So much of our lives is spent in the margins – waiting in lines, that gap between jobs, transitions across states, moving homes. And, of course, that odd space between graduating and arriving at a solid career path. But rather than letting these moments slip by, it’s possible to activate and use them for self-discovery, personal growth, and learning.

One avenue of doing this is via a service placement with AmeriCorps – a federal program founded in the nineties that continues to connect Americans to community-building opportunities. The program deploys 75-thousand members across this nation annually in service opportunities, with a wide range of positions to choose from. Oregon – and Portland in particular – has a rich legacy of nonprofit and service work, so it’s no surprise that some AmeriCorps members find placements here.

If this sparks your interest and you want to learn more about the AmeriCorps program, check out the third episode of Moving Lives Forward, as the podcast presents Self Discovery Through Service. The episode airs May 12 at 4:30 pm, on 99.1 FM and streaming at, and will be available soon thereafter here on this blog post, as well on Stitcher and iTunes.

Moving Lives Forward is hosted by Rebecca Webb, cofounder of Portland Radio Project.

Joining Rebecca on this episode is Amanda Hart. Amanda has worked with school communities across three districts in greater East Portland since moving to Portland in 2010. She joined the first AmeriCorps team at Metropolitan Family Service in 2010, and is currently serving as the MFS AmeriCorps program manager (full circle!). Amanda earned her BA in Comparative Sociology at the University of Puget Sound, with an emphasis on Latin American studies.  

Additionally, you’ll hear from three AmeriCorps members, including:

Anna Lindberg – serving with the Older Adults program
Brittani Holland  – serving at Alder Elementary School
Rosie Yerke  – serving with the Economic Empowerment programs

The Moving Lives Forward Podcast is supported by Metropolitan Family Service, an innovative, culturally-responsive Portland nonprofit.

Find out more about AmeriCorps opportunities with MFS here -recruitment is now open! The proposed living allowance for 2019-20 AmeriCorps service opportunities is $15,000 for a full year service term, and the education award (as of now) is $5,920. AmeriCorps members serving full-time qualify for these additional benefits: health insurance, childcare, access to public benefits (i.e. SNAP), Trimet public transit assistance, and free financial/student loan coaching.