Mission and Vision
AmeriCorps, a federal agency, brings people together to tackle the country’s most pressing challenges, through national service and volunteering. AmeriCorps members and AmeriCorps Seniors volunteers serve with organizations dedicated to the improvement of communities. AmeriCorps helps make service to others a cornerstone of our national culture.
By bringing people together to serve communities, AmeriCorps is making service to others an indispensable part of the American experience. We offer individuals and organizations flexible ways to make a local impact through our programs, which include: State and National, VISTA, NCCC, Foster Grandparents, Senior Companions, RSVP, and Volunteer Generation Fund, along with initiatives including September 11 National Day of Service and Remembrance and Martin Luther King Jr., National Day of Service.
Our purpose is to bring out the best of America by providing opportunities for Americans to serve their country domestically, address the nation’s challenges, improve lives and communities, and strengthen civic engagement.
Grant Program Highlights
Each year, AmeriCorps members serve in thousands of service settings, including nonprofits, public sector, local government, colleges and universities, tribal communities, and faith-based organizations to better meet their missions. These powerful service experiences also help AmeriCorps members develop skills and passion for lifelong civic engagement, increase their personal growth, and open opportunities for diverse career paths. AmeriCorps programs are designed to deliver direct and/or capacity building service.
The AmeriCorps Seniors RSVP program provides grants to organizations with a dual purpose: to engage Americans 55 years and older in volunteer service to meet critical community needs, and to provide a high-quality experience for the volunteers. RSVP is one of the agency’s most flexible grant programs. Organizations determine where the need is greatest and how volunteers can respond to the need as long as it falls within one of AmeriCorps’ six focus areas: Disaster Services, Economic Opportunity, Environmental Stewardship, Education, Healthy Futures, and Veterans & Military Members.
The Foster Grandparent Program provides grants to organizations with a dual purpose: to engage Americans 55 years and older in volunteer service and to provide one-on-one support to children with special needs to improve their academic, social, or emotional development. The volunteers in this program help children learn to read and provide one-on-one tutoring; mentor trouble teenagers and young mothers; care for premature infants or children with disabilities; help children who have been abused or neglected.
The Senior Companion Program provides grants to organizations with a dual purpose: to engage persons 55 years and older, particularly those with limited incomes, in volunteer service to meet critical community needs; and to provide a high quality experience that will enrich the lives of the volunteers. The AmeriCorps Seniors volunteers in this program provide supportive, individualized services to help older adults with special needs maintain their dignity and independence.
The Volunteer Generation Fund (VGF) focuses on investments in volunteer management practices that increase both volunteer recruitment and retention. At a time of social need, when Americans of all ages are looking for ways to give back, we need to be ready to engage all those who answer the call to serve.
September 11th is Patriot Day and a National Day of Service and Remembrance. On this day Americans across the country are called to volunteer in their local communities in tribute to the individuals lost and injured in the attacks, first responders, and the many who have risen in service to defend freedom.
The Martin Luther King Jr. day of service celebrates the Civil Rights leader’s life and legacy. Observed each year on the third Monday in January as “a day on, not a day off,” MLK Day is the only federal holiday designated as a national day of service to encourage all Americans to volunteer to improve their communities. AmeriCorps has been charged to lead this effort for the last quarter century.