SC Service Leaders
Promoting Participation in AmeriCorps SC
About SC Service Leaders
Vision: To ensure that all individuals, regardless of economic standing, have the ability to combat South Carolina’s most pressing community challenges through participating in an AmeriCorps SC program.
Mission: To provide emergency financial support to individuals who have committed to serving in a term of service with a South Carolina-based AmeriCorps program.
Overview: SC Service Leaders is creating an ecosystem of service in which every person, from all economic backgrounds, has the opportunity to serve and can begin to realize their full professional and civic potential. We believe that a term of service is a transformative experience and that everyone who wants to serve should have the opportunity to do so.
Unfortunately, the AmeriCorps living allowance does not provide the same level of financial support as it once did, and more common than not, AmeriCorps Members must access savings or work additional part-time jobs in order to make ends meet. This economic reality significantly decreases the number of individuals that view national service as a viable option and does not allow for equity among individuals from low-income communities to participate in AmeriCorps programming.
SC Service Leaders also believes that AmeriCorps service is a steppingstone to civic and professional leadership. Thus, in addition to the “on-the-job” skills, insights, and work-ethic that AmeriCorps Members gain during their term of service, steps should also be taken to connect Members to top-tier professional development networks that can help them further leverage their abilities to make a lasting impact.
Strategy: To increase the ability for all persons to have an opportunity help address pressing community needs, and also grow their personal and professional qualities by serving in an AmeriCorps SC program.
Apply for In-Service Emergency Assistance
We at SC Service Leaders understand that at term of service can be tough, and when unexpected financial challenges arise, it can make it even more difficult for an AmeriCorps Member to complete their service commitment. To help address this barrier, SC Service Leaders is pleased to announce the In-Service Emergency Fund.
The intent of the In-Service Emergency Fund is to provide limited financial assistance to individuals currently serving in an AmeriCorps SC program who have experienced an unexpected expense that may impact their ability to successfully complete their term of service. Financial assistance is capped at one request of no more than $500 per Member. Individuals interested in applying to receive assistance would need to provide supporting documentation that adequately justifies/substantiates the amount of assistance being requested.
Some examples of unexpected expenses that would be eligible to incorporate into a request may include, but are not limited to:
- An unexpected vehicle repair bill.
- An unexpected medical bill or unexpected costs associated with an injury or medical condition.
- An unexpected rise in an essential expense (i.e., rent increase due to a roommate leaving, prescription drug increase, etc.)
- An unexpected layoff from a part-time job.
General cost-of-living expenses that could reasonably be expected to occur during a member’s term of service are not eligible. Example of ineligible expenses may include, but are not limited to:
- Normal car maintenance
- Typical commuting costs
- Anticipated rent or utility payments
- Food costs
Please use the following link to apply for Emergency In-Service Aid. Applications will be reviewed on an ongoing basis until July 1, 2022, or until available funding has been exhausted. The number and amount of financial assistance awards issued during the 2021/22 program year is contingent and limited by funding availability.
Applicants submitting request for In-Service Emergency Funding will be asked to respond to the following:
- Phone Number:
- Name of the AmeriCorps SC program in which you are serving:
- Anticipated end-date for your AmeriCorps SC Term of service:
- Please list contact information for a staff person at your AmeriCorps SC program that can be contacted to provide a reference regarding your general performance during your term of service.
- In 500 words or less, please briefly describe the unexpected expense that has arisen during your term of service.
- In 500 words or less, please describe how the unexpected expense may impact your ability to complete your term of service.
- Please list the total amount of the unexpected expense.
- Please list the amount of financial assistance that you are requesting that SC Service Leaders provide in the form of In-Service Emergency Fund assistance.
- Please upload supporting documentation that substantiates/justifies the amount of aid you are requesting. (i.e., medical bill, car repair bill, etc.)
The SC Service Leaders’ Advisory Committee will use the criteria outlined above to determine the eligibility of each in-service emergency funding request on a pass/fail basis. Submitting a request for aid does not guarantee that an applicant will receive financial assistance, and it is at the sole discretion of the SC Service Leaders’ Advisory Committee to determine the eligibility of an application to receive aid.
Applicants will receive a notification within one week of submitting a request for emergency in-service aid notifying them of whether or not their request has been selected to receive funding.
For more information, please contact Mark Ward at firstname.lastname@example.org.