FoodCorps Arkansas Service Member
Who We Are: FoodCorps is a nationwide team of AmeriCorps leaders that connects kids to food and helps them grow up healthy. We do that by placing motivated leaders in limited-resource communities for a year of public service. Serving under the direction of local partner organizations, our service members focus on three areas of service:
● Hands-on learning: students grow, cook, and taste new foods, which builds their skills and changes food preferences
● Healthy school meals: the cafeteria experience steers students towards the healthiest options and gets them excited to try new healthy foods
● Schoolwide culture of health: as a whole, the school community and environment – from hallways to classrooms to cafeteria to grounds – celebrates healthy food. We measure our success in terms of changes in children, schools, and systems.
What We’re Looking For
• Passion for building a healthier future for school children
• Commitment to working hard in service of local communities in order to make a difference
• Demonstrated leadership ability
• Motivation to serve full-time in a limited resource community
• Perseverance in the face of challenges and creativity in finding solutions
• Respect for diversity of opinion, experience, and background • Experience working in or studying food systems, agriculture, public health, education, school nutrition, culinary arts, community organizing, or public service
• Experience working or volunteering in education, youth development, or other teaching setting
• Knowledge of the culture, history, and/or language of the communities we serve
• Desire to gain hands-on experience for your career
• Demonstrated ability or dedication to performing the activities listed below
To be considered for a FoodCorps service member position, you must: • Be 18 years or older by the start of your service term
• Be a legal, permanent resident of the United States
• Hold a high school diploma, GED or equivalent Individual service positions differ by location. There may be additional requirements depending on the site to which you apply.
What You’ll Do: Service members work with schools, service site organizations and local communities to build healthy school food environments. They do this in a variety of ways:
● Service members focus on teaching children in grades K-8 about food and nutrition in the classroom or cafeteria by delivering engaging, hands-on lessons, integrating activities into subjects such as math, science and history, working with teachers and school administrators to increase food and nutrition education in curricula, and more.
● Service members grow healthy food with students, teachers, and community members in school gardens, dynamic educational settings where kids can get their hands dirty and experience what they’re learning first-hand. While some service members expand/maintain already-existing school gardens, greenhouses and hoop houses, others work to establish new gardens. Service members develop garden sustainability plans and recruit community volunteers to ensure that the projects they start last into the future.
● Service members focus on district-level school nutrition projects that will work to change what students eat at school everyday. Service members will work with school nutrition professionals to integrate healthy foods into breakfast, lunch and snack programs and more. Under the supervision of district-level school nutrition leaders, and with ongoing support and training from FoodCorps, these members will help to advance the goals and vision for school meal quality in the districts where they serve.
● Service members help build schoolwide cultures of health by building strong, collaborative relationships with teachers, families, and school administrators, recruiting and training volunteers, organizing committees and running meetings, talking to press and public officials. ● Service members spend time learning and participating in trainings, helping FoodCorps and schools assess the impact they are having, and raising money to help support the local projects when allowable.
What You’ll Gain • $22,000 living stipend for Service Members, paid bi-weekly.
• $6,345 AmeriCorps Segal Education Award, upon successful completion of your term of service
• Health insurance* • Partial childcare reimbursement, if you qualify • Student loan forbearance, if you qualify • Training, mentorship, and professional development opportunities *Participation in the FoodCorps health insurance option is required if you cannot provide proof of existing coverage.