Reflecting the diversity of America in age, ethnicity, education, race, gender and religion nine area young adults have taken the AmeriCorps pledge:
"I will get things done for America - to make our
people safer, smarter and healthier. I will bring Americans together to strengthen our communities. Faced with apathy, I will take action. Faced with conflict, I will seek common ground. Faced with adversity, I will persevere. I will carry this commitment with me this year and beyond. I am an AmeriCorps member, and I will get things done."
The nine adults who have agreed to serve their community by completing either 900 or 1,700 hours of service between September 2000 and August 2001 are "getting things done" locally by:
1) Offering homework/tutoring help after school in the following elementary schools where Fun 'N' Friends is offered: Nisswa, Baxter, Lincoln, Lowell and Garfield;
2) Offering in school mentoring & tutoring at Mississippi Horizons, Washington, Baxter, Lowell, Brainerd High School, and Nisswa;
3) Offering youth support and encouragement to help their sense of school success and accomplishment and enhance their positive attitude towards school. School attendance and participation increased;
4) Helping to build developmental assets: interpersonal competence, caring, decision making, peaceful conflict resolution, and positive identity (self-esteem) through social and recreational outlets (field trips, outings, celebrations, training, play environments that are age appropriate and involve the children and youth in planning and design);
5) Working to enhance existing youth organizations and groups through collaborating on projects/events and sharing resources (financial, human and facilities) that will make the opportunities more accessible and affordable to more youth. Trying not to duplicate services but offering a variety;
6) Working to invite other adults and community members to work with and involve area youth in their places of employment, organizations, groups in leadership roles. Asking them to serve as positive role models, mentors, sharing skills, life experiences and build a community that values and appreciates the youth;
7) Involving the children and youth in service projects that are planned and organized by the youth with specific goals set to reach, that truly meet a community need that will strengthen our community;
8) Offering safe and age appropriate after school activities that are youth driven and offer a variety of activities that meet children's/youths needs and wants, including Fun 'N' Friends and Youth Trax.
AmeriCorps members can range in age from 17 to 90 and older. Some have college degrees while others have completed high school or are earning a GED. All members receive a living allowance and an educational award for their year of service.
AmeriCorp is co-sponsored by the National Service Corporation and locally by the Brainerd School District's Community Education program.
For more information on AmeriCorps or to see how you and/or your organization may partner with the members to reach their/your goals contact Lisa Stawarski at 828-0842.
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