HPU’s VISTAs Help Strengthen the High Point Community

Jun 03rd, 2021

HPU’s VISTAs Help Strengthen the High Point Community

HIGH POINT, N.C., June 3, 2021 – Throughout the past year, the High Point University AmeriCorps VISTAs (Volunteers in Service to America) have been working hard across the City of High Point. The eight individuals have completed a variety of tasks to help better the High Point community.

HPU 2 Jenny Carpenter
Community Gardens and Market VISTA Jenny Carpenter at a community garden workday.

“Through the VISTA Program, High Point University has supplied local nonprofits with vital staff resources in the midst of COVID,” says Rev. Dr. Joe Blosser, Robert G. Culp Jr. Director of Service Learning and associate professor of religion and philosophy. “These recent HPU graduates have worked full time in our community, preparing themselves to be active young professionals.”

The VISTAs’ projects focus on education and food security. The VISTAs completed everything from fundraising, recruiting and managing volunteers, writing grants, conducting research and planning and organizing events. They have worked with numerous organizations and groups including Guilford County Schools (primarily High Point schools), Communities in Schools, Growing High Point, the Greater High Point Food Alliance, D-UP, YMCA, YWCA, the City of High Point along with many others.

HPU 1 Wilson Haworth
Food Access VISTA Wilson Haworth delivering grocery bags purchased by the Greater High Point Food Alliance to a community partner

This year’s VISTAs are Wilson Haworth, Natalie Ward, Kayla Quick, Aliyah Suggs, Jenny Carpenter, Casey Tyndall, Douglas McCollum and Avery Moon.

“I have loved being a VISTA,” says High Point native Quick, HPU Class of 2020. “I’ve cultivated skills like project management and curriculum development and gained experience in volunteer management and networking. My favorite part has been the connections I’ve made and the impact those connections have had for me personally and for my hometown. Being a VISTA is a unique position for community work and utilizes my education and experience to create the largest impact for the City of High Point and High Point University.”

In the midst of COVID, the VISTAs recruited 1,202 volunteers to work with High Point nonprofits. They managed 684 volunteers. The VISTAs helped nonprofits raise $327,359 in grants and donations and also obtained $97,786 in in-kind donations for their nonprofit partners.

The VISTAs spent 2,253 hours doing community outreach on behalf of nonprofits, 1,004 hours of volunteer management, 1,176 hours of resource development, 479 hours of grant writing and 940 hours of resource mapping.