Volunteer Tennessee Announces 2024 AmeriCorps Planning Grant Funding Opportunity

Thursday, December 07, 2023 | 03:14pm
Volunteer Tennessee Logo

Volunteer Tennessee, the governor appointed 25-member, bi-partisan commission that encourages volunteerism and community service, announces its 2024 AmeriCorps Planning Grant Notification of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) for those interested in running a Tennessee AmeriCorps program. It invites public and private nonprofit, governmental, and faith-based agencies from across the state to apply.  To be eligible, planning grant applicants must submit a Notice of Intent to apply to Volunteer Tennessee by January 10, 2024, by 3:00 p.m. CT, with applications due on February 13, 2024, by 3:00 p.m. CT. 

AmeriCorps Tennessee Planning Grants provide financial support to organizations that will be developing an AmeriCorps program to place AmeriCorps members in service solely within Tennessee. Grant recipients are awarded up to $75,000 for a 12-month planning period to start no earlier than August 1, 2024 and are expected to be better prepared to compete for an AmeriCorps program grant in the 2025-2026 grant cycle. A planning grant will not be used to support AmeriCorps members. Agencies interested in applying for a planning grant are invited to visit the Volunteer Tennessee website at www.volunteertennessee.net to download application materials. 

Volunteer Tennessee will hold virtual AmeriCorps grant information sessions December 21 and January 8. Volunteer Tennessee staff will provide an overview of the grant competition and answer questions. To register for a virtual information session or for more information, please visit Volunteer Tennessee’s website or contact Latiyfa Fields at 615-253-2805 or Latiyfa.Fields@tn.gov. Volunteer Tennessee strongly encourages all planning grant applicants to attend at least one information session in this extremely competitive year.

Celebrating its 30th anniversary, AmeriCorps is the federal agency for national service and volunteerism. AmeriCorps provides opportunities for Americans of all backgrounds to serve their country, address the nation’s most pressing challenges, and improve lives and communities. It engages more than 2,000 organizations and 75,000 Americans each year to meet locally identified community needs in the areas of disaster services; economic opportunity; education; environmental stewardship; healthy futures; and veterans and military families.

“AmeriCorps is a terrific way for organizations to benefit from eager, service-minded individuals, who in turn get education awards to help pay for college,” said Jim Snell, Volunteer Tennessee executive director. “For almost 30 years, AmeriCorps members have cleaned up polluted urban streams, provided child abuse prevention services, taught children to read, and helped senior citizens live longer and healthier lives through preventative health education. AmeriCorps programs help local agencies maximize their capabilities to serve.”

“By placing AmeriCorps members in communities across the state, they are able to reach our most at-risk and underserved citizens,” he continued.

Volunteer Tennessee currently funds 18 AmeriCorps programs across the state. Examples of these include:

Community Action Committee (Knoxville): Community Action Committee AmeriCorps members build capacity with over 40 community partners in East Tennessee. The members serve in several areas including environmental education, housing, urban agriculture, job training, and food insecurity,

BRIDGES USA, Inc. (Memphis): Bridge Builders Expansion AmeriCorps members address key needs facing Memphis area youth in grades 6-12 through experiential learning and the facilitation of the Bridge Builders curriculum that targets low academic performance and graduation rates, low rates of cultural competency, and low rates of opportunity for meaningful civic engagement.

Martha O’Bryan Center (Nashville): The Martha O’Bryan Center empowers children, youth, and adults in poverty to transform their lives through work, education, employment, and fellowship. THRIVE AmeriCorps members serve in one of five program areas: K-8 Youth Education, High School Education, Post-Secondary Success and Digital Inclusion, Adult Education, and Family Support. Members build relationships, tutor, teach, plan curriculum and enrichments, and perform community outreach and engagement.   

Since the program’s inception in 1994, more than 1.25 million AmeriCorps members have served the nation, which has provided more than 1.8 billion hours of service and earning nearly $4 billion in education awards to pay for college or pay back student loans. In Tennessee, more than 17,000 AmeriCorps members have served more than 33 million hours and earned more than $69 million in education awards.


The mission of Volunteer Tennessee is to encourage volunteerism and community service. Volunteer Tennessee is the 25-member, bipartisan citizen commission appointed by the governor to oversee AmeriCorps programs, manage the Tennessee Serves Network, promote service-learning opportunities and foster community service initiatives and partnerships in which people of all ages and backgrounds engage in addressing the educational, public safety, disaster preparedness, environmental, and other human needs in the Volunteer State. For more information, visit www.volunteertennessee.net, or visit us on FacebookTwitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.

AmeriCorps, the federal agency for national service and volunteerism, provides opportunities for Americans to serve their country domestically, address the nation’s most pressing challenges, improve lives and communities and strengthen civic engagement. Each year, the agency places more than 200,000 AmeriCorps members and AmeriCorps Seniors volunteers in intensive service roles; and empowers millions more to serve as long-term, short-term or one-time volunteers. Learn more at AmeriCorps.gov.

AmeriCorps offers opportunities for individuals of all backgrounds to be a part of the national service community, grow personally and professionally and receive benefits for their service. Learn how to get involved at AmeriCorps.gov/serve.