develop a service description and service plan for your AmeriCorps Member
- Sign and submit the partner site Letter of Agreement and commit $6,000 of financial contribution, pending award
ALREADY A PARTNER SITE…WHAT’S NEXT?
- Recruit your AmeriCorps member! There are several key points and requirements to this process, please email us for more information on this process.
- Submit your financial donation to High Rocks Educational Corporation by August
- Attend the annual orientation in September, this includes the supervisor and member
- Start thinking about how you work with volunteers and how you would like to improve your volunteer system
- September: Partner sites submit letters of interest to High Rocks
- November: High Rocks begins initial selection of partner sites to include in grant application
- November-December: Preliminary partners submit signed Letter of Agreement to High Rocks and Performance Measure targets
- December: High Rocks submits collaborative AmeriCorps grant to Volunteer WV
- December-January: High Rocks works with VolunteerWV and partners on grant revision
- January: High Rocks AmeriCorps grant submitted to federal competitive grant pool
- March: High Rocks Partner Site Progress Reports due from current partner sites
- May: Volunteer WV notifies High Rocks if programs will be recommended for federal funding (start unofficial member recruitment)
- July: Volunteer WV notifies High Rocks if our programs received federal funding
- August: Partner sites complete AmeriCorps interviewing and member selection; send financial contribution
- September: AmeriCorps Orientation and training at High Rocks and in Charleston, WV
- September: High Rocks Partner Site Final Progress reports due from current partners (previous year)