Boston, MA - United States Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), along with U.S. Representatives Richard Neal (D-Mass.), Stephen F. Lynch (D-Mass.), William Keating (D-Mass.), Joseph P. Kennedy III (D-Mass.), Katherine Clark (D-Mass.), Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.), and Lori Trahan (D-Mass.), today announced that the Commonwealth of Massachusetts will receive a total of $61,358,349 in AmeriCorps funding from the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS).
The federal grants, which were awarded to 26 organizations based in Massachusetts, will support 6,611 AmeriCorps members in their efforts to tackle some of the toughest problems in Massachusetts including early childhood education, job-readiness, and environmental conservation. The Massachusetts Service Alliance, the Governor-appointed state service commission, will also receive $2,965,868 in non-competitive formula funding, which will in turn be awarded to Massachusetts organizations to support additional AmeriCorps members in the coming months.
19 grants totaling $17,985,803 are going to support Massachusetts-based organizations, including:
Another seven grants totaling $40,406,677 are going to national organizations headquartered in Massachusetts that operate around the country, including:
"AmeriCorps gives young people from every background a chance to strengthen their communities and begin a lifetime of national service," said Senator Elizabeth Warren. "These new grants will help thousands of dedicated AmeriCorps members continue their excellent work at schools, nonprofits, and other sites across the Commonwealth and the country."
"The programs supported by AmeriCorps are the programs that support Americans, and I am proud that Massachusetts is home to some of the most committed and energetic AmeriCorps members in the country," said Senator Edward J. Markey. "These AmeriCorps grants will continue the Commonwealth's strong tradition of service and strengthen our communities' schools, nonprofits, and critical organizations."
"The AmeriCorps program does great work promoting academic importance, providing mentorship and encouraging students who are at-risk to falling behind all across the country and state," said Congressman Richard E. Neal. "The AmeriCorps program has proven to be especially successful through the partnership between Springfield College and Springfield Public Schools. During the first year of their collaboration, more than 850 at-risk students were beneficiaries of the multitude of programs AmeriCorps provides. I am pleased that the state will be receiving more assistance to ensure that these programs continue."
"The AmeriCorps programs provide vital services in education, health care and employment assistance," said Congressman Stephen Lynch. "These grants fund critical programs like the Brockton Public Schools Early Literacy Program, which showed at least 80% of students displayed improved academic performance and increased confidence in reading as measured by a pre- and post- survey of the intervention. It's important we continue to support valuable programs like these so they may continue to provide essential services for individuals, families and children all over Massachusetts."
"We all should be so lucky to have community partners like AmeriCorps Cape Cod, and I am thrilled to see that they have received over $500,000 in grant funding," said Congressman William R. Keating. "Cape Cod deals with a number of unique circumstances. No matter the issue - demographic, environmental preservation, or educational - AmeriCorps Cape Cod and Barnstable County have worked hard to keep our community ahead of these challenges."
"Positive change across our Commonwealth and country begins with citizens willing to serve their community and organizations committed to their neighbors," said Congressman Joseph P. Kennedy III. "Both SAGA Innovations in Newton and South Coastal Counties Legal Services in Fall River identified areas of need and sought solutions that would change lives for the better. To these organizations and those around Massachusetts who earned AmeriCorps funding, thank you for your tireless work to build a better, kinder country."
"The Commonwealth has had a long-standing tradition of national and community service," said Congresswoman Pressley. "From tackling the inequities in our education system to combatting climate change and working towards environmental justice, the Americorps program has helped to provide an on-ramp to address our country's most pressing issues. The Massachusetts 7th is a diverse, bold and innovative district and I am proud of the powerful work happening in community and further bolstered by Americorps funds."
"Massachusetts has a strong tradition of volunteerism and service. This AmeriCorps grant funding will enable so many organizations to continue to promote community service across the Commonwealth. I am so pleased that over $729,000 of this funding will go to TerraCorps, a Lowell-based organization that supports land trusts, urban agriculture, and food justice nonprofits. Programs like these engage our communities in environmentally conscious practices and are central to preserving our environment for future generations. I am proud to support these essential grant programs as a member of Congress," said Representative Lori Trahan.
"Building on a strong tradition of neighbor helping neighbor, AmeriCorps members will change lives, improve communities, and build a safer, stronger, and more united Massachusetts," said Chester Spellman, director of AmeriCorps. "For 25 years, the AmeriCorps members who pledge to 'get things done' have represented the best of America while demonstrating the great promise and ideals of our country. I salute all the AmeriCorps members who will join them, and thank those who help make their service possible."
AmeriCorps' unique model means that the grants announced today will leverage an additional $70,155,026 from the private sector, foundations, and other sources to further increase the return on the federal investment.
CNCS will provide an additional $19,902,265 in Segal AmeriCorps Education Awards for the AmeriCorps members funded by these grants. After completing a full term of service, AmeriCorps members receive an award of approximately $6,000 that they can use to pay for college or to pay off student loans.
Every year, 75,000 AmeriCorps members partner with over 21,000 schools, nonprofits, and community and faith-based organizations to serve their communities. These citizens have played a critical role in the recovery of communities affected by disasters and helped thousands of first generation college students access higher education. They also tutor and mentor young people, connect veterans to jobs, care for seniors, reduce crime and revive cities, fight the opioid epidemic, and meet other critical needs.
This year marks the 25th anniversary of AmeriCorps. Since the program's inception in 1994, more than 1 million Americans have served, providing more than 1.5 billion hours of service and earning more than $3.6 billion in education scholarships, more than $1 billion of which has been used to pay back student debt. Those interested in joining AmeriCorps can learn more here.
The Corporation for National and Community Service is a federal agency that engages millions of Americans in service through its AmeriCorps and Senior Corps programs and leads the nation's volunteering and service efforts. For more information, click here.