About our AmeriCorps VISTA Cohort
For more than two decades, Strong City has been a proud sponsor of the AmeriCorps VISTA program. Strong City sponsors a diverse selection of projects that build and strengthen vibrant urban communities throughout Baltimore City and across Maryland.
Our members develop K-12, college, and career opportunities for at-risk youth, create access to healthy options through community organizing and gardening, improve programming that empowers refugees and the homeless, and much more.
We are not currently accepting applications for Strong City VISTA Projects.
To learn about the Strong City VISTA Cohort and the current VISTA projects, click here.
How to Apply to be a VISTA Member
All interested applicants must complete an online myAmeriCorps application. Go to my.americorps.gov and click “apply to serve” to register and begin your application. A complete application requires two references, so be sure to request those early. Please do not send cover letters or resumes unless requested; only online applications will be considered. Qualifying applicants will be interviewed by both Strong City staff and the service site before final decisions are made.
Strong City-Sponsored VISTAs serve full time for a period of one calendar year. All VISTA positions require full time dedication, often with responsibilities in the evening and on weekends.
VISTAs are required to attend a mandatory Pre-Service Orientation (PSO) prior to beginning their year of service. All lodging and travel costs to and from PSO will be covered by the Corporation for National Community Service (CNCS).
VISTAs receive a living allowance set at 105% of the poverty line for the city in which they will be serving as well as monthly transportation reimbursement.
VISTAs also have the opportunity to enroll in an AmeriCorps Health Allowance (supplemental to health insurance), to apply for SNAP (food stamps), childcare assistance, and other benefits if eligible.
Strong City provides an On Site Orientation & Training (OSOT) at the start of the term and monthly Professional Development Meetings (PDMs) tailored to the VISTA cohort. Training topics have included volunteer management, sustainable project planning, grant writing and reporting, effective communication, and community organizing, among others. Our in-service trainings are an opportunity for team-building and resource sharing among our VISTA members and are often described as a highlight of the service experience through Strong City.
If relocating more than 50 miles to serve, the VISTA will be considered to receive a travel allowance depending on the distance (not to exceed $1,000) and settling-in allowance (not to exceed $550).
Finally, upon successful completion of the term, VISTAs choose to receive either an Education Award of $5,550 or Cash Stipend of $1,500. The Education Award, which is subject to taxation, can be applied to any federally backed student loan or used to pay school tuition in the future. After serving, VISTAs have one year of non-competitive eligibility for federal employment.
For detailed information about AmeriCorps VISTA, including member benefits, please click here.
All applicants are required to fill out an online application with CNCS and, if selected, provide proof of age, social security number, and citizenship. All selected candidates are required to complete a federal criminal background check and child abuse clearance before beginning service.