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The Corps Network Receives Grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to Continue Initiative to Advance Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion in the Conservation Corps Community
The $600,000, three-year grant will support the continued efforts of The Corps Network’s Moving Forward Initiative.
Washington, DC – The Corps Network (TCN) is pleased to announce the receipt of a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to support The Corps Network’s Moving Forward Initiative: a program to assist the Service and Conservation Corps community in addressing racism, advancing equity, and authentically supporting young people of color on the path to careers in conservation.
The Corps Network launched the Moving Forward Initiative in 2017 with the assistance of a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Over the course of this new, three-year grant period, Moving Forward Initiative activities will include assisting Corps in implementing racial equity plans, facilitating meaningful conversations around race and racism, and providing young people with learning and workforce development opportunities that can equip them with the confidence and skills to pursue environmental jobs and higher education.
Specifically, one activity The Corps Network will undertake is expanding the implementation of “Corpsmember Liberation and Leadership.” Corpsmember Liberation and Leadership is an interactive workshop program that looks to address the impact of structural and institutional racism on the young people of color Corps serve. This workshop illuminates the impact that trauma as a result of racial discrimination can have on an individual and provides tools participants can use to identify negative patterns and learn how to interrupt and replace them with new, life-giving patterns.
“Service and Conservation Corps have a responsibility to provide each young person they engage with a meaningful service and learning experience and the tools to succeed on their education and career path. We must acknowledge and address the fact that the young people of color we serve face barriers. We cannot be blind to the biases and racism that can influence the experiences of our Corpsmembers, staff, and partners from communities of color,” said Mary Ellen Sprenkel, President and CEO of The Corps Network. “Through the Moving Forward Initiative, we aim to transform the Corps movement into one in which our programs are constructed around equity and awareness. We are grateful for the support of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation on this journey.”
“We appreciate this opportunity to continue to evolve and advance the Moving Forward Initiative,” said Capri St. Vil, The Corps Network’s Director of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion. “This grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation will help us continue our work and our focus on expanding opportunities for sustainable careers for youth and young adults in the fields of conservation and resource management through the implementation of a racial equity and healing framework and through the training of a cadre of Corps partners to sustain the Corpsmember Liberation and Leadership model over time.”
During the first three years of the Moving Forward Initiative, The Corps Network’s activities included curating a resource library of materials, launching a blog series around race and equity, and – with the assistance of The People’s Institute and other partners and consultants – providing the Corps community with numerous in-person and virtual learning opportunities around equity, diversity, and inclusion. Other recent activities have included exploring competency-based education programming for Corps and launching discussion groups for Corps staff across the country to collectively confront the realities of racism and learn and heal together.
About The Corps Network
The Corps Network, the national association of Service and Conservation Corps, provides leadership and support to over 130 Corps across the United States. Through advocacy, and providing Corps access to funding opportunities and expert guidance, The Corps Network annually enables more than 22,000 Corpsmembers to strengthen communities, improve the environment and transform their lives through service. To learn more about The Corps Network, please visit www.corpsnetwork.org.
About The W.K. Kellogg Foundation
The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), founded in 1930 as an independent, private foundation by breakfast cereal innovator and entrepreneur Will Keith Kellogg, is among the largest philanthropic foundations in the United States. Guided by the belief that all children should have an equal opportunity to thrive, WKKF works with communities to create conditions for vulnerable children so they can realize their full potential in school, work and life.
The Kellogg Foundation is based in Battle Creek, Michigan, and works throughout the United States and internationally, as well as with sovereign tribes. Special attention is paid to priority places where there are high concentrations of poverty and where children face significant barriers to success. WKKF priority places in the U.S. are in Michigan, Mississippi, New Mexico and New Orleans; and internationally, are in Mexico and Haiti. For more information, visit www.wkkf.org.
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