Young Adults Answer the Call to Serve

Despite the pandemic, 230 young adults from across the United States have answered the call to serve in the AmeriCorps’ National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC).

NCCC is a 10-month residential program funded by the U.S. government that annually engages approximately 2,100 young adults between the ages of 18 and 26.  The program assists recipients with student loan forgiveness and allows them to spend time prior to joining the labor market in public sector industries, giving participants the opportunity to give back to local communities.

These young men and women have been organized into 24 teams that have deployed across the country to assist communities responding to the COVID-19 pandemic and/or implementing wildfire management in the West.

Wilhemina Solley said, “It feels amazing to know that during these unprecedented times I have the chance to make a real difference. It was so rewarding to talk to homeowners and know that because of the work I was doing, they are going to be safer and more protected from wildfires. I know that this is an experience I will take with me for the rest of my life.”

The training for AmeriCorps began in October and emphasized Covid-19 safety, teamwork, leadership development, and communication.

From tackling food insecurity to providing affordable housing, these youth are bridging the gap by providing much-needed volunteers and people power.

One of the organization’s to benefit from the massive deployment of AmeriCorps teams was Habitat for Humanity. Two teams in Sacramento assisted Habitat workers and volunteers to construct affordable housing units.

Additionally, teams in Oregon assisted first responders implement fire mitigation barriers that protect both residential areas and the surrounding ecosystems.

Bode Anderson-Brown is working with a team in Salt Lake City, Utah and assisted local Health Department officials in establishing COVID-19 testing sites and scheduling appointments for individuals to receive their vaccines.

Anderson-Brown remarked, “Talking to people on the phone and getting them the assistance they need… I previously considered this to be out of my wheelhouse, but have now discovered that I have a talent for it!”

As the pandemic continues to engulf communities across the nation, the resolve of young adults to meet global challenges our world faces is a reminder that together we can overcome any obstacle.

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