VT Engage develops community based partnerships and supports capacity building through the VT Engage VISTA Network.Our expanding network has provided VT Engage the opportunity to work in a variety of areas to help address community needs and work towards eliminating poverty in our region. The VISTA members provide a capacity building resource to community organizations. Capacity building can take many forms within organizations including: building infrastructure, expanding community partnerships, securing long-term resources, coordinating training for participants, and fundraising (See AmeriCorps VISTA site). Additionally, the relationship to Virginia Tech offers organizations and VISTAs greater support during their project round. To learn more about AmeriCorps VISTA follow the link.
The VT Engage VISTA Network is currently comprised of seven VISTA members placed with organizations (see below). Each position is unique, created to meet the needs of our community partners and address issues of poverty in the New River Valley. Through our Network we build collaborative partnerships with the community and provide increased service opportunities for Virginia Tech students.
Current placements include:
- The Bike Kitchen
- Smart Beginnings NRV
- Plenty! Floyd
- Coalition for Refugee Resettlement
- Head Start Student Engagement
- Blacksburg Farmer’s Market
- Community Associates
Volunteering a year of service for AmeriCorps VISTA can be not only personally fulfilling, but provide you an opportunity to gain professional work experience. VISTAs work in an office setting and learn on the job about community development, volunteer management and recruitment, organizational skills and much more.
The VT Engage VISTAs also work collaboratively and receive additional skills training to support their work throughout the year. VISTAs receive a monthly stipend, health insurance and an education award at the end of their term to use towards continued education or loans.
VT Engage is always interested in finding new and innovative ways to make a positive impact with our community. Interested in joining our Network or joining us around the table to develop new ideas? Contact Whitney Johnson