Iowa Campus Compact Welcomes Des Moines Civil and Human Rights as Newest Partner

January 29, 2019

Iowa Campus Compact is pleased to welcome Des Moines Civil and Human Rights as the newest partner in our mission to strengthen community-campus relationships. The organization will serve as a site for our VISTA Community Corps program.

“Unique projects like this allow our partners to meet very specific needs in their communities while building capacity for their organization is a sustainable way,” Emily Shields, Executive Director.

The VISTA Community Corps strives to eliminate poverty through campus-community partnerships by placing full-time capacity building support in community-based organizations and higher education institutions. VISTA members serve at 10 host sites across Iowa, focusing on economic opportunity, education, and healthy futures.

The Des Moines Civil and Human Rights Commission VISTA project will connect non-White and historically marginalized communities with economic opportunities to ensure all people can move up the socio-economic ladder. 14.6% of the Des Moines population is below the poverty level, of whom 87.3% are people of color. Over 70% of Des Moines K-12 students are participating in free or reduced lunch program, the majority of whom are non-White students. The VISTA member will collaborate with organizational partners and community members to build trust and establish a sustainable connection and relationship between individuals and opportunity providers. Through creating new partnerships, a community outreach system, and relationships with targeted communities, the VISTA will build capacity and create sustainable efforts for our work to ensure individuals are not stuck in the cycle of poverty.

“We are very excited partner with Iowa Campus Compact to host our first VISTA member, who will build and strengthen our capacity to address poverty in Des Moines by leading the project on eliminating economic inequities. Filling the economic and employment gap has been one of the greatest needs as well as our core interest as lead our equity efforts. We’re looking forward to having Holly help us with that, especially given her experience working with historically marginalized populations,” Manisha Paudel, Des Moines Civil and Human Rights Equity Coordinator.

Holly Clark will begin her VISTA service on February 4th.

Learn more about the Iowa Campus Compact VISTA Community Corps program. program.