Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The Work Plan...

As an AmeriCorps*VISTA member I have a work plan, also known as a Volunteer Assignment Description, or VAD. At the PSO in Maine not having your "VAD" was a cardinal sin and we New Hampshirians (New Hampshirites?) were pretty confused about what the hell a VAD was... which is why the Vad-a-saurus was drawn on a post-it note that I have somewhere on the binder from the PSO.

Anyways, despite the VAD debacle, we, the PlusTime VISTAs, realized that what we knew as our "work plans" would soon be guiding, however loosely or strictly, our entire year of service. So far, my work plan has been going pretty well, but originally, I wasn't quite sure what the hell to do with it. Each VISTA site is a 3 year goal though each VISTA only has to serve for one of it. Therefore, a good VAD takes into account the fact that the first VISTA, in this case me, will be starting the goals and attempting to get the groundwork set for potential other VISTAs or other members at site. It is a lot to chew on so I will discuss the VAD in a later post. I have included my 3 overall goals below:

Goal 1: The 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) afterschool program will expand connections to the human services, arts, business, communities and increase program visibility in Manchester.

Activities: (Action Steps: Year One)

1. Create a database to organize and track potential funding and volunteer sources.

2. Meet with the director to identify program needs and specific ways each source could be most beneficially incorporated.

3. Develop ways in which to contact these sources such as emails, letters, phone, etc.

4. Expand relationships with the local professional sports teams (Monarchs, Fisher Cats)

5. Meet with local college representatives to discuss volunteer recruitment strategies

6. Provide support for 21st CCLC, program-wide events and activities

Outputs: (Performance Measures)

1. Five community sources will be contacted and become engaged in the program

2. A database for funding and volunteer resources will be created

3. At least ten members of the community (not previously aware of the program) will take part in a program event/activity.

Outcomes: (Changes in behavior or attitudes)

Community awareness of and support for the program will increase as community members become more engaged and discover ways to participate.

Goal 2: Community exposure of Manchester 21st CCLC program will be substantially increased through the use of intentional and coordinated media/public relations plan and materials.


1. Assess current materials and prior activities

2. Become familiar with local media sources and specific contact names and numbers.

3. Support creation of media plan and time line including update of 21st CCLC website

4. Develop, draft print media materials.


1. A*VISTA member will critique current 21st CCLC media outreach

2. A*VISTA member will present a list of area media contacts and materials

3. A media plan will be presented

4. The 21st CCLC website will be updated to reflect all current programs and activities and complement the media plan.

5. New 21st CCLC media materials will be distributed in the community according to the media plan


As community members gain a deepened understanding of the program and its purpose, levels of awareness and support will increase for all programs.

Goal 3:

A comprehensive 3-5 year strategic sustainability plan for Manchester 21st CCLC will be successful in its intention to maintain support for the continuation of afterschool programs.

Activities: (Year One)

1. Support the coordination of committee member recruitment.

2. Coordinate and facilitate sub-committee meetings as needed and appropriate.

3. Coordinate and manage sustainability planning timeline

4. Record and disseminate minutes for all sustainability subcommittee meetings

5. Support the on-going sustainability outreach work


1. Sub-committee meetings will be conducted in a timely manner and records disseminated

2. A sustainability plan will be developed


Implementation of a sustainability plan will ultimately result in the continuation of Manchester’s afterschool programming options, which in turn, will enhance overall family and youth development and strengthen the Manchester community.

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