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YouthGROW (Youth Growing Organics in Worcester) Commonwealth Corps Volunteer Engagement Specialist – Youth

by Hazel J. Ostrowski on May 1, 2020

The mission of the Commonwealth Corps service internship program is to engage Massachusetts residents of all ages and backgrounds in direct service to strengthen communities, address critical community needs, and increase volunteerism. By taking on a year of service, you can positively impact your community while gaining skills and experience.

The Massachusetts Service Alliance (MSA) is a private, nonprofit agency that oversees the program and supports host site partners and service members to find success throughout the program year. The three Commonwealth Corps members with Regional Environmental Council Inc. will serve 10.5 months in a half-time capacity. What they have in common is a desire to put their talents and ideas to use in the service of their communities and the Commonwealth.

The Regional Environmental Council, Inc. (REC) is a grassroots, nonprofit, environmental and food justice organization with a 45-year history working for environmental sustainability and social justice in Central Massachusetts. REC is seeking one half-time Commonwealth Corps members to support youth volunteer engagement and community education in our YouthGROW Farm. Through their service, the Commonwealth Corps Volunteer Engagement Specialist will increase healthy food production and community awareness at the YouthGROW Farm. In addition, they will collaborate with other members to leverage 100+ volunteers that will be engaged in hands on garden support and maintenance and inner-city food production for food insecure neighborhoods.



  • Complete a minimum of 750 hours of service, serving through June 26, 2021.
  • Attend all required Commonwealth Corps trainings and service events held by MSA (minimum of 6total, post orientation) and REC including a new member orientation on August 17 & 18, 2020.
  • Participate in a minimum of 30 minutes of MSA-approved professional development-related activities each week (in person or virtually).
  • Recruit high school and college age youth to participate in open community volunteer hours at the YouthGROW Farm.
  • Provide direct support at the YouthGROW Farm serving alongside youth leaders in the program and Farm Manager.
  • Mentor and support youth participants in the YouthGROW program to complete programmatic volunteer requirements, including leading youth internship teams.
  • Develop new partnerships with local school service-learning programs.
  • Create a college volunteer outreach guide.
  • Collaborate with other Corps members to plan spring community events, including a city-wide Earth Day Clean Up, engaging over 1,000 volunteers and our Annual Spring Garden Festival and Plant Sale.Marginal
  • Support non-volunteer-based youth development programming including monthly retreats.
  • Support produce delivery and sale in low income communities via the REC Mobile Market program.



  • Massachusetts residency and legal authorization to work in the United States
  • 18 years of age or older
  • Experience with or interest in volunteerism and community engagement
  • Ability to balance service commitment with other family/work/school/community commitments in a sustainable way
  • Self-motivated, detail oriented, highly organized and reliable
  • Ability to manage multiple tasks with competing deadlines
  • Ability to travel independently to sites via personal or public transportation
  • Comfort with online collaboration tools, e.g., shared calendars, email, shared folders/files (Dropbox, Google Drive, Google Apps)
  • Strong people and communication skills, both written and verbal 
  • Preferred:
  • Familiarity/experience with the Worcester community, particularly the Bell Hill and Main South neighborhoods
  • Previous experience collaboratively working or volunteering with people of diverse racial, ethnic, cultural, and socioeconomic backgroundsMember Benefits:
  • Stipend of $400 every other week while in service, up to $8,400, minus taxes and withholdings;
  • Member assistance program, including unlimited, confidential, 24/7, phone counseling services and up to three free, in-person counseling sessions, plus a lot more;
  • Completion award of up to $1,500 upon successful completion of service, minus taxes and withholdings;
  • Reimbursement for outside training or professional development opportunities relevant to member’s service and/or goals (Up to $100; Dependent on approval from MSA)
  • Additional training and other professional development opportunities;
  • Limited reimbursement for travel to Corps-wide MSA-sponsored activities;
  • Limited travel reimbursement from their host site for certain service-related travel away from their usual service location, according to REC’s policies;
  • The opportunity for at least 5 days of planned absences (may include holidays); and
  • Opportunity to join with others with a common sense of purpose as part of the Commonwealth Corpsservice internship program.Please note that receipt of these stipends/benefits may impact an individual’s eligibility for certain public benefits.Term of Service:
  • Position Start Date: August 17, 2020
  • Position End Date: June 26, 2021
  • Service commitment will average 18-20 hours per week with minimum of two full days (9-5) and approximately two evenings per month and up to two weekends per month during the months of September, April, and May, with advance notice. Service schedule/days will be agreed upon at the start of the service term and any changes or additions, including night or weekend hours, will be made with advance notice.

Application Instructions:

• Submit a cover letter and resume to Stacie Brimmage at Applications will be accepted on rolling basis, with preference given to candidates who apply by May 31, 2020.

Accepted members will be required to undergo a criminal history check.

Regional Environmental Council will recruit and select persons in all positions to ensure a diverse and inclusive climate without regard to race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, veteran status, color, political affiliation, creed, national origin, marital status, or any other status as protected by federal, state, and local laws. Regional Environmental Council welcomes applications from individuals with disabilities and will make reasonable accommodations for interviews and for service upon request.

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