800+ from AmeriCorps NCCC, VISTA Summer Associates, and Senior Corps RSVP will provide temporary surge capacity for contact tracing with support from Gary Community Investments
The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) made news yesterday in Colorado when Governor Jared Polis announced at a press conference that CNCS would mobilize more than 800 AmeriCorps members and Senior Corps volunteers to support the State’s COVID-19 response. They’ll conduct contact tracing and other important work to help Colorado reopen and get people back to work.
CNCS is supporting this effort by redeploying AmeriCorps NCCC members and providing nearly $2 million in federal funding for new AmeriCorps VISTA Summer Associates and Senior Corps volunteers. Gary Community Investments has secured the technology and equipment necessary for the virtual service required by the unique circumstances. Details of the project include:
- 300 AmeriCorps NCCC members, based out of the Southwest Region Campus in Aurora, will start immediately
- 350 VISTA Summer Associates will be hosted by the Community Resource Center in Denver and Conservation Legacy in Durango, both existing AmeriCorps VISTA projects
- 100-200 additional Senior Corps volunteers will join the Senior Corps RSVP projects at Cultivate and Volunteers of America, Colorado Branch in Denver
The AmeriCorps members and Senior Corps volunteers included in this project will join the many who, despite the obstacles presented by social distancing, have acted quickly and creatively to continue their critical work in new ways, or pivot to meet emerging needs. To date, more than 9,000 AmeriCorps and Senior Corps members have responded to COVID-19, providing assistance to more than 1.3 million people.
Organizations are currently recruiting for the new positions announced today, the first of which begin on June 22. Those who serve as VISTA Summer Associates will earn a stipend and an education award at the end of their service. For more information on requirements and details on how to apply visit www.colorado.gov/servecolorado.
Here's what our own CEO and Colorado’s leaders had to say about this exciting new partnership:
- “I’m proud that, working hand-in-hand with local partners, AmeriCorps and Senior Corps will help Colorado respond to COVID-19,” said Barbara Stewart, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service. “In moments of crisis, Americans have always come together to serve those who need help. United, there is no problem we can’t tackle.”
- “We are thrilled to have these AmeriCorps members join Colorado’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Governor Jared Polis. “Contact tracing is an important part of containing the spread of this virus and ensuring that Coloradans can keep themselves, and those around them, as safe as possible. The work of these members will be critical to the health and safety of Coloradans, as well as next steps for our economy.”
- “Colorado is the proud home to thousands of AmeriCorps members and this support will be critical in our efforts to contain the virus,” said Lt. Governor Dianne Primavera. “Colorado’s AmeriCorps members have already been hard at work in helping their communities during this global pandemic, and we are excited to partner with CNCS on this new effort.”
- “Thank you to the men and women who are coming to the aid of our state during this time,” said Congressman Ed Perlmutter. “Your work will provide valuable information and data as we work to contain the spread of COVID-19. As I’ve said many times, now is the time for all women and men to come to the aid of their country—and these good folks are answering that call.”
- "We at Gary are proud to work in partnership with the state and AmeriCorps to address this crisis and get Coloradans safely back on their feet. We're excited to show the country what can happen when we come together to solve big problems," said Gary Community Investments CEO Mike Johnston.
- “Throughout all the hardships, this pandemic has showcased the strength and basic goodness of those in our community,” said Congresswoman Diana DeGette. “I am incredibly proud of the hundreds of AmeriCorps and Senior Corps members who are stepping up to join Colorado’s COVID-19 response. This is yet another example of how our national service programs are essential to the well-being of our country.”