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Drawn to the Mission: Volunteering to Build Skills and Connect with Community

By Marissa Major, YWCA AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer
April 23, 2021
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April 23, 2021

AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) is a national service program dedicated to ending poverty by building the capacity of nonprofit organizations and public agencies. To wrap up Volunteer Appreciation Week 2021, we’re sharing a Q&A from one of our incredible AmeriCorps VISTA volunteers, Marissa Major.

How did you first get involved with AmeriCorps?

I became involved in AmeriCorps after college. I knew I wanted to work in the nonprofit sector but didn’t know how to get started. AmeriCorps allowed me to get experience working in nonprofits. I choose to join YWCA Minneapolis as an AmeriCorps member because I was drawn to the mission. After my first year of AmeriCorps, I wanted to expand my experience working for nonprofits but focus more on the issue of race and racism. YWCA’s mission drew me in.

What types of projects do you work on?

I have been working on expanding the capacity and diversity of our volunteer base at YWCA Minneapolis. This has meant I have worked on several projects from documenting volunteer procedures, to gaining volunteer feedback and urging programs to use more volunteers in their work.

How do you feel about this work?

Working with YWCA Minneapolis has given me the opportunity to build my volunteer management skills and to connect more deeply with the Minneapolis community.

My work has been impactful in gaining volunteer feedback and making YWCA Minneapolis volunteer program more responsive to volunteer input. I also made the organization more intentional in considering the volunteer experience to keep volunteers coming back.

Volunteer with YWCA

YWCA Minneapolis is a Service Enterprise-certified organization. Our work is fueled by the people who believe in our mission and put their values into action. Each year, volunteers donate 14,900+ hours to advance our mission and make our life-changing programs and events happen.

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