OCDCA is proud of our twenty-year-old AmeriCorps VISTA program. For twenty years through the Ohio CDC Association, these passionate volunteers (Volunteers In Service To America) dedicate a year of their lives to subsist on poverty wages while simultaneously building capacity within a non-profit to alleviate poverty in their neighborhoods. An initiative of the war on poverty, VISTA has a rich fifty year history. AmeriCorps began as a federal program in 1993 and adopted VISTA as a branch, thus creating a diverse array of national service options for volunteers and organizations.
Increasingly, cities are looking at national service as a means to solve local problems, be it neighborhood revitalization, greening efforts, or food access. April 7, 2015 was the third annual Mayor’s Day of National Service. Over 2,000 public officials in the U.S. made proclamations regarding national service. OCDCA, along with the Corporation for National and Community Service and ServeOhio, was proud to hold the Ohio Mayor’s Day event in Dayton. Mayor Nan Whaley made a wonderful proclamation for service and AmeriCorps members from each major branch: State and National, SeniorCorps, and VISTA each spoke about what their service means to them. OCDCA member St. Mary Development Corporation’s VISTA Kevin Tucker spoke on VISTA.
We at the Ohio CDC Association are immensely proud of our VISTAs and the work they do. Many go on to live a life of service, whether remaining in the non-profit realm or committing to public service. Most never stop volunteering. Thanks for the work you do to better your community and your country.