By Brigitte Valcin, AmeriCorps Instructor & Volunteer Services Assistant
AmeriCorps rarely get the opportunity to serve with their fellow AmeriCorps volunteers at other area nonprofits. But this year AmeriCorps Week gave Byte Back’s AmeriCorps volunteers a special chance to work together for a day.
AmeriCorps Week is an annual event to celebrate the commitment of AmeriCorps volunteers and community partners. Throughout the week of March 9 to 13, AmeriCorps members are encouraged to reconnect with their partners and participate in service activities.
This year, Byte Back AmeriCorps Members Anna Mulamba, Emily Morazán, Tehmina Mirza, Lawanda Davis, and Brigitte Valcin, celebrated the final day of AmeriCorps Week by tutoring students at Noyes Education Campus in Northeast D.C. Byte Back AmeriCorps alumna Erica Young, who serves as volunteer coordinator at Reading Partners Washington, DC, invited Byte Back to tutor four Noyes students who are actively improving their vocabulary skills and reading comprehension through the Reading Partners program.
Volunteering with youth for the day was a welcome change for the Byte Back AmeriCorps, who teach adults. Since many AmeriCorps have experience teaching children, it was exciting recalling those skills and facing the challenge of keeping the students engaged during the session.
In addition to meeting four bright kids, Byte Back AmeriCorps spent the afternoon with several fellow AmeriCorps serving with Reading Partners. These volunteers advised us that when reading to children, we should stay enthusiastic and pause throughout the story to ask questions and discuss what might happen next.
AmeriCorps volunteers working for different nonprofits rarely get a chance to work alongside each other during a day of service, so this was a unique opportunity to strengthen bonds, make new friends, and experience how other AmeriCorps are making a difference in D.C. During this enriching collaboration, we also had the pleasure of meeting Bill Basl, director of AmeriCorps at the Corporation for National and Community Service.