<h1>Does your organization want to start an AmeriCorps program?<\/h1>\r\nVolunteer West Virginia, the state\u2019s Commission for National and Community Service, is now accepting applications for 2017-2018 AmeriCorps program funding. Nonprofits, educational institutions, and state and local government agencies are encouraged to apply.\r\n\r\nThrough this funding process, Volunteer West Virginia hopes to expand programming to address jobs and tourism, arts and music, grade-level reading, and college success, and to invest in solutions related to opioid abuse epidemic and creating safer communities. The agency is also seeking to expand programming in north central West Virginia and in the southern coalfields.\r\n\r\n\u201cAmeriCorps and other national service programs provide support for local nonprofits and public agencies statewide,\u201d said Heather Foster, executive director of Volunteer West Virginia. \u201cAmeriCorps is a true public-private partnership which expands the capacity of our service agencies, provides professional development for its members and builds a culture of civic participation and volunteer service.\u201d\r\n\r\nWest Virginia ranks third in the nation for producing AmeriCorps volunteers. Each year over 1,000 individuals serve as AmeriCorps members in the state. Many AmeriCorps volunteers serve in their hometowns, while others come from across the country to make West Virginia their home for the year. AmeriCorps members change lives through mentoring, respond to disasters - such as the recent June 2016 flooding, increase access to healthy and local food, preserve historic properties, and more.\r\n\r\nAmeriCorps programs do more than move West Virginia communities forward; they serve their members by creating jobs and providing pathways to opportunity for young people entering the workforce. In exchange for a year of service, volunteers receive a living-allowance, money for school, and work experience.\r\n\r\nTo be eligible applicants must file an intent to apply by Friday, Mar. 24.\u00a0 To learn more about AmeriCorps funding opportunities, call 304-558-0111 or visit www.volunteerwv.org.