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University of Dayton receives $164K ServeOhio grant to launch out-of-school education program for area children

By Dave Larsen

The University of Dayton will launch a new program this fall to support out-of-school education efforts for Dayton’s children with a $163,568 AmeriCorps renewable grant from ServeOhio, Ohio’s governor-appointed commission on service and volunteerism.

Administered by the Fitz Center for Leadership in Community, the University of Dayton Community Corps builds on the Neighborhood School Centers partnership with Dayton Public Schools and the “Rock Your Homework” program with Dayton Metro Library. It will provide local children and families with a range of services during their out-of-school time.

UD Community Corps aims to increase educational success for Dayton's children by addressing and supporting the needs of the whole child through multi-faceted community efforts. It will provide a range of services to the students and their families through programming Dayton Metro Library and the family resource coordinators of four Neighborhood School Centers within Dayton Public Schools.

As with all AmeriCorps programs, UD Community Corps will rely on long-term volunteers to provide service to the community. The positions begin service Sept. 1.

Up to 46 University students and community members will be invited to provide educational support, social-emotional support and enrichment activities to Dayton’s children and their families. Volunteers will serve about 12 hours a week at one of six sites during the school year, or about 23 hours a week during the summer months.

“By partnering with local nonprofits, public agencies and community organizations, Ohio’s high-impact AmeriCorps programs address local communities’ most critical needs,” said ServeOhio Executive Director William Hall. “AmeriCorps members will grow as individuals and leaders while providing valuable service to Ohio’s struggling neighborhoods.”

UD Community Corps members will come to know the families who use the libraries, the non-profit agencies that oversee the family resource coordinators at each of the neighborhood schools, and the children and their families who are involved in the after-school and summer programs. They will be able to hone their tutoring and listening skills, gain a better understanding of the nonprofit agencies and schools involved, and interact directly with the community’s residents. While serving, these AmeriCorps members will be able to earn a living stipend.

Members who serve 300 hours satisfactorily over the course of the year also will be eligible for an educational award.

UD Community Corps will take the place of the Dayton Corps, a partnership with the City of Dayton and Dayton Metro Library that started in 2017 with a $385,000 AmeriCorps annual grant. Dayton Corps focused on housing insecurity, neighborhood development and out-of-school education.

ServeOhio supports AmeriCorps members by providing resources and leadership development for their service year. In addition, ServeOhio works closely with local nonprofit organizations and governmental entities to structure evidence-based programming that builds the capacity of local entities to increase student achievement and bolster community-improvement objectives.

Nationally, AmeriCorps programs engage more than 80,000 individuals in intensive, results-driven service each year through more than 21,600 organizations across the country. Upon completion of 1,700 hours of service, full-time AmeriCorps members earn a $6,095 Segal AmeriCorps Education
Award to help pay for college or pay back student loans. Since 1994, more than 1 million men and women have served in AmeriCorps, providing more than 1.4 billion hours of service and earning more than $3.3 billion in scholarships, more than $1 billion of which has been used to pay back student loan debt.

For more information about the UD Community Corps program or how to get involved, visit the Fitz Center website.

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