AmeriCorps Vista

Growing Hope is currently recruiting applicants for a VISTA position for a 12-month terms of service, to begin in February 11th, 2014 and to run through February 14th, 2015.  See below for details, but please note application deadline is December 13th, 2013.  However, prospective members who are willing to commit to a two-year term of service will be given some preference. Growing Hope is a community-based nonprofit organization whose mission is to help people improve their lives and communities through gardening and healthy local food access.


All VISTA members will help to strengthen food security, enhance local environments, improve health & nutrition, and provide educational opportunities to community members throughout Washtenaw County—particularly in ways that strengthen access for low-income families— through different roles at Growing Hope and our partners. VISTA members will work to increase organizational capacity by developing program models, partnerships & collaborations, training, and securing financial and human resources. The goals of this VISTA project include:

  • Maximizing year-round food availability for low-income households
  • Training youth & adults as urban farmers, and expand opportunities to serve in this area
  • Developing economically-viable models of urban agriculture
  • Cultivating healthy eaters among      low-income youth & adults to increase well-being and reduce risk of      chronic disease
  • Building enduring capacity      of these efforts to maximize impact of organizations & projects in      urban ag and food security through collaboration and volunteerism;      Documenting success & impact using common metrics


Each VISTA member will focus in one of the areas below, although some responsibilities/projects may be shared and adjusted based on the strengths and interests of each member.  


Please specify which position or positions you wish to be considered for.  Please cite both what skills you would bring to the entire Growing Hope team, and specific qualifications for each position you wish to be considered for.  While we outline specific position descriptions below, we may not fill all positions and/or may combine positions.

Qualified candidates for any of our positions will exhibit the following:

O        Passion for Growing Hope and our partners’ missions and work.  Dedication to working as a member of and in partnership with diverse communities

O        Willingness to commit to one full year of full time service to the organization and community, with some preference to those willing to commit to two years of service

O        Proven ability to work well and communicate effectively both in groups and independently

O        Comfort in use of computers and technology on a daily basis

O        Desire to encourage local community members to share ideas, talents and resources; previous knowledge of local resources is a plus!

O        Excellent verbal and written communication skills

O        Strong organizational and management skills, including excellent follow-through.

O        Willingness to know more about and respond to needs of communities and schools, and become grounded/involved (if not already) in the communities in which we work

O        Flexibility to work non-traditional hours, including evenings and weekends as scheduled

O        Experience in coordinating and leading teams and working with volunteers

O        Willingness to see projects through—from developing to implementing to evaluating

O        Ability to juggle multiple projects simultaneously

O        Experience or desire to gain knowledge of-and assist in disseminating information about organic gardening or farming, nutrition/health, sustainability, and community food systems

O        Willingness to adapt to changing organizational conditions and extremely limited resources

O        Creativity, flexibility, resourcefulness and positive thinking

O        VISTA members placed at Growing Hope who live in or will relocate to Ypsilanti are preferred





There are two steps to the application, and until both are completed, we will not review your application.


1)       Go to to enter the Americorps online application website.  Create your online Americorps application.  Once completed, you still need to submit your application to Growing Hope.  Do a search for Michigan and Growing Hope and you’ll find us among the results—from there you should be able to submit the application to us.  Note: until your references have completed their sections describing you on the Americorps website, your application is not complete.

2)      Submit a resume and 2-page letter describing your interests and qualifications by December 13th, 2013 at the latest—but applications will be reviewed and selections made on a rolling basis, so it is helpful to get yours completed right away.  You may not be considered if you apply later and applicants are already selected.  Electronic applications encouraged; please email (as attachments) to After receiving materials and completing online application above, applicants will need to be available for interviews in person or by phone (in-person preferred). 

Please read on for position areas, and specify in your letter which position(s) you are interested in, and how your qualifications match that/those position description(s).


Volunteer and Community Outreach Coordinator

This VISTA position will serve one year assisting the Volunteer Coordinator to create a robust volunteer program. This VISTA will spend time researching Veteran and Corporate volunteer engagement to create an action plan to engage these two specific populations. Other duties will include recruiting community volunteers, creating a volunteer retention plan and leading groups of volunteers. This VISTA will also assist with Growing Hope's community outreach by researching best practices surrounding community outreach. This person will then create and implement a strategic plan for outreach.

Farmer’s Market Coordinator

This VISTA will serve one year working in our three Farmer's Markets in the Wasthenaw County/Western Wayne County area. This VISTA will work to establish relationships with community partners for special events. Especially those events that increase healthy food access to low income individuals. They will work with the Market Manager to coordinate the markets and create an outreach plan for the markets. This individual will also work closely with market vendors. They will work to create relationships with the vendors and support them as entrepreneurs.




O        Monthly Stipend of $983.00 (before taxes), or $11,796/year

O        Health Benefits, optional Life Insurance

O        Child care assistance

O        Educational ($5,500) or cash award ($1,500) at end of term

O        Training before and during service term; Opportunities to build resume



AmeriCorps*VISTA members serve full-time, for one year with varying work schedules.  VISTA members are not allowed to be in school or have other employment during their term of service.  VISTA members may be eligible for Food Stamps, childcare subsidies, or other forms of public assistance.



More information about Growing Hope is available at  More information about VISTA and other Corporation for National and Community Service programs, see  Additional questions about Growing Hope or these positions, please call us at 734-786-8401 or email




Casey VanNest
Operations Director
Growing Hope

Fax: 734.484.4481

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Ypsilanti, MI
Publicaton Date: 
Monday, December 2, 2013 - 12:00am
Company Name: 
Growing Hope
Job Type: