VISTA Service Opportunity with Woman to Woman Pregnancy Resource Center in Denton, TX

W2W new logoInterested in women’s health & have fundraising skills? The Woman to Woman Pregnancy Resource Center Fundraising Events VISTA will increase funding to provide education & free medical care to women.

Woman to Woman Pregnancy Resource Center is located in Denton, TX. Woman to Woman Pregnancy Resource Center (PRC) empowers individuals to make wise life choices financially, sexually, and relationally through 3 programs that work together to provide assistance to women in unintended pregnancies and bring families out of poverty. Ninety percent (90%) of the clients receiving services through the programs at Woman to Woman PRC fall below the poverty line with an average annual income of $17,000. The clinic at Woman to Woman PRC provides free medical services, including pregnancy testing, ultrasounds, prenatal care and medical follow-ups, as well as counseling to clients. Woman to Woman’s Living Choices of North Texas program is a school-based program with the mission of educating youth, equipping parents and engaging the community with accurate facts concerning sexual health and well-being. The Twice as Nice Resale Store of Denton supports the mission of Woman to Woman PRC. Women seeking services from Woman to Woman have the opportunity to receive new and gently used merchandise from the thrift store for themselves and their children free of charge through the Earn and Learn Program. The Fundraising Events VISTA at Woman to Woman Pregnancy Resource Center will build capacity and increase awareness of agency events and programs through development of community outreach strategies and will create a system of metric analysis for determining event sustainability. To learn more about Woman to Woman PRC visit


VISTA Service Opportunity with Chestnut Square Historic Village in McKinney, TX

Chestnut SquareAre you passionate about history? Bring history to life in McKinney, TX by developing a volunteer program to educate elementary school children and the community about their storied past.

Chestnut Square Historic Village located in McKinney, TX is a 2 block historic campus, consisting of five historic homes, a historically accurate replica of a one-room schoolhouse, a chapel, a store, a reception house, and a Visitors Center, spanning the time period of 1850-1930. We host hundreds of school children and thousands of visitors each year. We are located east of downtown McKinney bordering Hwy 5. Five (5) of the eight(8) Title I Schools are located within a 5 mile radius of Chestnut Square, where 50% of the 2500 students live in a home where English is not the first language. Our organization utilizes volunteers to execute our education programs which serve audiences of all ages, our community events which honor our founding families and speak to our roots as a developing metropolis, and our Farmers Market which provides access to locally sourced seasonal produce, farm fresh eggs and dairy, meats and a variety of specialty items. The Farmers Market has been nationally recognized multiple times as one of the best markets in terms of variety, customer service, sustainability, providing economic opportunities for farms and farmers, and adherence to strict farmers market guiding principles. The Chestnut Square Historic Village Volunteer Program Development VISTA will develop and implement a comprehensive volunteer program to support education programs serving McKinney elementary schools and farmer’s market. The VISTA will  develop a formal volunteer program, including policies, procedures, training and recognition events, and the recruitment of 35 new volunteers.


Christian Community Action VISTA Increases Funding Potential through Grant Writing

IMG_13502AmeriCorps VISTA Stephanie Adams’ work at Christian Community Action (CCA) in Lewisville, TX has included submitting grants to the Hillcrest, Harry W. Bass, Celanese, and Kohl foundation as well as the Bank of the Ozarks. If granted funding from each of these foundations Stephanie’s work could provide Christian Community Action’s comprehensive programs and services with $32,500 to continue providing relief to its clients in crisis. CCA’s programs include food and financial assistance, life skills and job readiness training, as well as spiritual care and counseling to approximately 4,000 community members in need. The grants written to the Hillcrest and Harry W. Bass foundation could potentially provide funding for CCA’s Food Assistance program and help CCA purchase fresh fruits and vegetables as well as household and hygiene products.

Grants VISTA Stephanie Adams’ Work Brings Joy to Families during the Holidays

IMG_13502Stephanie Adams is the Grants VISTA at Christian Community Action (CCA) in Lewisville, TX. CCA’s mission is to minister to the poor by providing comprehensive services that alleviate suffering, bring hope and change lives. In December, CCA was notified that grants Stephanie submitted were awarded. The ADR Foundation awarded $10,000 and the Stallings Foundation granted $2,000 for CCA’s 2017 Christmas festivities.  The carnival-themed celebration hosted approximately 1, 400 children and their families, providing them with several age-appropriate gifts. The Christmas festivities included a family dinner, musical performances and carols, personalized family holiday portraits, carnival-themed games and food, as well as a special visit from Santa Claus. Children and their families were able to participate in a holiday experience they couldn’t celebrate otherwise. Stephanie also submitted grants for $5,000 to the Hillcrest Foundation and $1,000 to the Whataburger Foundation. If granted, the funds will allow CCA to purchase fresh and nutritious food to be served in their pantry which provides a variety of food and household products to 4, 164 struggling individuals in North Texas. This food service has given many individuals the opportunity to redirect their household funds from groceries to other financial obligations and has allowed for many clients to transition back to self-sufficiency.

Christian Community Action’s VISTA Secures Grant Funds for Job Readiness Training Program

StevenChristian Community Action, located in Lewisville, TX­ ministers to the poor by providing comprehensive services that alleviate suffering, bring hope and change lives. Through CCA’s Job Readiness program, unemployed and underemployed individuals are taught skills needed and assistance is given connect them with better job opportunities. VISTA member Steven Tillman submitted a grant to the Walmart Foundation in September for the amount of $1,750 to aid with the expenses of Hiring Fairs and Job Readiness Program-related expenses. As a result, the Walmart Foundation awarded CCA $1,500. Steven is very excited, and plans to begin searching for other grant resources which the program can utilize. Steven’s revamp of the Job Readiness Training program is nearly complete; he is taking time to fully assess the curriculum’s logic and theories in order to address many relevant questions which could be asked by both client and trainer, alike. Though the pilot-programs both went very well from a clientele-outlook, Steven wasn’t confident that volunteer trainers would have all that they would need in order to fully engage the program’s clientele, while keeping the amount of training hours for volunteers to a minimum. With his research reflecting the core of the program curriculum’s logic and theories, he is geared to relaunch the program very soon. He is confident that the program will be even more effective at training volunteers to work with Job Readiness clientele on becoming entrenched within socioeconomic increases and with maintaining successful employment.

Chisholm Trail RSVP’s Drug Education VISTA Lays the Groundwork for Prescription Drug Take Back Events

IMG_16662In December, Drug Education VISTA, April Comperda, continued mobilizing the Chisholm Trail RSVP, Inc., Prescription Drug Take Back project in Denton County, TX in response to the CNCS call to action. Chisholm Trail RSVP’s Take Back campaign, includes events providing services such as medication review and providing mail-back envelopes to assist residents with a safe, convenient way disposal method for any unwanted and expired medications in order to prevent drug diversion with addicts, curious teens, innocent children, and pets. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) and the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) has definitively concluded that the majority of people who misuse prescription drugs obtain them from family or friends first. Consequently, as the prescription opioids start to become harder and harder to get off the streets, many addicts turn to heroin for the cheaper and faster high. Four out of five (80%) new heroin users started out misusing prescription painkillers (NIDA, SAMHSA, 2016). Not only is the Denton community home of two universities and several retirement communities, its metropolis location, which resides so close to DFW area, creates an opportune channel of drug trafficking and diversion. April and Chisholm Trail RSVP organized (DEA) National Prescription Take Back events as part of the Disposal Campaign, targeting senior living communities and senior centers across Denton County. The overarching goals of the Take Back Program are 1) reduce the amount of prescription medications circulating the streets; 2) to prevent the diversion of prescription medicine; 3) gain community support; and 4) increase education and awareness of the opioid epidemic and prevention measures; 4) conduct medication reviews to identify any medicine errors, especially for seniors. The event will be on April 28th at five senior community locations in Denton County.

New Service Opportunity!

W2W new logo

Woman to Woman Pregnancy Resource Center New Volunteer Training VISTA

The New Volunteer Training VISTA will increase the agency’s capacity by improving current volunteer trainings and procedures thus increasing retention of volunteers. The New Volunteer Training VISTA will develop a curriculum to thoroughly orient and train new volunteers and will refine volunteer education and training in order to move volunteers from program participation to ownership. The VISTA member will expand and enhance the volunteer program through the evaluation and revising of existing policies and procedures. The VISTA will create a new volunteer training program that is consistent with new policies and procedures as well as follow-up trainings and evaluations to allow volunteers to provide feedback and retrain in areas where they need help. The VISTA member will develop a volunteer management system to track volunteer activities and hours of service. The system created will need to have measures in place that will maintain confidentiality and security of volunteer records.

For a step-to-step guide on how to apply for this Service Opportunity please visit our Apply Now! Tab or Contact Us for any additional questions.

New Service Opportunity!

Plano Children's Theatre

Plano Children’s Theatre Volunteer Coordination VISTA

The Volunteer Coordination VISTA will help break down the barriers poverty creates for low-income children seeking an arts education through the development of a new comprehensive volunteer recruitment and training program. Major functions will include evaluation and updating the volunteer handbook, policies and procedures, evaluating the agency’s volunteer needs and recruiting 50 new volunteers to fill those needs, and the development of training materials to educate and enable volunteers to serve the needs of the agency. Applicants should possess good oral and written communications skills, volunteer recruitment experience and computer skills.

For a step-to-step guide on how to apply for this Service Opportunity please visit our Apply Now! Tab or Contact Us for any additional questions.

December VISTA Spotlight

IMG_12511Name: Victoria Jackson

Hometown: Dallas, Texas

Alma Mater: Loyola University Chicago

Volunteer history: I was on the executive board of the Habitat for Humanity chapter of my university, and after college I was a typing and TEFL tutor at local community centers for about a year. I came across AmeriCorps while working at a mortgage company, and decided to leave the industry to work for DuPage Habitat for Humanity as an AmeriCorps National on the construction team. After my first AmeriCorps year ended, I came back home to Dallas and found a VISTA position at Metro Dallas Homeless Alliance.

Why did you choose VISTA? I knew that I wanted to work in the nonprofit world but had very little experience and didn’t know on which cause I wanted to focus. VISTA provides me with the opportunity to learn in a working environment and has helped me focus my interest in one area.

Tell us a little bit about what your organization does and your role in it: MDHA facilitates collaboration between homeless service providers and is the lead agency for the Continuum of Care, whose end goal is to make any experience of homelessness rare, brief, and nonrecurring.  MDHA also coordinates HUD Continuum of Care grant funding for homelessness in Dallas and Collin county. What I do, specifically, is help facilitate collaboration between youth service providers, faith-based organizations, and create tools that help people recovering from homelessness to achieve and maintain stability.

What is your biggest accomplishment as a VISTA so far?  The Youth Services Directory, which is an array of services and housing options for homeless youth in Dallas and Collin counties.

VISTA Rashika Smith Saves a Life Due to Training Received at Epilepsy Foundation Texas

RashikaRashika Smith is serving with the Epilepsy Foundation Texas as the Community Outreach VISTA. Education outreach for epilepsy is what Rashika primarily markets to potential funders and supporters. As part of her professional development, Rashika attended the Epilepsy Foundation’s seizure first aid training. As with any training like CPR and first aid you hope you never have to use it, but when 1 in 26 people develop epilepsy in their lifetime this type of education is important. The Epilepsy Foundation offers seizure first aid training so those in the community are aware and know what to do and not do when coming into contact with an individual experiencing a seizure. Rashika never imagined the training she attended and now assists with would ever be used. However, one Thursday afternoon, the sound of a loud scream prompted her into action when a co-worker was in the throngs of an active seizure. Rashika jumped into action, administered seizure first aid and stabilized her coworker until paramedics arrived. According to her supervisor, Rashika remained calm and administered the first aid flawlessly, even remembering to time the seizure. When paramedics arrived, they asked her how she knew to time the seizure. She was very proud to explain to them what Epilepsy Foundation does and the services offered.