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Monday, June 24, 2024
HomeCommunityAmeriCorps Seniors Volunteer Program  Connects Generations

AmeriCorps Seniors Volunteer Program  Connects Generations

Intergenerational connections are important in providing mentorship to young people and a sense of pur­pose to the older generations. In northeastern Minnesota, the AGE to AGE Program and the Northland Foundation are working together to administer the AmeriCorps Seniors Volunteer Program.

The Northland Foundation re­ceived a two-year AmeriCorps Se­niors Senior Demonstration grant to “engage senior volunteers who will provide tutoring, out-of-school time, and summer learning activi­ties in twelve AGE to age partner sites across rural northeastern Min­nesota.” This project focuses on the AmeriCorps priority area of “Edu­cation — Intergenerational Program­ming”, and is designed to “engage older adults in supporting students and families for successful transi­tions in returning to the classrooms and/or strengthen social emotion­al learning of students to increase school readiness and K-12 success post-pandemic.”

Lake Superior School District Community Education has worked with the Northland Foundation for many years as a designated AGE to age station site. “The Northland Foundation has been an outstand­ing partner and supporter of inter­generational programs, and this is just another extension of that rela­tionship,” Bruce Remme, Director of Community Education, said.

The AmeriCorps Seniors Volun­teer Program enrollment is open on a rolling basis, meaning that new volunteers are accepted at any time. The current volunteer program runs through Summer 2024. To date, students from preschool to high school have benefited from the “time and expertise our volunteers have so graciously shared.”

Due to the program’s broad na­ture, volunteers are welcome to serve in a variety of ways. “We cur­rently have volunteers serving on a weekly basis in elementary class­rooms and the library at Minneha­ha Elementary. We have volunteers working with our junior high robot­ics team. We have volunteers who are serving as ‘game buddies’ in our after school program. We have had several volunteers through the Lake County Master Gardeners who worked with our summer Kids & Co program providing education and experiencing various gardening techniques,” Remme said.

Interested seniors (age 55+) can get involved in volunteering by con­tacting the Community Educa­tion office. Prospective volunteers are welcome to stop by the office in-person Monday to Thursday, 7:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., call (218) 834-8201 x8227, or email Bruce Remme at bremme@isd381.org.

Haley Searls
Haley Searls
Hello! My name is Haley Searls. I’ve loved writing from an early age, though my nonfiction writing at five years old consisted mainly of weather and gardening reports. I still have some of those early articles: “It’s sunny.” “It’s still sunny.” “It’s raining.” I’m glad to say my writing has improved since then. I wrote a guest post for the Silver Bay Public Library blog, and was the writer/editor of the newsletter for my American Heritage Girls troop. I have been writing for the North Shore Journal since June 2022. Besides writing, I love reading, drawing, photography, music, and spending time with family and friends. Two books that have really influenced my writing are Reforming Journalism by Marvin Olasky and Writer to Writer by Bodie and Brock Thoene. As a journalist, I want to share positive community interactions and inspire people to make lasting connections. Article topics that interest me are ones which show community activities and involvement. Such articles include community events, youth accomplishments, library programming, small businesses, local history, local artists and authors, art programs, and cultural events such as theater and dance. If you have an article idea, email the North Shore Journal with my name in the subject line! I look forward to hearing from you!
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