AmeriCorps*VISTA is the national service program designed specifically to fight poverty. Founded as Volunteers in Service to America in 1965 and incorporated into the AmeriCorps network of programs in 1993, VISTA has been on the front lines in the fight against poverty in America for more than 40 years.
Thirty-seven million Americans live in poverty. Through AmeriCorps VISTA, you can make a tangible difference. And, you’ll find the fulfillment that comes from using your knowledge and skills to help those in disadvantaged circumstances turn their dreams into reality.
What do AmeriCorps*VISTAs do?
VISTA members commit to serve full-time for a year at a nonprofit organization or local government agency, working to fight illiteracy, improve health services, create businesses, strengthen community groups, and much more. With passion, commitment, and hard work, you’ll create or expand programs designed to bring individuals and communities out of poverty.
VISTA members generally do not provide direct services, such as tutoring children or building homes. Instead, they focus their efforts on building the organizational, administrative, and financial capacity of organizations that fight illiteracy, improve health services, foster economic develop, and otherwise assist low-income communities. VISTAs develop programs to meet a need, write grants, and recruit and train volunteers.
Read "Overcoming Poverty, Building Capacity"
What are the benefits of serving?
By serving through VISTA, you’ll gain new skills, friends, and experiences—plus you’ll get the satisfaction that comes from helping others. During your service, you’ll also receive a modest living allowance, health care, and other benefits. And, upon completing your service, you can choose to receive either a Segal AmeriCorps Education Award or post-service stipend.
All of the above information can be found on the AmeriCorps website.