AmeriCorps engages more than 50,000 Americans each year in intensive service to meet community needs in education, the environment, public safety, homeland security, and other areas. Members serve with national nonprofit organizations like Habitat for Humanity, the American Red Cross, and Teach for America, as well as with hundreds of smaller community organizations, both secular and faith-based. Other members serve with AmeriCorps*NCCC (National Civilian Community Corps), a team-based residential program for adults 18 to 24 years old, or in low-income communities with AmeriCorps*VISTA. In exchange for a year of service, AmeriCorps members earn an education award that can be used to pay for college or to pay back qualified student loans. AmeriCorps is administered by the Corporation for National and Community Service, which also oversees Senior Corps and Learn and Serve America. It is part of USA Freedom Corps, a White House initiative to foster a culture of citizenship, service, and responsibility, and help all Americans answer the President’s Call to Service.
The Osage Nation Ta-Wa AmeriCorps Program of the Communities of Excellence will address the devastating effects that obesity and a sedentary lifestyle has on residents of the Osage Reservation. This includes diabetes, chronic disease, poor nutritional habits, lack of access to fresh fruits and vegetables, lack of routine physical fitness, and poor understanding of quality health issues. Our focus will be youth, elders and young families. In order to develop the Osage Nation Ta-Wa AmeriCorps Program into a lasting success, and create lasting change among residents of Osage Reservation, we believe that collaboration between departments and partnerships with health-related organizations within the community must exist.