Through a unique state-local partnership with AmeriCorps, ServeOhio works with organizations to address their local area’s most critical needs in education, economic opportunity, health, and environmental stewardship while also providing a valuable service experience for the AmeriCorps member who will participate in the program – building skills, increasing employment opportunities, and reducing higher-education debt for thousands of Ohioans. This service year in Ohio, more than 900 AmeriCorps members will provide 1.2 million hours of service throughout the state at more than 500 program locations. They will work with more than 26,000 youth across the state, performing tasks such as tutoring and mentoring students, cleaning streams, helping youth prepare for kindergarten, and much more. To achieve this feat, AmeriCorps provides crucial funding to more than 2,000 of these nonprofit partners across the country every year. Learn more about some of the organizations we support and how their partnerships with ServeOhio and AmeriCorps helps them to achieve their missions. Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden At Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden, 10 AmeriCorps members are tasked with providing quality STEM education to 1,690 economically disadvantaged pre-K-12 students and their teachers to improve science literacy and student engagement. Their work also aims to educate 2,500 zoo visitors and community members on environmentally-conscious practices and behaviors to improve knowledge and encourage behavior change. “Having the service members here with us made us much more nimble-footed in being able to respond to the need of the community that was created by the pandemic,” said Dan Marsh, director of education and volunteer services at Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Gardens. City Year Columbus Seventy-six AmeriCorps members provide full-day academic and school engagement services to students in seven public schools in Columbus, Ohio, during their program year at City Year Columbus. At the end of the third program year, AmeriCorps members will be responsible for providing whole class support for English and math classrooms, providing individualized services, and student progress monitoring. The goals of these efforts are to improve English, math and attendance, implement extended day activities, and improve the overall school climate. “The support from AmeriCorps allowed City Year Columbus to increase our service footprint in Columbus by adding new service sites to serve more students in Columbus City Schools,” said Adero Robinson, vice president and executive director at City Year Columbus. College Now | Greater Cleveland At College Now Greater Cleveland, 55 AmeriCorps members work to deliver programs and counseling for students on college, career exploration, and financial education. This work includes providing support to 11 th and 12 th graders on postsecondary access and financial planning and facilitating successful postsecondary transitions. At the end of the program year, AmeriCorps members will be responsible for ensuring 6,050 of the upper-class students they serve complete at least one advising session and one milestone on their path to a postsecondary education. “Since 2009, we have hosted more than 150 AmeriCorps members. Not only have they been important to the work in the moment, but over 50 of them eventually joined the College Now team as part of our full-time staff,” said Lee Friedman, CEO of College Now Greater Cleveland. Mercy Health Eleven AmeriCorps members provide services related to the reduction and prevention of prescription drug and opioid abuse in urban and rural Mercy Health emergency departments in Ohio. The AmeriCorps members are responsible for providing education and information on substance abuse, linkages to healthcare and social services including treatment, and access to resources to patients and caregivers in select emergency departments. AmeriCorps members leverage volunteers who will be engaged in a National Day of Service community project and other service and outreach events during their tenure. “We’ve attracted a wide variety of emerging leaders, who bring a passion for service and an eagerness to serve their community and represent our mission so well,” said Gina Hemenway, executive director of community health for Mercy Health. Ohio Domestic Violence Network At the Ohio Domestic Violence Network (ODVN), 20 AmeriCorps members provide economic opportunity services to domestic violence survivors who receive services at 20-member domestic violence programs across Ohio. Financial Freedom Corps members serve in the following counties: Franklin, Athens, Wood, Auglaize, Lucas, Marion, Clark, Mahoning, Montgomery, Putnam, Knox, Richland, Van Wert, and Fayette. AmeriCorps members are also responsible for providing survivors with financial education, economic empowerment services, and housing counseling. “Building an AmeriCorps program has not only helped us provide more support to survivors, but it’s also helped us look at new ways to approach our service,” said Cassie Baker, AmeriCorps coordinator at the Ohio Domestic Violence Network. Ohio University Seventeen AmeriCorps members work to create and support social and physical environments that promote good health for all and enhance the quality of life in Athens County. AmeriCorps members are also responsible for teaching a year-long nutrition education program to 400 students each week, increasing their knowledge of and taste preferences for healthy foods. Members, through service at their sites, will serve 2,800 individuals through initiatives that will result in positive health knowledge and outcomes. “Whether assisting our county health department with COVID vaccination clinics or providing emergency food assistance for families, COMCorps members have been there for our community every step of the way,” said Sherri Oliver, executive director, Community Health Programs and Area Health Education Center at Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine. Rural Action At Rural Action, 31 AmeriCorps members educate youth and the public about restoring, conserving, and preserving environmental resources; improving food distribution to people in poverty; connecting community members to their history, heritage, and sense of place; and furthering economic sustainability in Appalachian Ohio. AmeriCorps members are responsible for cultivating healthier streams and a more engaged public acting as citizen stewards to increase direct service through volunteerism. AmeriCorps members also leverage volunteers who will serve more in communities of need, building trails, planting trees, cleaning up dumpsites, recovering resources, joining in education activities, improving the health of our watersheds, and engaging in citizen science. “Through our collaboration with AmeriCorps, we’ve been able to reach more communities, provide more resources and watch many service members develop into leaders across our region,” said Debbie Phillips, CEO of Rural Action. Learn more by visiting https://www.serveohio.org/AmeriCorps .