December 2019 Newsletter

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We're Moving!
Volunteer Iowa, along with Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA), is moving! On December 6, our offices will be closed to finalize the move to our new office space, which will be shared with Iowa Finance Authority (IFA). You will find Volunteer Iowa, IEDA and IFA at 1963 Bell Avenue, Suite 200, Des Moines, IA 50315, beginning on Monday, December 9. All Volunteer Iowa email addresses and phone numbers will remain the same.

Be The Greater Good. Join AmeriCorps.
AmeriCorps is your moment to take the path less traveled, to break the status quo, to stop talking about the problem and be the solution. Join AmeriCorps and you can mentor and tutor kids, rebuild a community after disaster, help veterans, or work with local communities to alleviate poverty. There are thousands of opportunities to choose from; find the one that fits you. Click HERE for more information or to apply.

Give Back Iowa Challenge
The 6th Annual Give Back Iowa Challenge is rapidly approaching! Now is the time to register your organization HERE and begin planning for the two-month employer-supported volunteer initiative.
The Give Back Iowa Challenge is an eight-week statewide challenge, which serves as a competitive way to encourage organizations and businesses alike to participate in community volunteering. The Challenge runs from April 1st through May 31st. It’s simple; register your organization, track the hours of your employees, record those hours on our system, and celebrate your employees and their dedication to volunteerism! The Give Back Iowa Challenge has proven to have a positive impact on businesses, including improved employee engagement, organizational commitment, job satisfaction, and retention. Last year alone, this initiative recorded over 74,000 hours of volunteer service in Iowa. Past winners of the Challenge include Worldly Goods in Ames, with 6 employees participating, and Wells Fargo with thousands of participants. Any business or organization of any size can help make Iowa a better, stronger place; one hour at a time. 
Registration is now open! Register your company before March 20th to be included in all pre-event media. Complete information and resources on how to participate and find volunteer opportunities are provided in the Give Back Iowa Challenge toolkit available at For more information, contact

Service Enterprise Applications Due January 6
A "Service Enterprise" is an organization that effectively leverages volunteers and their skills to meet their social mission. Research by Deloitte shows organizations operating at this level are able to operate at the same level as their peers, with half the median budget.
Cohorts across the state are beginning soon, with Des Moines area applications due January 6th. Questions? Want to request an application link? Please contact Michelle Raymer at or 515-348-6235.

Volunteer Hall of Fame and Iowa Mentoring Awards Nominations Are Now Open
The Iowa Volunteer Hall of Fame was established in 1989 to honor Iowans who have made extraordinary donations of volunteer service to their communities. The most prestigious state-level honor volunteers can receive; the people selected freely give their time and talent in countless ways to benefit others and have forever changed their community, the state, the nation, or the world. Nominations must be submitted online or postmarked by January 21, 2020; honorees will be recognized during a special ceremony in the Capitol in April. Details and nomination materials can be found HERE.

The Excellence in Mentoring Awards, established in 2009, gives Iowa Mentoring Partnership (IMP) certified programs the opportunity to recognize outstanding long-time youth mentors. Individuals selected have served as a mentor a minimum of two years and
exemplify both the spirit and positive benefits of mentoring. The nomination form can be found HERE.

Corporation for National and Community Service Regional Office Opens in Kansas City
The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), the federal agency for volunteering and service, opened its new office for the North Central Region in Kansas City, Missouri, on Monday, November 25. The grand opening event included representatives from AmeriCorps and Senior Corps programs from across the region to hear from CNCS CEO Barbara Stewart and North Central Regional Administrator Michael Laverty.
The new office will serve eight states across the region: Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. In total, CNCS provides $119 million in funding to the region and this federal investment leverages an additional
$97 million in local, outside investments. The funding provided by CNCS supports nearly 50,000 AmeriCorps and Senior Corps members who serve at 7,300 sites across all eight states. Working in collaboration with governor-appointed state service commissions, the North
Central Region office will connect communities to national service resources through the AmeriCorps and Senior Corps programs. Its staff will assist national service applicants and grantees by providing training, technical assistance, and administrative oversight. In
addition, they will promote the national days of service on MLK Day and September 11th.

Volunteer Iowa Seeking Organizations to Host AmeriCorps VISTA Projects
Volunteer Iowa is currently accepting applications from organizations interested in hosting a year-long AmeriCorps VISTA member(s) to focus on anti-poverty, community empowerment, sustainable solutions, and capacity building to meet the needs within the community for which they serve. The following issue areas are given priority:
Education and/or economic opportunity in rural communities
Addressing the opioid epidemic and other substance abuse issues
VISTA members provide a year of full-time service conducting capacity building activities for nonprofits, schools, and government organizations.
*To host a member beginning service in late winter/early spring, applications are due January 15, 2020. To apply, please review the Application Guide.
*VISTA applications are accepted on a continuing basis. Please allow at least 120 days from application to VISTA member start date.
If you have questions about the Volunteer Iowa AmeriCorps VISTA Project after reviewing the materials, please contact Julie Struck at or 515.348-6238 (toll-free: 1.800.308.5987).

Volunteer Management Training Series Registration Now Open
The Volunteer Centers of Iowa (VCI), in partnership with Volunteer Iowa, will host a webbased training resource for Iowa nonprofit, public, faith-based, and service organizations. The six session VCI Volunteer Management Training Series, running January 9 through
March 12, 2020, will provide best practices training presented by leading experts from across the state. Registration information and details are available at

Service in the News
Grassroots Energy Districts Aim to Spur Local Clean Energy Conversations
Iowa State 4-H AmeriCorps Program Assists with Tagging Monarchs to Track Their Migration Path
AmeriCorps VISTA worker Links CRB Students to Businesses 

Important Dates
December 6: 2020 Foster Grandparent Program-Senior Companion Program Replacement Sponsor Competition Applications Due
December 7: National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day
December 10: Human Rights Day
December 19: Life After AmeriCorps Day, Vinton (Register via email here)
January: National Mentoring Month
January 6: Service Enterprise Initiative Des Moines cohort applications due
January 14: Pre-applications due for NEW AmeriCorps State Programs
January 20: MLK Day of Service
January 21: Volunteer Hall of Fame & Excellence in Mentoring Award nominations due
February 11: Volunteer Iowa Day at the Capitol
April 1: Give Back Iowa Challenge begins

Looking for a way to give back? Visit Get Connected today to find volunteer opportunities. Organizations can post volunteer opportunities on Get Connected as well at no cost.

Volunteer Iowa
1.800.308.5987 | |
1963 Bell Avenue, Suite 200 | Des Moines, IA 50315 US

Printed from the website on September 19, 2020 at 9:55pm.