Written by Gerolly Lorenzo, AmeriCorps Equity Manager
In November 2022, the Mayor’s Office of Civic Engagement and Volunteer Service (MOCEVS) welcomed Service Year Alliance and the Service Collaborative of Western NY for a two-day visit to share what sets Philadelphia apart as a model for national service.
MOCEVS hosts the National Service Task Force (NSTF) which, since 2015, has committed to reducing barriers to service. The goal of the NSTF is to make national service more accessible to any Philadelphian committed to service.
As a result, in 2018, Service Year Alliance designated Philadelphia’s NSTF a service year Impact Community. Service Year Alliance defines Impact Communities as, “collaborative efforts among community stakeholders to leverage service years as a tool to address community needs. By coordinating local efforts, Impact Communities work to create the conditions for universal national service — full-time, paid service that is impactful, equitable, offers career, education, and civic opportunity, and exists at scale.” Find out more about Service Year Alliance Impact Communities here.
The National Service Task Force is a model for other Impact Communities across the country
Since our designation as an Impact Community, the National Service Task Force in Philadelphia has led several important projects that have made our network stronger and continues to improve member support in our AmeriCorps programs.
Here a few of the major accomplishments of the NSTF:
- Established the Philadelphia AmeriCorps Alumni Chapter
- The Chapter works to support AmeriCorps alumni to grow as civic leaders and mentors currently serving AmeriCorps members.
- The Philadelphia Chapter leads as a national model for alumni engagement and attracted the AmeriCorps’ CEO’s attention, who came for an in-person visit earlier in 2022
- Secured funding to launch the AmeriCorps Financial Empowerment Services
- This includes an AmeriCorps Financial Assistance Fund
- Led COVID response work through inter-program collaboration
- The NSTF redeployed AmeriCorps members to manage school meal-site distribution during the start of the pandemic
- Launched the Philadelphia COVID Response Corps through Commonwealth Civilian Coronavirus Corps funding in collaboration with funding from PennSERVE.
In the year ahead, the NSTF will tackle several issues faced by our AmeriCorps network including:
- access to transportation
- food security
- increasing alumni development
- building corporate connections to support AmeriCorps members
You, too, can support AmeriCorps members serving in Philadelphia. By donating to the AmeriCorps Financial Assistance Fund, you help members who are facing unexpected challenges remain in service.