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The Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) is partnering with a long-heralded federal program that promotes national service for people of all ages to make a daily difference in America’s urban and rural communities and tackle issues of housing, jobs, health, safety, and education for low-income residents in Detroit.
LISC is dedicating more than $3 million to support 165 AmeriCorps members in 13 urban areas and rural communities, including our neighborhoods of Jefferson East and Southwest Detroit. The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS)—the federal agency that oversees AmeriCorps—is providing $1.44 million in funding, which LISC is matching with another $1.6 million. Nationally, the LISC AmeriCorps program addresses challenges related to jobs, housing, education and other issues that underpin poverty.
In Detroit, LISC AmeriCorps has been an integrated component of our local strategy for several years. The 14 new AmeriCorps members will be placed with our local individual community based organizations to tackle neighborhood concerns related to the lack of safe, decent, affordable housing and working with our partners on the 0% City of Detroit Home Repair Loan program.
LISC AmeriCorps is unique because it typically draws its participating members from the same communities where they are assigned to work. Since 2010, Detroit LISC has placed 79 AmeriCorps members in organizations across Detroit.
“Our focus is on helping create economic opportunity for people who are struggling and to improve the quality of life in their communities,” said Tahirih Zeigler, Executive Director with LISC Detroit. “Our AmeriCorps members are passionate about supporting that kind of change, and deeply motivated to give back to their communities.”
LISC has operated a national AmeriCorps program for more than two decades, having placed more than 3,000 members in community-focused initiatives and programs across the country. Many of those members have gone on to long careers working with nonprofits, social services agencies and government.
“For us, AmeriCorps is about giving low-income residents the skills they need to build a careers in community-focused sectors, just as it is about lifting the prospects of the struggling neighborhoods where they live,” said Stacey Rapp, LISC AmeriCorps’ national program director.