While there is some flexibility to the start date, ideally the VISTA member will begin their year of service on 6/10/19. There are a number of benefits included: childcare assistance if eligible, relocation allowance, health coverage, a living stipend, multiple professional development opportunities, and the member's choice between an end of service education award or end of service stipend.
The VISTA member will help sexual violence survivors receive the support they need to help them to break (and prevent) the cycle of poverty by developing and implementing a comprehensive community outreach plan to increase community awareness/engagement, expand/strengthen partnerships/networks and develop diversified funding, including outreach to sexual assault survivors with low socio-economic status to connect them with our services to address the root causes of the potentially chronic impacts of sexual abuse to break the cycle of poverty; identifying potential collaborations and planning informational meetings with new and existing partners to help to meet all of the needs of survivors, establishing internal systems for utilizing volunteers for outreach and sustaining these efforts, and establishing fundraising efforts in Linn County, including surveys to identify unmet needs and identifying/researching potential grant funders and writing grants to support our free services.
Community Need Addressed
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an estimated 37,349 women and 15,878 men in Linn County will experience sexual violence during their lifetimes, representing all socio-economic and racial/ethnic backgrounds (CDC 2010-2012 National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence State Survey Report, released April 2017). According to the United Ways of Iowa 2018 ALICE Report (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed), a total of 30% of households in Linn County earn less than the basic cost of living for that county. Riverview Center’s free and confidential advocacy and therapy intervention services for survivors of sexual assault and abuse can help to minimize or prevent a network of overlapping issues that a trauma survivor is at risk of experiencing, helping to minimize the potential outcomes of poor school performance and reduced career prospects (MacMillan 2000).
Through this community engagement project, the AmeriCorps VISTA member would help our agency to conduct a coordinated outreach plan to raise awareness among low income individuals of the free and confidential services available, both through outreach initiatives to the general community and enhanced community partnerships to enhance referrals from community agencies, and through helping to identify local funding streams to engage them in our efforts to provide services for low income survivors of sexual assault/abuse.
Childcare assistance if eligible, Education award upon successful completion of service, Health coverage, Living allowance, Non-competitive eligibility (federal jobs), Relocation allowance (if applicable), Stipend, Student loan forbearance, Training
Competencies You Will Develop
Demonstrate sensitivity and empathy, Lead group discussion, Listen to and consider others' viewpoints, Maintain open lines of communication with others, Speak clearly, in precise language and in a logical, organized and coherent manner, Turn taking, Write cleary and effectively
Creativity & Problem Solving
Able to identify and define the problem, Capable of generating possible solutions, Communicate the problem to appropriate personnel, Improvise, Provide relevant expertise, Select and implement well-considered solution
Derive consensus, Develop constructive working relationships and maintain them over time, Establish a high degree of trust and credibility with others, Interact professionally and respectfully with supervisors and co-workers, Stay positive and outcome oriented, Use appropriate strategies and solutions for dealing with conflicts and differences to maintain a smooth workflow
Accepts responsibility, Anticipate the consequences of decisions, Identify and prioritize the key issues involved to facilitate the decision making process, Involve people appropriately in decisions that may impact them, Quickly respond with a back-up plan if a decision goes amiss
Carefully consider which tools or technological solutions are appropriate for a given job, Consistently choose the best tool or technological solution for the problem at hand, Operate tools and equipment in accordance with established operating procedures, safety standards, and ethical guidelines, Seek opportunities to improve knowledge of tools and technologies that may assist in streamlining work and improving productivity
Able to prioritize various competing tasks, Create environment of contribution, Create plan of action, schedule tasks so that work is completed on time, Demonstrate the effective allocation of time and resources efficiently, Drive decision making, Effectively delegate tasks, Facilitate group planning, Set goals
Be pleasant, courteous, professional and respectful when dealing with internal and external customers or clients, Evaluate customer or client satisfaction, Honor the privilege of being able to work with and for those being served, Provide personalized, prompt, and efficient service to meet the requirements, requests and needs of customers, Recognize the importance of maintaining privacy and confidentiality of those being served, Understand and anticipate the needs of others, Understand the importance of one's role in the functioning of the organization, Understand the significance of maintaining a healthful and safe environment