OSWEGO COUNTY – This year marks the 22nd year that Oswego AmeriCorps members have served in communities across Oswego County.
AmeriCorps Week, March 10 through 16, is an opportunity to recognize AmeriCorps members and their community partners for their positive impact and actions to “Get Things Done” at agencies around the county.
As a national service program, AmeriCorps addresses critical needs in local communities across the U.S.
More than 950 AmeriCorps members have served here since the Oswego City-County Youth Bureau introduced the program to Oswego County in 1997.
“Members of Oswego AmeriCorps enhance services for children and families in a variety of ways.
“They provide nutrition and fitness activities to reduce childhood obesity, manage youth and adult volunteers at AmeriCorps sites, involve community members in service projects that benefit the county, and provide housing services for economically disadvantaged individuals and families,” said Christopher Metz, AmeriCorps program coordinator for the Oswego City-County Youth Bureau. “Many AmeriCorps members find that serving in the program is so rewarding they decide to serve for more than one term of service.”
Danielle Sperato is serving her fourth term of service with Oswego AmeriCorps.
She currently serves at Palermo Elementary School.
Sperato said she decided to join AmeriCorps because “my sister was a member years ago and she suggested it to me. She had nothing but wonderful things to say about the program and the people involved. I am the type of person that loves to help the community, so AmeriCorps is the perfect platform to do that.”
Sperato especially enjoys seeing the impact she has on students at Palermo Elementary School.
“Working with so many different grade levels I can really see the growth of each student as time passes,” she said. “I also really enjoy how much the kids love fitness and nutrition groups, they have so much fun and it really sticks with them!”
Danielle’s advice for other AmeriCorps members is “to put yourself out there and get involved in anything and everything you can.”
Other Oswego AmeriCorps members currently serving in Oswego County include Timothy Conners, Lanigan Elementary School; Stephanie Crisafulli, Oswego Community Christian School (OCCS); Cali Eddy, OCCS; Alena Fresch, OCCS; Shakeemah Hordge, Fairgrieve Elementary School; Corey King, Fort Ontario State Historic Site; Elizabeth Larkin, Oswego Youth Court; Nathan Sharpe, Leighton Elementary School; Meghan Tice, Oswego County Health Department; Anthony Wallace, Victory Transformation; Nora Walsh, Leighton Elementary School; and Shannon Weaver, Palermo Elementary School.
For more information about AmeriCorps in Oswego County, contact Metz at the Oswego City-County Youth Bureau weekdays at (315) 349-3451 or go to http://www.oswegocounty.com/youth/Americorps.html.