Asian American Community AmeriCorps VISTA Project
AmeriCorps VISTA is a federal program focused on eliminating poverty in the United States. VISTA members sign up for a one year term of service, and work to build capacity at organizations and agencies to help combat poverty in communities across the country. For Asian Americans in the Chicago metro area, the poverty rate increased 40 percent between 2000 and 2010. Additionally, between 2007 and 2010, the unemployment rate among Asian Americans tripled.
In 2014, Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Chicago was awarded a grant through AmeriCorps for the hiring of 15 VISTA members to be placed with Asian American community serving organizations across Chicago and its suburbs. This is the first VISTA grant in the Midwest focused on the Asian American community.
- Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Chicago
- Alliance of Filipinos for Immigrant Rights & Empowerment
- Cambodian Association of Illinois
- Chinese Mutual Aid Association
- Coalition for a Better Chinese American Community
- Japanese American Service Committee
- Korean American Community Services
- Lao American Organization of Elgin
- Muslim Women Resource Center
- Korean American Resource and Cultural Center
VISTA members in the Asian American community VISTA project work in one of three project areas at their host sites:
- Community Outreach: VISTA members foster new connections with other community organizations, and conduct additional outreach to draw in more clients for their site. VISTA performance is measured by additional “activities” (which are new events and relationships that they have developed), and new clients brought in from this outreach.
- Volunteer Recruitment: VISTA members recruit new volunteers to increase capacity at their organizations. Their performance is measured by the number of volunteers they recruit, plus the number of hours that those volunteers contribute over the course of the year.
- Resource Development: VISTA members work to raise money and obtain donations (both monetary and in-kind). VISTA performance is measured by the amount of resources they are able to raise.
- About AmeriCorps VISTA
- In 2015, AmeriCorps VISTA celebrates its 50th anniversary.
- Community of Contrasts – Midwest Demographic Report (includes information on Asian Americans in poverty)