MANCHESTER, NH – The Families in Transition (FIT) VISTA Program recently welcomed 16 new AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) members to the program, along with five members who have committed to serving a second year. The FIT VISTA members will be working as full-time, professional volunteers at 15 nonprofit and government agencies throughout New Hampshire to build funding and foster sustainable programs to help the most disadvantaged populations in the state.
AmeriCorps VISTA is a national service program that started in 1964 and was designed specifically to fight poverty. VISTA members commit to working full time as paid professional volunteers for one year at a nonprofit organization or local government agency, working to fight illiteracy, improve health services, foster economic development and otherwise assist low-income communities. Most relocate from different areas of the country for their year of service.
“We are proud and excited to have these new AmeriCorps VISTA members join our program,” said Emily Melhorn, Families in Transition Manager of Volunteers and FIT VISTA Program. “Last year, our FIT VISTA members raised more than $710,000 for their organizations to be able to build capacity for the most disadvantaged members of their communities. The impact that these individuals have on their community and New Hampshire as a whole is extraordinary.”
The roles of this year’s VISTA members include positions in research and program development, community impact and outreach, volunteer engagement, marketing and communications, and graphic design. The participating organizations and agencies are spread throughout seven communities in New Hampshire.
Front row (L-R): Becky Martin, Chelsea Haskell, Gillian Seaman, Julianne DeFilippis, Ellyn Goncer and Kendall Ogle.
Middle row (L-R): Rachel Crinklaw, Elena Karis, Lauren Garza, Grace Farnan and Emily Gordon.
Back row (L-R): Nicole Clark, Greg Lange, Lucy Hewitt, Conor Murphy, Leslie Griffin, Kelsey Kenney, Evan Davis, Cal Inguanti and Barbara Huntress-Rather.
VISTA’s are working for the below nonprofits in seven New Hampshire communities:
- Bedford: The CareGivers, Inc.
- Concord: Early Learning NH/Spark NH, NH Department of Health and Human Services and NH Department of Education
- Lebanon: ReThink Health: Upper Connecticut River Valley
- Manchester: Child Health Services, Court Appointed Special Advocates of New Hampshire, Families in Transition, Manchester Continuum of Care, NH Coalition to End Homelessness and Old Sol Music Hall
- Nashua: United Way of Greater Nashua
- New Castle: Arts in Reach
- Portsmouth: Portsmouth Housing Authority and United Way of the Greater Seacoast
The Families in Transition VISTA Program is one of the largest networks of AmeriCorps VISTA members living and serving throughout New Hampshire. The program recruits volunteers and nonprofits to join the VISTA team, with the goal of improving the quality of life for the most disadvantaged members of the Granite State. Since 2010, it has been a program of Families in Transition, a Manchester, Concord, and Dover, NH, based homeless housing and services provider. For more information about the program or FIT, visit www.fitnh.org or call 603-641-9441.