How Will You Make a Difference?
This is an opportunity to spend one year serving full-time to make a difference here at home. Whether in your hometown or across the country, this is a unique chance to improve your life and the lives of others. AmeriCorps VISTA is about helping all individuals reach their fullest potential. VISTA is designed to build the capacity of an organization and enhance its ability to serve the community. As a result, VISTA impacts both the person serving as well as the individuals served. From Alaska to Puerto Rico, AmeriCorps VISTA members are building communities while building their careers.
Susan W - Volunteer Recruiter Specialist
Susan Weiss is a founding member of Heart-to-Heart. She started facilitating groups inside prisons in 2012 and believes that besides for raising her own family, her prison work has been the most fulfilling experience of her life. Susan began her career teaching young children from low-income areas in Israel as part of her Israeli military service. By encountering the justice system personally through her own divorce, Susan witnessed the need for improved justice for the economically disadvantaged. This realization is propelling her to promote justice and compassion in our courts and prisons. Susan is very proud to rejoin Heart-to-Heart as a VISTA.
John (Jamie) Hennelly - Grant Writer & Researcher and Web IT Specialist
John, who can be referred to as Jamie, grew up in the north-east suburbs of Philadelphia. He studied at Muhlenberg College, where he also played football for the school. He earned a degree in International Studies with a Spanish Minor. After school he pursued work in the business sector. He began his career with a job at GE. He eventually worked at Verizon, and then SportsUnlimited.com, where he began working on the internet sales and service team, later becoming manager. He was there for 7 years, until late 2013.
Since 2013, Jamie, has worked as an independent IT & Web contractor, primarily developing websites, applications, and web marketing campaigns for small businesses. He is also pursuing certifications in Full Stack Web Technologies & Mobile Application Development. Rooted in his Catholic perspective of charity and giving of oneself, Jamie has always pursued opportunities to volunteer. More recent volunteer experiences include: coaching youth football, teaching web & app development to elementary students; providing IT & Web application help for the Sisters of St. Joseph community; and he has also directly volunteered at events for Heart-to-Heart.
In late 2015, struck by severe RSI's(Repetitive Stress Injuries) pursued and mastered assistive and ergonomic tools and technologies. After adopting these in his daily activities, he has since seen full like recovery. He is confident and excited to join and add value to Heart-to-Heart as a Grant Writer & Researcher and Web & IT Specialist. He also welcomes any opportunities to offer what he has learned regarding in-office work related injury prevention and ergonomics.
Lifting People Out of Poverty Since 1965
AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) members bring their passion and perseverance where the need is greatest: to organizations that help eradicate poverty. The most pressing challenges we face as a nation require the most courageous and creative people to address them. An AmeriCorps VISTA member serves as a catalyst for change, living and working alongside community members to advance local solutions.
Brendan Latimer -- Program and Evaluation Specialist
Brendan began his journey in public service as an AmeriCorps tutor at Great Oaks Legacy Charter High School in Newark, NJ. There, he tutored small groups of AP Literature students, assisted a master teacher as a grader and in-class aide, and ran the school's first debate club. Prior to this, Brendan helped facilitate an after-school literacy program at P.S/MS 164 in Queens and served as a Legislative Fellow for South Bronx Assemblyman Michael Blake. As Program and Evaluation Specialist, Brendan collects and analyzes data in order to identify key areas of growth, and communicate the organization's mission through compelling narratives and infographics.
Brendan is a staunch transit advocate, and believes that spatial inequality is one of the most pressing civil rights issues of our time. In the future, he plans on obtaining a masters degree in city and regional planning with a focus on transportation and land use. Brendan graduated from St. John's University with a BA in English Literature.
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Michael Coley no stranger to helping those who are incarcerated or have the status of a returning citizen. Michael is the CEO and founder of Fresh Start Correspondence a writing ministry that was formed more than seven years ago. It was established to encourage those who have seemed to have lost their way. Mr. Coley is dedicated to serving others. Michael is the Community Outreach Specialist with Heart-to-Heart, a Vista role that is definitely in line with his desire to help others. Michael is looking forward to a year of service with the Vista program.
Lindsay Szul- Community Events organizer
Lindsay Szul is the Community Events Organizer with Heart-to-Heart. Lindsay studied at Rowan University's College of Communications and Creative Arts, where she focuses on outreach and program planning. Working in a bookstore, she gained experience in event planning and customer service, and she is passionate about helping others and using her skills to make a positive impact. Overall, Lindsay is looking forward to serving her community through AmeriCorps, and grateful for this opportunity with Heart-to-Heart.