TerraCorps, TerraCorps is an AmeriCorps affiliated start-up environmental non-profit preparing and mobilizing emerging leaders to help communities gain access to and conserve land for people and nature. Working at the intersection of the land conservation and urban agriculture movements, our vision is to create a future where land is the foundation of health and well-being for ALL people in EVERY community.
This year’s TerraCorps program will support up to eighty-eight full-time AmeriCorps Members across three states (MA, RI, and CT), serving in one of five positions: Land Stewardship Coordinator (LSC), Regional Collaboration Coordinator (RCC), Community Engagement Coordinator (CEC), Youth Education Coordinator (YEC), or Sustainable Agriculture Coordinator (SAC). Members will serve in full-time, 11-month terms (August 31st, 2020-July 30, 2021) in which they complete at least 1,700 hours of service with one of our partner organizations. Members receive a living allowance, education award, and additional AmeriCorps benefits (see full list at end of announcement).
Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust will host a Regional Collaboration Coordinator for the 2020-21 service year. Information about all TerraCorps positions is available at terracorps.org.
Regional Collaboration Coordinator with Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust
Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust
1461 Old Keene Road
Athol, MA 01331
Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust (Mount Grace) is a regional land trust that is deeply rooted in collaboration. Since 1986, we have worked with dozens of partners and hundreds of landowners to protect more than 34,000 acres of woods, streams, farms, and trails in our picturesque rural region. Nestled between Gardner and Greenfield and anchored by the Quabbin Reservoir and its thousands of acres of pristine trails, we are working throughout 23 towns to foster a deep conservation ethic. We are nationally recognized for our innovative and collaborative projects, and Mount Grace was the home and founder of the TerraCorps program. Four of our eleven staff are AmeriCorps alumni, three of whom served with TerraCorps specifically. This year, we are hosting four TerraCorps members who will be fully integrated into our conservation, stewardship, and engagement teams. We are committed to developing the next generation of conservation leaders, and we are continually inspired by the creativity and vision of the TerraCorps members who choose to join us each year.
Our region is beautiful and precious—and has benefited from a tremendous legacy of land conservation—but we have so many more people to reach and land to protect. We are ready for the 2020-2021 team to help us create the next chapter of Mount Grace’s story.
Regional Collaboration Coordinators (RCC) build the long-term capacity of their Service Sites by assessing community needs related to land conservation and land access and then organizing collaborative community projects to help meet these needs. They convene and coordinate municipal boards, all-volunteer local land trusts, planning agencies, academic institutions, nonprofits, government agencies, neighborhood groups, community housing associations, and local businesses to build regional networks, and organize collaborative cross-sector working groups to initiate new projects around community needs. By educating landowners, farmers, and community groups and organizing multi-stakeholder projects that increase access to funding, RCCs empower diverse people to create healthy, vibrant communities.
TerraCorps members engage with their supervisors to develop and carry out three or more capacity building projects over the course of the service year. Some of these projects will involve recruiting, training, and/or managing community volunteers. Mount Grace has proposed the following potential projects for their Regional Collaboration Coordinator:
- Provide catalyzing support for working groups of the Greater Quabbin Food Alliance, an informal network created and coordinated by Mount Grace that brings food system stakeholders together to discuss challenges while identifying and implementing creative solutions. The RCC will tap into groundwork laid by previous TerraCorps Members to build capacity of local people and entities that are currently tackling issues related to farm viability, land access, food access and equity, and community health. Their specific roles will include helping perform research and outreach, as well as leading and organizing effective meetings and planning event logistics.
- Help design and implement a farm conservation neighborhood project. Following the example of similar successful multi-landowner projects, the RCC will guide and support a circle of farming friends and neighbors to conserve their lands. This project will involve organizing neighborhood meetings and helping design a finance strategy that will include grant writing.
- Create a Strategic Farmland Conservation Map that will guide the next era of Mount Grace’s farm protection work. The map will ultimately help Mount Grace understand what farms are available to protect, and to prioritize our farm conservation efforts. To build this map, the RCC will utilize ArcGIS and existing information collected through interviews with farmers and agricultural commission members throughout our region.
Development of these and other projects will occur during the first two months of service and consider the member’s interests and skills.
Required AmeriCorps Qualifications
- A US citizen, US national, or Lawful Permanent Resident Alien of the U.S.
- At least 18 years old
- A minimum of a high school diploma or GED
- No more than three previous terms as an AmeriCorps member
- Pass a criminal history background check, including an FBI check
- Strong writing and verbal communication skills
- Able to serve both independently and as a member of a team
- Comfort navigating computer software programs (Microsoft Office, Zoom, basic computer mapping skills with ArcGIS)
- Training and experience pertinent to the Regional Collaboration Coordinator position and projects listed above
- Experience training and educating community members and volunteers
- Experience or strong interest in coordinating events, speaking to groups, and facilitating meetings
- Familiarity with or interest in community organizing
For questions about Mount Grace’s RCC for the Farmland Conservation Program, contact Rocio Lalanda at firstname.lastname@example.org
AmeriCorps Member Eligibility Requirements
This year’s TerraCorps members will serve from August 31st, 2020-July 30th, 2021. All members are expected to serve full-time, commit to serve for the entire 11-month term, and complete at least 1,700 hours of service, including time spent in trainings and service with the full TerraCorps team. Weekly service averages 38 hours and commonly includes some night and/or weekend activities.
AmeriCorps programs provide equal opportunities. TerraCorps 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. We encourage applications from individuals with disabilities and will provide reasonable accommodations for interviews and service upon request.
Member Compensation and Benefits
- TerraCorps members will receive a living allowance of up to $15,200 (pre-tax) over the 11-month term of service, which is $633.33 (pre-tax) per 24 biweekly pay periods.
- TerraCorps assists members in obtaining health insurance coverage. Reimbursement of costs may be available.
- Childcare assistance may be provided in cases of financial need.
- Upon successful completion of a term of service, AmeriCorps members receive a taxable $6,195 education award that can be used for future education or to pay off existing school loans. See gov/resources/edaward for info and restrictions.
- TerraCorps members are eligible for forbearance of most federally-guaranteed student loans, as well as payment of interest accrued during service.
- TerraCorps members will receive mentorship, training, and career development opportunities while serving directly with community-based nonprofits.
- TerraCorps members experience the personal rewards of national service
and community engagement.
Note: TerraCorps members are responsible for their own housing and must have access to reliable transportation.
How to Apply
2020-2021 Service Site organizations, service positions, and application procedures are described at terracorps.org.
A complete member application includes a 1-page cover letter, a resume, two references, and an application form. Member application and detailed instructions can be found at https://terracorps.org/become-a-member/.
Member applications will be collected by TerraCorps and shared with Service Sites. Do not send applications directly to a Service Site.
We strongly encourage interested individuals to apply as soon as possible once applications are posted mid-April. Position offers and acceptances will be made on a rolling basis. The program aims to fill all positions by late June, but Service Sites will continue interviews as needed until all positions are filled.
For questions about TerraCorps, contact Hanna Mogensen, who manages TerraCorps’ recruitment process. Email email@example.com or call 978-364-9770 x2.
Additional Information About this Program
TerraCorps seeks to create change by achieving a broader, more authentic engagement of the diverse peoples living in our communities. When we do this, resources will grow, access to land will increase, the pace of land conservation will accelerate, and whole communities will achieve more resilient futures. To learn more about TerraCorps, visit: terracorps.org.
AmeriCorps engages more than 75,000 people in intensive service each year through more than 15,000 nonprofits, schools, public agencies, and community and faith-based groups across the country. AmeriCorps members help communities tackle pressing problems and also leverage their service by mobilizing volunteers to help address community needs for environmental stewardship, health, education, economic opportunity, disaster services, and support to veterans and military families. To learn more about AmeriCorps, visit americorps.gov.
TerraCorps is a grant program contingent upon renewal of federal funding from the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS). TerraCorps is also supported in part by the Massachusetts Service Alliance in MA.