Experience is the Equalizer How do you know unless you know? How many of you are one trial learners? Do you remember your first job? Have you had role models? What are you good at?
Introduce high school and college age students with disabilities to AmeriCorps and their community with the intent of facilitating practical career exploration and preparation through the completion of a meaningful service experience. Establish local mutually beneficial partnerships between AmeriCorps programs, and youth initiatives in schools, colleges, not-for-profit organizations with a focus on youth with disabilities. The Purpose of Project Impact
Benefits For AmeriCorps Programs: Provides access to information about different disabilities. Develop a network of on-going partnerships. Provides access to a pool of people with disabilities to serve as AmeriCorps members or volunteers. Strengthens programs effectiveness in the community. Provides access to additional resources to assist the organization in fulfilling their mission. Provides opportunities for members to gain real- world experience the will be beneficial with future employment goals.
Benefits For AmeriCorps Members: Provides an opportunity to gain/practice leadership skills including: –Facilitation skills –Project management skills –Supervisory skills Build or ad to a resume Explore potential career options Expand community network Experience a mentoring relationship Find employment after AmeriCorps
Benefits Provides opportunities for students to: Learn about AmeriCorps Learn about their community Be exposed to additional employment opportunities Serve their community Gain work skills Earn a stipend by participating in a Project Impact AmeriCorps Experience internship Practice problem solving Gain and practice leadership skills Experience a mentoring relationship
Responsibility of AmeriCorps Programs Facilitate on-going communication with your disability partner; Facilitate students learning about service from kindergarten through retirement; Facilitate students learning about their community through a community mapping exercise and needs assessment exercise (Initial Project Impact Meeting); Facilitate students identifying a critical need in the community; Facilitate the students developing a service project to address that need; Facilitate the students reflecting on and celebrating their successful community service Time commitment: 5 hours a month for five months January through May.
Community Mapping What does your community look like….
Increase network of on-going partners. – Mentoring, guest speakers and job shadowing opportunities Provide linkages to AmeriCorps as a post high school option. Secure additional internships for students. Provides access to additional resources to assist your organization in fulfilling it’s mission. Benefits for Transition Partners
Mentoring as an Element of Community Service Project Impact provides participants access to caring adults in order to promote social, emotional, physical, academic and occupational growth. Mentoring is a necessary component of any Leadership Skills Training. It is important to teach participants: Who mentors are/what is a mentor? That connecting with a mentor is a proven behavioral link of successful people. Types of Mentoring Programs Formal Informal Types of Mentoring One to One (or “Traditional”) Group Peer Electronic
Research Shows Youth who participate in programs that include stand-alone mentoring or mentoring as one component of a program have had the following outcomes: Significant reductions in school absence Higher rate of college participation Improved school attitudes & behavior Lower likelihood of committing crime: Including misdemeanors, felonies, & major offenses Improved parental relationships Improved support from peers Jekielek, S., Moore, K. A., & Hair, E. C. (2002). Mentoring programs and youth development: A synthesis. Washington, DC: Edna McConnell Clark Foundation.
Increase Mentoring Opportunities WHO ARE POTENTIAL MENTORS IN PROJECT IMPACT? AmeriCorps Service Members Project Coordinator The Youth Themselves (peer to peer mentoring) Employers/Partners The Service Recipient Parents &/or other Family Members Others?
Project Impact Design Project Impact Partners will work together from December through May to introduce youth with disabilities to service. Project Impact first meeting will include: – An orientation to national and volunteer service – Facilitating participants choosing a service project. Project Impact Partners will meet each month to continue planning student-led service projects. Service projects will be completed in conjunction with Global Youth Service Day- April 26-28, 2013. Project Impact will culminate in May when students come together for the final time to reflect on their activities and celebrate their success.