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Harkin Announces $2.1 Million for AmeriCorps Programs Across Iowa

May 31, 2012

Harkin Announces $2.1 Million for AmeriCorps Programs Across Iowa

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) today announced that eight Iowa AmeriCorps programs have been awarded a total of $2,107,284 from the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS).  A longtime champion of AmeriCorps, Harkin helped secure these funds as Chairman of the appropriations panel that oversees CNCS.  

“AmeriCorps volunteers provide vital services that help strengthen Iowa communities,” said Harkin.  “In everything from mentoring kids after school to teaching healthy eating to protecting our natural resources, AmeriCorps is making a difference.  Despite the tough budget climate in Washington, I have fought – and will continue to fight – to support the AmeriCorps program.”

AmeriCorps, which is administered by CNCS, engages 80,000 people each year in intensive, results-driven service through more than 14,000 organizations across the country.  Since 1994, more than 775,000 Americans have provided more than 1 billion hours of service to their communities and country through AmeriCorps.  Among other accomplishments, AmeriCorps members last year mobilized 3.4 million community volunteers, and tutored, mentored or served more than 3.5 million disadvantaged youth.  Interested individuals can learn about available opportunities and apply online by visiting AmeriCorps.gov.

Details of the Iowa funding are as follows:

Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Mississippi Valley, BBBS AmeriCorps Consortium for Eastern Iowa - $130,000
This funding will help to support 14 AmeriCorps member positions.  AmeriCorps members will recruit and support volunteers to mentor disadvantaged youth at risk to leave school without a diploma.  The mentoring will result in improved academic achievement among these youth.  The program will serve students in Eastern Iowa.

Boys & Girls Club of Central Iowa Inc., AmeriCorps Education Enhancement Project - $216,468
This funding will help to support 25 AmeriCorps member positions.  AmeriCorps members will provide after school homework help, healthy choices programming and case management support in the education priority area to increase positive attendance patterns in schools.  The program will serve students age 5 - 18 in Des Moines, Cedar Rapids, Waterloo, Council Bluffs, Carter Lake, Sioux City, Adair, and Davenport, Iowa.

City of Dubuque, Partners in Learning AmeriCorps Program - $210,587
This funding will help to support 48 AmeriCorps member positions.  AmeriCorps members will provide in-school, before school and after-school academic mentoring and summer learning opportunities to improve math and reading proficiency in the city of Dubuque, Iowa.

Community Corrections Improvement Association, Each One Reach One AmeriCorps Project - $460,435
This funding will help to support 49 AmeriCorps member positions.  AmeriCorps members will leverage volunteers to mentor youth and adult offenders resulting in fewer youth entering the criminal justice system and increased life skills of ex-offenders.  The program will also target families in the child welfare system for abuse and neglect in Linn, Johnson and Tama counties of Iowa.

Graceland University, AmeriCorps Youth Launch - $175,146
This funding will help to support 25 AmeriCorps member positions.  AmeriCorps members will leverage  additional volunteers to strengthen academic engagement through mentoring service learning cultural/enrichment opportunity programs and building 'developmental assets' as indicators of academic achievement in rural south central Iowa.

Habitat for Humanity of Iowa, Inc., Habitat for Humanity of Iowa AmeriCorps - $274,576
This funding will help to support 31 AmeriCorps member positions.  AmeriCorps members will recruit and support volunteers to build low-income housing units to eliminate substandard, unaffordable housing in the state of Iowa.  The program will serve low-income families in Cedar Rapids, Iowa City, Quad Cities, Des Moines, Knoxville, Mason City, Marshalltown, Council Bluffs, Sioux City, Webster/Humboldt, and Greene/Boone counties of Iowa.

Iowa Dept. of Natural Resources, Keepers of the Land AmeriCorps - $506,727
This funding will help to support 87 AmeriCorps member positions.  AmeriCorps members will provide wildlife habitat restoration and trail improvement to reduce water quality decline in the Environmental Stewardship priority area.  The program will serve all residents, particularly in rural communities, throughout the state of Iowa.

United Way of East Central Iowa, Youth Achievement Corps AmeriCorps Program - $133,345
This funding will help to support 11 AmeriCorps member positions.  AmeriCorps members will provide early literacy activities and tutoring in out of school time programs to children and parents, and provide outreach services for children and families with disabilities. Members will serve in Eastern Iowa and the program will address the CNCS focus area of education.